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A rich and varied cultural life

Cultural life in Lyon is vibrant. The city hosts international events, such as the biannual festivals of dance and contemporary art, the Grand Lyon Film Festival (Festival Lumière), and the annual festival of lights that takes place at the beginning of December with millions of tourists coming to see the celebration every year.

The city also has an impressive cultural infrastructure, with more than 22 museums, 15 libraries, a plethora of theatres and the Maison de la Danse, and much more! Other main attractions include Fourvière (where you can visit the Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière), Vieux Lyon, Pérouges, Silk Factory, and wine tasting at Beaujolais, which is situated in a beautiful landscape. Some cultural activities organised by the international team include visits to a chocolate factory where you can learn the secrets of the making of French chocolate, as well as cookery classes, dinner with a French family and other opportunities to taste and explore the many flavours of French cuisine.

The city’s cultural wealth made Lyon UNESCO World Heritage site and a serious contender for the title of 'European Capital of Culture' in 2013
A great way of visiting the city is by investing in a Lyon City Card, that provides free admission to museums and free unlimited access to the city’s public transport network, guided tours and tour cruises, together with discounts at the city’s various attractions. However, it will only give you a free or discounted access to museums, transport etc for 1,2,3, or 4 days.

A high quality of life

Lyon offers an exceptionally good quality of life. The Rhône and Saône rivers (upon which boat tours can be taken), along with a multitude of parks, squares and gardens (including the well-known, Parc de la Tête D’Or), contribute to the high standard of living.

The efficient public transport system (including metros, buses, trams and even funiculaires) is accessible around the entire city, and the Velo'v public bike rental service, makes it practical to move about in the city. Segway and bus tours are also available in order to explore the wonders of Lyon. More information on transport here.

Lyon is a gastronomic capital of France, it is also a gastronomic paradise and has numerous restaurants, patisseries, bistro-style bouchons lyonnais, as well as many fresh food markets and a firmly established culinary tradition. The city has about 150 restaurants with Michelin stars. The places to find a variety of cultural restaurants include Rue des Marronniers in Place Bellecour, and Place Carnot, Perrache.
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Sport is available in all areas of Lyon, including gyms, health and fitness centres, yoga classes, and the famous Lyon half and full marathon. For more information on the University and local gyms, please see the GYM LIST.