Lyon Cultural Heritage

Staying in Lyon gives you a real opportunity to discover culture. The second largest city in France has earned international recognition as a World Heritage site.

Places you mustn’t miss!

There are many areas in the city center that lend themselves to enjoyable visits. These include Place Bellecour, Place des Terreaux and the Presqu'île, as well as La Guillotière and the Rhône quays.
Lyon Cultural Heritage

The Presqu’île is the center of Lyon
Located between the Rhône and Saône rivers, this district features large administrative and cultural buildings, such as the Hôtel de Ville (city hall), the Museum of Fine Arts, the Célestins Theater, the Chamber of commerce and the Lyon National Opera.
Rue de la République and the streets perpendicular and parallel to it comprise a popular shopping area. Don’t be surprised if on Monday or Saturday during the sales periods or at the crack of dawn, you have difficulty making your way along the street. You won’t be the only one window shopping!

The banks of the Rhône
People from Lyon love to stroll and picnic here, during the day and in the evening. Wooden deck chairs, barges and green lawns add a vacation feel to your walk.

La Croix-Rousse:
A neighborhood of artists and craftspeople, perched on a hill.

La Guillotière:
This is where university faculties were historically located. Here, you will find grocery stores and restaurants, as well as African, Asian and Indian shops.

During the day, Lyon is a very pleasant city to visit and features surroundings on a very human scale. You can easily vary your itinerary for an enjoyable stroll. And when night falls and Lyon lights up, you’ll fall completely under the spell of the city.

Find out more about Lyon’s cultural heritage and the city’s remarkable sites on the cultural portal of the City of Lyon

Office du Tourisme et des Congrès de Lyon, Place Bellecour 69002 Lyon – Tel. 04 72 77 69 69 -
Open seven days a week: Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Tourism Office proposes auto-guided visits. To enjoy Lyon at your own pace, rent an audio-guide for 8 euros, follow the suggested itinerary and learn all about the history of the Croix-Rousse or Vieux-Lyon districts.

Some suggestions for visiting Lyon

© Métropole de Lyon
© Métropole de Lyon
Some itineraries for visiting Lyon
Lyon "traboules"
The history of Lyon streets

The Roman theater on Fourvière Hill
Built in 15 B.C., this theater is the site of the annual Nuits de Fourvière festival, which is held from the beginning of June to the end of July.
17 Rue Cléberg, 69005 Lyon – Tel. 04 72 38 49 30
Open access daily from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., September to April, and from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. the rest of the year.

Vieux-Lyon (the old city)
Three districts stand out: Saint-Paul, Saint-Jean and Saint-Georges (from north to south). Those who love old stone buildings and ancient houses will enjoy this lively historical neighborhood, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
Interactive map, photo galleries, explanations and 3D views on

Lyon, “traboules” are interior passageways that lead from one street to another. They contain many architectural curiosities, such as Renaissance façades, spiral stairs and courtyards opening on first-floor gardens. They also protected the secret comings and goings of Lyon residents during the German occupation. Many traboules are closed to the public. Plates on the entrance to buildings indicate the ones you can visit and you can follow the pathways on:

The heart of the Croix-Rousse district beats to the rhythm of markets, café terraces and bustling activity.
The Croix-Rousse was the center of the silk industry and was where the Canut revolt occurred in the 19th century. This revolt is thought to be one of the first workers’ rebellions. The buildings have unornamented façades and contain apartments with high, French-style wood ceilings. This was because more than four meters of height were needed for the large, heavy looms of the Canuts.
Take a walk to visit the plateau, the square and numerous shops and cafés. (metro line C, Croix-Rousse station)
Les Pentes (the hills): this neighborhood of artists and craftspeople also has some surprising views.

Journées du Patrimoine (heritage days): September 15 -16, 2018
The city and its landmarks open their doors for a weekend of visits!
Journées du patrimoine (heritage days)

Take a stroll

This site is full of ideas for weekend outings.

