08/29 > 09/20/2020

17 previous stages

Prefecture of Rhône (69)

Population: 516,000 habitants (Lyonnais). 1,400,000 in the Lyon Métropôle

Celebrities: François Rabelais (writer), André-Marie Ampère (18th century scientist), Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Lumière brothers (inventors of cinema), Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (airman, writer), Édouard Herriot, Raymond Barre (politicians), Paul Bocuse (chef), Jean-Michel Jarre, Benjamin Biolay (musicians), Bernard Pivot (journalists), Sylvain Calzati (cycling), Fleury Di Nallo, Raymond Domenech (football), Olivier Panis (Formula 1).

Specialities: rosette, hot saucisson, quenelles (dumplings), tablier de sapeur (tripes), cervelles de canut (cheese), praline tart, wines of beaujolais Beaujolais.

Economy: banking, printing, mechanical engineering, research, textile, mechanical industry, health, chemicals, pharmacy.

Sport: Olympique lyonnais (football), ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne (basketball), LOU (rugby union).

Festivals: Fête des lumières (December). Nights of Fourvière Festival. Dance biennal. Biennale of contemporary arts. Quais du polar (crime bookfair).

Labels: UNESCO World Heritage site (old Lyon), capitworld capital of gastronomy

Websites / FB / Twitter / Insta: www.lyon.fr / www.lyoncapitale.fr / www.lyon-france.com / fr-fr.facebook.com/villedelyon/ / www.instagram.com/villedelyon/ / twitter.com/villedelyon

© Muriel Chaulet
© Muriel Chaulet
© Muriel Chaulet
© Muriel Chaulet
Tour de France 2020 - Lyon


The origin of the Festival of Lights dates back over a century and a half. While a statue of the Virgin was to be inaugurated on the Fourvière hill on September 8, 1852, torrential rain forced the authorities of the time to postpone the event. Three months later, on Wednesday, December 8, 1852, bad weather again threatened to postpone the ceremonies. At dusk, despite the tormented sky, the population, eager to share a moment of popular communion, spontaneously placed candles on their windowsills, illuminating all the streets of the city ... The tradition of December 8 was born.
At the beginning of the 1960s, traders gave a new dimension to the celebration by setting up a showcase lighting competition, thus perpetuating the tradition of lighting in Lyon. This popular competition, which includes food shops, kicks off the festive season and accompanies the religious ceremonies on December 8. In 1989, the city of Lyon imposed light as a new form of enhancement of its heritage, integrating it into its urban planning project and thus inaugurated its first Light Plan. Lyon is becoming a world reference in terms of long-term and event lighting.

© Muriel Chaulet
La Fête des Lumières à Lyon © Getty/Eddy Galeotti


The finish of the very first stage of the Tour de France in 1903, won by Maurice Garin, Lyon finally hosted the race only 17 times in 117 editions.
The capital of Gaul appeared for the last time on the Tour de France route in 2013 for the 100th edition. Victory that day went to Italian Matteo Trentin (1989), who has since repeated the feat twice, including last year in Gap. The 3rd city of France notably hosted the Grand Départ in 1991, when Thierry Marie (1963) won the prologue. Lyon has held decisive time trials on several occasions. It was the case in 1950 with the victory of Ferdi Kübler (1919-2016), then again in 1962, when Jacques Anquetil (1934-1987) won. Lyon also hosted Paris-Nice, the Criterium du Dauphiné and the Tour de l’Avenir but also a prestigious Paris- Lyon race, which only lived from 1922 to 1924.

Among the many riders born in Lyon, the most popular was undoubtedly Jean Forestier (1930), winner of Paris-Roubaix in 1955 and the oldest living winner of the Queen of classics. He also won the Tour of Flanders in 1956 and the green jersey of Tour de France in 1957. Another Lyonnais, Sylvain Calzati (1979) won the Tour de l’Avenir in 2004 and a stage of the Tour de France in 2004. Hubert Dupont (1980) ended his career last year after competing in 23 major Tours, including 5 Tour de France.

