Getting Around Lyon

  • In the TGV
    In the TGV
    by Nemorino
  • In the TGV
    In the TGV
    by Nemorino
  • In the TGV
    In the TGV
    by Nemorino

Most Viewed Transportation in Lyon

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    Cycling in Lyon

    by Nemorino Written Jul 20, 2011

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    First the good news: the use of bicycles for urban transportation in Lyon has doubled in the past few years, both because of the Vélo'v bikes and because people have been encouraged to get their own bikes out of the cellar and start riding them again.

    But now the bad news: the modal split for bicycle use is still only 2.5% of total trips within the city. As the Association Déplacements Citoyens (ADC) comments on the website "This is still extremely weak in comparison with other French cities (Strasbourg, Bordeaux, …) and five to ten times weaker than in certain European cities (in Switzerland, the Netherlands)" (my translation).

    In 2009 the Grand Lyon Urban Community adopted a "soft travel plan" (plan de déplacements doux) which aims to double the modal split by 2014 (that would still be only 5%) and triple it by 2020 (still only 7.5%). As the ADC comments: "Lyon will remain far behind many other French and European cities, but our current weak position would make more ambitious goals seem unrealistic."

    Just for comparison: Lyon's German partner city, Frankfurt am Main, has recently reached its interim goal of 15% bicycle use, with more on the way. Other cities such as Münster, Amsterdam and Copenhagen have 30% to 40% or even more, depending on what is counted as what.

    I personally found Lyon a very pleasant city to cycle in, but I was there on a long holiday weekend when there was relatively little motor traffic and lots of people were out on bikes.

    Second photo: Cycling on rue Paul Bert in the third arrondissement of Lyon.

    Third photo: Cycling on rue de la Part-Dieu.

    Fourth photo: Cycling at the Place des Terreaux.

    Fifth photo: One reason for the popularity of bicycle sharing programs in Europe is that people who live in apartment buildings often have no convenient place to store a bike of their own. Here at least someone has found space for a bicycle on a balcony up on the fifth or sixth floor of a building near Place Voltaire. (Hopefully there is an elevator in the building.)

    1. Cycling at the City Hall 2. Cycling on rue Paul Bert 3. Cycling on rue de la Part-Dieu 4. Cycling at the Place des Terreaux 5. Bike up on the balcony at Place Voltaire
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    by Nemorino Updated Jun 17, 2012

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    Vélo'v is a large-scale bicycle sharing system which is run by the JCDecaux company on behalf of the Grand Lyon Urban Community. The service began in 2005 and was an immediate success, which prompted the mayor and city council in Paris to institute a similar but even larger system two years later.

    Vélo'v provides "solid, comfortable bikes, available for anyone to use, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week." At last count there were 343 Vélo'v stations in Lyon and the neighboring city of Villeurbanne, with over 3000 bicycles.

    To use the bikes you first have to buy a one-day ticket for one Euro, a seven-day ticket for three Euros or one-year ticket for fifteen Euros. After that, you can use the bikes as often as you wish, and the first thirty minutes of each ride are free. If you keep a bike longer than half an hour you pay one Euro for the second half-hour and two Euros for each half-hour thereafter.

    In other words, Vélo'v is a great bargain for short rides but would get very expensive it you kept the same bike for a longer period. But hardly anyone actually does that. Before the end of the first half hour you can simply dock your bike at any Vélo'v station, wait two minutes and take another one. (Or the same one again.) And again the first half hour is free.

    All the Vélo'v stations accept "international bank cards", meaning cards that conform to the EMV norm. EMV stands for "Europay, MasterCard and Visa", which together have established international standards for cards using an "EMV chip". Unfortunately most American and Australian credit cards do not have EMV chips so they do not work at the Vélib' stations in Paris and presumably not at the Vélo'v stations in Lyon. My German credit card has an EMV chip so it worked fine when I bought my one-week ticket at the Vélo'v station "2025 Mercière / Ferrandière" near my hotel.

    For more about how these bike sharing systems work, please have a look at the General Tips on my Paris page, where I have spelled it all out in considerable detail. The main differences are that Lyon does not give you an extra fifteen minutes for riding uphill, as Paris does, and Lyon does not (yet) offer the option of buying a short-term ticket online.

    Update: As of May 2, 2012, Lyon does indeed offer the option of buying a short-term ticket on line, for one day or seven days. You can buy online up to fifteen days in advance and determine the exact day and time when your ticket will become valid. (Just as in Paris.)

