Europe Travel Stories; A Different Side of France You Need to See, Lyon in Twenty Four Hours.

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A short night train, approximately two hours from Paris. I arrive at Lyon Part Dieu. I was prepared my self and all of my belongings to step out from the train. The night was cold, as what the autumn temperature normally offers. Yet, as i walk toward the exit lane, i felt a different feelings, i know for sure this city, Lyon, will be way much safer than the Capital of France. and i know, i’m right.

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(Read my Paris Stories plus Fact Sheet, Things Todo and Galeries here.)

It was almost twelve at midnight, and i wasn’t sure wether to take bus or Uber. I walk back and forth trying to get some information on which stops that my bus will depart. Lyon is quiet and calmer. I can’t stop comparing, but my decision to put this city on my list is unmistakably great. As i didn’t saw any drunks people in the street, nor groups who yelled and shouts. Few young people sat there, but having talks in much calmer voice. They even help me, when i’m running out of whom to asks, to show me the bus stop which was still 600m away.

One bus ride, not more than twelve short stops, i arrived in the Hotel.


I woke up an hour later than i used to in Paris, knowing that Lyon was less populated and for sure sight seeing places will be less crowded on the morning of first weekday. I save more time for me to rest 🙂

I close the window where i can see what Lyon can offer from my room, and get down to start my Lyon’s day. I walk to Bartholdi Fountain, few hundred meters away from the Hotel, with fresh morning scents, and I love the story its represent.

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Lyon’s Bartholdi Fountain was sculpted by the same person who create Statue of Liberty, as same representing the depiction of France as a female with four horses to describe as its control four main rivers in France. Highly individualized and symmetrical arranged. First iconic Lyon was checked on my List, i can see how strong and pretentious Bartholdi Fountain as all it was represented.

To adore things around me, i need to take few more minutes. So i know for sure the needs to sat there, see the surrounding of heart of Lyon. Place des Terreaux, City hall on my left side and Musee des Beaux art de Lyon is in front of me. Cafe, pub, and supermarket is hidden behind the huge fountain, but there was the best place to enjoy the surrounding of Lyon’s city Center. Make my self on the frame, and took some frame through my own perspective then i go crossed the street get inside the Musee des Beaux of Lyon.

Immersing all the arts of France only for  EUR 8 per person and half price for those who below 26–yep again, climbing up the stairs to enter each of its galleries. With the combination of classic architecture, hanging arts on the wall, piece of medals and historical works on the shelf, soft lighten by the warm ceiling lamp straight to the art piece, and I walk around to see the painting collection that they have from 13th to 21st century.

I thought, i was interested to see and watch over these paintings not far from the reason that i thought we have similarities. How i love to use my camera’s a lot. I thought, maybe, we both want to tell a stories on what popped-up in our minds. The idea to tell people what we see, that other can’t see. The emotion that lies behind every pixels on my camera, and every stroke of their brush. To tell a story without describing a words.

Took me two to three hours to enjoy exploring all the historical and contemporer piece of works in Lyon Musee des Beaux, as in english they call it Museum of Fine Arts. People got their way in and out, students, residence or even the same visitor as i am. and i continue to have my brunch at Le Comptoir des Copains.

Lyon is not only well known of its historical heritage and architectural landmark, but you also can not resist the temptation of their foods. I have these foods, for starter and main course. plus the over flowing ciabatta, which is my forever go-to bread. Salads with baked of slice cheese, thick texture of warm pumpkin soup in the middle of freezing weather, Gratin Pasta with Truffle Ham, and this huge Ham Burger for the main course. As we sat by, waiting for the food i see people there who was indulge their time, on having lunch for catch-up, having conversation and enjoy their time with their group of friends. The space is not too big, but its sufficient to maintain the firm atmosphere for everyone who sat there and enjoy their foods and moments.

Merci” they said whenever we finished doing things on each store. “Bonjour!” i said, whenever i enter their shop forced my self to blend in.

