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Where to Stay in Lyon in 2023 | Best Areas & Hotels

Where to Stay in Lyon in 2023 | Best Areas & Hotels

Paris is not the only city that’s worth visiting in France. If you haven’t heard what Lyon has to offer, this is the right time for that. A culturally, historically, and commercially rich city at the conflux of the rivers Rhône and Saône, Lyon should definitely be on every traveler’s list.

After you’ve seen what the city has to offer, you will definitely want to find out where to stay in Lyon, and this guide is here to help you with that. Let us show you the way!


The 5 Best Parts of Lyon

Where to Stay in Lyon map in vector format featuring the best areas of town

From the deep-seated historical districts full of old buildings and historical museums in the La Presqu’ile and Vieux Lyon to very old archeological spaces in Fourvière, Lyon has everything.

Lyon’s Chinatown and budget-friendly accommodations in Guillotière and the post-modern architecture of Confluence are the cherry on top. No matter their differences, all of the districts are close to each other, and you can visit all of them while staying in Lyon.

Our favorites include:

  1. La Presqu’île: The utmost center of the city, located on the convergence between the two rivers, offering a bunch of beautiful buildings and museums and numerous accommodation options.
  2. Vieux Lyon: The historic district of Lyon, it’s a perfect choice for tourists who love the middle ages, old cathedrals and churches, museums, and decent accommodation options.
  3. Fourvière: Located to the west of Old Lyon, on Fourvière Hill, it’s the best area for strolling and walking, offering plenty of archeological findings from Roman times.
  4. Guillotière: The only area on our list located on the east coast of Lyon, it’s a multicultural melting pot and the most budget-friendly district in the city.
  5. Confluence: Just to the south of La Presqu’ile, on the literal “confluence” between the rivers, it’s a recently reinvented area, full of post-modern buildings and museums.  

Where to Stay in Lyon: Best Areas & Hotels

Lyon is definitely one of the most beautiful French cities and a magnet for tourists from all over the world. It’s no surprise that the city is packed with different kinds of accommodation options — from the hyper-luxurious five-star hotel to student-friendly cheap motels.

Generally speaking, the middle parts of the city (La Presqu’île, Confluence) are the most expensive, and the western parts too (Vieux Lyon, Fourvière) aren’t far behind.

The best hotels in Lyon, too, are located here. That being said, cheaper options can be found, but it may prove difficult.

The only real and genuine budget-friendly area in the city is Guillotière on the east coast. A true melting pot and boasting its own Chinatown, it offers the largest number of cheap hotels and motels in the city.

1. La Presqu’île

Saint Bonaventure Church in La Presqu'île, one of our top picks when considering where to stay in Lyon


In French, Presqu’ile means literally “almost an island,” or in other, more common words, a “peninsula.”

Stretching from the Croix-Rousse hill to the converging of the rivers Rhone and Saone and covering both the 1st and 2nd arrondissements, it’s the most central and tourist-friendly part of Lyon and a perfect option for every first-timer to the city.

Some of the best architecture in the city is located in Presqu’ile — because of that, the whole area is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Most of the landmarks that you just have to see are located between the Place des Terreaux and the Place Bellecour, going from north to south.

The best thing to recommend to every visitor is to take a long stroll along that distance and bask in the architectural glow. We can’t overestimate the importance and the beauty of the Place des Terreaux.

In the time of the bloody French Revolution, the guillotine was placed there, ending the French monarchy.

Today, it is surrounded by the Musee des Beaux-Arts de Lyon (to the south), Hotel de Ville of Lyon (to the east), numerous restaurants and shops, and the striking The Fontaine Bartholdi. Nearby, you’ll also find Lyon’s Opera House.

As you continue to the south of the area, you’ll see more picturesque buildings in the following order:

  • Église St Nizier (gothic church)
  • Église Saint Bonaventure (from the 14th century)
  • Palais du Commerce (an imposing structure)
  • Hotel Dieu Hospital (from the 12th century)
  • Place Bellecour (the largest pedestrian square in Europe)

The accommodation options are decent, but they aren’t cheap.

You may find some two-star hotels and more three-star hotels, but most of the accommodations have more than four stars on their resume. Also, some of the best shopping and dining options in the city are located here.

