Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Passport: Your weekly travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration

Lyon and the Alps Sights

Basilique de Notre-Dame-de-Fourvière

  • 8 pl. de Fourvière Map It
  • Fourvière
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Fodor's Review

The rather pompous late-19th-century basilica, at the top of the ficelle (funicular railway), is—for better or worse—the symbol of Lyon. Its mock-Byzantine architecture and hilltop site make it a close relative of Paris's Sacré-Coeur. Both were built to underline the might of the Roman Catholic Church after the Prussian defeat of France in 1870 gave rise to the birth of the anticlerical Third Republic. The excessive gilt, marble, and mosaics in the interior underscore the Church's wealth, although they masked its lack of political clout at that time. One of the few places in Lyon where you can't see the basilica is the adjacent terrace, whose panorama reveals the city—with the cathedral of St-Jean in the foreground and the glass towers of the reconstructed Part-Dieu business complex glistening behind. For a more sweeping view still, climb the 287 steps to the basilica observatory.

Sight Information


8 pl. de Fourvière, Lyon, 69005, France

Map It



Sight Details:

  • Observatory €6
  • Basilica daily 9–noon and 2:30–6. Observatory Easter–Oct., daily 10–12:30 and 2–6; Nov.–Easter, weekends 2–6


Map View

Map of

What's Nearby

  • Sights

See all sights in Lyon and the Alps

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss



No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE e-mail communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

How we use your email

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.