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  1. France - French
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FESTIVALS, HOLIDAYS AND OTHER ANNUAL EVENTS IN Lyon

There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in Lyon each year. The main ones are listed below.

January 1: New Year's Day (national holiday)

March or April: Easter Monday (national holiday)

May 1: Labour Day (national holiday)

On the first of May, it is customary to offer a sprig of lily-of-the-valley to close ones. Many vendors occupy the pavement on that occasion!

May 8 : Victory Day (national holiday)

Commemorates the Allied victory in Europe that ended World War II on this day in 1945. Various ceremonies are held around town.

June 21: Fête de la Musique (celebrated nationwide)

Also celebrated internationally as World Music Day, for this festival many free concerts featuring all types of music are held in the streets and parks across Lyon. Festive and friendly atmosphere guaranteed!

July 14: Bastille Day (national holiday)

This holiday celebrates the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789, the key event marking the beginning of the French Revolution, and symbolises the end of the privileges enjoyed by the clergy and the aristocracy. In Lyon, a dance party open to everyone is held on the left bank of the Saône (between the Maréchal Juin and Bonaparte bridges) and a traditional fireworks display is set off from Fourvière hill at nightfall.

August 15: Assumption Day (national holiday)

This celebration, still very popular in Lyon, is marked by the faithful with religious processions and ceremonies through the streets. On this occasion, a fireworks display is set off from the Fourvière hill.

3rd weekend in September: European Heritage Days (celebrated nationwide)

The aim of the European Heritage Days is to open up numerous sites and monuments, many of which are normally closed to the public, such as castles and private collections. A great opportunity for a lovely stroll through the city to admire architectural treasures!

November 11 : Remembrance Day (national holiday)

On this day, citizens gather at the war memorial in Lyon to commemorate the signing of the 1918 armistice officially bringing an end to the First World War.

Four days around December 8: Fête des Lumières (local event)

Known for centuries as a city of light, Lyon has hosted its Festival of Light for more than 150 years. First held on 8 December 1852 to celebrate the Virgin Mary, the festival was initially celebrated throughout the city by people lighting candles in their windows on 8 December. Nowadays the festival lasts four days, during which time dozens of sites are illuminated around the city, Artists from all around the world take part in this spectacular show, which attracts millions of visitors every year.

December 25: Christmas (national holiday)

December 31 : New Year's Eve (national event)

On the night of December 31st, the atmosphere is particularly festive on the streets of Lyon, with families and friends celebrating the new year.

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CLIMATE AND WEATHER IN Lyon

Lyon has a temperate continental climate. Winters tend to be cold and dry, while summers are hot and humid, punctuated by occasionally violent thunderstorms. Temperatures can rise above 35°C (95°F) on some days in the summer. In Lyon, it rains more during the summer than during the winter.

Month Min. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Max. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Average Rains (MM) Best Time to Travel
January 0/32 6/43 47/1.9 Not the best period to go
February 1/34 8/46 44/1.7 Not the best period to go
March 4/39 13/55 50/2.0 Not the best period to go
April 6/43 16/61 75/3.0 Good period to go Good period to go
May 11/52 21/70 91/3.6 Good period to go Good period to go
June 14/57 25/77 76/3.0 Good period to go Good period to go
July 17/63 28/82 64/2.5 Good period to go Good period to go
August 16/61 27/81 62/2.4 Good period to go Good period to go
September 12/54 23/73 87/3.4 Good period to go Good period to go
October 9/48 17/63 99/3.9 Good period to go Good period to go
November 4/39 11/52 82/3.2 Not the best period to go
December 2/36 7/45 55/2.2 Not the best period to go
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Lyon Saint-Exupéry Airport

The Lyon Saint-Exupéry Airport is located 25km (16 miles) east of the city centre.

  • Two terminals:
    • Terminal 1
    • Terminal 2 (Air France)

Getting from the airport to Lyon and back:
  • By car
    • Accessible via the A432 and A43 motorways, about 30 minutes to the city centre.
    • Several parking facilities are available:

- P0 and P1 covered carparks: EUR 5.50 for the first 15 minutes, then EUR 7.50 for 15-30 minutes, EUR 9.50 for 30-45 minutes, EUR 11.50 for 45 minutes-1 hour, EUR 25.10 for 12 hours and EUR 28 for 24 hours.

- P2 nearby carpark: EUR 5.50 for the first 15 minutes, then EUR 7.50 for 15-30 minutes, EUR 8.50 for 30-45 minutes, EUR 9.50 for 45 minutes-1 hour, EUR 22.50 for 12 hours and EUR 25 for 24 hours.

- P4 nearby carpark: EUR 4.40 for the first 15 minutes, then EUR 6.40 for 15-30 minutes, EUR 7.40 for 30-45 minutes, EUR 8.40 for 45 minutes-1 hour, EUR 20.40 for 12 hours and EUR 22 for 24 hours.

