48 Hours in Lyon – 2 Day Itinerary


One other nice metropolis in France that has been gaining recognition for the previous years amongst travellers is town of Lyon. Famend because the nation’s gastronomic capital, Lyon affords a pleasant expertise of wonderful delicacies and, on the identical time, a mix of historical past, tradition, and custom that entice guests from across the globe. 

The Saone river in Lyon city at evening France

On this 2 Day Itinerary for Lyon, we’ll share with you issues you are able to do, locations to go to, and what meals to attempt throughout your journey. But, consider it or not, with simply 48 hours on this enchanting vacation spot, you’ll nonetheless have the chance to expertise town’s highlights, from strolling via historic streets to indulging in beautiful delicacies.

Town boasts a captivating historical past relationship again over 2,000 years. When on the town, it’s onerous to overlook the UNESCO World Heritage website, Vieux Lyon (Previous City), which showcases well-preserved Renaissance structure and charming cobblestone streets. 

Then once more, Lyon is famously often known as the capital for gastronomy, which is why you’ll be able to count on culinary excellence within the metropolis. Housing quite a few Michelin-starred eating places and bustling meals markets, you’ll get a style of numerous culinary treats. 

However past its gastronomic delights, town affords a variety of points of interest, together with the magnificent Basilica of Notre Dame de Fourvière, Lyon Cathedral, La Croix Rousse, and the famend Fourviere Hill, which blends science, anthropology, and artwork. 

Earlier than we delve additional into your itinerary for two days in Lyon, you also needs to notice the very best time to discover town. 

Grand Hotel Dieu entrance wide angle view with facade and people at a cafe terrace in Lyon France

If you wish to take pleasure in out of doors actions and eating, day excursions, and all of the vacationer stuff you are able to do in Lyon, then late spring to mid-autumn shall be your finest wager. Particularly, town has few vacationers from September to October, but nice climate and vibrant foliage.

About your lodging, there are a number of vital areas in Lyon to remain in. However in case you are a first-time customer, the La Presqu’île space can be an important place to search for a spot to remain. It’s within the metropolis centre and just a few minutes from the principle points of interest. However if you wish to focus your journey on seeing the historic points of interest of Lyon, you’ll be able to keep at Vieux Lyon (Previous City).

In conclusion, Lyon is a fascinating vacation spot that guarantees an unforgettable expertise. With its wealthy historical past, exceptional culinary scene, and numerous points of interest, a weekend in Lyon shall be an important selection! 

So, maintain studying and ensure to take down notes. This complete information will assist you determine what to do in Lyon for 2 days.

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Overview of two Days in Lyon Itinerary

Right here’s a look at what you’ll see and do in two days in Lyon:

Day 1 in Lyon

  • Discover Vieux Lyon 
  • Take a look at the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere 
  • Get lunch at Paul Bocuse
  • See Place Bellecour
  • Admire the Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste
  • Discover Lyon’s well-known Traboules
  • Go to the Museum of Advantageous Arts of Lyon 
  • Dine & Drink at Groom

Day 2 in Lyon

  • Leisurely Stroll at Parc de la Tête d’Or and Jardin Botanique
  • Stroll round Place des Jacobins
  • Have Brunch at Halles de Lyon
  • Take a look at Ampitheatre des trois gaules
  • Spend Time on the Museum of Cinema and Miniatures
  • Take a Cruise at Saône River
  • Dinner at Takao Takano
Church of Saint Nizier in Lyon. Lyon Rhone-Alpes France.

Day 1 in Lyon

Discover the Historic Vieux Lyon 

Exploring the historic Vieux Lyon is a should throughout your first day in Lyon. Vieux-Lyon is town’s oldest district and was the primary website in France protected below the Marlaux legislation. It was the central a part of the city within the sixteenth century, however as the fashionable period arose, the Presquile grew to become the centre of Lyon. 

It is because this a part of city has remained virtually all its buildings and charming courtyards intact, and though town appears previous and left behind, many travellers go to the previous city to discover its slim cobblestone alleys and expertise what it was like prior to now.

You may as well discover hidden passageways in Vieux Lyon, also referred to as traboules. Silk retailers used these secret passages prior to now, however as time progressed, residents added a way of thriller to the world. 

