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1.8 miles from downtown
Vaise is undergoing major remedial work. A Vaise-lift, if you will. Once an industrial heartland, apartments and offices have replaced the factories of old. Grab a “Vélo’v” (city bike) and trundle along the riverbank, or pop across to Île Barbe. Speed freaks can get a risk-free adrenaline fix at the I-Way simulator of Formula 1 and fighter jets.
Places to stay from $25 a night
2.3 miles from downtown
Appearances can deceive. Looking at this quiet district, with its sleepy streets and humble houses, you’d never guess at its huge global significance. But this is the crucible of cinema – the Musée Lumière is where two local brothers made the world’s first motion picture. Catch an afternoon showing before chomping on fine steak at Monplaisir Côté Cour.
Places to stay from $39 a night
0.9 miles from downtown
When in Rhône! This riverside district is perfect for a stroll along the banks. On sunny days, locals unwind on the grass on the Berge du Rhône promenade, and cafés waft enticing aromas downstream. Rest awhile before ducking into Argenson Restaurant, famed for its succulent steak tartare. Then cap the day off with a gig at Halle Tony Garnier.
Places to stay from $20 a night
1.2 miles from downtown
A walk in the park. This district straddles Parc de la Tête d’Or, a haven of lawns and lake where locals come to leave modern life behind. On one side of the park, hungry families munch on burgers at Street Art, and bagel lovers are indulged in Chères Cousines. On the other, visiting businessmen set up shop in Cité Internationale Congress Centre.
Places to stay from $48 a night
0.5 miles from downtown
Feel the weight of history. Under the watchful eye of the lofty Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière, these streets are a maze of revelations. Duck into the “traboules” (narrow alleyways) to see where you end up. Tuck into a hearty lunch in a traditional “bouchon” restaurant before cutting a rug at L'Alibi or La Grange au Bouc.
Places to stay from $47 a night
1.4 miles from downtown
La Croix-Rousse is firmly woven into Lyon’s history. This is where the “canuts” (silk workers) used to operate the looms that made the city rich. Head up to Le Gros Caillou viewpoint before making a silky-smooth descent, winding your way past countless Bohemian boutiques flogging funky jewellery, handmade puppets or organic grub.
Places to stay from $36 a night
1.3 miles from downtown
The sky’s the limit in Part-Dieu. This business district solved its growing need for office space by building upwards. Skyscrapers sprout out of the concrete at ten a penny, from the pencil-shaped Tour Part-Dieu to the glass-bound Tour Incity. To disconnect from the rat race, touch the culinary heavens in chef Paul Bocuse’s Halles de Lyon.
Places to stay from $34 a night
0.2 miles from downtown
Land ho! Positioned between Lyon’s two rivers, La Presqu’île is known as “Almost an Island”. And it’s filled with treasures. Spend your pieces of eight on Rue de la République or in the flashy shopping centre, Confluence. If you’ve worked up a buccaneer’s appetite, set a course for Rue Mercière; this narrow passage is famed for its top-notch eateries.
Places to stay from $44 a night
0.8 miles from downtown
This district never sleeps. During the day, culture vultures flock to Musée des Beaux Arts to feast their eyes on works by Rodin, Renoir and Rubens. At dusk, Opéra de Lyon is a beacon that beckons opera buffs. Join the buzz at joints like Les Fils à Maman (don’t miss the Kinder tiramisu). Then, boogie into the wee hours on Rue Sainte Catherine.
Places to stay from $25 a night
Founded by the Romans in 43 BCE, Lyon is France's third-largest city and has a buzzing cultural and food scene. It's also the birthplace of cinema, with a popular museum dedicated to the Lumière brothers' revolutionary invention, now located in their former house. The city sits at the meeting point of the Rhône and the Saône rivers and is the capital of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region.
The centrepiece is the UNESCO-listed Renaissance old town, Vieux Lyon. Here you can wander through secluded passageways called "traboules," originally designed to let people pass from street to street without leaving the building. Take a leisuresly stroll on Rue Saint-Jean for the impressive Gothic cathedral, as well as Rue du Bœuf for its designer stores and Michelin star restaurants.
Other main attractions include the Parc de la Tête d'Or, the Fourvière basilica, and a number of museums including the Musée des Confluences, Musée des Beaux-Arts, and Musées Gadagne. On top of all this, Lyonhas an exciting nightlife and shopping scene – this city has it all.
Planes and trains are the easiest ways to reach the city, with Eurostar services arriving at Part-Dieu station and flights landing at Saint-Exupéry Airport, 15 miles east of Lyon.
From $72 per night
From $124 per night
From $119 per night
|Most popular time to visit||June-August|
|Cheapest time to visit||March-May|
|Local currency||€ 1 = $1.12|
|Average weekend price||$114 per night|
|Average weekday price||$116 per night|
|Average stay||1 night|
I highly recommend a bus tour of Lyon as well as eating at as many places as possible; we didn't find one bad place to eat and I think that says a lot about the area. Stay at the hotel Celestin because its charm is as wonderful as the staff.
Lyon is a wonderful, walkable small city with tons of shopping, historical architecture, and restaurants--definitely a city to be experienced on foot. If you come by car, park it and walk or take public transport, then fetch it up at the end of your trip. The basilica is beautiful and well worth a visit, but also take time to walk around and discover the odd shops and smaller churches and museums that dot the landscape.
This city is wonderful to explore. There are so many things to see, eat, and drink. I would plan, at the very least, 3 full days to explore. The public transit is great and easy to use. I would recommend getting the city pass. It gets you into many museums and exhibitions for free and discounts on others. It also is your public transport card and gets you discounts on the city bikes, and possibly the scooters.
A great city to just walk around and find places to eat. The food is great and the riverside ambiance is impressive, especially at night. Visit Toutes Les Couleurs for some of the best french vegan food and then walk it off by heading up to the fouvriere for awesome views.
It reminded me very much of Paris - if Paris had more nature and far fewer tourists! A beautiful space for riverside walking and enjoying a café, and taking in the historic sites. Wonderful ambiance!
Only one short day of sightseeing - hampered by sprained ankle, strikes and protest marches! But Le Vieux Lyon had some must sees - La Basilique de Notre Dame de Fourvière, Cathédrale de St Jean and Le Vieux Lyon streets. Very surprising bonus of Musée du Cinéma et de la Miniature in an amazing old "condemned" tenement building. The Brasserie Georges was chanced upon as next door to the Kyriad Hotel (Gare Pernache). A famous institution I should have discovered in my research but hadn't. Great experience of old world charm!
From $132 per night 9.8 Exceptional 172 reviews
From $202 per night 9.7 Exceptional 124 reviews
From $118 per night 9.6 Exceptional 103 reviews
From $70 per night 9.5 Exceptional 107 reviews
From $111 per night 9.4 Awesome 142 reviews