- P5 budget carpark: EUR 4 for the first 15 minutes, then EUR 6 for 15-30 minutes, EUR 7 for 30-45 minutes, EUR 8 for 45 minutes-1 hour, EUR 20 for 12 hours and EUR 22 for 24 hours.
    • Several car rental companies have counters at the airport.
  • By taxi
    • There are taxi ranks outside Terminals 1 and 2 as well as the TGV train station.
    • Daytime fares to Lyon city centre are about EUR 50-55 (EUR 65-70 at night).
  • By rail
    • The Lyon-Saint Exupéry TGV train station is just a five-minute walk from terminals 1 and 2.
  • By tram
    • Rhônexpress: located a few minutes' walk from terminals 1 and 2, this tramway connects the Lyon Part-Dieu TGV station with the Lyon Saint-Exupéry airport, every day from 4:25 a.m. to midnight with a travel time of 30 minutes (EUR 15.20 one way, EUR 26.70 round trip). Trains depart every 20-30 minutes.
  • Services: shops, bars and restaurants, pharmacy, post office, currency exchange, etc.
  • Telephone: 0 826 800 826 (EUR 0.15/min)
  • Website: https://www.lyonaeroports.com/en/
  • Train + Air Service
  • Customers with a Paris connection and an Air France flight number (either from Orly or Charles de Gaulle) must visit the Train+Air desk at Lyon Part-Dieu station 24 hours to 20 minutes before their train's departure time to collect their train ticket: they will need to present a valid plane ticket to do so.
  • You will find all the information you need at https://www.airfrance.fr/FR/en/common/resainfovol/avion_train/reservation_avion_train_tgvair_airfrance.htm
  • The Lyon Part-Dieu TGV station is located at 5 Place Charles Béraudier, 69003 Lyon. It is open every day from 4.50 a.m. to 12.45 a.m. From the station, you can access:
    - public transport: tramway (Rhoneexpress lines T1, T3 and T4), intercity buses (lines 165, 1980, 2960 and 1920), subway (line B), city buses (lines C1, C2, C3, C6, C7, C9, C13, C25, 25, 37, 38 and 70).
    - private transport: drop off area, self-service car sharing, car rental companies, taxis, parking facilities, bike hire companies.

To find out everything you need to know about the Train+Air desk, please visit: https://www.garesetconnexions.sncf/fr/gare/frlpd/lyon-part-dieu/services/guichet-tgv-air

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GETTING AROUND Lyon

In Lyon, as in many of France's large metropolitan areas, opting for public transport, taxis or bicycles for getting around the city is recommended wherever possible.

By bus, tram, metro and cable car

Lyon's public transport system has been awarded the Ticket d'Or (or Golden Ticket) and is considered the most efficient of those operated by France's largest cities. It offers dense and extensive coverage of the metropolitan area (more information is available on the https://www.tcl.fr/en website).

  • Over 120 bus and trolleybus lines, and 4,600 stops.
  • Four metro lines (42 stations) criss-crossing the city in all directions from 5 a.m. until midnight (with trains running every two to five minutes).
  • Two cable cars running from Saint-Jean:
    • F1 Vieux Lyon-Saint Just, from Saint-Jean to the Gallo-Roman Theatre and the Saint-Just neighbourhood (0.8km long)
    • F2 Vieux Lyon-Fourvière, from Saint-Jean to the basilica and esplanade overlooking the city (0.4km long).
  • Seven tram lines

Fares:
  • Single ticket: EUR 1.90 (EUR 2.20 when purchased on the bus)
  • Book of 10 tickets: EUR 17.60
  • 2-hour ticket (valid on all modes of transport for 2 hours): EUR 3.20
  • Day ticket (valid on all modes of transport for 24 hours): EUR 6.20
  • Evening ticket (unlimited travel from 7 p.m. until last service): EUR 3.20

The Lyon City Card: offers unlimited access to public transport networks and 23 of the city's museums - available as a 1-day (EUR 27), 2-day (EUR 37), 3-day (EUR 47) or 4-day pass (EUR 57).. For more information, please visit https://en.lyoncitycard.com/

By car

Due to heavy traffic and limited parking options, visiting Lyon by car is not recommended. Should you still need to drive, various car rental agencies are located throughout town.

Useful tip: "Citiz" (https://lpa.citiz.coop/english), a self-service car rental network is operated in Lyon. About a hundred cars are available 24/7, spread out through the 40 drop-off areas. From EUR 2 per hour, EUR 20 per day, or EUR 110 per week.

By bicycle

Lyon offers several hundred kilometres of cycling paths. Bicycles can be rented from local bike shops or you can use Vélo'v (https://velov.grandlyon.com/en/home), the city's public bike-sharing system, with 348 stations around the city. A day-pass costs EUR 4 to access the network. For each trip, the first 30 minutes are free of charge, then EUR 1.50 for the next 30 minutes and EUR 3 for 30 more minutes. EUR 4.50 for every additional 30 minutes.

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Visitor information

Upon your arrival in Lyon, you can get in touch with local tourism professionals for further information and to help organise your stay.

