In February, I arranged a ©Travel with Wendy adventure to the annual Lemon Fest in the French Riviera. As part of our itinerary, I included a half way stop in the town of Lyon, France. This would be my first time visiting this majestic city and now after having been, I know I will visit again and again. This must-see city has everything, from history, architecture, culture, shopping, ease of transportation and good eats, its the pièce de résistance of all things French.
The Tourism office is quite helpful and busy. Street maps including walking tours are free, we just had to take a number and wait to be served, it was that busy in February. I can only imagine during the summer months.
Lyon is one of France’s UNESCO World Heritage cities beginning with the Romans and has several sites that are still in tact. Even though we were only there for one day, we were able to see quite a few sites. Lyon can be traced back to 43 B.C. when the Romans called it, Lugdunum and has played an important role politically, religiously and culturally. A fiscally important city during the Renaissance, Lyon was notably important for it’s trade routes and built up trading on both rivers the Saône and the Rhone.
Notre Dame de Fourvière
Amphitheatre de Trois Gaules
Although we didn’t make it to the Amphitheatre in Lyon on our 24-hour journey I anticipate seeing it this summer – I’ll upload the pictures here after we visit in July. The Amphitheatre is near another garden of Lyon. I can’t wait to see it too.
Palais de Justice
St. Jean Cathedrale
Shopping along the Saône
Shopping zone – Les Brotteaux
Lyon is shaped similarly like Paris, several of the sites to see are on the island and accessible by bridges, rail and some roads (certain roads.) I encourage people to take the train. Public transportation around Lyon is super easy, whether you stay on the island (Presqu’île – heart of the city) or in the surrounding area.
When we used the train, it would not accept cash, credit or debit cards only and ironically only my American (chipped) card. Luckily, after trying several different cards we made it work. Don’t panic if you miss a train, they run about 3 to 5 minutes apart you can just get the next one.
City of Illumination
Every December, Lyon is the city of lights, they are also leading the way in Europe as one of THE lit illumination cities. It’s absolutely stunning to walk the streets at night in Lyon as the city comes to light.
Yummy treats and eats!
As with most restaurants in major cities, it’s a good idea to make reservations for larger groups. We were lucky enough to get in at the Cafe du Soleil on short notice and it was quite delicious. Unique setting in this narrow street cafe – truly French!
My next visit to Lyon is only a few months away as we stop back by on way from Provence! I look forward to finding more and adding to this blog! France has so much to discover the adventures are just beginning ~ For more information on our upcoming journey to the Provence region click the image below.