Things to Do

  • There are around 3000 shops in La Presqu’ile, which makes it not only the best shopping place in Lyon but one of the most imposing shopping places in both France and Europe. Most of the designer shops (around 70 of them) are located on Carre d’Or, between Place Bellecour and Cordeliers. The Part Dieu shopping mall, located close to the Part Dieu train station, is the largest shopping center in Europe, with plenty of restaurants, cinemas, and, obviously, shops. The area connecting Victor Hugo Avenue and Rue de la Republique is one of the largest pedestrian shopping streets you’ve seen.
  • Take a whole day and visit as many museums as you can in the area. You should start with The Musée des Beaux-Arts, located on the Place des Terreaux, and peruse the history of beauty from Ancient Egypt to Picasso and Georges Braque. The Musée de l’Imprimerie is a beautiful Renaissance building filled with ancient schools and old books; The Musée des Tissus et des Arts Decoratifs is about different materials from around the world and from all parts of history.
  • Breathe in the atmosphere of the city in some of the most beautiful and striking squares in Europe and the world. You can relax and look at the crowd of working people and tourists, choose one of the numerous restaurants and bistrot, and grab a bite or a cup of coffee. Alternatively, visit some of the shops. You can choose between the Place des Terreaux and its striking architecture or Place Bellecour and its imposing size.
  • Finally, take a stroll along the center of the city and take your time to admire the beautiful architecture of Lyon. It is comparable to places like Paris, Florence, or Venice because it is both old and very well-kept. The Lyonese are proud of their architectural heritage, and they take every chance to show off. Start with the churches: the gothic Église St Nizier or the renaissance Église Saint Bonaventure; then continue to the worldly buildings, like the Hotel de Ville of Lyon (the city hall), Palais du Commerce, and the Place Bellecour.

Where to Eat

  • Chez Micheline is a famous French restaurant, particularly suitable for having lunch and dinner. A 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection, it offers all kinds of traditional foods and specialties, as well as very friendly and professional staff. It’s usually crowded, so make sure you get a reservation upfront.
  • L’Épicerie de Ginette – Bistrot à Tartines – Lyon 2 is a classical French bistrot, which means that it serves dishes mainly from the French and more general European cuisines. The prices are not that high, and the menu is quite versatile. We recommend the tartines, the burger, the pasta, and the tiramisu.
  • Fiston is yet another French restaurant — as we all know, the French take their food very seriously, and as a matter of national pride — that was selected as the 2022 Travelers’ Choice. Aside from the usual meat dishes, the restaurant offers a number of healthy and vegetarian options.

La Presqu’ile Budget Hotels

  • Hôtel Vaubecour is a very cheap but quite decent two-star hotel with a great location in the absolute center of Lyon. It offers parking, free Wi-Fi throughout the premises, a lift, non-smoking family rooms, superb breakfast in the morning, and tea and coffee makers at your disposal.  
  • La Résidence is another cheap but great centrally located three-star hotel within walking distance of most major landmarks in La Presqu’ile. Like most of the hotels in this area, it offers parking and free Wi-Fi, a 24-hour front desk, and cable TVs in every room, as well as a great breakfast in the morning.

See All Hotels in Lyon

La Presqu’ile Mid-Range Hotels

  • Mercure Lyon Centre Beaux-Arts is a relatively cheap four-star hotel that’s completely pet-friendly and offers a fantastic city view. It also has parking and free Wi-Fi, a bar and a great restaurant on the premises, facilities for disabled guests, free luggage storage, free newspapers from all parts of the world, and meeting rooms.
  • Hôtel Des Artistes is a great three-star hotel in the absolute center of the city that comes at a really decent price. There’s parking and free Wi-Fi, non-smoking family rooms with private bathrooms, a 24-hour front desk, facilities for disabled people, and very good breakfast.

La Presqu’ile Luxury Hotels

  • InterContinental Lyon – Hotel Dieu, an IHG Hotel is a beautiful and elite five-star hotel and definitely one of the best and most luxurious accommodation options in all of Lyon. It offers a spa and wellness center, a fitness center, and a restaurant and bar on the premises. The hotel is particularly suitable for couples, and it’s close to every major tourist attraction in the center.
  • Hotel Carlton Lyon – MGallery Hotel Collection is another quite luxurious and expensive four-star hotel located in a building from 1894 in the utmost center of the city. The hotel is completely pet-friendly and boasts a spa and wellness center on its premises, as well as a bar, 24-hour desk, and very tasty breakfast.

