destinations / France

What to do around Lyon ?

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What to do around Lyon ?

Many of you ask us for things to see in the city center or around Lyon. As you may know, we live in Lyon, when we are not travelling. So we will tell you what to do near Lyon, for a weekend or for your vacations.

We will write an article about the city of Lyon itself and its good addresses later. First, let’s focus on the surroundings of Lyon, to escape from the city, in the fresh air!

How to get to Lyon ?

Lyon is easily accessible by train or bus from all major cities in France. There are two train stations in the city center: Part-Dieu and Perrache. We advise you to use these means of transports rather than the plane because the airport is located rather far from the city center.

Compare the best offers and book your mobile tickets (train or bus) on Omio.

Things to do near Lyon

With Smartbox’s Week-End Insolite box, we escaped to a quiet place, for a weekend, less than an hour from Lyon. We went to the vineyards of Beaujolais and the Azergues valley, for a preserved nature and staked landscapes. What we appreciate in Lyon is its proximity to the great outdoors. Whether to the east or to the west, you can escape the city and get away from it all in no time.

In the East, some ski resorts in the Alps are reachable in an hour’s drive and are very popular with Lyon’s residents on weekends. We have several articles LIEN on activities in the mountains, both in summer and in winter.

In the west and north, nature lovers, hikers and even wine lovers will find their happiness. There is also a very rich historical heritage and golden stone villages with incredible charm.

1- Unusual night near Lyon

With our Smartbox Week-end Insolite, we chose to spend a night in the Eco-Logis des Sapins of Pascale and Jean-Michel in Grandris in the Beaujolais. The welcome is very nice, especially since they are passionate about travel, like us! The accommodation has 3 beds, a kitchenette, a BBQ and a terrace with a view on the valley. For a small extra charge, you can also enjoy an outdoor jacuzzi, excellent for a romantic moment. This wooden chalet, created by Jean-Michel, is located in their flowered garden, but you will be in the quiet and in complete privacy.

Many other experiences similar to these are possible in Smartbox’s Insolite boxes. We chose this one for its proximity to Lyon!

“Watch the video of our romantic weekend around Lyon with Smartbox :


2- Visit the golden stone villages

At 30 km and 45 minutes from Lyon, you will find very atypical golden stone villages. These warmly colored villages, sometimes called “the little Tuscany“, are mainly surrounded by vineyards. One of the prettiest and most famous is Oingt.

The village of Oingt, among the most beautiful in France

Oingt is an old medieval village, out of time, perched on a hill. It benefits from a beautiful view on the Azergues valley and on the Beaujolais vineyards. Its medieval streets, its artisanal stores and its restored historical monuments give it an incredible charm. We love to walk there, letting ourselves be guided by these small streets and its colored flowers. Go to the tower, which is an old keep, to admire the exceptional panorama.


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Une publication partagée par Yann ♡ Aurélie – Blog Voyage (@amoureuxdumonde) le

3- To make the road of wines

Who says Beaujolais, says wine! Living in the West of Lyon for many years, I have heard a lot about this famous wine route. We are going to experience it this summer in order to share with you our feelings and give you some good addresses. This road starts near Saint-Amour, south of Mâcon. It is 140 km long and crosses 12 appellations. You will see many winegrowers and wine merchants ready to welcome you, castles, viewpoints. Also, you will have the opportunity to cross, as mentioned above, atypical villages!

It is an excellent way to discover the French heritage. But be careful, drink in moderation.

4- Explore the lakes near Lyon

The Rhône-Alpes region is full of beautiful landscapes. We are lucky to have a beautiful nature, mountains and lakes. After some research, here is a selection of the best lakes near Lyon!

Le lac des sapins

Near Lyon, 65 km away, there is an artificial lake in the town of Cublize: the Lac des Sapins. This lake attracts a lot of people from Lyon during the summer, with many activities: swimming, sailing, canoeing, paddle, paintball, mini-golf, tree climbing, relaxation, hiking… For those who want to walk around it by the path, it will take you one hour (distance: 4,5km).

To refresh yourself during the summer, swimming at the Lac des Sapins costs 4.50€ per adult. You can take a dip in the largest biological pool in Europe. Indeed, the water is permanently purified, thanks to minerals and depolluting plants.

“Please note that in high season, parking is 7€.


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Le lac des Eaux Bleues

This lake has the advantage of being closer to Lyon, it is only 20 minutes east of the city. To access it, you have to go inside the park of Miribel Jonage. The site has 4 beaches, 3 of which are free, and many water sports activities are offered.

The paying beach, that of Atol, provides deckchairs, umbrellas, beach huts, picnic tables and children’s games. Due to its success, it has recently been enlarged and refurbished to offer a better experience.

“Practical information: 6.75€ per adult and 3.15€ for children aged 4 to 11.

  • Le lac de Nantua

Another spot to discover around Lyon, the Nantua Lake. Change of scenery, since this lake is located in the Jura mountains and is surrounded by mountains. It takes about an hour to get there from Geneva. It is one of the rare large lakes of glacial origin. Many sports activities are available on this lake, but it is different from the others because of its beautiful and changing color depending on the weather. The Tour d’horizon du Lac hike is a must, it offers a panoramic view of the place. Attention, the total loop to make the tour of the Nantua Lake with this hike makes 14,5km and takes 4h.


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Une publication partagée par Adeline Bvt (@adeline_c_mwa) le

So now you know what to do around Lyon for your nature escapades! Dear fellow Lyonnais, do not hesitate to tell us in comments if you have other ideas of places to go. We will complete this article as we go along

To explore France even more, check out all of our articles about France here.

>> This article is the result of a collaboration with Smartbox, as part of the test of the Séjour Insolite box.

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