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Whether you are exploring the hidden passageways of the charming Croix-Rousse district, perusing the original Roman settlement of Lugdunum in the Fourvière, or enjoying the preponderance of cafes, restaurants, luxury shops and cultural institutions in the Presqu’île, Lyon is guaranteed to impress. It is also the capital of French cuisine and claims a greater density of restaurants than anywhere else – if nothing else, the bouchons of Vieux Lyon are sure to whet your appetite for the city.

Art and culture: Housed in a 17th century former Benedictine convent, Lyon’s Musée des Beaux-Arts provides a comprehensive look at fine art ranging from the ancient Egyptian to Modern period. For a slightly different take on culture, consider the Musée des Confluences – a science, anthropology and humanities museum within a deconstructed steel and glass crystal structure that represents the crowning attraction of a multimillion euro renovation of the Lyon Confluence.  

Historical sites: The magnificent soaring columns and the bedecked ceilings of the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourviere are a must-see in Lyon. Once a Roman forum, the basilica commands the skyline from its prominent position at the top of the Fourviere hill. Lyon Cathedral possesses a formidable beauty in its merging of Romanesque and Gothic designs, and the mechanism of the astrological clock at the front of the building is original, dating back to the 15th century.

Entertainment: A hub of events including ice skating, book fairs and demonstrations converge at Place Bellecour, a sprawling square in the center of town framing a state of Louis XIV and fringed by magnificent buildings.  For a break from the bustling cityscapes, Parc de la Tete d’Or is a lovely space comprising of botanical gardens, greenhouses, rose gardens and a vast lake. For an evening treat, Lyon’s opera house is another of the city’s gems. This gorgeous neoclassical building with a striking glass-domed roof is home to the world-renowned Opéra de Lyon.

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