Lyon, France
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Lyon Hotels Comparison & Online Booking

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In order to book an accommodation in Lyon enter the proper dates and do the hotel search. If needed, sort the found Lyon hotels by price, star rating, property type, guest rating, hotel features, hotel theme or hotel chain. Then take a look at the found hotels on Lyon map to estimate the distance from the main Lyon attractions and sights. You can also read the guest reviews of Lyon hotels and see their ratings.

When a hotel search in Lyon is done, please select the room type, the included meals and the suitable booking conditions (for example, "Deluxe double room, Breakfast included, Non-Refundable"). Press the "View Deal" ("Book Now") button. Make your booking on a hotel booking website and get the hotel reservation voucher by email. That's it, a perfect hotel in Lyon is waiting for you!

Hotels of Lyon

A hotel in Lyon is an establishment that provides lodging paid on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a basic bed and storage for clothing, to luxury features like en-suite bathrooms. Larger in Lyon hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Lyon are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Lyon hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Lyon hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Lyon have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:

Upscale luxury hotels in Lyon
An upscale full service hotel facility in Lyon that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Lyon hotels are normally classified with at least a Four Diamond or Five Diamond status or a Four or Five Star rating depending on classification standards.

Full service hotels in Lyon
Full service Lyon hotels often contain upscale full-service facilities with a large volume of full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and a variety of on-site amenities such as swimming pools, a health club, children's activities, ballrooms, on-site conference facilities, etc.

Historic inns and boutique hotels in Lyon
Boutique hotels of Lyon are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Lyon boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Lyon may be classified as luxury hotels.

Focused or select service hotels in Lyon
Small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer a limited amount of on-site amenities that only cater and market to a specific demographic of Lyon travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Lyon focused or select service hotels may still offer full service accommodations but may lack leisure amenities such as an on-site restaurant or a swimming pool.

Economy and limited service hotels in Lyon
Small to medium-sized Lyon hotel establishments that offer a very limited amount of on-site amenities and often only offer basic accommodations with little to no services, these facilities normally only cater and market to a specific demographic of travelers, such as the budget-minded Lyon traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Lyon hotels often lack an on-site restaurant but in return may offer a limited complimentary food and beverage amenity such as on-site continental breakfast service.

Guest houses and B&Bs in Lyon
A bed and breakfast in Lyon is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Lyon bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Lyon B&B has between 4 and 11 rooms, with 6 being the average. Generally, guests are accommodated in private bedrooms with private bathrooms, or in a suite of rooms including an en suite bathroom. Some homes have private bedrooms with a bathroom which is shared with other guests. Breakfast is served in the bedroom, a dining room, or the host's kitchen. Often the owners of guest house themselves prepare the breakfast and clean the rooms.

Hostels in Lyon
Lyon hostels provide budget-oriented, sociable accommodation where guests can rent a bed, usually a bunk bed, in a dormitory and share a bathroom, lounge, and sometimes a kitchen. Rooms can be mixed or single-sex, although private rooms may also be available. Hostels are often cheaper for both the operator and occupants; many Lyon hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk agents or housekeeping staff in exchange for experience or discounted accommodation.

Apartment hotels, extended stay hotels in Lyon
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Lyon hotels that offer longer term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Extended stay hotels may offer non-traditional pricing methods such as a weekly rate that cater towards travelers in need of short-term accommodations for an extended period of time. Similar to limited and select service hotels, on-site amenities are normally limited and most extended stay hotels in Lyon lack an on-site restaurant.

Timeshare and destination clubs in Lyon
Lyon timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership also referred to as a vacation ownership involving the purchase and ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage during a specified period of time. Timeshare resorts in Lyon often offer amenities similar that of a Full service hotel with on-site restaurant(s), swimming pools, recreation grounds, and other leisure-oriented amenities. Destination clubs of Lyon on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.

Motels in Lyon
A Lyon motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging establishment similar to that of a limited service hotel, but with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Common during the 1950s and 1960s, motels were often located adjacent to a major road, where they were built on inexpensive land at the edge of towns or along stretches of highways. They are still useful in less populated areas of Lyon for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Lyon motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.

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Travelling and vacation in Lyon

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For other uses, see Lyon (disambiguation) and Lyons (disambiguation).
Lyon
Top: Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, Place des Terreaux with Fontaine Bartholdi and Lyon City Hall at night Centre: Parc de la Tête d'Or, Confluence district and old city. Bottom, Pont Lafayette, Part-Dieu district with Place Bellecour in foreground during Festival of Lights.
Top: Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, Place des Terreaux with Fontaine Bartholdi and Lyon City Hall at night

Centre: Parc de la Tête d'Or, Confluence district and old city.

Bottom, Pont Lafayette, Part-Dieu district with Place Bellecour in foreground during Festival of Lights.
Flag of Lyon
Flag
Coat of arms of Lyon
Coat of arms
Motto: Avant, avant, Lion le melhor.
(Old Franco-Provençal: Forward, forward, Lyon the best)
Lyon is located in France
Lyon
Lyon
Coordinates:  / 45.76; 4.84  / 45.76; 4.84
Country France
Region Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Metropolis Metropolis of Lyon
Arrondissement Lyon
Subdivisions 9 arrondissements
Government
• Mayor (2014–2020) Gérard Collomb (PS)
Area 47.87 km (18.48 sq mi)
• Metro (2010) 6,018.62 km (2,323.80 sq mi)
Population (Jan. 2014) 506,615
• Rank 3rd in France
• Density 11,000/km (27,000/sq mi)
• Metro (2013) 2,237,676
Time zone CET (GMT +1) (UTC+1)
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
INSEE/Postal code 69123 /69001-69009
Elevation 162–349 m (531–1,145 ft)
Website lyon.fr

French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Lyon or (more archaically) Lyons (UK /lˈɒn/ or /ˈlɒn/; French pronunciation: [ljɔ̃], locally: [lijɔ̃]; Arpitan: Liyon [ʎjɔ̃]) is a city in east-central France, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, about 470 km (292 mi) from Paris and 320 km (199 mi) from Marseille. Inhabitants of the city are called Lyonnais.