2. Vieux Lyon

Vieux Lyon, the medieval area and one of the best places to stay in Lyon, France, pictured from across the bridge

Prochasson Frederic/Shutterstock

In 1957, a near catastrophe happened. The Lyonese elected their new mayor, a certain Louis Pradel, who had a diabolical plan: he wanted to raze Vieux Lyon — or “Old Lyon” — and build a new and ultra-modern expressway.

But luckily, a few years later, the famous French writer Andre Malraux, who was then a Minister of Culture, proclaimed The Old Town as France’s first “secteur sauvegardé,” or protected area.

In that way, the largest and most beautiful Renaissance district in Lyon was saved from destruction. Vieux Lyon is roughly divided into three areas, all of them named after Christian saints and the churches in their center.

The Northern Old Town is called “Saint-Paul,” the Old Town’s center is “Saint-Jean,” and the Southern Old Town is “Saint-Georges.” The first thing you should see in each of these districts are the Église St. Paul, the cathedral St. Jean, and Église Saint-Georges.

The attractions, landmarks, and museums scattered along all three areas simply can’t be enumerated in such a small space.

But there are some things that you simply can’t miss. Namely, the Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Lyon in the center of the Old Town is a classical 12th-century Gothic cathedral that you just cannot miss.

Also, don’t forget the Rue Saint-Jean, which is by far the most popular street in Vieux Lyon. Generally speaking, the center of the old town is where most of the things happen.

The other two neighborhoods offer plenty of maze-like streets that have looked the same for more than 800 years.

Then, there are the famous secret passageways (called les Traboules), numerous museums, shops, and restaurants. The accommodation options are quite decent too, with plenty of budget and mid-range options.

Things to Do

  • We mentioned the museums in our heading, so here’s a great chance to talk a bit more about them. The first place you should go to is definitely the Musée d’Histoire de Lyon, also known as the “Hôtel de Gadagne” after the two Florentine brothers that lived there.
  • If you’re interested in ecclesiastical (Christian) architecture, Vieux Lyon is the right place for you. Every part of the Old Lyon boasts a magnificent church around which the whole area is organized. The main attraction is the 12th-century Cathédrale Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Lyon, but Église Saint-Paul is also one of the oldest churches in Lyon and has an interesting mix of Gothic and Romanesque elements. Lastly, Église Saint-Georges is the newest and the central building of the southern parts of the area. Also don’t forget the Église de Saint-Just.
  • Lyon’s Old Town is mostly famous for its streets that go back to the middle ages and the Renaissance. The two most important ones that you have to visit are the main street of the district, called the Rue Saint-Jean, and the Rue Juiverie in Saint Paul, which means “the Streets of the Jews.” The streets are full of restaurants, interesting shops, hotels, and museums. But the most interesting parts are the secret passageways (or les Traboules) that can be found everywhere, giving Lyon its specific mysterious atmosphere.
  • Vieux Lyon is practically an inexhaustible stash full of wonders. That’s why we want to enumerate a bunch of places and structures that are hard to classify but that you just have to visit.
    • The Marche de la Creation by the river;
    • Fontaine Saint Jean;
    • The bridges Pont Bonaparte and Passerelle du Palais-de-Justice;
    • The interesting Le Jardin des Curiosités;
    • The monument called The Weight of Oneself Sculpture.

Where to Eat

  • Court Bouillon is a contemporary French diner located in the center of Lyon’s historic district and a 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection. The place is mostly suitable for either lunch or dinner, it offers a nice foie gras, and it has professional and friendly staff. We also recommend that you order the regular fish of the day.
  • Cafe Luna is a French and Mediterranean restaurant and cafe that’s yet another 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection. We recommend visiting this place for lunch, dinner, or a really late snack. It is perfect for tourists who prefer small, traditional restaurants that base their menu on traditional recipes.
  • Au 14 Fevrier Vieux Lyon is a French Michelin-star restaurant that’s a great choice for anniversaries, special occasions, or just a fancy dinner. A 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection, the restaurant is famous for its uncommonly combined meals and first-class presentation.

