GUIDED TOUR OF VIEUX-LYON

Guided tour in Vieux-Lyon district in the center part of the Unesco sector of Lyon, France.

By Historical Cities

Vieux-Lyon, Plan de Visite by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

LE QUARTIER DU VIEUX-LYON

Known the world over for its Renaissance architecture, Old Lyon owes its fabulous conservation to the « Plan de Sauvegarde » and the Malraux law which has protected the sector since 1964. The bourgeois architecture was very influenced by Italy and the capital. The quarter really became inhabited during the Carolingian period (towards 800) under the influence of Charlemagne, then in the Middles Ages. This period left its heritage of large churches and landmarks (Saint-Georges, Saint-Paul and Saint-Jean), the Manécanterie, but also, and mainly, the street tracks. It was during this period that the quarter was laid out and the wide roadways, parallel with the Saône, were traced. The roads we walk today are the same as those of the Middle Ages...

At the end of the medieval period and then the Renaissance the quarter was at its peak. It was also at this time that the land was divided into lots – narrow bands of ground ("piano keys”)-along the main throughways such as the rue Tramassac, the rue Saint-Jean and the rue Saint-Georges.

AVENUE ADOLPHE MAX

Not far from the metro station 'Vieux Lyon', is Avenue Adolphe Max, one of the shortest avenues of Lyon: it meets the Avenue du Doyenné and the dock Romain Rolland at the level of the bridge, Pont Bonaparte. There is the Palais Saint-Jean, the Diocesan Centre and several shops. If you continue eastward and cross the Pont Bonaparte, you can access the Place Bellecour. Proceed on the north-eastern side towards the Saint-Jean Palace.

Vieux-Lyon, Palais Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

PALAIS SAINT-JEAN

You are in front of the former episcopal palace. The facade on the wharf side is Gothic. It has a courtyard with two monumental portico designed by Soufflot. Built by Cardinal Charles de Bourbon at the end of the fifteenth century, it was modified during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It currently houses the 5th arrondissement library. Pick up Avenue Adolphe Max towards the hill, cross the Place Edouard Commette, and you will come to the Place Saint-Jean.

PLACE SAINT-JEAN

You are at Place Saint-Jean, the oldest square in Lyon. The fountain in the centre dates from 1844, designed by Dardel, architect of the city (to whom we owe the Palais du Commerce), and sculpted by Bonassieux. The sculpture is a reproduction of a small neo-renaissance temple surrounded by four stone basins for the baptism of Christ by John the Baptist. From this square you can admire the Fourvière basilica built on the site of the ancient Roman forum, the main square of the Gallo-Roman city.

Vieux-Lyon, Manécanterie by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MANÉCANTERIE

The Manécanterie, or the parish choir school, is located to the right of the Primatiale; the entrance is inside the cathedral. The choir school is the oldest building of Lyon’s historical centre. Constructed in the eleventh century, it mixes Romanesque and Gothic styles. Originally it served as a refectory for the canons of Saint-Jean then became home for the cathedral singers hence its name (mane cantare = to sing in the morning).

Vieux-Lyon, Cathédrale Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

LA CATHÉDRALE SAINT-JEAN

Here is the Saint-Jean Primatiale built between 1170 and the fifteenth century. The apse and the choir are Romanesque, while the transept and the nave are Gothic. The damage wrought on missing or decapitated statues is the work of Baron Adrets’ soldiers in 1562. Fortunately, the 320 lavishly decorated carved medallions at the bottom of the openings have only suffered from time. They narrate the Bible, the Saints, and even courteous or monstrous scenes. Indeed, the extremely varied subjects are inspired by sacred history, mythology, symbols, popular scenes.

INTÉRIEUR DE LA CATHÉDRALE SAINT-JEAN

As indicated, the apse and the choir are Romanesque, while the transept and the nave are Gothic. The lower part includes three important gothic portals each topped with quatrefoil rosettes.

RUE SAINT-JEAN

You are on the main street of Old Lyon, Rue Saint-Jean, northbound: it connects the Place Saint-Jean and the Place du Change. This is the best known and most popular of all the streets of old Lyon. You will find a hundred Renaissance houses and also the largest number of restaurants and shops.