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I continue to walk in Lyon, and i’ll never bored to tell you that i love to be in Lyon for its ease and calm than the previous city. With its own unique character that i can see through all the sight, i finally arrived at Lyon Mural. My mind couldn’t stop saying how creative these people are to work on these project throughout the entire of this tall building. Frescos, on their term language. Though there were so many of famous Frescos in Lyon, i walk toward this one alley that well aligned with my plan trip.

Located between Rue de la Martinier and Quai st. Vincent, i was mesmerized by the detail of its panting. The murals representing current Lyon’s situation with its daily routine whether of its residence or tourist. Hanging around on their room balcony watching the street out down there, and on the street level with stores and people who walk as what the local did their activities unbelievably painted as the mural is alive. It is even more real when you see it a little bit afar, i can’t even tell if it an actual building or just a painting. Yet, from all of these, the most interesting part is when i know the painted people in La Fresque de Lyon is consist of thirty people who help shape history of Lyon and the world. and i whispered to my self, no wonder these mural is taking my breath.

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The weather was well went through out the day, as the sun shines while i need it the most and shimmered the building, switching between light of the sun and shades of the cloud in every few minutes. These things make La Fresque de Lyon even more interesting.

Few meter away from these Murals, i stand right beside Saone River while i could see the beautiful building on the other side of the river. The pastel colors of Lyon on each of its standing building, as it turned out the Old Town of Lyon, Vieux et Lyon. The calm and peaceful feeling of Lyon were not far from its identity, while i found out that Lyon also hold too many histories waiting to be revealed. When you heard ‘Beautiful things don’t ask for attention’ maybe, Lyon is well describe in that term.

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I crossed the Saone River,  through the nearest bridge that i could found. Walking inside the Vieux et Lyon’s alley, to saw Roman’s and gothic architecture with most of stores and Gastronomy that doesn’t lose in my glance. All the Lyon’s nature is here. until i walked up to the Fourviere Basilica with an astonishing Lyon’s view from above. Not to mention the road and effort i need to take before these Lyon’s city view, even though its actually worth the hike.

While I was actually have to choice, wether to take shorter path yet steeped-uphill-track, or take less steeped but longer path, and i choose the first one. Took me 20 minutes to climb the path, good things Autumn’s weather help me to feel it less tiring as few sweats was produce :p

As I finally arrive, go straight to the area where people can see the city from up here, as i observe, I can count tall office building only with my right hand, make Lyon dominated with their original building. Reflecting the reason where it source its own beauty, with two major France’s river whirling pass looking for the end, the colors of Lyon that will never left my heart, as well as its main and historical building in nature.

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“Can i just live here and mind of nothing? Can i just live here and live my life to the fullest? or can i just live here, witnessing the pace and peace that Lyon always have?”

France is too beautiful, and one experience can tell me that most of small cities in France are underrated. While people choose to pick Paris, yet they don’t have an idea that small cities in France are way more beautiful. If i could go back, i will definitely go to the other small cities in France.

Continue from where i was, i sat on the Fourviere Basilica’s bench for a while. Stabilizing my breath after the long twenty minutes hike. I saw people who enjoy the view, with their friends, group and partners. Those who brought their Hang Instrument, that i never seen and never heard before. I love as they played it, these young people who sat on the stone barrier, as cliche as it said but i love how calm the sounds from the Hang Instrument. Making it even better the combination of Lyon city view, plateau area and the peaceful instruments.

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The church it self was stunning, i always love all things on detail, and the outer building was nothing that couldn’t be catch by my eyes. People who going up and down on their way to enter and exit the church, on the narrow crossing road was old people play his Concertinas on the street, amusing people who came to Fourviere Basilica with his instruments as if one would kindly give him back in return for some pennies.

and yes, this is one of things you need to witness in cities of France.

