Top Things to Do in Lyon Summer 2020

We know how hard it can be to stay active during the epidemic. Just because events have been cancelled and many businesses have closed temporarily doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do this summer in Lyon! From swing dance and irish festivals to street art and swimming, Lyon has plenty of upcoming events to keep you occupied.


Visit the Museum of Confluences

Along with four complementary exhibitions which present the question of the origins and destiny of humanity, the diversity of cultures and societies, but also the place of human beings in the chain of life, the Museum of Confluences is offering several temporary exhibitions to enjoy this summer.

Temporary exhibitions

– The World in Mind, the Antoine de Galbert Donation – extended until August 23
– Prison, Beyond the Walls – available until July 26
– The Universe Upside Down – available until November 1
– Traces du Vivant – available until 4 April 2021

The museum guarantees compliance with essential rules of social distancing and protection for both team members and visitors against the coronavirus, so book your tickets online today! Spaces will be sanitized regularly and please note that masks are mandatory for everyone aged 12 and up.

  • Tuesday to Friday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • 86 Quai Perrache, 69002 Lyon, France


Experience Nature with Sebastião Salgado

La Sucrière has extended the Genesis exhibition, a showcase of Sebastião Salgado’s photographic tribute to our planet in its natural state, until August 16.

The collection consists of 245 black and white photographs, taken by Salgado over the course of eight years and 30 trips around the world. Through 5 geographic chapters, the exhibition becomes a journey to the landscapes, seascapes, animals and people that have managed to escape the reach of today’s modern world.

© Sebastião Salgado

To attend, groups are not permitted, masks are required for all people above the age of six and tickets must be bought online.

La Sucrière also encourages visitors to bring their smartphone and a pair of headphones as they no longer offer portable audio guides. Instead, you can listen to the audio guide right from your phone!

48 Quai Rambaud, 69002 Lyon, France

Marvel at Paintings by Picasso at the Musée de Beaux Arts

Anywhere from July 15, 2020, to January 3, 2021, take the time to visit Musée de Beaux Arts for a chance to admire more than 150 paintings, drawings, sculptures, and films centered around “the bather”, a traditional subject in both painting and sculpture that Picasso treated in a very unique way.

Woman Seated on the Beach (1937). Picasso. © Musée des Beaux Arts de Lyon

The exhibition is based around Woman Seated on the Beach (1937), a Picasso painting that has become an iconic symbol of the museum’s collection.

Due to current health measures, reservations are required and everyone is asked to book their tickets online before arriving at the museum.

Entrance fees: 8 to 13€.

20 Place des Terreaux, 69001 Lyon, France


Let’s dance at l’Ile Barbe

Attend Les Quartiers d’été du Pôle 9

3 days, 9 free shows. Visit Île Barbe, an island located in the middle of the Saône, in the 9th arrondissement of Lyon, from July 22nd to the 24th for the experience of a lifetime.

Visitors will get to experience a variety of music from around the world, including places like the Caribbean islands, southern Italy, Andalusia, India and more! Each day, a new show will start at 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m., and 7:30 p.m.

In order to respect social distancing measures, entry will be limited to 200 spectators and wearing a mask is recommended.

Swing the night away on July 26 and August 23

Gon’a Swing, an association of Lyonnais who swing dance, will be organizing two concerts this year. With a live orchestra and a friendly atmosphere, people are encouraged to come and discover the culture of swing, whether you’re new to the dance form or if you are already a swing enthusiast!

Gon’a Swing will be offering an introduction to body percussion as well as mini conferences on swing and musicality.

Due to COVID-19 preventive measures, entry will be limited to 200 spectators and wearing a mask is recommended.

July 26 and August 23: 7 p.m. – 9 p.m., Île Barbe, 9th arrondissement

Enter the Celtic Musical Universe at This Year’s Irish Festival

On July 24 and August 29, the Lyon Arts Dance Center will be coordinating an Irish festival, free of charge for all spectators.

Experience both classical and contemporary Celtic music while watching the group, Les Corde, Irish step dance and tap dance. There will also be live concerts, demonstrations and other festive events for everyone to enjoy.

The reception capacity is limited to 200 people, with floor markings to ensure that safety distances and health regulations are respected. The public must be seated in these markings throughout the event in order to abide by social distancing guidelines. Event coordinators encourage bringing a cushion for more comfort if you wish.

July 24 and August 29: 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Parc de Gerland – Petite Prairie, entrance to Pierre de Coubertin alley, 7th arrondissement, Île Barbe, 9th arrondissement


Listen to “Love in all its Forms”

Foolish Hearts, a group of three opera singers (Majdouline Zerari, Fanny Mouren, Isaias Soares da Cunha) and an accordionist (Maxime Point) will take on renowned Broadway repertoire this August 7 and August 9.