Vieux Lyon Budget Hotels

  • Centre Jean Bosco is a very cheap accommodation and part of the Jean Bosco Catholic Institute. Located very close to the Vieux Lyon Metro Station, the hotel has a terrace and a garden, free Wi-Fi, facilities for disabled guests, non-smoking rooms, and private bathrooms in every room.
  • Hostel Lyon Centre HI is a very cheap but quite decent accommodation located near Fourviere Roman Theatre and less than a mile from the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere. It has free Wi-Fi, a bar on the premises, very tasty breakfast, and a pretty garden.

Vieux Lyon Mid-Range Hotels

  • La Nuit Saint Georges is a great three-star hotel with a beautiful and clear view of St George’s Church. The best part is that it’s not really expensive. The building itself, however, is considered a historical monument, and the hotel offers non-smoking family rooms, free Wi-Fi, private bathrooms, and on-site parking.
  • MiHotel Tour Rose is a perfect mid-range hotel in the heart of Lyon’s historic district that’s particularly suitable for couples. It offers free Wi-Fi, an airport shuttle, a lift on the premises, a 24-hour front desk, tea and coffee makers in every room, and a pretty decent breakfast in the morning.

Vieux Lyon Luxury Hotels

  • Cour des Loges Lyon, a Radisson Collection Hotel is a very expensive and very luxurious five-star hotel located very close to the famous Saint-Jean-Baptiste Cathedral. It offers an indoor pool, a spa and wellness center, and a restaurant and bar on the premises. The hotel also has professional room service and a nice breakfast.
  • Collège Hôtel is a great four-star hotel in the heart of the historic district of Lyon. It has private parking and free Wi-Fi throughout the premises, a bar, a 24-hour desk, and an airport shuttle. The hotel is particularly suitable for couples and offers professional room service.

See All Hotels in Lyon

3. Fourvière

Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourviere pictured from the Roman theatre steps, featured as a favorite spot to consider when thinking about where to stay in Lyon

Henryk Sadura/Shutterstock

Right to the west of Vieux Lyon lie the hills and the neighborhood called Fourvière. We’ve already seen that most of the things in Lyon are pretty old, but Fourvière is even older.

In the time of the Roman Empire, when the city was called Lugdunum, the Fourvière was its center. Today this area is famous for its archeological remains, beautiful churches, recognizable “Montées” (slopes), and cheap accommodation options.

Fourvière (or Fourvière Hill) basically consists of a few rises and a number of stairs. If, for example, you want to reach the Old City, you have to cross some of those “Montées” (slopes).

They are safe and sound but can be a bit tiring. Together, Montée des Carmes-Déchaussées and Montée Nicolas de Lange consist of more than 800 steps. But Montée des Chazeaux is significantly smaller, with its 200 steps.

However, the true charm and uniqueness of this part of Lyon lies in these steps, regardless of their length. The remains of Lugdunum are the second most recognizable thing in Fourvière.

There’s the ancient theater, the odeon, the so-called Temple of Cybele, the Roman road, etc. For those who are thoroughly interested in archaeology, we recommend visiting the Lyon Fourvière Museum of Gallo-Roman civilization, which is located — quite conveniently — right next to the remains.

Finally, there are the churches. Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière (Our Lady of Fourvière Basilica) is definitely one of the most recognizable objects in the city.

The other two, too — Église Saint-Just (Church of St. Just) and Église Saint-Irénée (Church of St. Irenaeus) — are also not to be trifled with. There aren’t many accommodation options in Fourvière, but those that are here are significantly cheaper and more financially accessible.

That’s why this area is the most suitable for family-friendly trips. Regarding the restaurants, Fourvière is famous for its diversity, with a lot of non-European and non-French eateries.

