Lyon is where I would go to get away from Paris and still feel I am in a big city! Lyon is best known for its Gastronomy, the birth place of French Nouvelle Cuisine, and silk, the oldest silk factories dating back to 400 years.
Yet, Lyon is a modern, hip, safe, and simply beautiful city with an amazingly active night life. I love Lyon and hope to live there for a period of time. YOU can’t possibly go to a bad restaurant in Lyon, it is so not Lyonnaise!
The tourism office staff are delightful and very accommodating, make a stop there and get acquainted with Lyon.
Where to Start
A huge part of the French culture is the art of eating! When in Lyon, you eat only the best and you can start at any of Paul Bocuse’s restaurants, depending on your budget. If you are on a tight budget, do indulge 50 euros or so and go to “L’institut de Paul Bocuse” for a culinary experience that you will never forget. See Art of Eating for mouthwatering details.
Then, I suggest when in Lyon, take a cooking class as soon as possible, then wander the city and region! Here are couple of wonderful schools that will teach in English:
- The Plum – a trip to the market and voilà you start cooking with expert instructions.
- Wine and cooking – what could be better right?
Next, visit the old town and the formidable Fourvière Basilica , yes the view is amazing but your jaw will drop when you walk into this marvel of a cathedral.
With 9 quartiers, there is plenty that you can see and still feel you need more time. So here are a list of my favorite places:
- Walking over the bridges of the Saone and Rhône rivers, during the day and specially at night!
- With 15 museums, if there was only one you could see make it to be the modern beauty of Musée des Confluences, go there around 5 PM so you can see it at night. The museum is a work of art itself and the acoustics are one of a kind.
Where to stay
Lyon is divided to 9 quartiers, or Arrondissements, and each are filled with amazing restaurants, art galleries or museums, great discoveries and shops. I have stayed in the 2nd and 5th, the Bellcour and Old Lyon. Love both locations and would stay there again and again. Lyon is walkable and has a metro.
Here are a few suggestions:
- Lyon Traboules in the old town offer many high end Airbnb
- Cours de Loge offers the best of old and modern world.
From Grenoble, to Albertville, to Chamonix and the splendid Val d’Isere, skiers, snow boarders, bikers, and hikers paradise , known as the French Alps, is only 1-2 hours away from Lyon. Host of multiple Winter Olympics, the French Alps offer skiing for all levels. From the bunny hills of Semnoz to the majestic Mount Blanc.
More, coming soon.