Lyon questions

Old Mar 4th, 2003, 08:43 AM
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Lyon questions

I have decided to include Lyon in my itinerary on my way to Avignon and Nice. What is a good area to stay in and any recommendations for budget hotels - $50 -$60.I will leave early from Paris on the train, spend most of that day, night, next whole day and night and leave early for Avignon. What are the must sees and can I walk to most things? Any recommendations for good little bistros?
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 09:39 AM
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Barb,

I stayed at the Residence Hotel on Rue de Victor Hugo, very comfortable and in your price range. Get off at Part Deux, the second train station. If you must get off at the first one, take the short ride that leaves about every 10 or 12 minutes to the second station. Walk right out of the station and across the park and you will be on the pedestrian street that is Victor Hugo. Walk down that til just before Place Bellacour. One tip, ride on the right side of the train (facing the front) for the most fabulous view as you cross the first river.

Be sure to go to Vieux Lyon for dinner. Take the funicular to Fouviere, the cathedral on the view (for a fantastic sunset!). Walk down past the Roman theater.

You will love Lyon. The food is fantastic and the views are beautiful.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 09:58 AM
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Thanks Grasshopper - is this city easy to get around on foot? Do you think I am giving it enough time? Any other restaurant recommendations - going solo, so no really fancy ones, just simple bistros, cafes. Thanks.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 10:07 AM
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If you stay in a central area of Lyon, it is easy to get around on foot. They have a metro system, in addition, so between the two you can easily get around. I think the amount of time you allocated is about right.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 10:20 AM
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Hi Barb, Grasshopper and Christina -
I am also going to Lyon - for two nights - straight from CDG. I already have my reservation at the Hotel La Residence about which I read good reviews here. I see from the Lyon website that there is a two day Lyon card available which includes many museum admissions, guided tours, boat cruise, public transport, etc. This seems like a good deal and is about 23 Euro for 2 days. Do you knowledgeable ones agree??
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 10:34 AM
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It's the second train stop you want -- Perrache. Part Dieu will put you across the river from where you want to be (and you'll have to take a cab or wait for the next train to Perrache).

If you're used to walking, it's a very walkable city. And the time you have allocated is enough to enjoy it. There are many museums, parks and shops.

There are the Roman ruins (with museum), Vieux Lyon (with museums and walking tours -- it was the silk district before it moved across the river, Hotel de Ville area (museum of fine arts), Place Bellecour (museums close by -- nice textile museum), etc. The tourist office is in Place Bellecour, as is Decitre (English bookstore -- novels, books on Lyon, etc.) The tourist office can give you a rather nice map and help you with the walking tours of the traboules (which I highly recommend -- in Vieux Lyon) and they also sell tour books in English. Look for the painted walls -- Lyon's known for them.

On the other side of the Rhone there is the Center for the Resistance and the Deportation -- sobering (and you'll get a lot more out of it if you can read a little French), however one of my favorite "museums" in Lyon. There also the park (Tete d'Or) which has a zoo (a little down-trodden) and beautiful gardens. A visit to the mall would be interesting too -- but not open on Sundays. On the way to the mall (if you're walking) is Les Halles -- reportedly THE place for oysters (don't know, don't like 'em). A good place to grab lunch.

Almost anywhere you go you'll get good food. The staff at Bar Americaine (in the Presqu'ile) can be surly, but they have a great salad Lyonnaise. We always liked Le Nord for a meal (and they have lunch too).

I always tell people to start at the top and work your way down -- start at Fourviere, then to the Roman ruins, down to Vieux Lyon, then to the Presqu'ile.

I'm jealous -- I love Lyon.

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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 10:41 AM
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Great responses - does anyone have a web page for Hotel Residence?
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 11:27 AM
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hotel-la-residence.com.
I emailed them, got their answer, faxed my cc info and got back their confirmation email all in less than 24 hours, I think.
Barb - are you the person who mentioned Hotel St. Jacques in Paris in another topic here?? If so, because of you I looked into it and am staying there when I go back to Paris after Lyon!
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 11:37 AM
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Chaton is right! I mis-spoke. You want to go to Perrache. It is pretty easy to walk around the parts of Lyon you will most likely be seeing.