    And now the Vélo'v system in Lyon gives you an extra half hour of cycling time if you dock your bike at one of the uphill stations. (Double the credit you get in Paris.)

    Second photo: Returning a Vélo'v bike at Place Voltaire (Vélo'v station "3018 - Créqui / Voltaire" in the third arrondissment of Lyon.)

    Third photo: Riding a Vélo'v bike at Place Voltaire.

    Fourth photo: Vélo'v users at Place Bellecour, rue de la République.

    Fifth photo: Checking out bikes at the opera house, Vélo'v station 1002.

    1. Place Voltaire 2. Returning a bike 3. Riding at Place Voltaire 4. At Place Bellecour 5. Checking out bikes at the opera house
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    Bikes for rent

    by iNorv9 Written Dec 20, 2005

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    Over 2000 bicycles are available at 200 stations around Lyon and Villeurbanne. After aquiring a card from Le Grand Lyon, you can rent 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. Especially helpful for those situations where you need a bike at 3 in the morning.

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    by sedky118 Written Oct 12, 2006

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    Velo'v is the greatest innovation in transport in recent years. The bright red bikes that you see around the city (can't miss them really) are absolutely everywhere, and you can use them for up to half an hour for free (just buy a week-long membership card for €1 - yes ONE EURO - or a year-long card for €10).

    Everything else you need to know you can find by tapping on the screen at any of the Velo'v stations, or by visiting the Velo'v website below.


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    Le Vaporetto - ferry on the River Saone

    by pedroswift Updated Oct 27, 2012

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    The newest commercial and residential area in Lyon is CONFLUENCE.
    The River is ever present as this was an old section of the city with docks and warehouses. As well as trams and bus services serving the area, there is a ferry service along the River Saone with stops at Confluence, Bellecour and St Paul/Hotel de Ville.
    Confluence Stopis located north side of east end of the large harbour north of the Commercial building
    Bellecour Stop: Quai Tilsitt (Pont Bonaparte)
    Saint-Paul Stop: Quai de Bondy ( Pont de la Feuillée)
    A ticket can be purchased as one boards the boat - €1.50 (one way).
    Departs Confluence at 30 minutes past the hour between 1030 and 2030 seven days a week.
    Arrives Bellcour 20 minutes later and St Paul 10 minutes after Bellecour.
    Departure times St Paul on the hour 1000 to 2100 - Bellecour 10 minutes and 50 minutes past the hour.

    It is a brand new service and the boat is well patronised. My only criticism is that the internal space was not air-conditioned on the day we used it. There is a small open-to-the-air area at the stern but that was totally occupied on the 40 º Centigrade boiling hot day we used it. The windows in the main cabin were sealed tight.

    Le Vaporetto
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    by bonio Written Dec 22, 2011

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    Tram linking the airport to Part-Dieu SNCF railway station.
    Modern and fast, journey time around 20 minutes.
    Convenient but expensive, a return ticket for two people (Dec 2011) a whopping 46 euros.
    Check out their website for more info.

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    Parrache to airport Lyon

    by gwened Written Mar 22, 2012

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    yes you need to go to part dieu and then connect to airport on public transport.
    you can find your routing here in city transport

    and from the airport you can hook up here

    hope it helps

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    getting around inside Lyon

    by gwened Written Jun 30, 2012

    yes the city bus system is on TCL, and the RhoneExpress takes you into the airports and train stations

    and did not read all above but this site tells you about how to calculate your itineraries on TCL

    hope it helps

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    How to come in and out Lyon

    by gwened Updated May 4, 2015

    Lyon is a major city and as such it has plenty of parking and sometimes tight spaces. The laws have change since 2010 where the available parking has been expanded at lower rates but the usually free periods of 12h-14h and 18h-19h are now paying on the whole city.
    There are several parks all over the city they are group here in the city of Lyon page

    as a guide for visitors the most convenients to sights and ones that I have try are Bellecour, Brotteaux, Capucins,Cuirassiers, Perrache, Opéra, and Verdun.
    you can always use the route planner
    and the traffic planner in the Lyon area use Coraly (region) and Onlymoov (city)

    This is a service of the parc parkings of Lyon, in French but beautifully explained§ion=LESPARCS

    the best way to reach Lyon for example from Paris is by taking the fast route A6 from porte de gentilly or Orléans. A longer scenic route is to take the N7/D607 from Paris direction Fontainebleau/Nemours/Montargis/Briare/by Cosne-Cours-sur-Loire it becomes the A77 continue direction Pouilly-sur-Loire,go around beltway of Nevers, where it comes back to N7 road direction Saint-Pierre-le-Moutiérs, go around beltway of Moulins, then direction Roanne,coming to Lyon under the tunnel de la Croix rousse on the D306 the roads are continuous.