The group will be performing pieces from operas by Bernstein, orchestral compositions by Gershwin and Weill, and musical movies by Fred Astaire and Jane Rodgers.

Due to the health situation as a result of COVID-19, entry will be limited to 200 spectators and wearing a mask is recommended.

  • August 7: 8 p.m., Parc Sisley, Entrance rue du Professeur Sisley, 3rd arrondissement
  • August 9: 8 p.m., Garden of the Lumière Institute, Entrance 98 Cours Albert Thomas, 8th arrondissement

Expand Your Knowledge of Silk Weaving with Soierie Vivante

Take a guided tour this summer with Soierie Vivante, an organization that safeguards the heritage of silk weaving in Lyon.

On your guided tour, you will enter authentic Canut (silk-weaver) workshops in the Croix-Rousse district to see how looms work and how they progressed as a technology, from the traditional arm loom, to the mechanized Jacquard loom.

A Jacquard loom at Maison des Canuts

Guides will also provide information on the various techniques silk-weavers use to make the beautiful silks Lyon is known for worldwide.

July 15-August 14
21 rue Richan, 4th arrondissement
from 6 to 10 €
7 years old and up, only 6 people per group allowed


Admire Street Art in the Croix-Rousse District

Lyon is internationally recognized as a symbol of muralism. We are also considered the French capital of Street Art.

While Croix-Rousse Hill is famous for being home to the silk workers that helped shape this city into what it is today, recent years have prompted street artists to use the naked walls in the district for art.

Mur des Canuts in Lyon

The Mur des Canuts, Lyon 4th arrondissement

Book a tour on August 26, or August 27 to be taken to some of our best examples of street art and to truly experience Lyon’s artistic renewal.

Only 15 people are allowed per group, a distance of one meter must be respected between participants, and all guides will be equipped with a hygiene kit.

August 17, and August 26: 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
Plateau de la Croix-Rousse, 4th arrondissement
From 8 to 13.00 €
Children 11 and up
Place of departure
In front of the painted wall of the Canuts, at the corner of rue Denfert-Rochereau and bd des Canuts, Lyon 4e.

Discover the Ideal Palace of Postman Ferdinand Cheval in Drôme

Between 1879 and 1912, local postman Ferdinand Cheval built an incredible stone palace in his garden without any prior architectural knowledge.

The Palais Idéal du Facteur Cheval in Hauterives.

The structure is only 26m high, 14m wide, 10m high, but the detail in Cheval’s work is immense. The “Ideal Palace” is now regarded as an example of naïve artistic architecture and has inspired artists for more than a century. To see the monument, online reservations are recommended and face masks for people over the age of 10 are required.

80 km south of Lyon (1h10 min – A7 freeway, Exit 12 Chanas).

Glimpse into the Past in Pérouges near Lyon

Less than an hour away from Lyon, Pérouges is a small town situated on a hilltop that appears as if it was frozen in time.

The entire town is a historical landmark, some of the buildings dating all the way back to the 12th century.

The town was restored in the 19th century, but much of it remains completely preserved, offering a wonderful glimpse back in time and a look at historical French architecture.

How to Get to Pérouges
There are two options to reach this medieval escape for a day trip out of Lyon: by car or by train.
● By Car: Pérouges is 30km away from Lyon, with a short drive on the A42. There is parking available for visitors, outside the town, for only 2 euros.
● By Train: There is a train line Meximieux – Pérouges. The station is only a 20-minute walk from the town. The earliest train departs from Lyon at 6:30, with the last train departing from Pérouges at 21:00.

Find Places to Swim In and Around Lyon

If you need to cool down this summer, there are plenty of places in and around Lyon to go swimming.

New guidelines have been set in place for public outdoor swimming pools as a precautionary measure against the spread of the coronavirus in Lyon.

Lac d'Aiguebelette near Lyon

Lac d’Aiguebelette

Access to public swimming pools is reserved for Lyonnais only and proof of residence will have to be presented upon arrival. Reservations have to be made online to swim in a public pool and visitors are only allowed to swim during their reserved, two-hour time slot.

There are also a variety of aquatic parks near Lyon. Take a trip to the Aquavert in Francheville, the Cascades in Trévoux, La Plaine Tonique near Montrevel-en-Bresse, or AquaParc La Vallée Bleue. You might even want to take a trip to one of Lyon’s natural swimming sites! Visit Lac des Sapins in Clublize, Lac d’Aiguebelette in Savoie, or Lac Cormoranche near Macon for a fun-filled day.