Lyon had a population of 506,615 in 2014 and is France's third-largest city after Paris and Marseille. Lyon is the capital of the Metropolis of Lyon and the region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. The metropolitan area of Lyon had a population of 2,237,676 in 2013, the second-largest in France after Paris.

The city is known for its cuisine and gastronomy and historical and architectural landmarks and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lyon was historically an important area for the production and weaving of silk.

It played a significant role in the history of cinema: Auguste and Louis Lumière invented the cinematographe in Lyon. The city is also known for its famous light festival, Fête des Lumières, which occurs every 8 December and lasts for four days, earning Lyon the title of Capital of Lights.

Economically, Lyon is a major centre for banking, as well as for the chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. The city contains a significant software industry with a particular focus on video games, and in recent years has fostered a growing local start-up sector. Lyon hosts the international headquarters of Interpol, Euronews, and International Agency for Research on Cancer. Lyon was ranked 19th globally and second in France for innovation in 2014. It ranked second in France and 39th globally in Mercer's 2015 liveability rankings.

Lyon: History

Main articles: History of Lyon and Timeline of Lyon

According to the historian Dio Cassius, in 43 BC, the Roman Senate ordered Munatius Plancus and Lepidus, lieutenants of the assassinated Julius Caesar and governors of central and Transalpine Gaul, respectively, to found a settlement for a group of Roman refugees. These refugees had been expelled from Vienne (a town about 30 km [19 mi] to the south) by the Allobroges and were now encamped at the confluence of the Saône and Rhône rivers. Dio Cassius says this task was to keep the two men from joining Mark Antony and bringing their armies into the developing conflict. The Roman foundation was at Fourvière hill and was officially called Colonia Copia Felix Munatia, a name invoking prosperity and the blessing of the gods. The city became increasingly referred to as Lugdunum (and occasionally Lugudunum). The earliest translation of this Gaulish place-name as "Desired Mountain" is offered by the 9th-century Endlicher Glossary. In contrast, some modern scholars have proposed a Gaulish hill-fort named Lug[o]dunon, after the Celtic god Lugus ('Light', cognate with Old Irish Lugh, Modern Irish Lú), and dúnon (hill-fort).

Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa recognised that Lugdunum's position on the natural highway from northern to south-eastern France made it a natural communications hub, and he made Lyon the starting point of the principal Roman roads throughout Gaul. It then became the capital of Gaul, partly due to its convenient location at the convergence of two navigable rivers, and quickly became the main city of Gaul. Two emperors were born in this city: Claudius, whose speech is preserved in the Lyon Tablet in which he justifies the nomination of Gallic senators, and Caracalla. Today, the archbishop of Lyon is still referred to as "Primat des Gaules" and the city often referred to as the "capitale des Gaules".

The Christians in Lyon were martyred for their beliefs under the reigns of various Roman emperors, most notably Marcus Aurelius and Septimus Severus. Local saints from this period include Blandina (Blandine), Pothinus (Pothin), and Epipodius (Épipode), among others. In the second century AD, the great Christian bishop of Lyon was the Easterner, Irenaeus.

Place Carnot, Lyon

Burgundian refugees fleeing the destruction of Worms by the Huns in 437 were re-settled by the military commander of the west, Aëtius, at Lugdunum. This became the capital of the new Burgundian kingdom in 461.

In 843, by the Treaty of Verdun, Lyon, with the country beyond the Saône, went to Lothair I. It later was made part of the Kingdom of Arles. Lyon did not come under French control until the 14th century.

Fernand Braudel remarked, "Historians of Lyon are not sufficiently aware of the bi-polarity between Paris and Lyon, which is a constant structure in French development...from the late Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution". In the late 15th century, the fairs introduced by Italian merchants made Lyon the economic countinghouse of France. (Even the Bourse (treasury), built in 1749, resembled a public bazaar where accounts were settled in the open air.) When international banking moved to Genoa, then Amsterdam, Lyon remained the banking centre of France. In the later 1400s and 1500s Lyon was an key centre of literary activity, both of French writers (Maurice Scève, Antoine Heroet, Louise Labé) and of Italians in exile (Luigi Alamanni, Giorgio Trissinio), for book publishing and of protestant activity.

In 1572, Lyon was a scene of mass violence by Catholics against Protestant Huguenots in the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacres.

During the French Revolution, Lyon rose up against the National Convention and supported the Girondins. In 1793 the city was assaulted by the Revolutionary armies and under siege for over two months before eventually surrendering. Several buildings were destroyed, especially around the Place Bellecour. Jean-Marie Collot d'Herbois and Joseph Fouché administered the execution of more than 2,000 people. A decade later, Napoleon ordered the reconstruction of all the buildings demolished during this period.

During the Renaissance, the city's development was driven by the silk trade, which strengthened its ties to Italy. (Italian influence on Lyon's architecture is still visible among historic buildings.) Thanks to the silk trade, the city became an important industrial town during the 19th century. In 1831 and 1834, the canuts (silk workers) of Lyon staged two major uprisings for better working conditions and pay. The 1831 uprising had one of the first recorded uses of the black flag as an emblem of protest.

In 1862, the world's first urban funicular railway was built between Lyon and La Croix-Rousse.

During World War II, Lyon was a centre for the occupying German forces, as well as a stronghold of resistance. The traboules (secret passages) through houses enabled the local people to escape Gestapo raids. On 3 September 1944, the city was liberated by the 1st Free French Division and the Forces Françaises de l'Intérieur. The city is now home to a resistance museum. (See also Klaus Barbie.)