    Taxis have more than 50 stands in the city. Place des Terreaux,gare de perrache, place Bellecour,place carnot, pl de la République,place des cordiliers, place des jacobins,place de trions, place st paul ,quai charles de gaulle, as the most popular I can think. The rates are day and more at nights after 19h to 7h (am) from 4th person there is a 1,60€ per km charge, extra baggage 0,80 cents and big bulky items such as skis 1,04€ extra.airports and train stations have 1,60€ extra per km charge.

    covoiturage or car sharing to go out in Lyon you can do so here in French

    private tours from the tourist office of lyon French Flair.

    for the bus you have over 100 lines, the SYTRAL (Syndicat Mixte des Transports en commun pour le Rhône et l'Agglomération Lyonnaise) is for the metro area and the local city is assign to SLCT Société Lyonnaise de Transports en Commun (SLTC) and inner city to TCL (Transports en Commun Lyonnais) .
    the new public transport site since January 1 2015.

    the metro/tube:subway has 43 stations and 4 lines with one is totally automatic. You ,also, have 3 funiculars or cable cars in the city covering the trajects Fourvière - Vieux Lyon; Saint-Just - Vieux Lyon; and Hôtel de Ville - Croix-Rousse.
    The Tramway has 5 lines linking the city with the nearby cities of Villeurbanne, Bron, Meyzieu and Chassieu. The lines are
    Montrochet Hôtel de Région / IUT Feyssine La Doua : line T1 (23 stations)
    Perrache / Saint-Priest Bel Air : line T2 (29 stations in 40 minutes)
    LEA , de la Part-Dieu à Meyzieu ZI : line T3 (10 stations in 25 minutes)
    De La Doua to Vénissieux (Pôle hospitalier des Portes du Sud Feyzin) : line T4 (21 stations)
    De Grange-Blanche to Eurexpo passing by city center of Bron and the Parc d'activités du Chêne (11 stations).

    for persons with mobility impaired there is Optibus

    the site multitud groups all the transports needs in the metro area of Lyon, a one stop site in English

    you have the link to the airport on RhoneExpress , it links the station Part-Dieu to the aéroport Lyon-Saint Exupéry in 25 minutes. The airport for passengers and visitors is excellent. Terminal 3 is reserve for low cost companies such as Easy Jet. fully loaded airport that I use on my trip east has several restaurants, bars, boutiques and duty free boutiques, car rentals, and two hôtels. Long term and short term parkings and bus navettes linking the airport to main nearby cities.
    There is a train gare TGV de Lyon-Saint-Exupéry,linking with Paris CDG, par example .
    Aéroport Lyon Saint Exupéry (in town of Saint Exupéry)
    – 69125 Lyon Saint Exupéry

    Vélo or bike=bicycle is big with over 1000 rings of parking in the city and growing as I write (2014 covering 520 kms of cyclable pistes). those traveling with TCL cards can use the park and ride stations at parc relais Gare de Vaise (100 places) ,and métro Oullins La Saulaie linking an extension of the metro B line (40 places). to know more all in French at the site Vélo for the metro area of Lyon.

    the local Vélov has in Grand Lyon 4 000 bikes in great shape call Vélo'v, in 350 stations from Lyon and Villeurbanne available 7/7 and 24/24. This site in English

    electric bikes cyclopolitain all in English here

    the cyclopousse for seniors, and the mobility impaired bikes with driver to move you in city centers, all here

    The train is big here with two stations in city center , Part-Dieu and Perrache,and a third one in the airport Lyon Saint Exupéry, the TGV Méditerranée puts Lyon within 2h from Paris (1 train every 30 minutes), 3h Lille, 5h London (by Eurostar),the TGV also serves Chambéry, Annecy or Bruxelles...Avec deux gares en centre ville, Part-Dieu et Perrache, and a third one inside the airport Lyon Saint Exupéry. it is 2h from Paris(1 train every 30 minutes), 3h Lille, 5h London (by Eurostar), the TGV goes to Chambéry, Annecy or Brussels as well...From train stations you can reserve in advance a taxi with the PAP service from 9.90 € TTC even with late train( for a traject of 1 -4 persons + luggage). More here

    Part Dieu train station explained in English by official SNCF site
    Perrache train station explained in English by official SNCF site

    to reserve and see schedules in French (clear your cookies from abroad)

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