la fete des lumieres lyon festival of lights2

On the first day of roaming Lyon a week ago I found out about the Festival of Lights in Lyon and decided to stay in the city a little bit longer to see what it was all about.

The Festival of Lights (French: Fête des lumières) in Lyon, France, is a popular event that originally aimed at expressing gratitude toward Mary, mother of Jesus around December 8 of each year. This unique Lyonnaise tradition suggests that every house place candles along the outsides of all the windows to produce a magical effect throughout the streets. The festival includes other activities based on light and usually lasts four days, with the peak of activity occurring on the 8th

Thanks to a suggestion of a local friend(merci, Ludo!), I found out that the locals go out to see the show on the 7th of December, as the technicians run the tests ahead of the show and it is a great chance to see them firsthand and avoid the crowds.

Most of the places are located in the centre and quite easy to access with the public transport, by bike or scooter and on foot. With a bit of careful planning it is possible to see most of the attractions within a day.

The two main focal points of activity are typically the Basilica of Fourvière which is lit up in different colours, as well as the Place des Terreaux, which hosts a different light show each year.

Find out the full program and find the map of all the attractions on the official site