Things to Do

  • The first thing you should do if you plan on spending your time in this old and beautiful neighborhood is take a stroll (or a hike) along its recognizable “Montées” or slopes. You should check all three of them — Montée des Carmes-Déchaussées, Montée Nicolas de Lange, and Montée des Chazeaux. You can try and take a long walk from the hills to the intricate streets of Vieux Lyon, but prepare yourself physically and psychologically since you’ll have to walk more than 800 steps!
  • Church and cathedral lovers will have the time of their lives on the hills of Fourvière. Starting with the imposing Our Lady of Fourvière Basilica, built in the 19th century and based on both Romanesque and Byzantine architecture, you can continue to the Église Saint-Just, built in the 16th century and boasting a really interesting and bloody history. Then, proceed to the Église Saint-Irénée from the early 19th century. To put it simply, Fourvière offers a nice continuation of La Presqu’ile and Vieux Lyon in terms of religious objects.
  • If you love romantic strolls, the lovely Fourvière Hills also houses Parc des Hauteurs, located very near the archeological remains of Lugdunum. It’s practically a promenade on Fourvière Heights that was built quite recently — in 1989 — to both preserve and embellish this part of Lyon that was slowly falling into neglect. Make sure you pass by Jardin du Rosaire, which offers numerous viewpoints and gardens with flowers from all around the world.
  • If you’re a museum type of person, make sure to visit one of the most important and popular museums in Lyon — the Lyon Fourvière Museum of Gallo-Roman Civilization. Located right next to the archeological remains of Lugdunum, it offers a rich collection of all kinds of artifacts and items from the Roman-Gallic times. Built by Bernard Zehrfuss and opened in 1975, it holds exhibits such as the original transcription and early speech about equal rights given by Emperor Claudius, who was born in Lugdunum, and other items of that kind.    

Where to EatParc des Hauteurs

  • Al Dente is a great and not very expensive Italian and European restaurant that boasts that it offers the best pizza in Lyon. A tourist favorite and a 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection, it offers a wide and interesting range of pizzas, professional and friendly staff, and reasonable prices.
  • Le Royal Indien is one of the best and most famous traditional Indian restaurants in Lyon. It offers an interesting combination of an intimate (and even romantic) atmosphere and authentic Indian food. You’ll have a lot of entree options and some really tasty desserts.
  • Les Adrets should be your place of choice if you’re looking for authentic French restaurants that are usually visited by locals. A 2022 Travelers’ Choice selection, it’s a perfect choice for trying some traditional French recipes. Their fresh fish, salmon, and foie gras are pretty famous.

Fourvière Budget Hotels

  • Séjours & Affaires Lyon Park Lane is a cheap but decent two-star pet-friendly hotel that’s here to welcome you and your furry companion. It offers private parking, free Wi-Fi, a terrace on the premises, great breakfast, and family rooms with flat-screen TVs. All the rooms also have private bathrooms, microwaves, and refrigerators.  
  • Alter’hostel is another cheap but decent accommodation, located just 15 minutes from the fantastic Vieux Lyon. It offers free Wi-Fi throughout the premises, a shared lounge, a bar, facilities for disabled people, and a 24-hour desk. Finally, a really tasty breakfast is served every morning.

Fourvière Mid-Range Hotels

  • Le Jardin de Beauvoir is another rather cheap four-star accommodation, given what it provides. Located in a typical and very beautiful 19th-century house, it offers free Wi-Fi throughout the premises, private parking, a shared terrace, very tasty breakfast in the morning, and an exceptionally pretty garden.
  • Esprit cosy, terrasse, piscine, proche Lyon is a three-star accommodation with a great outdoor pool, free parking in front of the premises (a quite rare thing in Lyon), and free Wi-Fi. There are two bedrooms, along with a fully equipped kitchen with all the amenities, and one bathroom with a bath.

Fourvière Luxury Hotels

  • Fourvière Hôtel is a great four-star hotel with a great location atop the famous Fourvière Hill, overlooking the whole city. It offers an outdoor swimming pool, a bar and restaurant on the premises, a spa and wellness center, a fitness center, and all the other amenities you can think of. The room service is stellar.
  • Villa Maïa is a very luxurious and very expensive five-star hotel also located on Fourvière Hill, offering a priceless panoramic view of the whole city center of Lyon. It also has an indoor swimming pool, a spa and wellness center, a fitness center, a bar, room service, and very tasty breakfast in the morning.

See All Hotels in Lyon

4. Guillotière

Carousel pictured in the Guillotière district for a piece titled Where to Stay When Visiting Lyon, France

LYON, FRANCE, March 31, 2019 : The Carrousel du Pont de la Guillotière and Palais de la Mutualité/Pierre Jean Durieu/Shutterstock

When you pass from the west to the east side of the Rhône, you’ll reach a significantly younger and tourist-friendly area called Guillotière.

The district is usually considered the multicultural melting pot of the city, where numerous immigrants, tourists, visitors, and students co-exist while reinventing contemporary forms of living.

Lyon’s Chinatown, for example, is also located in Guillotière and boasts a number of Asian restaurants and shops of all kinds and sizes. We said that Guillotière is a “young” district, but that assertion has to be taken with a grain of salt.