Lyon: Geography

The Rhône and Saône Rivers converge to the south of the historic city centre forming a peninsula or "Presqu'île". There are two large hills, one to the west and one to the north of the city centre, as well as a large plain which sprawls eastward. West of the Presqu'île, the original mediaeval city (Vieux Lyon) was built on the west bank of the Saône river at the foot of the Fourvière hill. This area, along with portions of the Presqu'île and much of the Croix-Rousse is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

To the west is Fourvière, known as "the hill that prays". This is the location for the highly decorated basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, several convents, the palace of the Archbishop, the Tour métallique (a highly visible TV tower, replicating the last stage of the Eiffel Tower) and a funicular (a railway on a steep hill).

To the north is the Croix-Rousse, known as "the hill that works". This area is traditionally home to many small silk workshops, an industry for which the city was once renowned.

Place Bellecour is located on the Presqu'île between the two rivers and is the third-largest public square in France. The broad, pedestrian-only Rue de la République leads north from Place Bellecour. The second arrondissement has many of the finest old residential buildings in Lyon and the area is known for its concentration of old Lyonnaise Catholic families, particularly in the Ainay part of the arrondissement.

East of the Rhône from the Presqu'île is a large area of flat ground upon which sits much of modern Lyon and contains most of the city's population. Situated in this area is the urban centre of Part-Dieu which clusters the Tour Part-Dieu (affectionately nicknamed "The Pencil"), the Tour Oxygène, the Tour Swiss Life, La Part-Dieu (a shopping centre), and Lyon Part-Dieu (one of Lyon's two major rail terminals).

North of this district is the relatively wealthy sixth arrondissement, which is home to the Parc de la Tête d'Or (one of Europe's largest urban parks), the prestigious Lycée du Parc to the south of the park, and Interpol's world headquarters on the park's western edge. The park contains a free zoo that has recently been upgraded.. The zoo hosts animals from around the world. It covers more than 6 hectares.

Panorama of the city of Lyon
Panorama of the inner city of Lyon, taken from the basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière's roof

Lyon: Climate

Lyon has a humid subtropical climate (Cfa), albeit having some characteristics of the oceanic climate (Cfb). The mean temperature in Lyon in the coldest month is 3.2 °C (37.8 °F) in January and in the warmest month in July is 22 °C (71.6 °F), hence maintaining its subtropical classification. Precipitation is adequate year-round, at an average of 830 mm (32.7 in), but the winter months are the driest. The highest recorded temperature is 40.5 °C (104.9 °F) on 13 August 2003 while the lowest recorded temperature is −24.6 °C (−12.3 °F) on 22 December 1938.

Climate data for Lyon (1981–2010 averages)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 18.5
(65.3)
21.9
(71.4)
25.7
(78.3)
30.1
(86.2)
34.2
(93.6)
38.4
(101.1)
39.8
(103.6)
40.5
(104.9)
35.8
(96.4)
28.4
(83.1)
23.0
(73.4)
20.2
(68.4)
40.5
(104.9)
Average high °C (°F) 6.4
(43.5)
8.4
(47.1)
13.0
(55.4)
16.3
(61.3)
20.8
(69.4)
24.6
(76.3)
27.7
(81.9)
27.2
(81)
22.7
(72.9)
17.4
(63.3)
10.8
(51.4)
7.1
(44.8)
16.9
(62.4)
Daily mean °C (°F) 3.4
(38.1)
4.8
(40.6)
8.4
(47.1)
11.4
(52.5)
15.8
(60.4)
19.4
(66.9)
22.2
(72)
21.6
(70.9)
17.6
(63.7)
13.4
(56.1)
7.6
(45.7)
4.4
(39.9)
12.5
(54.5)
Average low °C (°F) 0.3
(32.5)
1.1
(34)
3.8
(38.8)
6.5
(43.7)
10.7
(51.3)
14.1
(57.4)
16.6
(61.9)
16.0
(60.8)
12.5
(54.5)
9.3
(48.7)
4.3
(39.7)
1.6
(34.9)
8.1
(46.6)
Record low °C (°F) −23.0
(−9.4)
−22.5
(−8.5)
−10.5
(13.1)
−4.4
(24.1)
−3.8
(25.2)
2.3
(36.1)
6.1
(43)
4.6
(40.3)
0.2
(32.4)
−4.5
(23.9)
−9.4
(15.1)
−24.6
(−12.3)
−24.6
(−12.3)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 47.2
(1.858)
44.1
(1.736)
50.4
(1.984)
74.9
(2.949)
90.8
(3.575)
75.6
(2.976)
63.7
(2.508)
62.0
(2.441)
87.5
(3.445)
98.6
(3.882)
81.9
(3.224)
55.2
(2.173)
831.9
(32.752)
Average precipitation days 9.0 7.8 8.4 9.3 11.3 8.4 6.9 7.1 7.6 10.2 9.0 9.1 104.1
Average snowy days 5.5 3.9 2.5 1.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.0 4.6 19.6
Average relative humidity (%) 84 80 74 71 72 70 65 70 76 82 84 86 76.2
Mean monthly sunshine hours 73.9 101.2 170.2 190.5 221.4 254.3 283.0 252.7 194.8 129.6 75.9 54.5 2,001.9
Source #1: Météo France
Source #2: Infoclimat.fr (humidity, snowy days 1961–1990)

Lyon: Administration

Main article: Arrondissements of Lyon
Map of the City of Lyon divided into 9 arrondissements
Map of the Metropolis of Lyon (the city of Lyon is in red)

Like Paris and Marseille, the city of Lyon is divided into a number of municipal arrondissements, each of which is identified by a number and has its own council and town hall. Five arrondissements were originally created in 1852, when three neighbouring communes (La Croix-Rousse, La Guillotière, and Vaise) were annexed by Lyon. Between 1867 and 1959, the third arrondissement (which originally covered the whole of the Left Bank of the Rhône) was split three times, creating a new arrondissement in each case. Then, in 1963, the commune of Saint-Rambert-l'Île-Barbe was annexed to Lyon's fifth arrondissement. A year later, in 1964, the fifth was split to create Lyon's 9th – and, to date, final – arrondissement. Within each arrondissement, the recognisable quartiers or neighbourhoods are:

  • 1st arrondissement: Slopes of La Croix-Rousse, Terreaux, Martinière/St-Vincent
  • 2nd arrondissement: Cordeliers, Bellecour, Ainay, Perrache, Confluent
  • 3rd arrondissement: Guillotière (north), Préfecture, Part-Dieu, Villette, Dauphiné/Sans Souci, Montchat, Grange Blanche (north), Monplaisir (north)
  • 4th arrondissement: Plateau de la Croix-Rousse, Serin
  • 5th arrondissement: Vieux Lyon (Saint-Paul, Saint-Jean, Saint-Georges, Saint-Just, Saint-Irénée, Fourvière, Point du Jour, Ménival, Battières, Champvert (south)
  • 6th arrondissement: Brotteaux, Bellecombe, Parc de la Tête d'Or, Cité Internationale
  • 7th arrondissement: Guillotière (south), Jean Macé, Gerland
  • 8th arrondissement: Monplaisir (south), Bachut, États-Unis, Grand Trou/Moulin à Vent, Grange Blanche (south), Laënnec, Mermoz, Monplaisir-la-Plaine
  • 9th arrondissement: Vaise, Duchère, Rochecardon, St-Rambert-l'Île-Barbe, Gorge de Loup, Observance, Champvert (north)

Geographically, Lyon's two main rivers, the Saône and the Rhône, divide the arrondissements into three groups:

  • To the west of the Saône, the fifth arrondissement covers the old city (Vieux Lyon), Fourvière hill and the plateau beyond. The 9th is immediately to the north, and stretches from Gorge de Loup, through Vaise to the neighbouring suburbs of Écully, Champagne-au-Mont-d'Or, Saint-Didier-au-Mont-d'Or, Saint-Cyr-au-Mont-d'Or and Collonges-au-Mont-d'Or.
  • Between the two rivers, on the Presqu'île are the second, first, and fourth arrondissements. The second includes most of the city centre, including Bellecour and Perrache railway station, and reaches as far as the confluence of the two rivers. The first is directly to the north of the second and covers part of the city centre (including the Hôtel de Ville) and the slopes of La Croix-Rousse. To the north of the Boulevard is the fourth arrondissement, which covers the Plateau of La Croix-Rousse, up to its boundary with the commune of Caluire-et-Cuire.
  • To the east of the Rhône, are the third, sixth, seventh, and eighth arrondissements.

Lyon: Mayors

Mayor Term start Term end Party
Antoine Gailleton 1881 1900
Victor Augagneur 1900 000000001905-10-30-000030 October 1905 PRS
Édouard Herriot 30 October 1905 20 September 1940 Radical
Georges Cohendy 20 September 1940 1941 Nominated and dismissed by Vichy
Georges Villiers 1941 1942 Nominated and dismissed by Vichy
Pierre-Louis-André Bertrand 1942 1944 Nominated by Vichy
Justin Godart 1944 18 May 1945 Radical
Édouard Herriot 18 May 1945 26 March 1957 Radical
Pierre Montel, interim 26 March 1957 14 April 1957 Radical
Louis Pradel 14 April 1957 27 November 1976 Centre-right
Armand Tapernoux, interim 27 November 1976 5 December 1976 Independent
Francisque Collomb 5 December 1976 24 March 1989 UDF
Michel Noir 24 March 1989 25 June 1995 RPR
Raymond Barre 25 June 1995 25 March 2001 UDF
Gérard Collomb 25 March 2001 incumbent PS

Lyon: Culture

UNESCO World Heritage Site
Historic Site of Lyons
Name as inscribed on the World Heritage List
The Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière
Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière on the hill.

Location France
Type Cultural
Criteria ii, iv
Reference 872
UNESCO region Europe and North America
Inscription history
Inscription 1998 (22nd Session)

Since the Middle Ages, the residents of the region have spoken several dialects of Franco-Provençal. The Lyonnais dialect was replaced by the French language as the importance of the city grew. However some "frenchified" Franco-Provençal words can also be heard in the French of the Lyonnais, who call their little boys and girls "gones" and "fenottes" for example.

  • The Lumière brothers pioneered cinema in the town in 1895. The Institut Lumière, built as Auguste Lumiere's house, and a fascinating piece of architecture in its own right, holds many of their first inventions and other early cinematic and photographic artefacts.
  • 8 December each year is marked by the Festival of Lights (la Fête des lumières), a celebration of thanks to the Virgin Mary, who purportedly saved the city from a deadly plague in the Middle Ages. During the event, the local population places candles (lumignons) at their windows and the city of Lyon organises impressive large-scale light shows onto the sides of important Lyonnais monuments, such as the mediaeval Cathédrale St-Jean.
  • The church of Saint Francis of Sales is famous for its large and unaltered Cavaillé-Coll pipe organ, attracting audiences from around the world.
  • The Opéra Nouvel (New Opera House) is the home of the Opéra National de Lyon. The original opera house was re-designed by the distinguished French architect Jean Nouvel between 1985 and 1993 and is named after him.
  • Lyon is also the French capital of "trompe l'œil" walls, a very ancient tradition. Many are to be seen around the city. This old tradition is now finding a contemporary expression, for example in the art of Guillaume Bottazzi.
  • The Brothers of the Sacred Heart, a Roman Catholic congregation that operates schools in Europe and North America, was founded in Lyon in 1821.
  • The African Museum of Lyon is one of the oldest museums situated in Lyon.
  • The Museum of Resistance and Deportation looks at the various individuals prominent in the Resistance movement in World War II. The building is strongly linked to Klaus Barbie. Lyon sees itself as the centre of the French resistance and many members were shot in Place Bellecour in the town centre. The exhibition is largely a series of mini-biographies of those involved.
  • The unusual project Lyon Dubai City, a reproduction of some districts of Lyon in Dubai, is a major point for tourism in Lyon.
  • Lyon is a pilot city of the Council of Europe and the European Commission Intercultural cities programme.