I still questioning my self, how i still couldn’t believe how Lyon can be so pretty. With its historical and ancient sights and the perfect amount of population. Can i just say that i was fall in with Lyon?

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Because not far from Fourviere Basilica, i came across The Ancient Theatre of Fourviere, which i will never tired to mention the histories that lies behind. Built by the ruined stones for all the seating and stage, The Ancient Theatre of Fourviere was built in 15 BC. Once i see it in person, i feel like the history come alive. I sat on the top of its ruins and munched some of ciabatta that i packed from my brunch. Another view, feelings and experience to Indulge.

I guess, this is the last of major places from Lyon. Not long after, i walk down heading back to the city. Back on the daily life and routine by checking on some stores around Place de Jacobins. Watching people whom off from their works. Mother and her kids. and A lot of students on the way back down. The trully Liveably cities of France, i will definitely go back to Lyon. For its feeling, its people, and sure its foods.

And afterall, I just end my Lyon Story as well as France Trip from here.. I Couldn’t wait to write you the story of my next destination. See you on next stories! and check my Instagram Page to take a peek on where I go, my self in frame and the lense through my perspective. ❤

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Fact Sheet;

Lyon

Lyon is actually the second largest urban area after Paris, yet i swear there is more of France if you go to another city such as Lyon or the other but Paris. Paris just too crowded, only if you want to know how it feels then its ok. But if you have more time and want to experience the France atmosphere, i am fully advised you to go to Lyon, Nice, Marseille or Toulouse. and, would be more perfect if you did the road trip. Which is my new Bucket-List after knowing the real France feeling.

Unesco world heritage

As named Lugdunum in 43 BC, Lyon City is one of Unesco World Heritage, because of its history while founded by the Romans in the first BC. as the capital of the three Gauls. Back on the centuries, Lyon is the most strategic city for Romans people to do their Trade. Since its location between two France Major River, Rhone and Saone. Most of its site is The Ancient Theatre of Lyon, Vieux et Lyon, Fourviere Basilica, and many more.

Hotel

Here is my cheat-sheet. I always choose my hotel depend on my-each-day activities . So, if i have to go all-the-day-long, which means spend the whole day outside and need my hotel for sleep-and-rest only, i always choose budget hotel. Not to mention if i am intended to staycation, where i spend most of the time on my hotel room. My staycation will worth the splurge. But if its for sleep only, better to use the budget as while in Lyon i only need to stay for One Night, so this is my best decision.

Gastronomy

Lyon is well known for its Gastronomy, so if you found the french restaurant around, don’t hesitate to came in, They will have all the good food for you! Or, try to search for “Best Lyon Resto” on your search engine whenever you were in hunger! Lyon’s have a lot of best Gastro, and will definitely near you!

Lyon Transportation

Well, since i only hang around in the heart of Lyon, I strolled and did all my to-do list by foot. I approximately walk around 1-3 km between each place. Yet since its all worth the view and sight seeing, i dont mind at all to walk all day long. If you’re not comfortable to stroll around by walk, you can use their bus as their major transportation line. There were Trams and Metro but will be easier to use Bus in Lyon.

Off – From and To Lyon

From Paris i go to Lyon from Paris Gare Du Lyon to Lyon Part Dieu. Two – three hour train ride.

From Lyon to my next destination, i use overnight Bus from Gare de Lyon – Perrache. Its quite easy from my hotel. I just need to go to the metro station, which was right aside city hall, and go for the line heading to Gare De Lyon – Perrache. I book my intercity ticket on Trainline.eu


Things To-Do;

  • Museum of Fine Arts – Musee des Beaux
  • City Hall
  • Fountaine Bartholdi
  • Lyon Mural – La Fresque de Lyon
  • Vieux et Lyon
  • Fourvierre Basilica
  • Ancient Theatre Fourvierre
  • Place de Jacobins
  • Musee de Confluences
  • Food in Le Comptior des Copains
  • Bye Lyon! Off to next destination~

Galeries;

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