We should rather say that it’s younger than the western side of the city — there are still plenty of historical landmarks that attract numerous tourists every year.

Château de La Motte (the Castle Of La Motte; not Château de la Motte in Normandy), for one, is a stunning, imposing, late-medieval castle. Then, there is the Guillotière Cemetery, which holds many important historical personages from the history of the city.

And, finally, there’s the 19th-century Notre-Dame Saint Louis, which looks humble but is nonetheless awe-inspiring. Lovers of both museums and film will find a hidden gem in Guillotière.

Amidst the streets and buildings of the area, you’ll find the Musée & Institut Lumière, whose mission is to establish and further promote the names and deeds of the fathers of modern cinema.

There are plenty of movie projections, too. Don’t forget to visit the Centre d’histoire de la résistance et de la déportation, which is all about WWII and the French resistance.

Plainly speaking, Guillotière is the most budget-friendly and affordable district in the whole of Lyon. It is full of young people and foreigners, and, as such, it’s an obvious choice for both young people (students, for example) and visitors who prefer to save a couple of bucks.

The multicultural structure of the area, on the other hand, is to “blame” for a large number of non-French and international restaurants.

Things to Do

  • If museums are your thing, there are two places you just have to visit while staying in Guillotière. Musée & Institut Lumière is a museum and a cinema. If you’re more of a WWII history aficionado, visit the Centre d’histoire de la résistance et de la déportation, which is all about the French resistance.
  • If you’re a fan of Asian culture (especially Chinese) and you like visiting the numerous Chinatowns in America or Europe, make sure you check out Lyon’s Chinatown, located in the middle of Guillotière. It is full of shops and interesting restaurants unlike anything else. Also, the eponymous Chinatown offers some great Chinese specialties.
  • If you want to spend a pleasant day out enjoying the outdoors and relaxing, Parc Georges Basin, located in Guillotière, is a great choice. An old 19th-century park, it offers plenty of shade, a lot of strolling spaces and intricate paths, and sculptures. It might just come as a refreshment after the older architectural marvels of Lyon. Check out the sculpture made by Émile Peynot, named “Freedom, Equality, Fraternity.”

Where to Eat

  • Les Bonnes Manières is a great French restaurant in the middle of Guillotière, mostly suitable for either lunch or dinner. The restaurant is a local favorite and always full of Lyonese. The only problem is that the menu is only in French, but the staff speaks English and will help with the order.
  • MAORI is a multicultural and intercontinental fusion restaurant that offers an interesting blend of Chinese, Asian, Vietnamese, European, and Thai cuisines. The menu is very rich and varied, with a lot of vegan and vegetarian options. The staff is friendly and discreet, and the prices are not that high.
  • Kuro Goma is a nice and quite famous Japanese and Asian grill that was selected as the 2022 Travelers’ Choice. It offers quick, cheap, and healthy lunch or dinner options, a cozy and relaxing ambiance, and friendly and professional staff. It’s one of the best restaurants of its kind in Lyon.

Guillotière Budget Hotels

  • Adagio Access Lyon Centre Université is a very cheap and budget-friendly hotel, which is quite suitable for young people or students. It’s located near the famous Place Bellecour and Perrache railway station. It offers free Wi-Fi throughout the premises, a terrace, and a garden. It also has a 24-hour front desk, decent family rooms, and nice breakfast.  
  • ibis Lyon Centre is another very cheap hotel located around a mile from Place Bellecour and more than a mile from Lyon’s Old Town. It has free Wi-Fi and private parking, a great and fun bar, and a 24-hour front desk. There’s also a complimentary breakfast served every morning.

Guillotière Mid-Range Hotels

  • Appart’City Classic Lyon Part Dieu Villette is a great three-star accommodation located around 500 m from Lyon Part-Dieu Station. It offers free WI-Fi and private parking, a terrace and a garden on the premises, rooms with kitchens and desks, and a nice breakfast in the morning.
  • Residhotel Lyon Part Dieu is a decent and not very expensive three-star hotel located around 700 m from La Part-Dieu Train Station. It offers free Wi-Fi, private parking, a 24-hour desk, and non-smoking rooms serviced by elevators, small kitchens, and air conditioning.

