Please sign in to post.

Lyon: any recommendations?

We will be in Lyon for three nights in September, staying in Villeurbanne near the Parc de la Tete d'Or. After reading comments from Phillip and Ed that sound great, I wondered if anyone has a favorite thing to do in and around the town.
We will, of course, be seeking good food, and we don't need to eat in Michelin starred restaurants though we wouldn't mind it. We'd like to get to a couple of the listed-or not-Bouchons. We are film enthusiasts and will visit the Musee Lumiere. We are interested in art museums especially where there is a local story or connection. I have also read about "traboules"-old passageways, has anyone seen any of them?
We can hang on to our rental car for an extra day if there are notable small villages to see on a daytrip within 20-40 km away.
Any input is appreciated.
Dave

Posted by
4684 posts

The Lumiere museum is interesting but I seem to remember when I was there last year there wasn't very much English labelling. I read French fairly well so didn't enquire about English audioguides or leaflets.

The big areas for traboules are the old city or Vieux Lyon and the Croix Rousse area. Some are very atmospheric and impressive. You can get leaflets to them at the tourist office, or most guide books will point out significant ones. Remember that many of them run through what are still residential buildings, so don't make too much noise. One small warning is that some of the Croix Rousse ones include level changes, which can involve quite long and steep staircases.

The Beaux-Arts museum isn't incredible but does have some nice artworks. The big art interest in Lyon is the multiple murals on the sides of buildings that are dotted all over the place.

Posted by
2246 posts

Thanks Phillip, I was not aware of the Croix-Rousse area of the city until you mentioned it in the other post. The Traboules sound even better now, and we will be quiet. I'll look at the Lumiere site a bit to see if English audioguide is available. We look forward to the murals, I did not know that, either.

Any other input on Lyon will be welcome.
Dave

Posted by
380 posts

Hi, Dave

Definitely eat at one of the Bouchons. We had our best meal at Le Vivarais. We ordered the Lyon classic of quenelle with lobster sauce, 19 euro at lunch. So, heavenly. The Chamber of Commerce has the list of Bouchon Lyonnais with links to the restaurants. I had no trouble making a reservation on-line. The chef went to every table and greeted everyone. I got a photo of myself and him. It was a very memorable experience.
Another fun food adventure is to go to the Las Halles food market. This is where professionals buy their products. The prices are a bit higher. We went with our cruise tour guide so I don't remember the tram stop, but it's not far from the center of town.
The old quarter is very nice to walk about, but loaded with touristy restaurants and shops. Avoid it on weekends nights when young people go there to party. Personally, I found the traboules to be nothing special. They're just narrow passageways between two buildings connecting two parallel streets. Seeing one was enough.
The Notre Dame de Fourviere is very beautiful. It was built 500 years later than St. Chapelle in Paris, so the stain glass is a lighter blue with more whites, not so dark as St. Chapelle. The floors, walls and ceiling are decorated with glass, colored tiles which are gorgeous. If you are up there to see the Roman amphitheater, it is worth going onto the basilica.
If you are a fitness buff, you can rent bikes to ride along the river or go up into the hills. Walking/jogging along the river was very peaceful.
Enjoy.

Posted by
2246 posts

Thanks Chun, that's great information. The Les Halles market sounds really interesting. And we will visit the amphitheater and Notre Dame.

Thanks again,
Dave

Posted by
3101 posts

If you're there on the weekend check out the Sunday market on the banks of the Saône. There are the booksellers on one side and the food market and craft sellers on the other. We enjoyed it!

Posted by
5 posts

My husband and I visited Lyon in late October of 2012 and we absolutely loved it! If interested in a day trip, I would suggest Vienne as it is only a 20 minute train ride from Lyon. It's a lovely small town filled with medieval churches and incredible Roman ruins, including the Garden of Cybele which is free and open to the public. There is a beautiful view of the city from atop Mount Pipet.

Posted by
2246 posts

Good to know, we can stop on our way in from Avignon. Looks great!
Thanks