Five reasons to visit Lyon
It is worth kicking its alleyways and climbing the numerous steps in search of the perfect view. Capital of Roman Gaul, the Rhone and the nouvelle cuisine revolution, Lyon is an itinerary for the good life.
We already made it clear here that Gastronomy (mandatory capital letter) in Lyon is a serious matter. Beyond the long shadow of Paul Bocuse (practically another pillar of the French national identity) and of the gastronomic restaurants well loaded with Michelin stars, what is imposed here is the visit to a bouchon. On paper they are traditional cuisine bistros that serve specialties of Lyonian cuisine, but after eating there they become one of the reasons we forgive almost everything to France, haughty waiters included. In addition to going crazy with the wines and cheeses of the region, you have to get acquainted with all varieties of quenelles (elongated pasta balls) and, the most daring palates, try the blunt andouillette (sausage stuffed with pork guts).
Bouchon: the most traditional bistro © Corbis
One of the pleasures of Lyon is to tour the city looking for traboules, passages that communicate streets and courtyards functioning as shortcuts. Do not miss the traboules with windows of the beautiful Torre Rosa, in the Renaissance Vieux Lyon, nor the famous zigzag stairs of the Cour des Voraces, in the Croix Rousse, the city's most rollaco neighborhood. These are easily located, others make up a true network of secret tunnels, wisely employed by the Resistance during World War II or by the canuts in the 19th The revolts of the canuts (textile workers) in the Croix Rousse to achieve better working conditions are a milestone of social struggles (now that they are again rabid today), and in several traboules of the area this is remarkable.
It barely lasts a minute but if it had not existed our lives would be much more boring. The considered -more or less unanimously- The first film in history, 'The exit of the factory workers', was recorded here. Incredibly, the same filmed factory building has survived and is now part of the Lumière Institute. In the same enclosure the beautiful house is also maintained art noveau of the Lumière family, a museum / dollhouse that exposes the first cinematographers, family films and even three-dimensional photographs surviving the prehistory of cinema.
The current Lumière Institute © Institute Lumière
As soon as they cross the Pyrenees, it is practically impossible to take a step without encountering any trace of the Second World War. The city is the ideal place to evoke La Resistance, the other side of the occupation, collaboration and the Vichy regime. Here Klaus Barbie, "the butcher of Lyon," captured the Resistance leader Jean Moulin and more than 7,500 people were deported to the death camps.The Museum of Resistance and Deportation now stands in the former Gestapo barracks, a place to never forget the years of infamy.
Neither flamboyant nor baroque Gothic: the architectural style of the unusual Dominican convent of Santa María de la Tourette is brutalism. Everything makes sense when we know that it was designed by Le Corbusier. In Éveux, 30 kilometers from Lyon, the architect created this white concrete building whose austere lines are not even painted in the ascetic life of the ten monks who still inhabit it. There are guided tours on Sundays and, for those willing to go beyond the tourist experience, they offer accommodation as austere as it is unique.
Le Corbusier: brutalism in Lyon © Corbis