Lyon is a archetype of heritage

City with unique architectural, cultural and gastronomic heritage

Founded by the Romans, with many preserved historical areas, Lyon is a vibrant metropolis which makes the most out of its unique architectural, cultural and gastronomic heritage. Lyon has dynamic demographics and posseses a strategic location between Northern and Southern Europe.

Lyon may not have world-famous monuments such as the Eiffel tower or the Statue of Liberty, but it offers very diverse neighborhoods which are interesting to explore and discover hidden architectural marvels.

 

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Lyon is the archetype of the heritage city
 

All periods of Lyon's 2000 year history have left visible traces in the city's architectural and cultural heritage, from Roman ruins to Renaissance palaces to contemporary skyscrapers.

Very few cities in the world boast such diversity in their urban structure and architecture. Early traces of settlement date back to 12,000 BC Lugdunum, the Roman name of the city, was officially founded in 43 BC.

The first Roman settlements were on Fourvière hill, and the first inhabitants were probably veterans of Caesar's war campaigns. Lugdunum was the place where the first Christian communities of Gaul appeared.

It was also where the first martyrdoms took place, most notably in 177 AD when the young slave Blandine was killed in the Amphithéâtre des Trois Gaules.


The Nuits de Fourvière festival, from June to early August
 

In Summer, Lyon hosts The Nuits de Fourvière festival, from June to early August. The Roman theatres of Lyon host various shows such as concerts of popular music, jazz, classical, dancing, theatre and cinema.

Acclaimed international artists are often seduced by the special atmosphere of the theatres. 


Lyon, the city of lights
 

Lyon has an international reputation for the lighting of buildings, and not only during the December festival of lights. When the sun sets, many major monuments such as the City Hall, Hôtel-Dieu or the Fourvière basilica are illuminated in a spectacular way.

The Lyon II and Lyon III University buildings along the Rhône are  among the most beautiful illuminations. Another local specialty is its painted walls. About 100 trompe-l'oeils of all sizes can be seen around the city.


Lyon's old town
 

The region of Beaujolais, north of Lyon, is famed worldwide for the "Beaujolais nouveau", released on the 3rd Thursday of November each year.

Look for the best winemakers in the ten crus, most notably Juliénas, Fleurie, Morgon, Chénas and Moulin-à-Vent.

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All periods of Lyon's 2000 year history have left visible traces in the city's architectural and cultural heritage, from Roman ruins to Renaissance palaces to contemporary skyscrapers.

Very few cities in the world boast such diversity in their urban structure and architecture. Early traces of settlement date back to 12,000 BC Lugdunum, the Roman name of the city, was officially founded in 43 BC.

The first Roman settlements were on Fourvière hill, and the first inhabitants were probably veterans of Caesar's war campaigns. Lugdunum was the place where the first Christian communities of Gaul appeared.

It was also where the first martyrdoms took place, most notably in 177 AD when the young slave Blandine was killed in the Amphithéâtre des Trois Gaules.


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The Nuits de Fourvière festival, from June to early August, the Roman theatres host various shows such as concerts of popular music, jazz, classical, dancing, theatre and cinema.

International artists who usually fill up much larger venues are often seduced by the special atmosphere of the theatres. Nuits sonores, is an increasingly popular festival dedicated to electronic music, every year in May.

The Biennials. Lyon alternatively hosts a dancing (even years) and a contemporary art (odd years) biennials from September to December and January.

The dancing biennial is traditionally opened by a street parade in which inhabitants of the Greater Lyon take part through neighborhood associations. If you are in town at this moment, do not miss this colorful and fun event.


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Lyon may not have world-famous monuments such as the Eiffel tower or the Statue of Liberty, but it offers very diverse neighborhoods which are interesting to walk around and discover hidden architectural marvels. A good way to explore it may be to get lost somewhere and enjoy what comes up, and not to always follow the guide.

Local specialties Lyon has an international reputation for the lighting of buildings, and not only during the December 8th festival. When the sun sets, many major monuments such as the City Hall, Hôtel-Dieu or the Fourvière basilica are illuminated in a spectacular way.

The Lyon II and Lyon III University buildings along the Rhône are also among the most beautiful illuminations. Another local specialty is painted walls. About 100 trompe-l'oeils of all sizes can be seen around the city.


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The region of Beaujolais, north of Lyon, is famed worldwide for the "Beaujolais nouveau", released on the 3rd Thursday of November each year. Look for the best winemakers in the ten crus, most notably Juliénas, Fleurie, Morgon, Chénas and Moulin-à-Vent.

Their value for money is excellent and the best wines tend to acquire a "Burgundian" taste with age. Winemakers are usually very welcoming and the area is very beautiful.

Go skiing from Lyon. In winter, the nearest ski resorts are less than two hours away. Coaches depart from Lyon between 6 and 7AM and come back around 8PM. This is a convenient way to go skiing

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