Showing posts from September, 2010

Lyon part II

11 August 2010

My second day in Lyon couldn't have started any better than breakfast at the hostel on the terrace overlooking the city:

It was cool and breezy, and the sun was just beginning to come over the horizon - what a stunning morning.

Unfortunately, after my six-course incredible meal the night before, I was feeling a little sick to my stomach.  I set out to explore a little more of the city and find a market on Boulevard de la Croix Rousse to pick up some fresh fruit.  When I began walking towards the market, I hadn't realized there was another huge hill to climb going in this direction as well.  But Lyon is a beautiful city, and there was plenty to see on my way up:

In addition to being home to a market, the Croix Rousse district is also home to some of Lyon's most famous hidden landmarks, the traboules:

Traboules are passageways that cut through buildings.  However, unlike the galeries in Paris that are centers of commerce filled with shops and caf├ęs and covered …

Lyon part I: The first night & La Machonnerie

10 August, 2010

The morning and early afternoon of August 10 weren't my most exciting - I finished packing, checked out of my hostel in Aix, then took a city bus to the bus station, and then a navette, or shuttle, essentially, to the Aix TGV train station.  I wasn't sure how long the trips would take, especially with my shoddy luggage repair job, so I left plenty of time and ended up getting to the train station a few hours before my train to Lyon departed, but I would definitely prefer to be way early than to worry if I would arrive on time.  The train ride itself was a couple of hours long and pretty uneventful.

When I was planning this trip, Lyon was another must-see city.  It is considered by many to be the "gastronomic capitol of France;" however, I think that is in large part due to being home to restaurants of such renowned chefs as Paul Bocuse.  And while I'm sure his restaurant is outstanding, with prix-fixe menus between 135-220€, per person... that'…


I arrived in Aix-en-Provence the evening of August 7.  Justine and I had taken the train together from Avignon with a stopover in Marseille; however, our first train was delayed about an hour and a half, so we didn't get in to Aix until pretty late.  We then had a mile-long hike to the hostel.  On our way there, just before the last hill, the wheel on my duffel broke - it basically ripped in half from overuse.  So lame!  I was able to drag it along the rest of the way to the hostel, but this was a serious issue as I had over a month left to go of moving every 2-3 days to a new location.  If you are planning a trip with luggage that will spend a lot of time rolling over cobblestones... Make sure you've got extra wheels.

Though the hostel was in a rather inconvenient location pretty far out of town, it did offer a view of the quintessential landmark of the Aix countryside:

I got super excited when I saw Mont Sainte-Victoire looming in the distance - though I'm pretty sure Jus…