Saturday, 11 January 2014

Lyon, France: Tour de Lyon

After stepping off my second overnight bus ride I was back in France. Having experienced 6 straight months of travelling you might assume I have acquired some basic organisation skills but you would probably be wrong. Upon arrival in Lyon I only knew the metro stop and the address of my host. Lucky for me the bus station is attached to a metro station and the first Frenchie I asked knew the location of my host's street. I soon met my host, Lisa, a French girl that had only just returned from 3 months of travelling the US. She gave me a very friendly welcome and breakfast.

Lyon is the 2nd most populous city in France by metropolitan area. It has two large rivers that meet in the centre of the city separating the old town, the island city centre and the suburbs. It is also the headquarters of Interpol with their office being the only one located in the city's biggest park. Lyon is also very famous for Festival of the Lights.

French Alps
Lyon with the French Alps behind

Like many French cities Lyon has a city run hire bicycle system. I used these in both Paris and London. You pay a small fee for a card that is valid for a set number of days which allows you to retrieve a bicycle from one of the many stations around the city. Your first 30 mins is free so the idea is to return the bike to another station within the 30 mins then retrieve the same bike or another one. Lyon is a city built for bikes with all the main streets containing bike lanes... this was my mode of transport in Lyon.

I spent my days touring the city on bicycle, getting back into fitness, sleeping in the park, eating quiches, trying the very unique Lyonese food and hanging out with Lisa in the evening. We cooked, drunk wine, went on a tour, went running and shared many stories together. I also checked out La Basilica de Notre-Dame de Fourvière. The interior would have to be the most impressive I've seen in a church/cathedral but I haven't been in very many.

Riding the Red Lyon

A little island with deers and ostriches in the middle of the main park

The Main Square

A very interesting statue!

Amazing art on the side of the building. Each person is a famous person that has something to do with Lyon.

An old Roman theatre that has had many renovations
An Australian rollerblading shop!

Lyon was really cool and I racked up many hours of cycling during my stay. After 3 days it was time to say good bye to Lyon and Lisa.

Next stop Paris via Covoiturage with a German girl and a French girl that speaks no English.

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