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A great Lyon experience

Have you spent time in Lyon? We'll be there for about a week next summer. Looking for ideas... What are some of your experiences and recommendations? Best area of the city to stay in, (we'll do Airbnb), good restaurants (we're vegetarian, though!) , public transportation and day trips from Lyon, fun things to do. All input appreciated! Merci!

Posted by
11158 posts

Do you have Rick Steves France? He has a very good Lyon chapter - take a look and see what interests you. He also has all the details on public transit, which is excellent, although much of what you want to see in Lyon is walkable. Do be sure to take line D of the metro. It's driverless, so when you stand in the front, Rick is right when he says you feel like you're piloting your own starship.

The Resistance Museum (which has a lot of material on collaboration as well as resistance) and the Lumiere museum were highlights for me, as was just walking around - I really like the vibe in the city.

The one thing Rick didn't list that I enjoyed was the Parc de la Tete d'Or. It's a large city park, and on a nice day it seems the whole town is there enjoying themselves.

Posted by
4125 posts

Kate,

I loved Lyon, and I do not think you will find it hard to find things to do! The chapter in Rick's book is very good, and the helpful TI has tons of information and a city card that is one of the best travel deals around.

Two things not mentioned in Rick's book that I particularly enjoyed: using the bike-share system to get about, and visiting a greenmarket on the banks of one of the rivers. (I did both things at once, actually.)

Do read some guidebooks before you go! Chance favors the prepared mind.

Posted by
25 posts

Thank you, Adam. I am adding your tips to my list - they sound like winners!

Posted by
182 posts

Consider a tour with Lyon Greeter. Mine was awesome!

Posted by
768 posts

I spent four days in Lyon in May and loved the city,plenty to do really enjoyed Notre Dame Cathedral on the hill along with the views of the city and the Roman Arena and museum.We also enjoyed the Resistance Museum and the many great restaurants.We stayed in the Presqu'ile district which is centrally located.We had a car so we day tripped to Beaune,great place to visit.
Mike

Posted by
3340 posts

I have spent 6 weeks in Lyon, just returning at the end of July. I would recommend staying in the Croix Rousse area because it is has fabulous restaurants and great metro connections. There are lot of Air BnB in the area. It is the 4th arrondissement. My favorite museum is the Musee de Tissus, the silk museum. I also used Rick Steves' chapter for Lyon and found it very helpful. I also think the Lyon City Greeter experience is very helpful and fun. If you are interested in a very high quality cooking class in Lyon, I would recommend Lucy at Plum Lyon. She is American but has a certificate from France in Pastry but is also well trained in all the culinary areas. Her classes are fascinating. If you want more detailed information on restaurants and food shops in Lyon, just private message me. Even if you don't stay in the Croix Rousse, the outdoor market is amazing and is held everyday except Monday. The St. Antoine market near the Saone is beautiful as well. J'AIME LYON!!

Posted by
25 posts

Merci, Cyn, for your fantastic suggestions. I like all of them! I was especially interested in figuring out which arrondissement would be the best one to stay in, in terms of walkability, public transportation and charm, so that is really helpful. And we adore markets, so that is also a good tip.
Since you know the city well, I'll let you know if I have any more specific questions between now and next May!
KateN

Posted by
11743 posts

I spent a couple nights there in September. The arenas and basilica on the hill are worth visiting. I also drove to Vienne to see Roman Ruins/Museum (closed on Mondays) and to Perouges to see the medieval town (maybe too perfect?).

The food choice is a bouchon, traditional Lyonaise fare. Most places now offer vegetarian options. There are probably too many cafes now that call themselves bouchon. Few had the types of food I was told to seek out.

I met locals who were friendly and down to Earth, which is always nice.