Lyon: UNESCO World Heritage Site

The Historic Site of Lyons was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1998. In its designation, UNESCO cited the "exceptional testimony to the continuity of urban settlement over more than two millennia on a site of great commercial and strategic significance." The specific regions comprising the Historic Site include the Roman district and Fourvière, the Renaissance district (Vieux Lyon), the silk district (slopes of Croix-Rousse), and the Presqu'île, which features architecture from the 12th century to modern times. Both Vieux Lyon and the slopes of Croix-Rousse are known for their narrow passageways (named traboules) that pass through buildings and link streets on either side. The first examples of traboules are thought to have been built in Lyon in the 4th century. The traboules allowed the inhabitants to get from their homes to the Saône river quickly and allowed the canuts on the Croix-Rousse hill to get from their workshops to the textile merchants at the foot of the hill.

Lyon: Gastronomy

Main article: Lyonnaise cuisine

Lyon has a long and chronicled culinary arts tradition. The noted food critic Curnonsky referred to the city as "the gastronomic capital of the world", a claim repeated by later writers such as Bill Buford. Renowned 3-star Michelin chefs such as Marie Bourgeois and Eugénie Brazier developed Lyonnaise cuisine into a national phenomenon favoured by the French elite; a tradition which Paul Bocuse later turned into a worldwide success.

The "bouchon" is a traditional Lyonnais restaurant that serves local dishes such as sausages, duck pâté or roast pork; along with local wines. Two of France's best known wine-growing regions are located near the city: the Beaujolais region to the north and the Côtes du Rhône region to the south. Another Lyon tradition is a type of brunch food called "mâchons", made of local charcuterie and usually accompanied by Beaujolais red wine. Mâchons were the customary meal of the canuts, the city's silk workers, who ate a late-morning meal after they finished their shifts in the factories. Other traditional local dishes include Rosette lyonnaise and saucisson de Lyon (sausage); andouillette (a sausage of coarsely cut tripe); pistachio sausage; coq au vin; esox (pike) quenelle; gras double (tripe cooked with onions); salade lyonnaise (lettuce with bacon, croûtons and a poached egg); marrons glacés; coussin de Lyon, sabodet and cardoon au gratin. Cervelle de canut (lit. silk worker's brains) is a cheese spread/dip, another Lyonnais speciality. The dish has a base of fromage blanc, seasoned with chopped herbs, shallots, salt, pepper, olive oil and vinegar.

Lyon: Sport

Parc Olympique Lyonnais

Lyon is home to the Division 1 Féminine team Olympique Lyonnais Féminin, 14-time winners of the French women's first division championship and three-time winners of the UEFA Women's Champions League as well as to the Ligue 1 football team Olympique Lyonnais, seven-time winners of the French men's first division championship (2002–2008),. The team played until December 2015 at the 43,000-seat Stade de Gerland, which also hosted matches of the 1998 FIFA World Cup. Since 2016, the team has played at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais, a 59,000-seat stadium located in the eastern suburb of Décines-Charpieu.

Lyon has a rugby union team, Lyon OU, currently in Pro D2. In addition, Lyon has a rugby league side called Lyon Villeurbanne that plays in the French rugby league championship. The club's current home is the Stade Georges Lyvet in Villeurbanne.

Lyon is also home to the Lyon Hockey Club, an ice hockey team that competes in France's national ice hockey league. The Patinoire Charlemagne is the seat of Club des Sports de Glace de Lyon, the club of Olympic champions Marina Anissina and Gwendal Peizerat; and world champions Isabelle Delobel and Olivier Shoenfelder (both pairs competed in ice dancing). Villeurbanne also has a basketball team, ASVEL, that plays at the Astroballe arena.

Lyon: Street art

Since 2000, Birdy Kids, a group of graffiti artists from the city, has decorated several random buildings and walls along the Lyon ring road. In 2012, the artist collective has been chosen to represent the city as its cultural ambassadors.

Lyon: Economy

La Part-Dieu, the city's central business district

The GDP of Lyon was 74 billion euro in 2012, and it's the second richest city in France after Paris. Lyon and its region Rhône-Alpes represent one of the most important economies in Europe and, according to Loughborough University, can be compared to Philadelphia, Mumbai or Athens with regard to its international position. The city of Lyon is working in partnership to more easily enable the establishment of new headquarters in the territory (ADERLY, Chambre du commerce et d'industrie, Grand Lyon...). According to the ECER-Banque Populaire, Lyon is the 14th favourite city in the European Union for the creation of companies and investments. High-tech industries such as biotechnology, software development, video game (Arkane Studios; Ivory Tower; Eden Games; EA France; Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe), and internet services are also growing. Other important sectors include medical research and technology, non-profit institutions, and universities. Lyon is home to some of the most dangerous viruses in the world (class 4) in the Jean Merieux laboratory of research, like Ebola, Marburg, Nipah, Hendra, and Lassa.

The city is home to the headquarters of many large companies such as Groupe SEB, Sanofi Pasteur, Renault Trucks, Norbert Dentressangle, LCL S.A., Descours & Cabaud, Merial, Point S, BioMérieux, Iveco Bus, Compagnie Nationale du Rhône, GL Events, April Group, Boiron, Feu Vert, Panzani, Babolat, Euronews, Lyon Airports, LVL Medical, and inter-governmental agencies IARC, Interpol. The specialisation of some sectors of activities has led to the creation of many main business centres: La Part-Dieu, located in the 3rd arrondissement is the second biggest business quarter after La Défense in Paris with over 1,600,000 m (17,222,256.67 sq ft) of office space and services and more than 55,000 jobs. Cité Internationale, created by the architect Renzo Piano is located in the border of the Parc de la Tête d'Or in the 6th arrondissement. The worldwide headquarters of Interpol is located there. The district of Confluence, in the south of the historic centre, is a new pole of economical and cultural development.

