Sunday, 18 December 2011

Le Fete Des Lumieres - Lyon, France

The second weekend of every December Lyon is lit up in tremendous displays of light. The second city in France, near the Alps while usually bitterly cold, the city's key buildings and monuments are draped with incredible projections for Le Fete Des Lumieres.

Visit the old theatre and see a live light ping pong machine, you can even queue up to join in the fun.

Visit the grand square and experience a 360 degree light theatre spectacle. The Town Hall and surrounding buildings showed a montage of lighting techniques - the buildings shook, horses galloped across the open space and dancing ladies were projected across the plaza in this 10-minute presentation.

Head to the churches to witness light displays to music, these can last between a few minutes and 10 minutes and keep the entire audience in awe.

Walk around the rest of the inner city, enjoy warm wine, crepes or waffles - walk across the River Rhone and River Saone to watch displays across the rivers and light projections from Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière.

The city is packed when the lights are switched on at 6pm until they finish at 1am during the four day spectacle.

When you arrive in the city, you're advised to buy a travel pass for the metro - it only costs €2.50 but except for using it to get to your hotel, it is unlikely you will need it at all during your stay as Lyon is very walkable.

A weekend trip to the city is perfect, it's easy to walk around and it is steeped in history. Plus being famous for its Gastonomie you can enjoy the amazing French cuisine.