RUE SAINTE-CROIX

Take a glimpse on the right to Rue Sainte-Croix, a narrow lane which connects Rue Saint-Jean and Rue Mandelot (archaeological garden). Rue Sainte-Croix took its name from one of the first parishes of Lyon; the vestiges of its foundations can be seen in the archaeological garden on Rue Mandelot.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison du Chamarier by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON DU CHAMARIER

La Maison du Chamarier, built in the fourteenth century, was occupied by Chamariers dignitaries of the Chapter of Saint-Jean, such as François d'Estaing, canon-count. The Chamarier oversaw security, justice, roads and had under his command twelve monitoring agents. He held the city fortification gate keys and also collected taxes during fairs. The windows, whose mullions are missing, are joined and separated by pinnacles decorated with florets and brackets. A stone cord runs along the front. The flamboyant Gothic style mixes with the Renaissance style. The twisted staircase is pointed. The well in the court is assigned to Philibert de l'Orme.

INTÉRIEUR DE LA MAISON DU CHAMARIER

The internal structure of the house, composed of three building blocks, corresponds to the traditional Renaissance style: an inner courtyard with a spiral staircase (enclosed in a tower) and open galleries connecting the bodies Between them. A well and a fountain, attributed to the architect Philibert Delorme, decorate the courtyard of this hotel which has become one the beautiful residences of the district..

RUE DE LA BOMBARDE

Exit the Maison du Chamarier, turn right and take Rue de la Bombarde towards the Saône. This street connects the Montée du Chemin Neuf with the Quai de Saône. This street was the old limit of the cloister of St. Jean au Nord. Its southern part was also called Rue Porte-Froc.

JARDIN ARCHÉOLOGIQUE SAINT-JEAN

You are now at Rue Mandelot, named after François Mandelot, Governor of Lyon in the sixteenth century. The layout of the garden in front of you, near the cathedral, shows the remains of Lyon’s group of ancient primitive episcopal churches, three in all: St. John in the south, Saint-Etienne in the centre and St. Croix in the north. You can see the remains of the first Christian baptistery of the fifth century, foundations and an arc of the St. Croix nave.

Vieux-Lyon, Palais de Justice by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

PALAIS DE JUSTICE

Take the Rue de la Bombarde towards the quay of the Saône then turn at the corner of the Palace of Justice to come to Place Paul Duquaire, just in front of the Palace. This palace was built between 1835 and 1845 by Louis Pierre Baltard on the site of the former Palais de Roanne. It is also called '24 columns' due to its Corinthian façade. The building has recently been completely restored, inside and out. Since 1995, it hosts the Lyon courts and different administrative services of the Rhône department.

RUE DU PALAIS DE JUSTICE

On the right-hand side end of the Palais facade, take the Rue du Palais de Justice. Formerly Rue des Fouettés (street of the whipped) which disappeared during the construction of the Palace of Justice, this lane connects the Rue Saint-Jean and Quai Romain Rolland on the north side of the Palace. This is one of the guarded vehicle entrances for the users of the building.

RUE DES TROIS MARIES

Turn right onto Rue des Trois Maries. This joins Rue du Palais de Justice and the Place de la Baleine. It owes its name to the three Maries (Mary Jacob, Mary Magdalene and Mary Salome) of the sixteenth century. It was formerly known as Rue de Etuves, Rue Tres-Monnoye and Rue Ganivet. This is an interesting road as it has kept its shape and period facades.

PLACE DE LA BALEINE

You are now at the Place de la Baleine (whale) which connects Rue des Trois Maries on one side with the Rue Saint-Jean and Rue de la Baleine on the other side. It was formerly known as Place du Grand Palais then Place Pandalais. As for Rue de la Baleine, its name comes from either a medieval shop-sign in the form of a whale or a piece of whale skeleton that was found here.

RUE SAINT-JEAN

Pick up Rue Saint-Jean on the right towards the Place du Gouvernement then Place du Change.

PLACE DU GOUVERNEMENT

This square only took its name in the seventeenth century. It was formerly known as Place du Petit Palais. The governors of Lyonnais, Forez and Beaujolais had their mansion here from 1512 to 1734 which was demolished in the nineteenth century.