Tourism is an important part of the Lyon economy, with one billion euros in 2007 and 3.5 million hotel-nights in 2006 provided by non-residents. Approximately 60% of tourists visit for business, with the rest for leisure. In January 2009, Lyon ranked first in France for hostels business. The festivals most important for attracting tourists are the Fête des lumières, the Nuits de Fourvière every summer, the Biennale d'art contemporain and the Nuits Sonores.

Lyon: Demographics

The population of the city of Lyon proper was 491,268 at the January 2011 census, 14% of whom were born outside Metropolitan France.


Lyon: Main sights

Lyon: Antiquity

The Roman-era Theatre on the Fourvière hill
Lyon in the background with Fourvière on the left
  • The Roman ruins on the hillside near the Fourvière Basilica with the Ancient Theatre of Fourvière, the Odeon of Lyon and the accompanying Gallo-Roman Museum;
  • Amphitheatre of the Three Gauls, Roman ruins of an amphitheatre.

Lyon: Middle Ages and Renaissance

Cathedral of St. John
  • Cathedral of St. John, a mediaeval church with architectural elements of the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, also the principal religious structure in the city and the seat of the Archbishop of Lyon;
  • Basilica of St-Martin-d'Ainay, one of the rare surviving Romanesque basilica-style churches in Lyon;
  • Église Saint-Paul, Romanesque (12th and 13th century) and Gothic (15th–16th century) church;
  • Église Saint-Bonaventure, 14th- and 15th-century Gothic church;
  • Eglise Saint-Nizier, Gothic church from the 15th century, having a doorway carved in the 16th century by Philibert Delorme;
  • Vieux Lyon (English: Old Lyon) area, Mediaeval and Renaissance quarter of the town, with shops, dining and cobbled streets;
  • The many Renaissance hôtels particuliers of the Old Lyon quarter, such as the Hôtel de Bullioud, were also built by Philibert Delorme.

Lyon: 17th and 18th centuries

City Hall towering over the Place des Terreaux
  • City Hall on the Place des Terreaux, built by architects Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Robert de Cotte;
  • Musée des beaux-arts de Lyon, fine arts museum housed in a former convent of the 17th century, including the Baroque chapelle Saint-Pierre;
  • Hôtel-Dieu de Lyon (17th and 18th century), historical hospital with a baroque chapel;
  • Temple du Change (17th and 18th century), former stock exchange of Lyon, Protestant temple since the 18th century;
  • Place Bellecour, one of the largest town squares in Europe;
  • Chapelle de la Trinité (1622), the first Baroque chapel built in Lyon, and part of the former École de la Trinité, now Collège-lycée Ampère;
  • Église Saint-Polycarpe (1665–1670), Classical church;
  • Église Saint-Just (16th to 18th century), Classical church;
  • Saint-Bruno des Chartreux (17th and 18th century), church, masterpiece of Baroque architecture;
  • Église Notre Dame Saint-Vincent (18th century), Neo-classical church.

Lyon: 19th century and modern city

Overview on Lyon during Fête des Lumières
Fourvière
  • Opéra Nouvel (1831), renovated in 1993 by Jean Nouvel;
  • Théâtre des Célestins (1877), designed by Gaspard André;
  • Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, large 19th-century basilica on the top of Fourvière Hill;
  • Tour métallique de Fourvière (1894);
  • La Mouche Cattle Market and Abbatoir (1914, 1928), designed by Tony Garnier;
  • Sainte Marie de La Tourette monastery (1960) designed by Le Corbusier;
  • Saint-Exupéry International Airport (formerly Satolas Airport), designed by Guillaume Gilbert;
  • Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupéry (1994) by Santiago Calatrava;
  • Palais des congrès de Lyon (1998), designed by Renzo Piano and a group of buildings for various functions;
  • Tour du Crédit Lyonnais;
  • Tour Oxygène;
  • Tour Incity.

Lyon: Museums

  • Musée des beaux-arts de Lyon (Fine Arts Museum), main museum of the city and one of the largest art galleries in France. Housed in the "Palais Saint Pierre", a former 17th-century convent, it displays a major collection of paintings by artists (including Tintoretto; Paolo Veronese; Nicolas Poussin; Rubens; Rembrandt; Zurbaran; Canaletto; Delacroix; Monet; Gauguin; Van Gogh; Cézanne; Matisse; Picasso; Francis Bacon...); collections of sculptures, drawings and printings, decorative arts, Roman and Greek antiquities; the second largest collection of Egyptian antiquities in France after that of the Louvre; and a medal cabinet of 50.000 medals and coins.
  • The Gallo-Roman Museum displaying many valuable objects and artworks found on the site of Roman Lyon (Lugdunum) such as Circus Games Mosaic, Coligny calendar and the Taurobolic Altar;
  • African Museum of Lyon;
  • Centre d'histoire de la résistance et de la déportation;
  • Musée des Confluences, new museum of sciences and anthropology which opened its doors on 20 December 2014.
  • La Sucrière, contemporary art centre;
  • Hôtel-Dieu de Lyon houses the "Musée des Hospices Civils", a permanent exhibit tracing the history and practice of medicine from the Middle Ages to modern times;
  • Musée des Tissus et des Arts décoratifs, decorative arts and textile museum. It holds one of the world's largest textile collections with 2,500,000 works ;
  • Musée d'art contemporain de Lyon, contemporary art museum;
  • Musée Gadagne, museum of the history of Lyon housed in a historic building in Vieux Lyon. Also includes a large collection of marionnettes;
  • Musée des Automates, museum of automated puppets in Vieux Lyon, open since 1991.

Lyon: Parks and gardens

Main article: Parks in Lyon
The lake, in the Parc de la Tête d'Or
  • Parc de la Tête d'Or, (literally, Golden Head Park), in central Lyon is the largest urban park in France at 117 hectares. Located in the 6th arrondissement, it features a large lake on which boating takes place during the summer months.
  • Jardin botanique de Lyon (8 hectares), included in the Parc de la Tête d'Or, is a municipal botanical garden and is open weekdays without charge. The garden was established in 1857 as a successor to earlier botanical gardens dating to 1796, and now describes itself as France's largest municipal botanical garden.
  • Parc de Gerland, in the south of the city (80 hectares);
  • Parc des hauteurs, in Fourvières;
  • Parc de Miribel-Jonage (2200 hectares);
  • Parc de Lacroix-Laval (115 hectares);
  • Parc de Parilly (178 hectares).

