Lyon is the second largest city in France with 500,000 inhabitants but including the suburbs in the outlying areas, they say there are 1.2 million. Lyon is between two hills, the Fourvier and Croix-Rousse and between two rivers: the turbulent Rhone and the tranquil Saone. Lyon is a very industrial city; textile manufacturing is one of the most important here. But not only that, this city is known, as the capital of gastronomy, like Paris, this city has the largest number of Michelin-star restaurants. The most famous chef, Paul Bocuse, has his restaurant in Lyon
Lyon has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site since December 1998, specifically the Saint-Jean and the Croix-Rousse areas. This is a very beautiful part of the city with its architectural renaissance buildings and monuments.
At 9:00am we leave for a guided tour of Lyon by coach with some easy walking. We visit a very new Cathedral on the top of a hill. By new, it was completed in the mid 1800’s. There was a striking set of mosaics on the walls and all the outside was ‘like new’, in other words the color was not dull grey.
In the old town, we stop to view some buildings that have been painted depicting famous people and points of history. Quite striking indeed. Then we follow through some of the streets and into some of the 50 trauboules, which exist in the old city. A trauboule is made up a of a hallway at street level that leads to a small courtyard which has staircases up to the apartments in the various parts of the buildings.
After yet another sumptuous lunch, we take a 50-minute coach ride to the medieval village of Perouges. It, of course, is built on the top of a hill in case of the inhabitants needing to defend it in case of an invasion. You can see the walls are made of river rocks and mortar, but are reasonably built. The streets are also made of river rocks either laid flat in mortar or on end to assist the vehicles or coach wheels if they need additional traction. On the way, we pass the town of Phillips. This is the region that produces Phillips lights and the town is named after the company.
Tonight is the crew concert so after the oversized meal – again. The crew entertain us with skits and ‘stuff’, while the ship leaves the wharf, and does a few circles between a couple of bridges before heading upstream on the Saone River.
Famous French People – Claude Monet
Claude Oscar Monet was born in Paris in 1840 and died in Giverny in 1926. He was a famous French painter, one of the founders, and of the most relevant and pure figures of Impressionism. The term impressionism comes from the title of one of his paintings, “Impression, Soleil levant” (Impresssion, Sunrise). He’s best known for his predilection for plein-air landscape painting.