Vieux-Lyon, Hôtel du Gouverneur by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

HOSTELLERIE DU GOUVERNEUR

Built in the fifteenth century, the building was an inn until 1826. Before entering, note the arc terminated by two cones. The griffon, a symbol of the hurdle to cross, looks at another symbol, the mermaid fish and its poisonous singing. Although the mullioned windows have retained their carved bases, the cone figurines have almost all disappeared. Enjoy the vaulted hall. As you go up the stairs, notice the stone ramp carved into the wall. Passing under a vaulted loggia, you arrive in the 'high court’. Discover the carved mullions, a door with a coat of arms and a figurine, the well with its shell-shaped canopy. Now go back to Rue Saint-Jean on the right of the Place du Gouvernement.

RUE DE LA FRONDE

Take a look at the Rue de la Fronde : a narrow street which joins Rue Saint-Jean and Rue de Gadagne at the museum entrance. Formerly Rue de Romagny then Rue du Garillan, it owes its current name to a hotel sign that was a sling.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 9 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON 9 RUE SAINT-JEAN

The building, rebuilt in 1516, marks the transition from flamboyant Gothic to the Renaissance style. Admire the beautiful heavy wooden door topped by an opening decorated with peacocks and flowers. Enter the vaulted alley; it links to 8 Quai Romain Rolland. At the opening of the courtyard, look at the building on the right: it has a mullioned window with double crosses, a luxury for that time. Do not miss the exceptional twisted core of the stairs. In Gothic style it is common to see a stair flourish under the arch into a beautiful palm tree.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison Thomassin by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON THOMASSIN

Some elements of this house date from 1298; it is one of the oldest residential houses of Lyon. Its facade was rebuilt in 1493 in Gothic style at the initiative of Claude Thomassin, notable and rich merchant of Lyon. Of this late thirteenth century house, there remains a room with its ceiling painted with the arms of St. Louis, his mother and the Fuers, the former owners. Note the mullioned windows under a frieze decorated with zodiac signs on the first floor. On the second floor, in the centre of each pointed arch, there carved coats of arms: those of the Dauphin (fish), of King Charles VIII of France (fleurs de lys) and of Anne of Brittany (ermine). The last, on the right, was added in the nineteenth century.

PLACE DU CHANGE

Smaller before, this square was already a place of trade and exchange in the thirteenth century: four annual fairs were held here. In the seventeenth century, the customs office was near the bridge of Change (first Lyon stone bridge built in 1020 and demolished in 1842 to facilitate navigation on the Saône) and close to the Place du Change.

Vieux-Lyon, Loge du Change by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

LOGE DU CHANGE

In 1653, the first lodge was built with a portico with arches and a ground floor for trade and counterfeiters. It was enlarged in 1748 by Soufflot. At the top two clocks frame the king’s coat of arms; on the left Soufflot’s cycloscope is the only dial of its type in the world. La lodge du Change was entrusted in 1803 by the City of Lyon to its Protestant community when it became a temple. In 1938, the merger of four Protestant churches, which led to the creation of the Reformed Church of France, took place here. The Sunday morning service at 10:30 am is open to the public.

RUE LAINERIE

Now take the Rue Lainerie, formerly Rue Asnerie. It comes to Place Saint-Paul via Rue François Vernay. This was a beautiful street during the Renaissance which, like Rue Juiverie, included some beautiful buildings. Unfortunately those on the east side were destroyed during the construction of the Gerson school.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison Claude Debourg by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON CLAUDE DEBOURG

This beautiful house dates from 1516. It was built for a magistrate, Claude Debourg. Above the door, note the shield leaning to the left that indicates that the family was involved in the Crusades. The facade is typical Gothic style. Enjoy the elegance of its tightly joined openings.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 10 rue Lainerie by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON 10 RUE LAINERIE

In the courtyard, you can admire a staircase whose structure is remarkable, it is also a historical monument. Stand at the foot of the stairs and look up towards the top. Spiral staircases, such as this one, are amongst the plus audacious and are often called stairs without a core. This technique was outstanding until the sixteenth century as it required specific skills of the stonemason who carved the shaft, the step, the riser and the joint in one block of stone which then joined with the upper and lower steps to create the full spiral. Do not miss another specificity: the banisters are cut directly into the wall and the centre.