Lyon City Tour: guided tours organized by the tourism office
Price: 5 euros; free with the Lyon Visite card. Information and reservations at the Pavillon du Tourisme, Place Bellecour, 69002 Lyon, Tel. 04 72 77 69 69
Pay a visit on foot, by bike or in a car. Themes include, “Squares and Parks,” “Lyon, City of Light,” “From Fourvière to Vieux Lyon” and “Hidden Monsters and Gargoyles.” There are also visits programmed in nearby cities: “Villeurbanne and Skyscrapers,” “St. Priest and Ecology” or “Discovering Vénissieux by Tramway.”

Volunteers from Lyon will share their city with you:
Student associations also organize visits at the beginning of the school year. Consult the news on ESN COSMO LYON, AFEV, etc.

You can also discover Lyon in a double-decker bus. Buy a one- or two-day pass that will allow you to get on and off as often as you like at the nine stops on the itinerary in order to visit museums and monuments or take a stroll.
One-day pass: €17; two-day pass, €20; special “Last Departure” pass at 5:15 p.m., €12. Tel. 04 78 56 32 39

There are many green areas where you can take a walk, relax and enjoy life in Lyon:

The Saône quays and La Confluence: although this district is currently undergoing reconversion, it is still a pleasant place to stroll and sit by the water. Houseboats are docked at the quays and bars and restaurants are scattered here and there.

Urban parks:
Tête d’Or Park: At the heart of the city, this magnificent 105-hectare park was created in the 19th century. It features an African plain and a botanical and aquatic garden. It’s a favorite spot for strollers and joggers.

Gerland Park: This park is located in south Lyon, on the banks of the Rhône. It is dedicated to sports and outdoor activities and has a skate park and a playing field.

Parc des Hauteurs (the high park): This planted pathway on Fourvière Hill overlooks the banks of the Saône River and the historic neighborhoods of Saint-Jean and Saint-Paul. It features panoramic viewpoints, wooded slopes, fields and the gardens of large estates owned by religious groups. Here and there, you will find archeological sites and playgrounds.

La Feyssine Park
This 55-hectare park has trees, fields and bike paths and opens on the banks of the Rhône, which are not landscaped and provide a rustic setting. Tram T1, IUT Feyssine station.

Parilly Park
For strollers, joggers and skaters. Metro Line D, Parilly station.

Miribel Jonage Park
Swimming, beach, relaxation, fitness center (stretching, step exercises, weight-lifting, etc.), golf, inline skating, tennis, badminton, rowing, canoes, sailing, swimming. Access by bike on a bike path that links Lyon-Gerland to the park through La Doua and Croix-Luizet.
Bus Line 83 (April to September) from Metro A, Laurent Bonnevay station.
By car: Rocade Est, exit 5; on the A42 highway, exit 4.

Discover the city in a different way

On foot: Learn the imaginative and completely subjective history of La Croix-Rousse!!! Jean-François Perrier and Michel Pichon, who are two very enthusiastic guides, invite you to take an original and fun-filled stroll across the plateau and slopes of La Croix-Rousse. Free of charge.
See the program (when school starts up again)

Make a surprising visit of Lyon with an electrically powered bike, an on-board multimedia guide and a geolocalized itinerary.
You’ll be charmed by the unusual itineraries and guided tours. Equipped with a multimedia guide (iPhone), these electric bikes combine discovery and relaxation. Plan your itinerary as you wish or let yourself be guided.
Bike and See

Jogg'in City. A run through the city with a running commentary on the touristic highlights! Available from 6:30 a.m. to noon. Lasts one hours (5 to 6 km). Tel. 09 52 155 599

“Contemporary art and eco-mobility in Lyon”: hop on a Segway to see the sights in Lyon.
26 rue du Doyenné, 69005 Lyon, Tel. 06 07 33 07 65

Au Fil de l'Eau
River cruises and boat rental at the Hermès boat-restaurant:
From April to October, day cruises are organized for groups of 30 or more (11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.); possibility of lunch or dinner on board. Reservation required, Tel. 04 78 42 96 81