Lyon: Education

Lyon: Universities and tertiary education

Université Lumière
  • École Centrale de Lyon;
  • École Normale Supérieure de Lyon
  • EM Lyon (École de Management de Lyon);
  • ECE Lyon (École de Commerce Européenne de Lyon);
  • Institut d'études politiques de Lyon (Sciences Po Lyon);
  • CPE Lyon;
  • ECAM Lyon (École Catholique d'Arts et Métiers de Lyon);
  • École pour l'informatique et les nouvelles technologies;
  • École pour l'informatique et les techniques avancées;
  • ENTPE (École Nationale des Travaux Publiques de l'État);
  • ESME-Sudria;
  • École des Beaux-Arts;
  • E-Artsup;
  • Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Lyon (located in Villeurbanne);
  • Polytech Lyon located in Villeurbanne;
  • Institut supérieur européen de gestion group;
  • ISARA (Institut Supérieur d'Agriculture Rhône Alpes);
  • Institution des Chartreux;
  • Université Claude Bernard (Lyon 1);
  • Université Lumière (Lyon 2);
  • Université Jean Moulin (Lyon 3);
  • IAE (Institut d'Administration des Entreprises de Lyon);
  • Catholic University of Lyon;
  • ESDES Business School;
  • IDRAC (International School of Management);
  • Wesford Graduate Business School;
  • IFAG (Business Management School);
  • Institut supérieur européen de formation par l'action;
  • Le Lycée du Parc;
  • La Martiniere Lyon;
  • Web@cademie;
  • CEESO (Centre Européen d'Enseignement Supérieur de l'Ostéopathie);
  • Bellecour, Ecoles D'Arts.

Lyon: Primary and secondary schools

There are some international private schools in the Lyon area, including:

  • Cité Scolaire Internationale de Lyon or the Lycée de Gerland;
    • Includes the Section Japonaises (リヨン・ジェルラン補習授業校 Riyon Jeruran Hoshū Jugyō Kō "Lyon Gerland Japanese Supplementary School"), which the Japanese Ministry of Education (MEXT) counts as a part-time Japanese supplementary school
  • Ombrosa;
  • International School of Lyon in nearby Sainte-Foy-lès-Lyon;
  • Montessori School of Lyon.

Lyon: Supplementary education

Other Japanese supplementary schools:

  • The Association Pour le Developpement de la Langue et de la Culture Japonaises (ADLCJ; リヨン補習授業校 Riyon Hoshū Jugyō Kō) is held in the Maison Berty Albrecht in Villeurbanne, near Lyon. It was formed in 1987. It serves Japanese expatriate children who wish to continue their Japanese education whilst abroad.

Lyon: Transport

Further information: Lyon Metro, Tramways in Lyon, Trolleybuses in Lyon, Buses in Lyon, Transport in Rhône-Alpes, and TER Rhône Alpes
Network of highways around Lyon

Lyon–Saint Exupéry Airport, located east of Lyon, serves as a base for domestic and international flights. It is an important transport facility for the entire Rhône-Alpes region. Coach links connect the airport with other towns in the area including Chambéry and Grenoble. With its in-house train station (Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupéry), the airport is also connected to the TGV network. Since August 2010, the new Rhônexpress tram links the international airport with the business quarter of La Part Dieu in less than 30 minutes and can reach up to 100 km/h (62 mph); it offers connections with Underground A&B, Tramway T1,T2 & T3, and many bus lines. The Lyon-Bron Airport is a smaller airport dedicated to General Aviation (both private and commercial). Having helipads, the facility hosts a Gendarmerie and a Sécurité Civile (civilian defence) Base.

Lyon has two major railway stations: Lyon Part-Dieu, which was built to accommodate the TGV and has become the principal railway station for extra-regional trains; and Lyon Perrache, an older station that now serves primarily regional rail services. In practice, many trains, including TGVs, serve both stations. Smaller railway stations include Gorge-de-Loup, Vaise, Vénissieux, Saint-Paul and Jean Macé. Lyon is connected to the north (Lille, Paris, Brussels, Rennes, and in the future Amsterdam) and the south (Marseille, Montpellier, and in the future Barcelona, Turin) by the TGV. Since 23 March 2012 there has been a direct TGV connection from Frankfurt via Strasbourg and Lyon to Marseille. It was the first city to be connected to Paris by the TGV in 1981.

The city is at the heart of a dense road network and is located at the meeting point of several highways: A6 (to Paris); A7 (to Marseille); A42 (to Geneve); and A43 (to Grenoble). The city is now bypassed by the A46. A double motorway tunnel passes under Fourvière, connecting the A6 and the A7 autoroutes, both forming the "Autoroute du Soleil". Prior to the construction of the bypass by the east, the tunnel was famous for its traffic jams, since traffic between northern and southern France, as well as from neighbouring countries and local traffic, converged at this point, Lyon being virtually the only low passage between the Alps and the Massif Central (extinct) volcano range. Lyon is served by the Eurolines intercity coach organisation. Its Lyon terminal is located at the city's Perrache railway station, which serves as an intermodal transportation hub that also includes tramways, local and regional trains and buses, the terminus of Metro line A, of the Tramway T2, the bicycle service Vélo'v, and taxis.