RUE LOUIS CARRAND

Cross Rue François Vernay and take Rue Louis Carrand towards the Saône and Quai de Bondy. The old houses on the northern side of the street were all destroyed in the nineteenth century to make way for the Palais de Bondy. A few houses remain on the south side. The first name of this street was Place de l’Ancienne Douane. Turn left to stand in front of the Palais de Bondy.

QUAI DE BONDY

If you turn left you will find yourself on Quai de Bondy, created in the early nineteenth century. It could only exist once the alleys down to the Saône had either regular alignments or small river ports. Quai de Bondy hosts the Sunday morning craft market, an extension of the design market on Quai Romain Rolland.

Vieux-Lyon, Palais de Bondy by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

PALAIS DE BONDY

This palace was built on the site of Lyon’s first hospital in the sixth century. There are now several theatres and concert rooms: Molière’s room, Witkowski’s room, Guignol puppet theatre (Zonzons Company). This is one of the best places to listen to chamber music in Lyon. Continue along the quay in front of the buildings going north up the Saône.

RUE OCTAVIO MEY

On your left you pass Rue Octavio Mey. It was remodeled in 1873 to facilitate the access between the Pont la Feuillée and the Saint-Paul station; this road took the name of a Lyon silk merchant, Octavio Mey. You can see the Saint-Paul station at the bottom of the street.

RUE SAINT-NICOLAS

As you move up the quay, take Rue Saint-Nicolas on your left towards Place Gerson. This is a typical street that has retained its medieval appearance and narrowness of the period.

PLACE GERSON

You are now at Place Gerson. Its name comes from Jean Charlier 'Gerson', a theologian at the University of Paris who lived at the cloister of St. Paul between 1419 and 1429.His statue is located on Rue St. Paul opposite the church entrance. Move towards the hill to admire St. Paul's Church.

Vieux-Lyon, Église Saint-Paul by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

ÉGLISE SAINT-PAUL

The church was first built around 549. It was then rebuilt along basilica lines in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. The bell tower was rebuilt In the thirteenth century. Many works and restorations took place throughout the centuries, especially in the Gothic period then in the eighteenth century, in 1778.

INTÉRIEUR DE L'ÉGLISE SAINT-PAUL

Several restoration campaigns also took place in the nineteenth century.
On leaving the church, take the Rue Saint-Paul towards the square of the same name.

PLACE SAINT-PAUL

Come back to the Place Saint-Paul. The square separates the Saint-Paul - Pierre Scize part from the Saint-Jean part. It was originally surrounded by shopping streets.The construction of the railway station in 1872 and the creation of the Rue François Vernay in 1899 enabled the square to grow. There are still some beautiful facades. You can admire the beautiful restoration of a group of buildings in front of you.

MONTÉE SAINT-BARTHÉLÉMY

Now take the Montée Saint-Barthélemy to the left of the station. It connects St. Paul to Place de l’Antiquaille. This old road, built on a Roman road that climbs the Fourvière hill, owes its name to a chapel. On the way, you will cross three pedestrian mounts: Montées Change, Garillan and Chazeaux. Going up, on the right, are successively the Marist, Lazaris and ECAM engineers’ schools, the entrance to the Jardin du Rosaire, that goes as far as Fourvière and the house of Pauline Jaricot – founder of the Catholic order of the Propagation of the Faith. At 27, Saône side, is Villa Florentine, a four-star hotel-restaurant housed in a former convent.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison Henri IV by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON HENRI IV

Only the eastern part of this house is still standing; it was partially destroyed in the nineteenth century due to the expansion of the Montée Saint-Barthélemy and the construction of the St. Paul / Loyasse funicular. From the mount, you can admire the Renaissance staircase and the large arched galleries supported by massive columns. The well ironwork dates from the seventeenth century. The bust of Henri IV, on the first floor, dates from the nineteenth century. François 1st, in 1515, and Henry IV in 1600 are said to have stayed in this house that Claude Paterin, a Lyon judge, built during the reign of François 1st.

RUE JUIVERIE

Now come back down the Montée St Barthélémy and turn right on Rue Juiverie. This ancient route from the Middle-Ages owes its name to the number of Jews who used to live here in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. From the fifteenth century onwards, the various livestock markets started to leave; the road became richer and city notables and wealthy merchants started to settle here. Curiously, this street was also famous for its tournaments organised in honour of Charles VIII who used to stay for long periods in Lyon. You will find the most beautiful Renaissance buildings and courtyards on Rue Juiverie in all Vieux Lyon.

