The Top 10 Must Be Seen Places in Lyon
So where is that you would like me to start with this ‘difficult’ task? Firstly, there is more than 10 places that you should see in Lyon and secondly I am totally in love with Lyon. But ok, I do understand that the space it limited so let me present you the Compact List of The Top 10 Must Be Seen Places in Lyon!
Vieux Lyon (Old Town)
– is definitely my number 1! What I would suggest is to get lost in Lyon’s most atmospheric place and start discovering this wonderful old town. There are many small shops, many little cafes, many traditional restaurants. This is a place to find a typical bouchon and try Lyonnais specialities. You can have a heart warming traditional meal or try the Lyonnais sweets and famous praline desserts. Vieux Lyon is a place where you can discover its history. I would recommend a quick visit to 2 beautiful churches: Cathedral Saint Jean Baptiste and the Church Saint-Georges. But also and mostly, you will find out the history of the silk production by following the famous ‘traboules’. Those covered passageways that function as public hallways through the quarters of private houses were used by silk workers to transport their fabrics. Nowadays, they are open to public and need to be found so it is exciting adventures to visit hidden spots of Old Town. And here I have a good news for you, because those traboules carry on and reach my number 2 favorite place in Lyon…
Colline de la Croix-Rousse
– which is a wonderful hillside full of the small hidden streets, many charming curves and staircases. Here you will discover even more “traboules” and there are maps and apps which you can review before and follow to see all the hidden spots. They are free to visit and a great way of appreciating Lyonnais history and beauty. Not to mention the fact that Croix Rousse is a Must Be Seen Place in Lyon because of the specific artistic atmosphere and beautiful view. There are many bars with unique atmosphere, specific restaurants, old style shops and food market in the mornings.
is number 3 for me. Although it can easily compete with the top two. You can walk up to the Fourvière Hill if you are adventurous enough as it is a high hill to reach or you can take the famous old style metro called funicular which will take you there. Whatever you choose, it will give you great different experiences, either you have a fun ride up or you will admire amazing views as you walk. Once you reach Fourvière be ready to become speechless! You will face one of the most beautiful basilicas in the world. You can visit the Basillique de Notre Dame anytime and/or take part in the masses which are still being organized there. I would just say that the Sunday performances are amazing when the church is filled with music, lights and people. So if you have a chance, pop over on Sunday! Then you should have a walk around the Colline de Fourvière and Esplanade de la Basilique de Fourvière to enjoy the views of the city. Don’t forget to visit the beautiful Le Parc des Hauteurs which surrounds the Basilique and once you follow the path you might happen to reach another stunning place of Lyon which you must see. It is…
Théâtre Antique de Fourvière,
its garden and Musée de la Civilisation Gallo-Romaine. This is another UNESCO’s World Heritage sites in Lyon. It is quite impressive. Spread out across 5 floors, it displays statues, models of what the Roman town used to look like and some superb mosaics. The collection covers 5 centuries of preserving the Lyonnais heritage from across their ruins, inscriptions and objects, statues, currency, and ceramics. And on Thursdays, it is free to everyone. But to be honest, just being around the Théâtre Antique de Fourvière is an amazing experience.
Le Marche de Creation
– so once you decided to visit Fourviere on Sunday and walked down back to Old Lyon, there is a place you should be. It is the morning Sunday impressive and famous Market of Lyon on where over 150 artists are registered and the impressive different style ranges of the paintings, photography, crafts, sculptures and engravings are displayed each Sunday. So don’t miss it! Admire the real artists of Lyon and if you get a bit hungry, pop over to the other side of the river where the biggest Lyonnais Food Market is located. It has regional, fresh & good quality products, many specialities across fruits, vegetables, bread, desserts, wines, meat, cheese and takeaways…Bon Appetit!
which is nearby and its my personal favorite Lyonnais museum. Don’t get me wrong, there are bigger and more famous museums in Lyon such as Musée des Beaux-Arts and Musée des Confluences, and I would highly recommend to visit them. But with the Museum of Cinema and Miniature I am simply in love….Located in the heart of the Vieux Lyon, it is so easy to find! It is situated in an impressive 16th century building of the Maison des Avocats which is a UNESCO world heritage site. It consists of the 2 parts: the Movies Special Effects displaying about 300 elements with the latest musuem gain which is Alien Queen created by Hollywood studio ADI, and the Miniature Part with about 100 miniature scenes created by world-renowned miniaturists and lead by the miniaturist artist Dan Ohlmann, the Musée Cinéma et Miniature founder.
– now it is high time to explore the biggest market of Lyon and one of the biggest markets in France. It is located in the Presqu’ile district so the area between the Rhône and Saône Rivers and just next to the Old Lyon. You will find there an impressive statue of Louis XIV, the splendid 17th-century building – the current Musée des Hospices Civils –Hôtel-Dieu de Lyon and the nearby access to the most famous Shopping Street ….Rue de Republique which I don’t think I need to convince you to visit. It has all the famous shops, the brands you know worldwide but also typical French ones. It is packed with restaurants and places where you can get free wifi and a good coffee….Starbucks and McDonalds as well
Les Halles de Lyon Paul Bocus
is another place which I would highly recommend visiting in Lyon. Lyon is the Capital of Gastronomy so it is an obligation to discover the Lyonnais cuisine and its specialities. Get the feel of Lyonnais best quality food, visit this indoors marketplace with over 50 different shops and restaurants that offer the highest quality regional products: charcuteries, local cheeses, fresh bread, escargots, quenelles, fruits, vegetables, pâtisserie, and chocolates.
Saône and Rhône riversides
– now let me recommend you to spend some time by the river. And there are 2 rivers to choose from. I love the idea of Lyon having Saône and Rhône and more opportunity for a lovely walk, jogging, riding a bike and relax. Take a walk alongside the Rhône riverbank. You will pass many boat restaurants and bars…it’s a good idea to stop for a drink and enjoy the atmosphere! Get energy back and if you still strong enough for walking there is a part of the riverside redesigned over the five kilometres between Raymond Poincaré Bridge and the entrance to Gerland Park and also the place where those 2 rivers merger. Reach the Confluence district and see it yourself how Rhône overtakes Saône.
Parc de la Tete d’Or
– lastly but most importantly! This is a place that you cannot omit in Lyon. And what is more, you are going to spend there a lot of time and might come back many more times. Simply because it is totally worth it and because there are so much to do. So you can take a small boat at the lake, visit the Botanic Garden, the Garden of Roses, the Free Zoo and you can have a lunch here. I won’t reveal more details as I would like you to be surprised by the park as I had been when I went there for the first time! I enjoyed it a lot! And I am curios to know what you did like the most…
So how did you like My Compact List Of Places Must Be Seen in Lyon? Do you know them all? Which is your favorite one or would you suggest any other place that should be visited in Lyon? Let us know! And in the meantime, make sure you visit those places for the first time or re-visit them as I guarantee its a lovely experience and super way of spending free quality time in Lyon.