10 Cool Things to Do in February

Top events to attend in Lyon in February 2018


January was rainy, depressing and sad in Lyon with the passing of legendary chef Paul Bocuse, the city’s best ambassador but February will be a lot better for foodies with Crepes Day and Fat Tuesday. NFL fans, street art enthusiasts and moviegoers should not be disappointed either. Welcome to February!


By Kevin Bonnaud


Typical and local Food Parties (Not for Dieters)

If you had a hard time following your post-christmas diet in January because of Kings cakes,
February will be a lot worse with two more Christian traditions which are more about food than religion.


Eat French Crepes on Candlemas Day (February 2)

While churches bless candles on February 2 to commemorate the purification of Virgin Mary, forty days after the Christ’s birth (presentation at the Temple), most French eat crepes!

Those thin pancakes are filled with jam, chocolate spread or chestnut cream (my favorite).

VIDEO – How to make Crepes with NYC based chef Bernard Le Bris (Brittany)

You can make crepes at home or go to a local restaurant (creperie) to taste sweet and savory Brittany crepes made with buckwheat crusaders brought back from the Middle East.

Try organic crepes from Praline et Fleur de Sel in Gerland, Le Dolmen, Lyon’s oldest creperie on Franklin Street (Ampère) or Le Cinoche in Croix Rousse hill where every crepe bears the name of a blockbuster movie!


Celebrate Mardi Gras with local Doughnuts called “Bugnes” (February 13)

Candlemas marks the beginning of carnival festivities which culminate on Fat Tuesday, the last day for Christians to eat fatty foods before the 47-day fasting season (Lent) kicks-off on Ach Wednesday.

Typical doughnuts from Lyon

Thin and crispy bugnes from Seve bakery (c) Philippe Jalin

In Lyon, those not-so-healthy carnival doughnuts are called “bugnes”, a local specialty introduced in the 16th century by Italian merchants.

These French doughnuts, sprinkled with icing sugar, sometimes flavoured with orange blossom or lemon zest are either flat, thin and crisp or much thicker, soft, puffy like a brioche.

You can find both treats in the city’s top bakeries such as Sève, Bernachon, Délices des Sens
or A la marquise (Vieux Lyon), which makes the best bugnes in town (my opinion).


Sports events not to be missed in February in Lyon


Where to watch the Super Bowl in Lyon?

Minneapolis, Minnesota will be the center of the universe on February 4 as the City of Lake hosts the 52nd Super Bowl between the Eagles (Philadelphia) and the New England Patriots.

Come to Lyon’s Hard Rock Café to see the biggest US sport event of the year on big screens, Justin Timberlake half-time show and Pink’s National anthem performance while enjoying beer, French fries, popcorn or tortilla chips.

The game is also broadcasted on W9 French channel (for free).

Get your ticket online and come early to get a great seat!

Super Bowl 52 Watch Party at the Hard Rock Café –February 4 – From 10.30pm
1, Rue du Président Carnot – Lyon 2 – Subway A Cordeliers.


VIDEO: highlights from last year Super Bowl


Top Soccer Matches in February with Olympique Lyonnais

Lyon’s resounding victory against Paris made local fans so proud but raises their expectations for the rest of the soccer season.

As usual, February is going to be a make-or-break month as Lyon faces Villareal in the UEFA Europa League round of 32.

The second leg of the derby match against AS Saint-Etienne is even more exciting though it may be tough to do better than last November when Lyon beat their old local rival 5 to 0.

Upcoming Football matches in Lyon Groupama stadium:
OL vs. Villareal (UEFA Europa League) – February 15 / OL vs. St. Etienne (French league) – February 24

VIDEO – OL vs ASSE – november 17


Art, Music and Solidarity


Urban art Jungle, Street Art Festival

If you still have some doubts about Lyon’s vibrant street art culture, you should go to the Urban Art Jungle Festival to make your own judgment.

You are going to see diverse artistic performances from live painting to hip hop and jazz shows, open-mic events, yoga classes, screenings of movies and documentaries.

