Located easily between other key areas such as Marseille and Paris, Lyon is France's third largest city. It has a unique appeal thanks to its fascinating elaborate history. Once prominent in Ancient Rome, Lyon remains lovingly preserved as a world heritage site, featuring Italian architectural influences and narrow streets in the old part of the town free from heavy traffic. In fact Lyon even boasts a large network of hidden passageways or 'Traboules' as the French call them, used hundreds of years ago for moving silk manufacturing materials and again in World War II as urgent escape routes during the resistance.
Just under a mile in length the old town is home to a multitude ofshops, cafes and galleries to explore. Beyond the centre, Lyon also offers a variety of exquisite gardens to behold in addition to panoramic views of Lyon's religious architecture, colourful houses and charming local rivers, best seen high up on the city's surrounding hills.
A two-day break:
Two days spent in Lyon are perfect for a short getaway to explore the rich history of the old town in the city centre just 2 km away from Hotel Kyriad Lyon Centre - Croix Rousse. Begin day one with a stroll around the Place Bellecour taking in the spectacular buildings and marvel at the statue of Louis XIV in the Square's centre. Continue day one with a walking tour of the Traboules, deeply immersed in the ancient tunnels of Lyon. To make the most of day two, a trip to Cathedrale St-Jean, one of Lyon's most ancient and magnificent buildings, easily accessible using the city metro (Line D), is a must. Inside you will find thegrand astronomical clock for which the visit alone is worthwhile!
A week-long stay
A week to spend in Lyon is an excellent chance to relax at Hotel Kyriad Lyon Sainte Foy a few minutes south of the city centre. From the centre travel is effortless to the amazing Museum of Fine Arts using the local metro or via bus, to take in the 70 rooms packed with masterpieces by the likes of Pablo Picasso. Further cultural delights in Lyon include Fourvière hill accessible by cable car from Vieux Lyon on Metro Line D. In this region lies the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière likened by some as the Sacre coeur of Lyon withbreath-taking views. Also for those in search of historical gems venture to the nearby Gall-Roman Museum for fascinating insights into the city's past.
For a family holiday
For families heading to Lyon, the Parc de la Tête d'Or (Park of the Golden head) is sure to please all. Easily situated just 2km from the City centre, Hotel Kyriad Lyon Gare Perrache provides easy travel to this attraction. In addition to picturesque grounds the park boasts a thriving zoo, mini golf and a charming puppet theatre. Other local family-friendly attractions include local river tours on the Saone and the Rhone.
Lyon is one of the most accessible cities in France. The nearest airport is Saint-Exupéry Airport approximately from the city from which the TGV (a high speed train) can be taken into the city. Airlines serve many European destinations such as London, along with services to other French cities. There are two main train stations in the city itself (Part-Dieu station and Perrache) with excellent links to the rest of France. From Paris the TGV can be taken to both stations in Lyon. By road Lyon can be reached by several motorways (A6, A7, A47 and A43). With a variety of such links by road, coaches and bus companies regularly travel to Lyon.
Famed for its delectable food and home to many fine chefs such as Paul Bocuse, Lyon is especially known for its Bouchons. These are authentic restaurants serving traditional dishes such as roast pork and duck pâté. Known for its specialities such as its unique cheese dip, Lyon also boasts numerous local food market which are notoriously of very high quality located in areas such asCroix-Rousse.
One of the most notable events in Lyon is the Festival of Lights (Fête des lumières). This festival is held annually every December from the 8th onwards for several days. During this period residents place candles in their windowsills with the city building facades gloriously illuminated and regular celebratory displays, truly a sight to behold. Other events held in the city include Lyon's homage to its part in the history and current contributions to film as birthplace of the Lumière brothers (Louis and Auguste) who invented the cinema. The annual Lumière Grand Lyon Film festival celebrates an assortment of world class cinematography. Held typically in the beginning of October the festival is in held central and greater Lyon at a range of cinemas.
An artistic city, Lyon is home to over 100 painted murals depicting both surreal and traditional elements of Lyonnaise life.