Lyon

Lyon Travel Guide

The second-largest city in France may, in some ways, sit in the shadow of Paris, but Lyon has long held its own as another city that makes France a divine place to visit. Once a powerhouse in the silk trade, Lyon still offers world-class art, fantastic shopping and easy access to the Rhone Valley, home to some of the most stunning scenery in Western Europe — not to mention some world-class wines. (For silks, you can still browse the local Hermès boutique today.) And if one of your main reasons for wanting to visit France is to dine on some of the best cuisine in the world, Lyon is a vital stop on your itinerary.

Things Not to Miss in Lyon

Use this Lyon travel guide to plot your course through this cosmopolitan city. Take in some of the most alluring sights and activities Lyon has to offer, including:

• Strolling around Vieux Lyon to see Europe’s oldest Renaissance Quarter

• Watching an early film classic at Institut Lumiere, the birthplace of cinematography

• Visiting the Lyon Fine Arts Museum, showcasing France’s best collection of sculptures and paintings outside Paris

• Seeing the original guignols, or French marionettes, at Musée des Marionnettes du Monde

When to Visit Lyon

The Lyon travel season never really ends, since there are activities all year round. Summer can get hot, which makes it even nicer to go canoeing or take boat rides. Travel to Lyon has another surge in winter, given the nearby Alps and the indoor attractions of the city — plus, if you visit Lyon in December, you can see the renowned Festival of Lights.

Articles about Lyon

  I first came to Lyons in 2011 to watch the Bocuse d’Or, the world’s most prestigious cooking competition. Held every two years, the Bocuse is an extraordinary spectacle—a kind of gastronomic Super Bowl. It takes place in a cavernous auditoriu...
See our slideshow of the World’s Top Late-Night Restaurants How do you coax Anthony Bourdain, Daniel Boulud, and four other celebrated, eternally busy Manhattan chefs to sit down for three hours? Put them in the company of friends and culinary ...
The walls of the Gallo-Roman amphitheaters in the Rhône Valley city of Lyons will shake to the beats of the music festival Fourvière Nights (33-4/72-57-15-40; www.nuits-de-fourviere.org; through August 6). In attendance: Ravi Shankar, Lenny Kravit...
For us, no souvenir is sexier than a taste of something discovered on our travels--farmhouse goat cheese from the Pyrenees, Isle of Skye smoked salmon, a rose-colored soft drink from Ladakh, India. But who wants to lug such delicacies home?A stink...
"Turin is terrible," said my friend Remo Guidieri, a writer and an anthropologist, of his native town. "Don't go there." He himself moved to Paris—the city on which Turin was, after all, modeled. But Remo might not have his delicious contempt for ...
The chambermaid couldn't resist. She had to peek inside Madame's cosmetics bag. (After all, it was her job to pack up the suite by checkout.) There it was, lying open on the marble vanity, contents scattered. Next to it was the gentleman's dop kit...
See our slideshow of the World’s Top Fast-Food Restaurants. Who liked potato chips in their sandwiches as a kid?Superstar chef Bobby Flay, that’s who. At Flay’s latest venture, Bobby’s Burger Palace, the award-winning chef is recapturing his yout...
Ask Mark Driving from Paris to Avignon By Mark Orwoll Mark Orwoll, seasoned traveler and T&L Managing Editor, is here to help you with your travel questions. Think of him as your personal concierge, and ask ...
Places selling sustenance to passersby are at least as old as Pompeii. But it took the French to invent the restaurant. In late-18th-century Paris, people for the first time were able to eat what they wanted, when they wanted, with the added filli...