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First day in Lyon

Lyon Travel Blog

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Train station tracks and a free parking behind the hotel

We arrived in the early afternoon and we found our hotel quite easy; thank God for the GPS, well I guess I would have managed anyway. The hotel looked okay from the outside and I managed to find a free parking spot just behind the hotel where some of the people working in the neighbouring buildings also parked their cars.

We walked in and talked to the two ladies running the hotel. The hotel was an aparthotel and therefore without normal reception. We had our rooms at the 5th floor and the room was nice but not more; with a small kitchen in the middle of the living room, an okay bathroom, well it had no shower curtain, but otherwise with what you needed.

In the living room there was also a futon bed, which could be turned into a 1½ person bed.

Signaling where the Metro was at Gare de Vaise
There was also one bedroom with a double bed, so Maxime and I could easily manage there. There was also a small balcony overlooking the road and the some office buildings but you could also see the river.

We quickly changed to something warm preparing ourselves for a long day outside before we would end the day with a dinner at Paul Bocuse’s restaurant. We walked first down to the river eager to find a taxi or a bus that could take us to the city centre. Little did we know at that time we lived 500 meters away from Gare de Vaise and the unmanned Metro.

We walked along the river and crossed it at Pont Masaryk and started walking towards the city centre on the other side; there we just missed a bus but there was still no sight of Taxi’s. Finally we gave up and entered Brasserie le Tagalou at Quai Joseph Gillet. We were in the need of getting some heat but I could also enjoy my first beer in Lyon for this time, so I took a beer and Maxime had a cup of tea.

First café we passed without entering :)

After hanging out in the bar for 30 minutes we asked the friendly waiter to call us a taxi but that turned out to be completely impossible so we decided to walk again along the river.

We finally arrived in the city centre and Place de Terreaux, where they were doing sound and light checks for the following day. We decided that it was time again to get some heat and entered Café Le Moulin Joli on the corner on the square at Rue Puits-Gaillot, the place that looked cozy from the outside but had lost all personality inside after a recent make over! We stayed there for a sandwich and beer before we headed out on the route of the light festival. We wanted to walk it before tomorrow, so we knew what to look for.

Lyon is actually quite hilly and we walked up and down all the hills and streets and enjoyed every minute; the city was all dressed up and there were activities going on everywhere after some hours we needed a break and some heat again and at Place Sathonay we spotted Café de la Mairie which seemed as a nice place to be on a summer day.

Maxime on Pont Masaryk crossing the river

From outside it looked very cozy, but when we went in we were hit by an experience that for us had been typical French so far; there was not much coziness inside, it was like they had removed the history from inside.

The bars interior was quite cold, and left no space for ambiance. The light was not nice; it was way too cold and sharp like in a garage for cars. We ordered two glasses of red wine and got something that the cat had dragged in! It tasted really bad; but when all this has been said, I must say that the people were really nice and friendly; asking us where we were from and so forth.

We left for the streets some 25 minutes later and hit the streets again towards the city centre and found a really nice wine bar which I forgot the name on. Here we got a very nice glass of wine the both of us, and I ended with one of these French green non alcoholic mints drinks which was very freshening.

Towards Quai Joseph Gillet
We let the bar and it was time to visit the main goal of the first day; L'Auberge du Pont de Collonges.

The restaurant was situated some distance from the city centre all the way out at Quai de la Plage some 22 euro in a taxi from the city centre.

We were probably looking too common but we had been out walking all day and when we entered there was an elderly woman in the entrance who really gave us the eye when we went in.

Some guests were the rock star or movie star types with a pack of blond girls in tights pants and too large breasts to fit their small tops. You had also the up dressed family with their 3 grown up sons just home from board school.

Towards Quai Jayr
The loving couple out celebrating a ring or a special day but also many high-end couples with friends going for the full Monty; and then there were Maxime and I out for an out of the normal experience.

Maxime and I was in for a heavy food experience at Bocuse. The Aperitif was for me a standard glass of Champagne that turned out to be a Mumm. Max went for a house thing; something red kirish! They served a food Appetizer which was a small glass of pumpkin soup with maroons; very tasty by the way.

My starter was a foie gras with a little jelly containing artichoke and truffles; Foie Gras de Canard Maison en Gelee au Sauternes Antonin Careme! Maxime took almost the same but with one of the two foie gras exchanged by a duck pate; Dodine de Canard a l'ancienne pistachee et Foie Gras de Canard Maison! The taste was good but heavy.

River boats at Quai Joseph Gillet
This was to be the first step of the Bocuse killing.

As a main course we chose an in baked fish with some lovely filling and a fantastic but super heavy sauce; Loup en croute Feuilletee, sauce Choron. The sauce was almost the thing that ended our lives but we managed to go even a bit further.