Public transport map

The TCL (for Transports en Commun Lyonnais), Lyon's all-four public transit system, consisting of metro, tramways and buses, serves 62 communes of the Lyon agglomeration. The metro network has four lines ( A B C D ), 42 stations and runs with a frequency of up to a train every 2 minutes. There are five Lyon tram lines ( T1 T2 T3 T4 T5) since April 2009: T1 from Debourg in the south to IUT-Feyssine in the north, Tram T2 from Perrache railway station in the south-west to Saint-Priest in the south-east, Tram T3 from Part-Dieu to Meyzieu, Tram T4 from 'Hôptial Feyzin Venissieux' to Gaston Berger. Tram T5 from Grange Blanche, in the south-east to Eurexpo in the south-wast. The Lyon bus network consists of the Lyon trolleybus system, motorbuses, and coaches for areas outside the centre. There are also two funicular lines from Vieux Lyon to Saint-Just and Fourvière.

The current ticketing system is relatively simple as the city has only one public transport operator; the SYTRAL (TCL is the brand name used for the transport, it stands for Transport en Commun Lyonnais (Lyon Common Transport)).

In 2008, an 'RER' (commuter rail) project was started, with the objective of linking Lyon with the surrounding cities which are growing fast. It should have a total of eight lines and will replace the actual TER lines operated by the SNCF (National French Railway Network). It was planned to be fully finished by 2010.

The public transit system has been complemented since 2005 by Vélo'v, a bicycle network providing a low-cost and convenient bicycle-hire service where bicycles can be hired and dropped off at any of 340 stations throughout the city of Lyon and Villeurbane, Lyon was the first city in France to introduce this bicycle renting system. Borrowing a bicycle for less than 30 minutes is free. Free rental time can be extended for another 30 minutes at any station. In 2011 the Auto'lib car rental service was introduced; it works in the same way as the Velo'v but for cars.

Lyon: International relations

  • Lyon is a pilot city of the Council of Europe and the European Commission Intercultural cities programme.

Lyon: Twin towns – Sister cities

See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in France

Lyon is twinned with:

  • Syria Aleppo, Syria
  • Israel Beersheba, Israel
  • Lebanon Beirut, Lebanon
  • United Kingdom Birmingham, West Midlands, England, UK (since 1951)
  • Romania Craiova, Romania (since 1992)
  • Germany Frankfurt am Main, Hesse, Germany (since 1960)
  • China Guangzhou, China (since 1988)
  • Vietnam Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (since 1997)
  • Germany Leipzig, Saxony, Germany (since 1981)
  • Poland Łódź, Łódź Voivodeship, Poland (since 1991)
  • Italy Milan, Lombardy, Italy (since 1966)
  • Belarus Minsk, Belarus (since 1976)
  • Canada Montréal, Québec, Canada (since 1979)
  • Burkina Faso Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
  • Hungary Pécs, Hungary
  • Russia Saint Petersburg, Russia (since 1993)
  • United States St. Louis, Missouri, United States (since 1975)
  • Italy Turin, Piedmont, Italy
  • Armenia Yerevan, Armenia (since 1992)
  • Japan Yokohama, Japan (since 1959)

The lion, symbol of the city, is a common sight in Lyon:

Other images :

Lyon: See also

  • Gallia Lugdunensis
  • List of movies set in Lyon
  • List of people from Lyon
  • List of streets and squares in Lyon
  • Outline of France

Lyon: Notes

  1. A war cry from 1269, in modern Franco-Provençal this is spelt: Avant, Avant, Liyon lo mèlyor.

Lyon: References

  1. "Séries historiques des résultats du recensement – Commune de Lyon (69123)". INSEE.
  2. "Villes de France". INSEE. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
  3. Oxford Dictionary of English (retrieved 19 August 2014)
  4. Granger, Bill (14 June 1987). "What´s In A Name? Well, Excuuuuse Us, Nueva York, But We Shakawgoans Know". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  5. "Lyon entrepreneurship, Lyon company, Invest Lyon – Greater Lyon". Business.greaterlyon.com. Archived from the original on 8 March 2010. Retrieved 3 April 2011.
  6. "Innovation Cities Top 100 Index, 2014". Innovation Cities Program. 18 October 2011. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  7. Cassius Dio, Roman History, Book 46: Lepidus and Lucius Plancus [...] founded the town called Lugudunum, now known as Lugdunum
  8. Louis, Jaucourt de chevalier (1765). Lyon.
  9. Lugduno – desiderato monte: dunum enim montem Lugduno: "mountain of yearning"; dunum of course is mountain. www.maryjones.us/ctexts/endlicher_glossary.html
  10. Braudel 1984 p. 327
  11. Pierre Edmond DESVIGNES. "Quartier renaissance Lyon : Vieux Lyon, quartier ancien et secteur sauvegarde Lyon". Vieux-lyon.org. Retrieved 3 April 2011.
  12. "Historic Site of Lyons". unesco.org. UNESCO World Heritage Center. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  13. "Lyon, France: Local Transport". Lonely Planet. Retrieved 2 February 2017.
  14. (French) Georges Duby (ed), Histoire de la France : Dynasties et révolutions, de 1348 à 1852 (vol. 2), Larousse, 1999 p. 53 Buy book ISBN 2-03-505047-2
  15. "La Part Dieu". centrecommercial-partdieu.com.
  16. "Données climatiques de la station de Lyon: Relevés de 2016 – Lyon" (in French). Meteo France. Retrieved 2 October 2016.
  17. "Données climatiques de la station de Lyon" (in French). Meteo France. Retrieved 16 December 2014.
  18. "Climat France" (in French). Meteo France. Retrieved 16 December 2014.
  19. "Normes et records 1961–1990: Lyon-Bron (69) – altitude 198m" (in French). Infoclimat. Retrieved 16 December 2014.
  20. "St-Irénée – France". sacred-destinations.com.
  21. Jean-Baptiste Onofrio : Essai d'un glossaire des patois de Lyonnais, Forez et Beaujolais, Lyon 1864
  22. "Pierre Alain Muet Archives 2008". Pa-muet.com. 17 June 2008. Archived from the original on 24 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010.
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  • Official website(French)
  • Visit Lyon, the official website for tourism in France
  • Lyon Tourist Office and Convention Bureau
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