Greater Lyon Tourist Office and Convention Bureau

Offers practical information (sightseeing, tours, heritage sites and cultural institutions, nights out on the town, etc.), maps and brochures for tourists on the city of Lyon and its region.

  • Address: Place Bellecour, Lyon 69002 Lyon
  • Opening hours: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., 7 days a week
  • Telephone: +33 (0)4 72 77 69 69
  • Website: https://en.lyon-france.com/

French Travel Guide

The official tourism website of France has plenty of information available on the city of Lyon.

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Medical information

In order to travel in the best conditions and for your health and safety, we invite you to check all information regarding preventive measures and best practices to be respected, available on the official website of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: https://www.gouvernement.fr/info-coronavirus

Your comfort, well-being and health are at the heart of Air France's concerns, and we want to help you prepare for your trip in the best way possible. Find out more about the measures taken to ensure safe travelling on our website: https://www.airfrance.fr/FR/en/common/page_flottante/information/coronavirus.htm#notre-engagement-sanitaire

See your doctor before you travel. It is also recommended to take out insurance covering medical expenses and repatriation before your trip. Lyon counts several hospitals and medical institutions, as well as quality medical practitioners and health specialists.

Vaccinations

There are no vaccination requirements for visitors to France. For more information, contact Air France's international vaccination centre:

Water

Tap water is safe to drink in Lyon.

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Administrative formalities

Entry requirements for France

As a general rule, a visa is required to enter France. Foreign nationals in the two categories listed below are not required to carry a visa for stays of 90 days or less:

  • Citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) or the Swiss Confederation
  • Citizens or nationals of some foreign countries.

For stays of more than 90 days, a long-stay visa is required.

Travellers from all other countries must be in possession of a visa, regardless of the length of their stay. Visa applications must be submitted to the nearest French Embassy or French Consulate in the country of permanent residence well in advance of departure.

For further information, visit the website of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

https://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/en/coming-to-france/requesting-a-visa/

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Useful addresses

Directory of foreign embassies and consulates in France

Contact information for the embassies and consulates of your country is accessible in the directory of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs: https://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr./en/

To enjoy peace of mind during your stay in Lyon, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country.

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Essential phrases

Here are a few basic French phrases that will make your stay in Lyon a little easier:

Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: Bonjour (morning) Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: <em>Bonjour (morning)</em>

Good evening: Bonsoir Good evening: <em>Bonsoir</em>

Goodbye: Au revoir Goodbye: <em>Au revoir</em>

Yes: Oui Yes: <em>Oui</em>

No: Non No: <em>Non</em>

No, thank you: Non, merci No, thank you: <em>Non, merci</em>

Thank you very much: Merci beaucoup Thank you very much: <em>Merci beaucoup</em>

Please: S'il vous plaît Please: <em>S'il vous plaît</em>

I don't understand: Je ne comprends pas I don't understand: <em>Je ne comprends pas</em>

Could you repeat?: Pouvez-vous répéter ? Could you repeat?: <em>Pouvez-vous répéter ?</em>

What time is it?: Quelle heure est-il ? What time is it?: <em>Quelle heure est-il ?</em>

Sorry: Pardon
Excuse me: Excusez-moi Sorry: <em>Pardon</em><br />
Excuse me: <em>Excusez-moi</em>

Airport: Aéroport Airport: <em>Aéroport</em>

Train station: Gare Train station: <em>Gare</em>

Taxi: Taxi Taxi: <em>Taxi</em>

Hotel: Hôtel Hotel: <em>Hôtel</em>

Hospital: Hôpital Hospital: <em>Hôpital</em>

Bank: Banque Bank: <em>Banque</em>

Telephone: Téléphone Telephone: <em>Téléphone</em>

I'm (…): Je suis (…) I'm (…): <em>Je suis (…)</em>

I'm looking for (…): Je recherche (…) I'm looking for (…): <em>Je recherche (…)</em>

How much is (…)?: Quel est le prix de (…) ? How much is (…)?: <em>Quel est le prix de (…) ?</em>

Do you have (…)?: Avez-vous (…) ? Do you have (…)?: <em>Avez-vous (…) ?</em>

Where can I find (…)?: Où puis-je trouver (…) ? Where can I find (…)?: <em>Où puis-je trouver (…) ?</em>

Where can I buy (…)?: Où puis-je acheter (…) ? Where can I buy (…)?: <em>Où puis-je acheter (…) ?</em>

I'd like (…): Je voudrais (…) I'd like (…): <em>Je voudrais (…)</em>

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Good to know

+33
+ phone number (without 0)
-1 : 00
of time difference with
Sofia
Start of daylight saving time: last Sunday in March

End of daylight saving time: last Sunday in October

BANKS

Usually open Tuesday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. (open until 12:30 p.m. on Saturdays)
GOVERNMENT OFFICES

Usually open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
230 V / 50 Hz

Tipping
In Lyon like elsewhere in France, a service charge is always included in the bill. If you are particularly pleased with the service, you may certainly leave a few extra euros on the table. But this additional tip is neither expected nor necessary.

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