Pedestrian Saint Georges footbridge and the Saint Georges church in Lyon, France

Take a look at the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere 

Perched atop Fourvière Hill (the hill that prays), your subsequent cease on your 1st day morning tour in Lyon is the majestic Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière. 

The basilica is a registered UNESCO World Heritage website constructed by the well-known architects Pierre Bossan and Sainte-Marie Perrin. It’s thought of town’s emblem and is devoted to the Virgin Mary. Accordingly, over 2.5 pilgrims go to the Basicila every year. 

However except for the non secular significance of Notre Dame, it additionally attracts vacationers due to its gorgeous structure and spectacular panoramic metropolis views. The within of Notre Dame includes two church buildings, every with extraordinary decor, intricate mosaics, ornate stained glass home windows and grand interiors. 

So, if you go to Notre Dame, you’ll be able to find out about its historic and non secular significance and, on the identical time, marvel at its lovely architectural construction. 

The Basilica of Notre Dame de Fourviere in Lyon - Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes, France

Get lunch at Paul Bocuse

As talked about earlier, Lyon is the nation’s gastronomic capital, and it’s not shocking that you’ll discover many Michelin-stared eating places right here, together with Paul Bocuse. 

Now, a visit to Lyon would solely be full with a gastronomic expertise at Paul Bocuse. This restaurant is known as after the legendary French chef. Right here you’ll be able to pattern beautiful dishes that showcase French delicacies’s best native and seasonal elements, ready with revolutionary methods. 

The restaurant is only a few minutes from the Notre-Dame, making it a superb place to have lunch on your first day. 

#1 High Decide – Strolling tour

Lyon France : Tourists in the street of Vieux Lyon old town on summer day in Lyon France

See Place Bellecour

As one in every of Europe’s largest squares, Place Bellecour has grow to be a distinguished landmark in Lyon. It’s the central historic centre of town, residence to the enduring statuaries and sculptures and likewise served because the navy sq. again in Roman occasions. 

The world has been thought to be a UNESCO World Heritage Web site and is now a well-known vacationer vacation spot with a number of historic implications. 

As you stroll across the space, you’ll be able to wander round completely different locations, together with the central equestrian statue of Louis XIV, the Saone and the Rhone figures, the Stone Watchmen and the well-known Antoine de Saint Exupery statue. 

The attractive buildings, luxurious boutiques, and cafes encompass the sq., which you’ll be able to take a look at throughout your go to. At a while of the yr, you may additionally come throughout vital occasions celebrated within the yard, whether or not guide gala’s, public live shows or native festivals.

Aerial view of Place Bellecour with statue of Louis XIV, Lyon, France

Admire the Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste

After strolling round Lyon’s busiest sq., your subsequent cease for the day is the towering Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptist.  The Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste is a spot of worship and a testomony to Lyon’s wealthy historical past and architectural heritage. At current, it stays the seat of town’s archbishop.

This magnificent cathedral rests in a waterfront plaza close to Saone of Previous Lyon and is named the Primate of the Gauls.

What makes Cathedrale Saint-Jean-Basptise definitely worth the go to is its gorgeous architectural construction. Get to admire a mix of Gothic and Romanesque types, each inside and exterior, that took centuries to finish.

Moreover, one of many cathedral’s highlights is its well-known astronomical clock, which delights guests with its hourly present. You may take your time to discover the tranquil courtyard and the archaeological backyard adjoining to the cathedral. 

View on the saint Johns cathedral with the statue of Jesus during the sunrise in the old town of Lyon city

Discover Lyon’s well-known Traboules

Though you would possibly already encounter just a few Traboules throughout your go to to the Vieux Lyon, making time (about an hour or two) to discover these is critical on your two days in Lyon.

These secret passageways are a singular characteristic of Lyon, providing a glimpse into town’s historical past and tradition. Initially utilized by silk retailers to move their items, the traboules have been now open for exploration. 

As you discover these, uncover hidden courtyards, intricate staircases, and delightful Renaissance-era facades. Some traboules result in hidden gems like small gardens or quaint retailers, including to the sense of discovery. 

The traboules will be discovered all through Vieux Lyon, Croix-Rousse, and different components of town. Nonetheless, solely about 5% of the traboules are open and satisfactory for the reason that house owners of the buildings have already closed off some traboules. 

