Hello everyone , welcome to part two of the travelogue, this time we are in Lyon , the third largest city in France. We had a relative straight forward drive from Blois until we reached the outskirts of Lyon and spent the next hour in a traffic jam crawling along at barely snails pace. Apparently the World Cup Rugby was in town . We finally arrived at Hotelo Lyon Charite , our home for the next three nights.
Lyon is an interesting city for a visit with its mix of historical and architectural landmarks .On our first day we took advantage of a hop on/hop off tour bus to get acquainted with the city and to help us decide what to visit in depth later.
A view over the city from the Fouviere hill .
Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere was built with private funds between 1872 and 1896 to thank the Virgin Mary for having spared the city from invasion during the Franco-Prussian war.Its unique architecture is a mix of byzantine, gothic and romanesque and is quite impressive.
Vieux Lyon (old Lyon) is a charming area with its laneways , restaurants and cobbled streets. We had a lovely time simply wandering even though some parts are spoilt with tacky souvenir shops.
The Croix Rousse area was formerly home to Lyon’s silk weaving district. Ancient covered passageways named traboule were used by the silk workers to carry their heavy loads from their workshops down to the merchants at the foot of the hill . There are many of these but only a few are open to the public today. They are a fascinating part of the history of the silk workers . I only wish I had more time there to investigate further.
Lyon is also the home of two well preserved Roman theatres, sitting side by side in the Fourvière area.
The larger of these , the Theater of Fourvière, dates back to 15BC and now is part of an UNESCO world heritage site and is still used at times as a performance arena.
Lyon is a city of murals , this one depicting books from famous local authors was one of my favourites .
Many of the cities famous residents are also featured, this one is the well known chef , Paul Bocuse.
I thoroughly enjoyed our few days in Lyon , there was so much to see and do and we could have spent much more time there.
If you enjoy history , art and culture , as well as good food , Lyon after all is listed as the capital of gastronomy in France then I would suggest a visit but allow plenty of time .