Sunday, 1 November 2015

Lyon Day 2: Markets and Vieux Lyon

Granola bowl at Le Kitchen Café
Our first, and only, full day in Lyon started with drift round the market in Place Jean Macé only a few minutes walk from our apartment. It was a classic French market with lots of cheese, meat and vegetable stalls. The complete opposite of the trendy markets we have here in London, it was centred on produce and people actually do their weekly shops. As well as all the food there was the obligatory stall selling pants.

After the market I was in need of some breakfast so we head to Le Kitchen Café only a five minute walk away. Both Mike and I had read a review of the place in the Guardian and were keen to check it out. I've no idea what the modern food trends are in France, but the café felt like a departure from a traditional French breakfast spot and not dissimilar to a breakfast spot in Sydney or London.

Their menu was pretty small and we all ended up with the granola, which actually turned out to be a bowl of yogurt, covered with a sprinkling of granola and some sliced nectarine on top. I had a herbal tea infusion as well. It was a lot lighter than what I'd usually have for breakfast, but that was probably a good thing considering the weekend we were having!
Outside Les Halles
After breakfast we walked up to Les Halles de Lyon - Paul Bocuse the famous covered market. The market is house in a modern glass and steel box and filled with high end food stalls. It's the type of place that in London would be a mecca for tourists, but everyone seemed to be French and I didn't hear many foreign accents as we wondered round.

About a third of the stalls in the market were small eateries, busy with the lunch trade. We meandered up an down every aisle gawking at the food without actually buying anything. (Flying back with only hand luggage ruled most things out.)

After the market we popped into the mini shopping mall next door to buy a birthday present for Becks.
Opera cakes inside the market
After buying Beck's birthday present we decided that we were in need of some lunch. We headed towards the island thinking we'd see somewhere to stop along the way. We didn't see anywhere which took our fancy before reaching the island so ended up at the touristy Café La Manille in the pedestrian heart of the island.

Lunch was solid, if unspectacular, but it we were getting pretty hungry by the time we found it so it met our needs nicely. It also provided me with the opportunity to have my only oringina of the holiday. It was also the only meal time (breakfasts excluded) where we didn't have a bottle of Côte du Rhone!
Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière
Suitably fortified we head off the western side of the island to the historic Vieux Lyon area of the city. We followed the crowds and climbed the steps up to the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière. We decided against going inside the cathedral and just admired it from the outside and then stood on the terrace soaking in the panoramic views over the city.
Ed and I with Lyon in the background
Having enjoyed the views we drifted back down the hill stopping briefly in the square outside the Cathédral Saint Jean Baptiste to take a photo along with lots of other tourists.

We then crossed back across the island, passing through Place Bellecour, and headed back to our apartment for a short rest before heading out for a night in Lyon!

All of the places I visited in Lyon have been added to my European adventures map.

Le Kitchen Café
34 Rue Chevreul

Café La Manille
33 Rue Tupin


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