Wall paintings and street art in Lyon

Lyon Urban Art Festival (c) miss Den’Ki

Visitors can participate in workshops to learn how to make ceramics, origamis, tawashis, stickers, graffities or embroideries.

Don’t miss late-night concerts promoting young and alternative bands.

Urban art Jungle Festival – February 23-25 
Le Croiseur – 4, Rue Croix Barret – Lyon 7 – Subway B Place Jean Jaurès

Fares : 5 Euros (day pass), 10 euros (night pass), 16.50 Euros (3-day pass)

VIDEO – highlights last edition


Soupe en Scène, Food & Music Charity Festival (February 1-3)

Soupe en Scène is a 3-day food and music charity festival aimed to bring a little bit of comfort to people who need it most. Locals and tourists can make an action of solidarity by buying a soup cooked by local chef Fabrice Bonnot, the initiator of the project.

Chef Fabrice Bonnaud at Soupe en Scènes charity festival

Local chef Fabrice Bonnaud during Soupe en Scènes charity festival (c) Arnaud Iracane


The money collected goes to the charity group Le Foyer Notre-Dame des Sans-Abri.

There is also a charity dinner on February 1 with music and cabaret performances.

Music is indeed at the core of the festival with several concerts featuring hits from the 1980s and a contest of young talents.

Republique Square (Subway A Cordeliers, Bellecour).


Chinese New Year in Guillotière on February 18.

New Year greetings are not over yet as Chinese communities around the world celebrate the Lunar New year on February 16. In Lyon, the festivities take place the following Sunday in the Guillotière neighborhood often considered as Lyon’s Chinese district.

Dragons during Chinese New Year Parade in Lyon

Chinese New Year celebrations in Lyon Guillotière. (c) Marie Perrin

The traditional parade with lion dances and firecrackers aimed to drive evil spirits away while bringing good fortune is a must-see.

The lively area becomes even more festive with street food stalls and music performances.

Happy Year of the Dog!

Chinese New Year in Guillotière, Rue Passet, Rue Pasteur – February 18 – 11:30 to 18:00 – subway D Guillotière



Movie Nights in February in Lyon


Tim Burton Retrospective at the Lumière Institute

The Lumière Institute tribute to Tim Burton continues throughout the month of February with a series of movie showings die-hard film enthusiasts would not want to miss:

Big Fish (February 7), Batman (2/22-25), Ed Wood (2/25), Mars Attacks (2/15), Sleepy Hollow (2/17-18), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2/21), Corpse Bride (2/14-18) or The Nightmare Before Christmas (l’Etrange Noel de Monsieur Jack, 2/11).

Book your seat here. 

Trailer sleepy hollow


Ciné O’Clock, English movie Festival in Villeurbanne (February 3-11)

Ciné o’clock, the British (and Irish) cinema festival is back to Villeurbanne’s Zola Theater in early February with 20 old or new movies to watch including nine previews, a blindest party and a flea market with books, CDs and posters.

Get ready for a Sunday movie marathon on February 4 starting in the morning with the projection of the 1960 movie Saturday night and Sunday morning which will be followed by a free brunch.

Come back in the evening for two screenings of Murder on the Orient Express: the preview of the restored version of the 1974 film directed by Sydney Lumet (6pm) and the 2017 version by Kenneth Branagh (8.45pm).

Ciné O’Clock Festival – February 3-11.
Le Zola Movie Theatre – 117 cours Émile Zola, Villeurbanne – Subway A République Villeurbanne


Going Green

Primevère, Go-Green Fair in Lyon Eurexpo

If you are lifelong green activist or if you considered yourself as an environmentalist-in-waiting wondering how to make the world a better place, you may want to go to Primevère green fair to meet professionals and like-minded peers.

Primevère Green Fair in Lyon-Eurexpo

At Primevère Green Fair in Lyon (c) Pierre Mas

The 3-day environmental gathering, which usually draws 30,000 people, includes over 500 exhibitors selling fair-trade goods and organic products. 70 conferences are also scheduled.

Primevère Green Fair – Eurexpo.
February 23-25 – Fares: 6/12 euros (Pay What You Want)

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