Each year, several million tourists come to discover and enjoy Lyon. Thanks to the strong growth of Saint Exupéry Airport, Lyon has become a destination for “city-breakers” keen to discover the charm of one of Europe’s cities over the course of a long weekend.

Opéra Hotel de ville Mur des LyonnaisLyon 2013-©www.gmd-photographe.fr

Opéra Hotel de ville Mur des Lyonnais 2013 – © www.gmd-photographe.fr

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  • Key Figures
  • More Than 5.5 million tourists visited Lyon in 2012
  • 53% of visitors to Lyon are foreigners
  • Top 5 foreign visitors in 2012 :
  • Germany : 10.5%
  • Spain : 8.6%
  • Italy : 8.1%
  • Canada : 7.6%
  • USA : 7.3%

This trend can be explained by the city’s exceptional heritage, its way of life, cultural and culinary attractions, and its environment. But there is another factor: large international events combined with low-cost flights to Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport (EasyJet, Aer Lingus, Jet4You, Air Arabia, Transavia, Vueling) have allowed Lyon to experience a real boom in tourism.

Diverse and original ways to discover the city:

  • Lyon City Card: provides free unlimited access to all means of public transport and offers free entry to 31 attractions and reductions for 12 others. This offer covers all cultural attractions, including 22 museums, guided tours, and tourist cruises.
  • Lyon City Greeters: this initiative offers a personal welcome from a native Lyonnais who shares the same interests and can be arranged through the dedicated interactive website.
  • Lyon City Helpers: a team of students and some well-known local characters who aim to welcome, inform and provide advice to tourists in their native language.

Finally, to offer tourists a unique way of discovering the city, a certain number of programs have been put in place combiningsimplicity and originality: double-decker “Grand Tour” buses travel through the city, and tour guides and fitness coaches offer tours on foot or whilst jogging! Or, if you prefer to take in the city sitting down, you can take a green taxi or “Cyclopolitan”, a new generation electrical tricycle. Last but not least, you can visit Lyon by boat.

Lyon, culinary capital

The capital of French gastronomy, Lyon offers a choice between the gourmet charms of its traditional “bouchons” (small, family-run restaurants), the refined atmosphere of its great Michelin-starred restaurants, or its bustling markets.

Stitched Panorama

Lyon Old Town 2013 – © www.gmd-photographe.fr

Lyon gastronomy:

  • 1,500 restaurants (about 4,300 in Greater Lyon, of which 13 have Michelin stars)
  • Beaujolais: a region famous for its wines!
  • The Grand Hôtel Dieu, a historic building set to house the future Gastronomic Center of Lyon: it will feature a 15,000 sq. meter Taste Tour including 4,900 sq. meters of restaurant space, 2,700 sq. meters of shops and a local produce market covering 900 sq. meters.
More information about culture in Lyon, contact us !