For restaurants, I highly recommend almost anything that is in vieux Lyon. My favorite things are salade Lyonnaise and querenelles (sp?). But you can't go wrong with anything they have. I went alone last time, no problem.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 11:41 AM
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Mara - yes, I am the person - I'm so glad I decided to go with Saint Jacques too. When are you going? I am going to email La Residence right away. I did a text search and there were very good responses. What rate did they give you?
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 01:57 PM
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A great restaurant in the Vieux is Les Adrets at 30, rue du Bœuf 04 78 38 24 30. Just down the street from Les Adrets is a great wine shop called "The Flying Sommelier". George is the owner and Vickie also works there. They are great people.

Another great find is the wonderful bouchon, Au Petit Bouchon "Chez Georges" on rue Garet. Also ate at La Voute "Chez Lea" 11, Place Antonin Gourju 04 78 42 01 33. Not the greatest, just OK food (a bit touristy for my taste). If you love chocolate, don't miss a visit to Bernachon and the food vendors at Les Halles is another must see.
Lyon is the greatest.
Best, Gregg
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 04:09 PM
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Barb
I am going to Lyon the end of April - the rate I got at La Residence is 65 Euro for a single - and when will you be there?
Mara
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 04:15 PM
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I'm not going until Sept. I like to plan in advance, ha. That's half the fun of traveling you know. Now I am excited about Lyon. Great article in LA times, 2/3/03, by Susan James. I wonder if I should stay longer than 1-1/2 days.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 04:29 PM
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Oooh, I forgot about Bernachon! There's a tea room and a chocolate shop. Find out the hours though -- I believe the tea room is closed on Mondays, not sure about the shop. There's also a patisserie in Vieux Lyon that has wonderful things -- it's on a corner and always busy (just down the street from St. Jean church). Try a chou (whipped cream and pastry) -- I shared them with my cat until she got too greedy and didn't leave enough for me.

Barb, I lived there for 18 months and it was not enough, but a day and a half will get you around pretty well. If you stay longer, take a day trip to Perouges (Lyon Vision has a bus trip on Saturdays, I think). You could try to hire a cab for several hours too -- check with your hotel or the tourist office.

And, like Grasshopper, I love the salad Lyonnaise and quennelles. But have the quennelles at Le Nord or Le Merciere -- I've not found them as good at other places.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 04:37 PM
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Ok, I give up - what's bouchon and quennelles? bouchon translates to "stoppers"?
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 04:37 PM
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Chaton, How lucky for you to spend 18 months there! How did that happen? My daughter was an exchange student in highschool in a very small town near St. Etienne (Planfoy) and at the end of her year I met her in Lyon. Part of my love affair with Lyon comes out of seeing her after such a long time and part out of the fabulous food and lovely surroundings.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 05:10 PM
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"Bouchons" are small, old Lyon restaurants that serve classic dishes for the area. Some are still family owned. This one is and has received some good comments on this board:

www.chabertrestaurant.com

"Bouchon" does mean "stopper" or "traffic jam" in the rest of France.

"Quenelles" are light, flour, egg and cream dumplings.
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 07:00 PM
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Barb - Have fun planning! I'm more of a last-minute type person! I just printed out the Susan James' L.A. Times article - thanks for the heads up!
Mara
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Old Mar 4th, 2003, 11:27 PM
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Chaton's advice is spot on! A couple of streets you might enjoy wandering through if you're looking for lunch/dinner are the rue des Marroniers (just off place Bellecour) and the rue Mercière (just off the place des Jacobins). Both streets are pedestrianised, packed with restaurants, with tables out in the street, and lots of "ambience". Also, as Grasshopper says, wandering through the Vieux Lyon you will also find a huge choice of eateries (rue St Jean).
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Old Mar 5th, 2003, 12:30 AM
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> "Quenelles" are light, flour, egg and cream dumplings.

I think fish is the main (maybe not in quantity) ingredient for quenelles.
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