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Exploring the Traboules of Lyon

By Viator, October 2017

4.5 19 Reviews | Add your review

Once used by silk merchants to reach the bustling markets of Lyon without damaging their wares, the city's traboules, or passageways, hark back to a bygone era. Here's how to escape the city streets and explore these hidden, secret alleyways.
 
Lyon Traboules History
The traboules of Lyon date back to the fourth century, when residents of what's now known as Vieux Lyon needed swift and simple access from their homes to the banks of the Saône River for water. Come the 18th century, Lyon's silk-weaving industry boomed and the traboules also became the perfect way for silk workers—known as canuts—to transport their products from their homes on the outskirts of town to the markets in the new city center on the Presqu'ile, between the Rhône and Saône rivers. Still in place today, the passageways offer access to many of Lyon's residential apartment buildings, with some 40 of them open to the public.

Ways to Experience Lyon's Traboules
  • Follow a tour guide on a walking tour of Lyon's historic Old Town, and hear colorful stories dating back to Renaissance France.
  • Take a theatrical walking tour in Lyon to learn of city life in the 16th century, and listen as an actor-guide sheds light on the best spots to buy silks.
  • Stroll through the UNESCO World Heritage–listed streets—from Bellecour Square to Terreaux Square and Fourvière Hill—and explore the historic courtyards and traboules of Saint-Jean Square.
  • Sample some of the praline sweet treats for which Lyon is famous at a local patisserie, then head to the Museum of Fine Arts and discover Lyon's silk-printing history.
  • Wander through the Croix-Rousse district to the ancient traboules and feel like a true Lyonnais.
  • Explore streets such as Rue du Boeuf and Rue Saint-Jean, where daily life ticks by at a relaxed pace.

Tours & Tickets

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Half-Day Food Tour Old Town from Lyon, Lyon, null
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Half-Day Food Tour Old Town from Lyon

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

Lyon Food Tour offers a 4-hour unique gastronomy experience with lunch. Accompanied by a passionate local guide discover the capital of gastronomy during a ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $81.83
Hop-On Hop-Off Tour of Lyon, Lyon, Food Tours
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Hop-On Hop-Off Tour of Lyon

4.5 star rating: Recommended 11 Reviews

Explore Lyon at your own pace with a unique vantage point from a double-decker bus. Listen to audio commentary of the sights, available in eight language ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 1 day (approx.)

From USD $24.55
Private: Lyon Food Walking Tour of the Old Lyon and Halles Bocuse with Tasting, Lyon, Hop-on ... 
TVRM_SORTED : false ESSENTIAL : ADMISSION :

Private: Lyon Food Walking Tour of the Old Lyon and Halles Bocuse with Tasting

From Old Lyons on the banks of the Saône to Halles Paul Bocuse on the Left Bank of the Rhone, via the Presqu'île, the itinerary has been devised to ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $409.16
Old Lyon Gourmet Private Guided Tour, Lyon, Private Sightseeing Tours
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Old Lyon Gourmet Private Guided Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 1 Review

Enjoy a walk in the UNESCO World Heritage historic neighborhood of Lyon and discover some of the culinary specialties. This 2.5-hour small-group guided tour ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $374.09
Old Lyon, Halles Bocuse Walking Culinary Tour with Tasting, Lyon, Food Tours
TVRM_SORTED : false ESSENTIAL : ADMISSION :

Old Lyon, Halles Bocuse Walking Culinary Tour with Tasting

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 4 Reviews

This 3-hour small group tour invites you to discover the capital of gastronomy: Lyon. Elaborated by your epicurean guide, a specialist in culinary history, ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $409.16
Best of Lyon Private Tour, Lyon, Food Tours
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Best of Lyon Private Tour

Discover the highlights of Lyons through the historic districts listed as your Heritage by UNESCO. This cultural and gourmet tour presents the best of Lyons' ...  Read more

Location: Lyon, France
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $350.71

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