Portrait de Maurice Garin de 1903 © Presse Sports
Matteo Trentin gagnant de l'étape 14 à Lyon du Tour de France 2013 © Presse Sports/Bernard Papon


The “Fourvière” district is integrated into the territory called Hill of Fourvière, which also includes Saint-Just, Saint-Irénée and Montauban / Bourgneuf / Pierre-Scize. The district extends over the northeast part of the top of the hill. With the neighbouring part of Saint-Just, it is the historic birthplace of Lugdunum, which overlooks the two rivers Saône and Rhône to the East.

The Gallo-Roman site
Any visit to Fourvière must include, for the Roman part, the Gallo-Roman site: the park updated between 1933 and 1946, the grand theatre, the odeon and the buried museum built in 1976. For the more recent parts, do not miss the basilica, its esplanade, the religious museum, the Rosary garden and the house of Pauline Jaricot. Other very different elements are also to be seen: the former Antiquaille hospital, very recently reconfigured into mixed housing, the Metal Tower and the Parc des Hauteurs (Park of the Heights).

Old Lyon
World famous for its Renaissance architecture, the Old Lyon district owes its fabulous conservation to the safeguarding plan and to the Malraux law protecting the site from 1964. It is typical for its bourgeois architecture, very influenced by Italy and by Paris. The district began to be really busy in the Carolingian era (around 800) under the influence of Charlemagne, then in the Middle Ages. This era bequeathed the great churches (Saint-Georges, Saint-Paul and Saint-Jean), the Manécanterie, but also and above all, the fabric of the streets.
Archaeological studies carried out during the restoration of certain residences in the Old Lyon revealed the phases of occupation of the land. A first house of two or three levels, with its façade to the street, was built; the bottom of the plot was occupied by a barn, a garden or a courtyard. Access to the courtyard from the street was made through a passage called "alley", often arched and richly decorated. Some of those plots were going across two streets. They were then called “traboules”, typical Lyon dewellings.

The facades
Unlike the facades on the street which, for the most part, have a rather simple architecture, the facades on the courtyard were more sophisticated, adorned with sculpted decorations. The presence of galleries allowed the decorations to reach the arches, the keystones, the pillars ...
The last, more recent period (16th and 17th centuries) changed the face of medieval Old Lyon. Henceforth, the economic power and the way of life of large families and bankers allowed them to buy several adjoining plots and join them behind large façades.
For example: the house of Gadagne, the Philibert de l'Orme gallery (communication system), 21 rue Juiverie which includes the alley separating the two plots or on Place du Change, the integration of the beehive in the Thomassin house.

The peninsula
The peninsula between Saône and Rhône, gradually asserted itself, from the second half of the Middle Ages, as the administrative and commercial centre of Lyon. The 18th and 19th centuries marked the peak of the district.
Between Place Bellecour and Les Terreaux, the district was modified from 1853 by the work of prefect Marius Vaïsse and chief engineer Gustave Bonnet who built two major streets, rue Impériale (today rue de la République) and rue de l'Impératrice (rue Edouard Herriot). Squares punctuate the urban space, creating lively areas, while the visit of the adjacent monuments tells the history of the city. Only the Terreaux St-Nizier Cordeliers, Grolée Jacobins Célestins and Bellecour Ainay districts are part of the UNESCO sector.

La colline de Fourvière avec la Basilique © Getty/Gregory Dubus
View of Basilica of Notre Dame de Fourviere, Lyon, France © Getty/Davizro
L'impressionnant plafond de la Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière © Getty/manijk
© Muriel Chaulet
© Creative Commons 3.0/Phinou
© Muriel Chaulet
© Muriel Chaulet


For 8 beautiful quenelles you need: three eggs, 175 g of flour, 50 g of butter. And that's all! Put the butter and 250 ml of water in a saucepan and heat until the butter is melted. Add a pinch of salt. Add the flour and stir well, all over low heat to obtain a homogeneous dough. Turn off the heat, let cool a little and add the eggs. Stir again to obtain a smooth paste. Place a little flour on a work surface and make sausages. Cut the sausages and pinch the ends to get a nice quenelle shape. Boil water in a large saucepan and dip the quenelle in to poach it. When the quenelles rise to the surface, take them out and drain them.
They're ready, but they need a good sauce to add flavour. Let your imagination be free. Place the sauce of your choice at the bottom of a dish, place the quenelles on top (the sauce should cover 2/3) and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

© Creative Commons 3.0/Fryke27

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