Guillotière Luxury Hotels

  • Lagrange Aparthotel Lyon Lumière is a great but not very expensive four-star hotel, famous for its relaxing spa and wellness center and the beautiful garden. There’s continental breakfast available every morning, private parking, free WI-Fi, and a 24-hour desk.
  • Best Western Hotel du Pont Wilson is a great four-star hotel that comes at a really sensible price and boasts a beautiful view of the Fourvière hill. It offers stylishly decorated rooms, with private bathrooms and cable TV, tea and coffee makers in every room, room service, free Wi-Fi, and a great breakfast.

See All Hotels in Lyon

5. Confluence

Artistic building in the Confluence District, one of the best places to stay when in Lyon, pictured from the river

LYON, FRANCE – OCTOBER 28, 2020 : The Confluence District – famous modern district in Lyon, France. Nicely enhanced by a landscaped park with a natural pond/Jasminka Keres/Shutterstock

If La Presqu’ile and Vieux Lyon had their renaissance from the 14th to the 16th century, Confluence had its own in the late 20th century.

Formerly an ugly industrial complex located on the southern tip of La Presqu’ile, full of empty and forlorn warehouses, today Confluence is the true epitome of cool.

The urban revolution at the close of the former century brought some of the best architects in the world to give it a try, and the results are simply magnificent. In contrast to the older part of Lyon, Confluence has a distinctive futuristic and even cubistic look.

The urban project that we mentioned opened a number of new spaces that have been a magnet for tourists for the last thirty years. The architectural ingenuity of the area is admirable, as well as its inviting shops, restaurants, parks, and walking areas.

The Musée des Confluences is the soul of this post-modern renaissance. It’s an interesting and quite unique combination of a science and anthropology museum.

It’s relatively new, as it started working in 2014, but it’s nonetheless considered a masterpiece of the so-called deconstructivist architecture (a modern take on Jacque Derrida’s philosophical method of the same name).

It’s immense. There are plenty of parks in the districts, which are not very large but share the general atmosphere of modern design and planning.

Starting with the Confluence park near the museum, we also recommend checking out the Jardin Gabriel Rosset, the Gardens Ouagadougou, the Jardin d’Erevan, and the Square General Delfosse.

The accommodation options in the area are not perfect.

The difference between the budget and the mid-range options is slight since Confluence is not the cheapest area in Lyon — it is part of the utmost center of the city. On the other hand, it offers a bunch of affordable fast food options.

Things to Do

  • The first thing you should definitely do is spend a whole day in the most interesting institution in the district, namely The Musée des Confluences. The anthropology/natural science and history museum offers four quite unique exhibitions:
    • “Origins – Stories of the World”
    • “Species – the Web of life”
    • “Societies – Human theatre”
    • “Eternities – Visions of the beyond”

The first one is about the beginning of the universe, the Earth, and evolution; the second about the evolutionary connection between humans and animals; the third covers the “societes”; the last asks a question about the “meaning of life”.

  • The Musée des Confluences is an exemplary model of deconstructivist art and architecture, but there are other important and interesting buildings built in a post-modern manner that are worth looking at. They are living proof that the art of architecture is not dead, after all:
    • the Orange Cube, which is a coworking space located on the banks of Saône river;
    • La Sucrière, which serves as both a conference and a cultural center;
    • Finally, the Pôle de commerces et de loisirs Confluence, which is a shopping and a leisure center a the same time.
  • Speaking of Pôle de commerces et de loisirs Confluence, it’s also a great place for avid shoppers. It’s probably the most modern shopping center in all of Lyon. It offers more than 100 shops (with names like Geox, Zara, Mango, Go Sport, Muji, and Fossil), a dozen restaurants, and a multiplex cinema. Located on the confluence of the two rivers of Lyon, it also offers an unforgettable view from its terraces, and it’s a great place for taking some memorable Instagram pictures.
  • Finally, if you want to spend a little bit of time outdoors, enjoy some greenery, and relax by Lyon’s powerful rivers, the best thing you could do is go to some of the parks the Confluence has to offer. They aren’t large, but they are completely in touch with the post-modern atmosphere of the district. We recommend Confluence Park, Jardin Gabriel Rosset, the Ouagadougou Gardens, Jardin d’Erevan, and Square Général  Delfosse.