Traditional French Restaurant in Lyon seen from a street from Old Lyon, called Bouchon Lyonnais. It is a symbol of the Gastronomy of the second biggest French city

Go to the Museum of Advantageous Arts of Lyon

Whereas day one is principally meant for exploring town’s historic half, you should see the Museum of Advantageous Arts earlier than the day ends. Lyon boasts of a wealthy historic heritage and is residence to many Museums that showcase completely different sorts of arts and tradition. 

This is the reason artwork lovers (or not) ought to reap the benefits of the chance to go to the Museum of Advantageous Arts of Lyon. Housed in an imposing Seventeenth-century constructing, the museum has an in depth assortment of art work spanning numerous durations and types. 

Some masterpieces you’ll be able to admire right here embody the works carried out by Monet, Renoir, Picasso, and Van Gogh. A number of sculptures, ornamental arts, and archaeological artefacts are additionally on show. 

Gardens of the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon (in French, Musee des beaux-arts de Lyon), near the Place des Terreaux.

Dine & Drink at Groom

After exploring Lyon’s points of interest, take pleasure in a memorable eating and ingesting expertise at one in every of its finest eating places, Groom. This trendy and vibrant institution affords a singular fusion of gastronomy and mixology. 

Whereas there are different bars and eating places within the metropolis, Groom is without doubt one of the hottest amongst travellers and locals. This stylish and upscale bar affords trendy cocktails, a lineup of reside music, and native DJs each evening. 

Their menu is fastidiously crafted, combining conventional French flavours with modern twists. So, in the event you’re as much as having fun with the evening at Lyon and on the identical time need to have a tasty dinner, Groom is the very best place to be at.

LYON, FRANCE- Bouchon -traditional local restaurant in Lyon where you eat specialties from Lyon and the region. There are 30 Bouchons in Lyon, France.

Day 2 in Lyon

Leisurely Stroll at Parc de la Tête d’Or 

In your second day at Lyon, begin with a leisurely stroll on the most vital city park of town, Tete d’Or Park. Whereas the park is open to go to any time of the day, we advise you go within the morning to benefit from the calmness and tranquillity of the place. 

This expansive city park in Lyon affords lush inexperienced areas, serene lakes, and charming strolling paths. It additionally has completely different points of interest, together with a zoo, a lake and even a miniature railroad. 

If you would like one thing extra lively than strolling, you can too hike kilometres of trails and run and play in its rolling fields in the event you really feel prefer it. However then once more, you’ll be able to take it gradual, cease by a close-by cafe for espresso and pastry and revel in a fast picnic. 

Greenhouse in parc de la tete d'or in Lyon, France

Stroll round Place des Jacobins

One in all France’s most iconic and delightful squares is at Lyon – the Place des Jacobins. 

Earlier than it grew to become an iconic landmark within the metropolis, it was the primary a part of the Jaboin convent, named after the Jacobin monks. After it was destroyed, the sq. was opened and later constructed with a white marble fountain. 

The fountain, the spotlight of the sq., represents France’s 4 well-known native artists. Now, as you stroll across the sq. understanding its historic story, you’ll admire the harmonious mix of historic and modern parts.

One other factor you are able to do within the space is to admire the bronze statue of King Louis XIV on the centre of the fountain and marvel on the surrounding facades adorned with ornate balconies and balconettes. 

 Lyon, France: Fountain at Jacobin square with relaxing people and tourists

Have Brunch at Halles de Lyon

Take pleasure in one other pleasant brunch expertise at a famend meals market in Lyon. Halles de Lyon showcases the very best of Lyon’s gastronomy, so it is a must-visit when in Lyon. 

You may take a look at the market’s stalls crammed with recent produce, artisanal cheeses, cured meats, and tempting pastries. As you discover the world, choose quite a lot of delectable treats and discover a cosy spot to take pleasure in your brunch. 

Pattern native specialities resembling quenelles, saucissons, and creamy cheeses, or ask an area to counsel one thing you’ll be able to attempt. As you interact in conversations with pleasant distributors, you’ll uncover their ardour for the culinary arts and realise why Lyon is the gastronomy capital of France. 

Take a look at Amphithéâtre des trois gaules

The Amphithéâtre des trois gauges is one other well-known landmark in Lyon that holds an important significance within the metropolis’s historical past. It was previously referred to as Lugdunum and served as a gathering place and leisure venue through the Roman presence. 

