When to Go

Lyon and the Rhône-Alpes are so diverse in altitude and climate that the weather will depend mostly on where you are, when you’re there, and which way the wind blows. Freezing gales have been known to turn Lyon's late September dance festival into a winter carnival, with icy blasts from the Massif Central sweeping down the Saône. As a rule, however, Lyon may be rainy and misty, but not especially cold. Conversely, Grenoble and the Alps can be bitter at any time of year, especially from December to April. The Beaujolais wine region is generally temperate, though a recent Beaujolais Nouveau festival (held on the third Thursday in November) saw frozen vines and revelers alike. South of Lyon along the Rhône the sun beats down on the vineyards in full summer, but the winds howl in winter.

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