Firstly this will not be as long or as detailed as I’d initially hoped/planned for a variety of reasons, none of which I am going to disclose. Sorry.
The picture in the ‘Featured Image’ is of the River Sâone in Lyon. There are two Rivers in Lyon, the Sâone and the Rhône. Quick geography lesson for those who don’t know, Lyon is in the Auvergne-Rhone-Alps region of France, which is pretty central. Personally one of my favourite parts of France.
14 – 22 June, were the dates that I was in France, although, to be fair, the 14 June was a late night flight into France so it doesn’t really count! (Not in my book haha) 15 – 18 June was in Lyon, 3 full days with the 18th being a travel day. 18 – 22 June was in Clermont-Ferrand, with the 22 travelling back to Lyon and then flight back.
Average temperature during the day was between 32 and 35°C, average night temperature was 25 – 27°C, sleeping in Lyon was almost non-existent. Even less so when the apartment had no fan or shutters, was like being in an oven, cooler outside! Thankfully it was low humidity, 20%, which made doing things during the day a bit more bearable. I love the heat, I really do, but if the temperature is in the 30’s I’d much rather be sitting under a parasol or shady tree with an ice cold drink and a good book, than wandering around.
All the usual touristy things occurred in Lyon, I have only ever previously been to Lyon airport, so actually getting to be in Lyon, seeing it from ground level instead of a plane and in the darkness, was rather nice. It’s a beautiful city, like most cities in France I have found, a mix of old and new, blending seamlessly, which takes some doing!
Lyon is the gastronomy capital of France, some might say the world! I would certainly say there is plenty of choice when it comes to food, all of the highest quality and extremely reasonable prices. Even the wines are reasonable!
This twisted gun was outside the Museum of Resistance and Deportation (Lyon).
Museum of Confluences, it’s on the Confluence of the Saone and the Rhone (Lyon).
Onto Clermont-Ferrand. I have been there before, 13 years ago, it hasn’t changed much, with the exception of some new builds and restoring older buildings. There are a lot of narrow, cobbled roads in Clermont, it’s a Medieval city, quite small, it reminds me in a way of Chester, only hillier and in a way, prettier. The main focal point of Clermont is the very large, black Cathedral. Made out of the local Volcanic Rock, compared to the rest of the lighter coloured buildings around it, it stands out like a sore thumb. Except, for a sore thumb, it’s rather spectacular.
It’s even more impressive on the inside! (Clermont-Ferrand)
The local Volcano you can go to the top of is the Puy de Dome, don’t worry it’s not active! In fact it has a weather centre on top of it, a long with a fort of all things. It also has a rather stunning view, but unfortunately it was rather hazy the day I was at the top, which was a shame, still stunning views though.
Top of the Puy de Dome
Top of the Puy de Dome
As you can tell from this photo, it was very hazy, but it was 32 at the bottom at 22 at the top. Now, the black spires are the Cathedral, if you can see them. The large white thing on the top left is the Michelin factory, yes the tyre maker, it also does Maps and Restaurant ratings. It’s a shame it wasn’t clearer.
I very much love Clermont, the food and wine, like Lyon, are wonderful. Almost too much choice of restaurants, if thats possible! You could easily spend a full week there and may still have things you missed out, it’s that sort of place. The Michelin museum is well worth a visit, it’s not just the history of tyres, it’s about a whole load of stuff from how they helped in the War to modern advancements, very interesting.
Clermont is also the home of the Rugby team Clermont Auvergne, they wear “IKEA” colours! There were flags for them all over the city, possibly because they won the league this year, I also believe they’re a rather good rugby team.
If you’ve never been to the Auvergne, or even if you’ve never heard of it before, do research it and or visit. It’s traditional France, even in this modern era, they are very open and honest, I happened to be in Lyon during Lyon Pride, the love for the LGBT community was wonderful, and not just them, every walk of life was accepted.
Vive la France!