The theatre gained recognition when the Gauls (indigenous individuals of the area) would collect within the space for assemblies. This made the Amphitheater extra vital, particularly regarding politics, faith and social implications. 

With this, the ruins have been well-preserved since then and now act as a spot for locals and guests to discover. Right here you’ll be able to admire the remaining stone seating tiers and the partially reconstructed stage, gaining insights into the architectural prowess of the Romans. 

You may as well take a look at an on-site museum to be taught extra about its historical past. A number of guided excursions can take you to the theatre, however they may also be explored independently. 

Amphitheater of the Three Gauls in Fourviere above Lyon France under blue sky

Spend Time on the Museum of Cinema and Miniatures

One of many go-to interactive museums in Lyon (and France) is the Museum of Cinema and Miniatures. After studying about historical past and tradition, right here on the Museum of Cinema and Miniatures, you’ll be able to unleash your inside movie fanatic as you take a look at an in depth assortment of cinema artefacts.

One thing you’ll be able to see contained in the museum contains props, costumes, and set designs from iconic motion pictures. You may as well marvel on the intricate particulars and craftsmanship of the miniature fashions, which carry well-known movie scenes to life and create awe and surprise. 

This Museum is residence to completely different galleries so every corridor shall be crammed with memorabilia from basic and modern movies. When you guide beforehand, additionally they supply workshops and demonstrations to be taught in regards to the methods and processes concerned. 

This is Museum of Miniatures and Cinema Decor located in the House of Counselors one of the most emblematic buildings of the Renaissance quarter.

Take a Cruise at Saône River

Earlier than ending your 48-hour journey to Lyon, you need to reap the benefits of one of many metropolis’s highlights. Residence to this lovely waterway, get able to hop on a scenic cruise trip and see Lyon from a special perspective on the Saône River. 

A number of charters can take you on a cruise within the Saone River. You’ll must board a riverboat, and from there, now you can chill out as you soak within the panoramic views of town’s landmarks and picturesque landscapes. 

Plus, a sundown cruise will mean you can admire the scenic view of the sky after which finish with a possibility to witness town illuminated at evening.

Lyon old town and the river saone, Lyon, France

Dinner at Takao Takano

After an extended day of journey, there’s no higher option to finish it than to have a gourmand dinner expertise on the Michelin-stared restaurant Takao Takano

Takao Takano affords conventional French delicacies mixed with revolutionary Japanese flavours. The chef and mastermind behind the restaurant create beautiful dishes that showcase his distinctive culinary imaginative and prescient. 

Count on every plate of meals you get shall be a murals, combining flavours, textures, and methods to create an unforgettable gastronomic expertise.

The elegant atmosphere and impeccable restaurant service elevate your eating expertise, guaranteeing a memorable night earlier than your journey ends. 

Street view with cafes near the river in the old town in Lyon city

Excursions in Lyon

Meals Tour

Get to be taught extra in regards to the metropolis’s culinary tradition if you be a part of a Meals Tour in Lyon. Throughout this tour, you can be led by an area who will carry you to areas of the Previous City the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in native and genuine meals.

You’ll go to 5 eating places, bakeries and artisan retailers with a small group and check out Lyonnaise specialities resembling Pike quenelle, Cervelle des Canuts and Pink Praline Brioche. As you take pleasure in these pleasant treats, you can too obtain ideas and data out of your native information. 

Strolling Guided Tour 

One other tour choice is the Highlights & Secrets and techniques Strolling Guided Tour. On this tour, you will notice the numerous landmarks and points of interest in Lyon, together with the Place des Terreaux, Vieux Lyon and Colline de Fourviere. 

These areas are residence to a number of spots that function main vacationer locations in Lyon. What makes this tour value it’s that you just be taught in regards to the locations in Lyon from an area information and, concurrently discover out secret routes you’ll solely find out about when you be a part of the group.

LYON, FRANCE - The Fontaine Bartholdi was sculpted by Bartholdi in 1889. It is erected at the Place des Terreaux near the City Hall of Lyon.

2-Day Itinerary for Lyon Wrap-up

That’s it for this complete 2-day Lyon itinerary! Now that we’ve got shared with you the issues you are able to do with simply 48 hours within the metropolis, you’ll be able to cease doubting if this journey as a result of it’s attainable! With correct planning and scheduling, you’re prepared for an journey to Lyon. 

Really helpful excursions in Lyon

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