We travelled to Lyon, not to be confused with the almighty king of the jungle, although we did see a Lion during our trip.
To start off our trip we stopped at a tourist trap, this was unbeknownst to us at the time. As a starter I enjoyed some lovely smoked salmon with a whipped butter topping while Matt had a traditional Lyonnaise sausage in a Beaujolais sauce; but these were the highlights of the meal. For our next course, I had a pot of mussels, which were adequate. They were lacking a bold flavour but did the trick. Matt on the other hand opted for the “faux filet” which of course was a bad cut of beef that was chard to the max; but of course with the addition of yet again the same Beaujolais sauce it was hard to detect solely by its appearance. The taste was another story, the flavour of ‘burnt’ could not be hidden, no matter how much Beaujolais or sauce one has consumed. For our final course I had the crème brûlée, however, something was off putting about it as well. The dessert had a lemon flavour that didn’t mesh well with the custard. Yet again, Matt seemed to upstage me in battle of the gross, he ordered what he thought to be crème caramel (he was told that’s what he ordered) but he received an egg tart that tasted like scrambled eggs, not bad if you wanted breakfast. All in all we managed to get out of there in once piece and had nothing but better meals for the rest of our stay.
Walking around the large town of Lyon was charming. The old town was enchanting with its cobblestone streets, restaurants, cafes and its hidden ‘traboules’. During World War II the French used these medieval covered passageways as escape routes or meeting spots. The alleys are very inconspicuous; it was hard to find them, even with an address!
We also trekked up what seemed to be 500 stairs and then some winding hills in order to see the lovely panoramic view of the city. From here, the whole town was visible, along with its two rivers the Rhône and Saône.
We spent our last two days exploring Le Parc de la Tête D’or, which is not only huge, but had a zoo on its grounds. We saw all kinds of animals and even stopped to drink a beer while watching Capuchins ‘monkey’ around. On our second day we rented bikes and travelled through the rest of the park while stopping to feed some ducks and geese. This was my Lyon highlight!
All in all Lyon is a lovely place to visit, the city is clean, the people are more relaxed than most people are in the rest of France, it holds the record for the most restaurants per square inch and there is plenty to see and do while there. If I weren’t already living in Nice, Lyon would be my next choice to settle down in.