What to Do in Lyon When Family Comes to Visit?

Published: 2019/11/18
What do you do when you have visitors come to your home? You provide food and games for a great evening, right? Now, what do you do when you have visitors coming to a brand new country, that you have only been in for a few months?

How to Keep Your Family Entertained in Lyon

When traveling anywhere, you have to know how to keep your family entertained. If it’s a big or small family, kids, your parents, or even some visitors, you have to know what is going to keep everyone happy.

Aerial view of Lyon

Lyon, France

In my case, I had the pleasure of getting to introduce the city of Lyon to my visiting parents. In such a vast and eventful city, how could I pick and choose the right things to do to give my parents the full experience of Lyon?

Here are a few of my favorite places to go, restaurants to eat at, and a few helpful tips when giving any visitors of yours the full experience of Lyon.

Things to do in Lyon when family is coming

Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvière

When I think of my favorite places to go and things to see, my first thought always goes to La ​Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière.

Notre Dame de Fourrière in Lyon

Notre Dame de Fourrière in Lyon

This is something everyone of every age can enjoy. You can get lost in the beauty of the mosaics, ​exquisite​ architecture, and of course, the gorgeous views out over the city. You can even take an exclusive tour inside of the towers and learn the history behind this amazing basilica.

The next stop was to work our way down to Vieux Lyon. This is the perfect place to enrich your family/visitors in the Lyon culture.

Musée de la Miniature et du cinéma

You can explore the streets and take in the different shops and bouchons they have to offer. One hidden gem is the Musée de la Miniature et du Cinéma.

Musée de la miniature in Lyon

Musée de la Miniature et du Cinéma

This museum is perfect for anyone because it has a mixture of both american and french film props, as well as a display of, well, miniature displays of famous movie scenes and places around the world.

Parc de la Tête d’Or

The last place that is going to really impress your family is Parc De La Tête D’Or. This park has it all. Between the variety of different greenhouses, the lake with the monument d’ile, the abundance of gardens, the children’s park, and a free zoo, your family will definitely be entertained.

Parc Tete d'or in Lyon

Parc de la Tête d’or

With a nice picnic, you can lay out on the grass and enjoy the groups of ducks that waddle past you, or even have a bite to eat at the lakeside restaurant, next to a splendid view of the lake.

No matter what activity you want to par-take in, Parc De La Tête D’Or will be a perfect spot for you and your family/visitors to enjoy.

Where to eat in Lyon with your family

If you have family visiting in Lyon, the capital of gastronomy, you have to try some of the specialities that Lyon has to offer. As mentioned earlier, in Vieux Lyon and throughout most of the older parts of Lyon, there are many bouchons.

Bouchons are a type of restaurant that you can only find in Lyon. The menu is different at each one, with some speciality dishes created by the chef themself. The idea is to feel as if you are eating at a friend’s or a family member’s house.

Bouchon in Lyon

Typical bouchon’s table

The decor and the way the restaurant is set up is made to give you a homey feeling. All tables are smooshed together, forcing you to talk and meet different people seated next to you. You enjoy the company of others, and it is a perfect way to have your family from home, become part of the Lyon family here.


Public transportation, demonstration… helpful tips to visit Lyon with your family

If you have been living here as I have, you have learned a lot of the tips and tricks to living here, but for someone visiting for the first time, it can be very overwhelming.

For example, public transportation. For some people like my family, we come from a place with no public transportation, so it was a lot at first. An important thing to remember, always check the schedules.

Bus in Lyon

Public transport in Lyon

There could be a delay, a demonstration, important people visiting, or even just that it is getting later at night. Checking the times will help you from being stranded and waiting for a while, as well as knowing other multiple options for getting home.

Speaking of demonstrations, it is an important idea to keep in mind when in France. Demonstration/protests are very common and could get out of hand sometimes, so it is important to know ahead of time.

All demonstrations all pre-planned, so this is a good thing to know so you can plan your schedule ahead of time.

Overall, Lyon is a great place with so much to do to keep your family entertained.

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