We actually also managed to have the cheese, but barely; Selection de Fromages Frais et Addines "Mere Richard" Now the killing was almost complete; Max was almost out of breath and I was on the same way. The cheeses were very good but with humongous farm life taste. The goat cheese was so heavy that it almost got stuck in the mouth.

After this the Petit Fours came in together with a small Chocolate mousse which was very heavy and far from light! The killing was almost there, but we got saved by the bell in the last minute.

The river seen from Quai Joseph Gillet

The dessert table rolled in and the display was awesome and we both went for the fruit. Maxime went for the raspberries and I took strawberries with a lemon sorbet - and that is to me a fabulous combination I have loved since I was 12 years old in Rome with my dad.

After the meal we were totally finished and full. We could absolutely not do anything more so we went back to the apartment to sleep and that was the end of the first day in Lyon.

Chokk says:
We had the same feeling - but for real
Posted on: Jan 09, 2010
sarahsan says:
Sounds like you had a good day! I feel totally stuffed just by reading your blog!
Posted on: Jan 09, 2010
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Train station tracks and a free pa…
Train station tracks and a free p…
Signaling where the Metro was at G…
Signaling where the Metro was at …
First café we passed without ente…
First café we passed without ent…
Maxime on Pont Masaryk crossing th…
Maxime on Pont Masaryk crossing t…
Towards Quai Joseph Gillet
Towards Quai Joseph Gillet
Towards Quai Jayr
Towards Quai Jayr
River boats at Quai Joseph Gillet
River boats at Quai Joseph Gillet
The river seen from Quai Joseph Gi…
The river seen from Quai Joseph G…
Sky over Lyon
Sky over Lyon
Pont Masaryk
Pont Masaryk
Under the Bridge at Avenu de Birmi…
Under the Bridge at Avenu de Birm…
Nice church roof
Nice church roof
Parking at the quai
Parking at the quai
Maxine in the cold
Maxine in the cold
Plan A - Get a bus (-)
Plan B - G…
Plan A - Get a bus (-) Plan B - …
Belgian beer in France
Belgian beer in France
The bar
The bar
I believe you!!
I believe you!!
River view
River view
River in December
River in December
Old fortress
Old fortress
Old French Francs! What are they …
Old French Franc's! What are they…
Yeah - we are going in right direc…
Yeah - we are going in right dire…
The Gasne Olivier
The Gasne Olivier
Maxime getting cash
Maxime getting cash
It was getting cold so we went for…
It was getting cold so we went fo…
Christmas beer from Grimbergen in …
Christmas beer from Grimbergen in…
This one is too big for you
This one is too big for you
Blue lights in front of the Opera
Blue lights in front of the Opera
Green lights in front of the Opera
Green lights in front of the Opera
A yellow Vespa the wrong place!
A yellow Vespa the wrong place!
Icecubes by light
Icecubes by light
Getting ready to walk
Getting ready to walk
Maxime and the Green Man
Maxime and the Green Man
Red and Green
Red and Green
Mean Clown
Mean Clown
Mickey on dope
Mickey on dope
One of many local Mayor houses
One of many local Mayor houses
Spitting Lion in Lyon
Spitting Lion in Lyon
Cafe de la Mairie
Cafe de la Mairie
Statue in the night
Statue in the night
Some nice colours!!
Some nice colours!!
Great vine machine
Great vine machine
Looking happy in Lyon
Looking happy in Lyon
Maxime also happy
Maxime also happy
Bar environment
Bar environment
Funny painting on the wall
Funny painting on the wall
Nice style
Nice style
Green non-alcoholic drink
Green non-alcoholic drink
Lyon lights
Lyon lights
Lyon Restaurants, Cafes & Food review
Café Le Moulin Joli
Café Le Moulin Joli is situated on the corner on the square of Place de Terreaux at the street Rue Puits-Gaillot. From outside it has this Grand Plac… read entire review
Lyon Restaurants, Cafes & Food review
Café de la Mairie
We had been out walking in the streets for some time following the scheduled route for the light festival that would start the following day. The stre… read entire review
Lyon Restaurants, Cafes & Food review
Getting killed by Paul Bocuse
We had a heavy experience at Bocuse. The interior and the service were adorable as one of my Belgian girlfriends would have said. Maxime and I real… read entire review
Lyon Restaurants, Cafes & Food review
Brasserie le Tagalou
We were in the need of getting some heat and we were tired of walking and looking for a taxi so we wanted to find a café to get some rest. Our choice… read entire review
Lyon Hotels & Accommodations review
Residence Antaeus Saint Cyr Park Hotel Lyon
Together with my friend Maxime we were visiting the light festival in Lyon for the first time for the both of us. I had been dragging my hotel booking… read entire review
Lyon Nightlife & Entertainment review
NIce place to have a glass of wine
"Qu'importe le flacon, pourvu qu'on ait l'ivresse", meaning "Whatever the flask, provided that one gets the drunkeness" My friend Maxime and I were… read entire review
Lyon
photo by: spocklogic