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Lyon City Guide

Population: 500,000
Language Spoken: French
Currency Used:
Emergency Contact Number: 112
Country Calling Code: +33
Time Zone: (UTC+01:00)
Student Population: N/A

Welcome to Lyon, the city between two rivers - the Rhône and the Saône! Lyon is situated in the Rhône-Alpes region of France, in the east of the country. The city is one of the largest cities in France, with a population of more than 500,000. Lyon is rich in culture and history, and is the famous hometown of the Lumière Brothers, the inventors of cinema.

Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport (LYS) is located 11 miles east of the city centre, with daily domestic, European, and some international flights. There are frequent bus and train services connecting the airport to central Lyon. If you are travelling to Lyon by train or bus, Gare de la Part-Dieu, Gare de Perrache and the main bus station are all located in the city centre. (TIP: another option for international students flying to France, is to fly to Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and connect with Lyon via TGV train.)

TCL (Transports en Commun Lyonnais) operates the public transport system in Lyon. There is an extensive bus and tram network, a four-line metro system, and two very interesting funiculars (cable railway lines). The metro is probably the most popular mode of transport and has four lines accessing the entire city. Public transport functions between 5 a.m. and midnight, and tickets for all modes of transport are integrated and inexpensive. Lyon also operates the vélo’v bike service, which is a bike hire system with over 200 bike stations throughout the city.

For short term accommodation, use one of the city's quality hostels. For longer term student accommodation, please check out the accommodation section of the website for Lyon.

Eating out in Lyon. Coming soon.

For a night out in Lyon, we highly recommend trying The King Aurthur and the Elephant & Castle pubs. Both pubs serve good food, offer live entertainment and show live sport.

Lyon is a city rich in culture and offers a wide variety of attractions. Spend a few hours at the Institut Lumière or the Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière, visit the Odéon de Lyon or the Aquarium du Grand Lyon, or enjoy a show at the Maison de la danse. If you are a sports fan, there is 'Ligue 1' football at the Stade de Gerland and 'Pro D2' Rugby at the Matmut Stadium. For the more energetic, enjoy a run or a cycle along the Rhône and Saône rivers or through the streets and parks in the city. For a more relaxing experience, we highly recommend enjoying a stroll or a picnic in the Jardin botanique de Lyon.

The main shopping area in Lyon is located in Presqu'lle in the 2nd arrondissement. The streets surrounding Place Bellecour offer shoppers all of the large chains and department stores, while more exclusive stores are found on rue du Président Édouard Herriot and rue des Archers. If you prefer shopping malls, there is the Centre Commercial la Part-Dieu, which is one of the largest malls in France. For more traditional and independent shops, visit Vieux Lyon. Lyon is home to a number of fun and exciting street markets including Les Halles de Lyon, which is a world-class indoor food market!

Lyon has a huge student population and is home to several top universities, including the Ecole Normale Superiéure de Lyon, the Université Claud Bernard Lyon I, the Université Lumière Lyon 2 and the Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3. For more info. on studying at any of these, please visit the university section of the website.

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