Where to Eat

  • Sushi Shop is a Japanese restaurant that mostly functions as a fast food place. It’s not that expensive (it may even be considered as cheap), works late-night hours, and its staff is very professional and fast. It’s mostly suitable for lunch, dinner, or late dinner.  
  • Copper Branch is a healthy fast food place that presents a perfect option for a quick bite at any time of the day — especially during lunchtime or at night. It’s well known for its relatively low prices, fast and efficient service, and some vegan and vegetarian meals. We recommend you order the burger.
  • WOKO Confluence is a Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese fast food restaurant. It’s yet another relatively cheap and fast-serving place that’s perfect either for quick lunch or late-night bites. The place is also vegetarian-friendly, but the shrimp dishes are their best.  

Confluence Budget Hotels

  • Residhome Lyon Gerland is a relatively cheap three-star accommodation that’s completely pet-friendly and located very close to the Jean Jaures Metro Station. It offers free Wi-Fi, private parking, a private bathroom in every room, a seating area, and cable TV. There’s also breakfast available every morning.
  • Hôtel Chromatics & Restaurant Hill Club is another relatively cheap three-star accommodation (Confluence is not the cheapest area in Lyon), with a restaurant and a bar on its premises. There’s also a terrace and a lift in the hotel, and a very tasty breakfast in the morning waiting for you.

Confluence Mid-Range Hotels

  • Novotel Lyon Confluence is a great three-star hotel located in the center of Lyon, right on the banks of the Saône River. It offers a perfect bar that offers an unforgettable panorama of the city, a restaurant and a fitness center on the premises too, a very tasty breakfast in the morning, and facilities for disabled guests.
  • MOB HOTEL Lyon Confluence is a great three-star hotel with a great location, very close to the famous Musée des Confluences and the shopping mall. The hotel offers a restaurant and a bar, yoga and pilates classes, a terrace with a beautiful view, and a very good breakfast in the morning.

Confluence Luxury Hotels

  • Hôtel de l’Abbaye Lyon – Boutique Hôtel is a great and luxurious four-star hotel located in the utmost heart of Lyon and particularly suitable for couples. It has a fabulous restaurant on the premises, a very fast and professional room service, a great breakfast in the morning, and tea and coffee makers in every room.  
  • Aparthotel Adagio Lyon Patio Confluence is a beautiful pet-friendly four-star hotel that offers a magnificent garden and a great location, very close to both the train station and the metro station. It offers large family apartments with all the amenities and a perfect breakfast in the morning.

See All Hotels in Lyon

So, Where Should You Stay in Lyon?

Lone person walks through a narrow alleyway in the restaurant district in one of the best parts of Lyon to stay in when visiting

LYON, FRANCE, JULY 22, 2017: a narrow street full of restaurants is waiting for first customers to come, Lyon, France/Trabantos/Shutterstock

✅ Best Area to See EverythingLa Presqu’île
🏛️ Great for History BuffsVieux Lyon
🏰 Best Area for RuinsFourvière
💲 Most Budget-Friendly AreaGuillotière
😎 The Trendiest Part of TownConfluence

We hope that our guide has helped you to get a clearer picture of what Lyon has in store for you. To finish on an even more transparent note, let’s do a quick recap and see what the different areas of the city have to offer.

  • La Presqu’ile is the absolute center of the city and the place where you’ll find the most beautiful and important buildings and museums in the city, more than 3000 shops, and numerous restaurants and accommodations. It’s truly the best choice for first-time visitors to Lyon.
  • Vieux Lyon is the historical district of Lyon, offering an unforgettable picture of how things looked in both the middle ages and the Renaissance. It’s truly a great choice for lovers of history and museums.
  • Fourvière, located on the Fourvière hills, to the west of both Vieux Lyon and La Presqu’ile, is the former center of Lugdunum, the Roman name for Lyon. Full of archaeological findings, walking areas, and beautiful churches, it’s one more quintessentially Lyon district.
  • Guillotière is the only area on this guide that’s located on the eastern coast of the city. A true melting pot, full of different cultures and even boasting its own Chinatown, it’s the cheapest and most budget-friendly district in Lyon.
  • Finally, there’s Confluence, located on the southern tip of La Presqu’ile. It’s an interesting and hyper-modern (even post-modern) district, full of interesting architecture and a lot of fast-food restaurants. One of the most interesting institutions in Lyon — the Confluence museum — is located here.

So, with so much to see and do in so many amazing areas, what are you waiting for — book your trip to Lyon today and see all that this idyllic location has to offer. Happy travels!