MAISON BULLIOUD

Here lies one of the jewels of Old Lyon which is also a historical monument: the tubular gallery by the architect Philibert de l'Orme, built in 1536 when he was only 26 years old. To see it, take the ribbed vault alley and cross the courtyard with its well, of which only the canopy and blazon are original. In this courtyard, Philibert de l'Orme was commissioned by Antoine Bullioud to connect two buildings in an aesthetic style and representative of his client’s social position. De l'Orme had to join two separate buildings via a gallery but without encroaching on the rather small yard or demolishing the existing wells. Inspired by Roman monuments, he built a suspended tubular gallery.

RUELLE PUNAISE

Ruelle Punaise (Bedbug Alley) is located between numbers 16 and 18 Rue Juiverie. It was an open sewer into which the residents of neighbouring houses emptied their buckets. It communicates via a steep slope with the Montée Saint Barthélémy. This is a remnant of the Middle-Ages and is no longer accessible.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison 20 rue Juiverie by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON 20 RUE JUIVERIE

The house at 20 Rue Juiverie was the home of Stephen Grolier, a gentleman of the Duke of Orleans, and dates from 1493. The size of the windows and carved ornaments reflected the wealth of the owners. The mullions on the first floor are very refined; the alley arches slope onto a frieze of sculpted foliage and mythical animals; and the tower of the spiral staircase that leads to the galleries is canted. In 1576, Pierre Duxio, a rich Italian merchant, bought the house and had his crest mounted in the yard: it is a carved figure seated on a throne carrying a Grand Duke clinging to a branch. Can you see it ?

Vieux-Lyon, Maison Dugas by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON DUGAS

This is the house of the Têtes de Lion (or Lions’ Heads) also called the Dugas house. It dates from the seventeenth century. When it was built in 1647, it was one of the most beautiful palaces of Old Lyon. Admire its long facade in grey stone, the ground floor arcades, the flat mullions, typical of the seventeenth century, and the fifteen carved lion heads. Unfortunately, some animals have suffered the onslaught of modern urbanism.

RUE DE LA LOGE

Now turn left into Rue de la Loge. This street is a prolongation of the Montée du Change and connects Rue Juiverie and Place du Change. This street was also called Rue de la Porcherie (or Piggery Street).

RUE DE GADAGNE

Turn right onto Rue de Gadagne. This street connects Rue de la Loge and Place du Petit College. The street took its name from the Gadagne family of Italian bankers who bought the large property from the Pierre-Vive family in 1545. It has also been called Rue Boissette and Rue Pierre-Vive.

Vieux-Lyon, Hôtel de Gadagne, by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

HÔTEL DE GADAGNE

Housed in the former Gadagne mansion, one of the richest houses in the neighbourhood, the Gadagne museums consist of two adjoining hotels built from 1511 to 1527 which were revamped in 1545 for the Gadagne brothers, of Italian origin. The rooms, which were restored recently, along with a new museography, present the history of Lyon from the Middle-Ages to the twentieth century. Visitors can access 39 showrooms, two workshops, an auditorium, a documentation centre, hanging gardens and shop.

PLACE DU PETIT COLLÈGE

Cross the first part of the Place du Petit College which connects Rue de Gadagne and Rue du Boeuf; the square is wide enough to accommodate several terraces of restaurants and cafes. Its name comes from the building, No.5 of the square, which was an annex of Trinity College and is now the annex of the town hall of the 5th district.

PETITE RUE TRAMASSAC

Turn left onto the small street, Rue Tramassac, an alley that has retained its original medieval dimension and joins the Place du Petit College and Rue Saint Jean. It used to be called Rue Berthet.

RUE SAINT-JEAN

Pick up Rue Saint-Jean on the right towards the south and the cathedral. You are almost in the middle of this central street.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeubles 26-28 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISONS 26-28 RUE SAINT-JEAN

Built in the late fifteenth century, these two houses merged their courtyards by destroying the dividing wall during a restoration. One yard is more elaborate than the other. The tower containing the spiral staircase of the first building takes up a lot of space in the courtyard: the entrance is under an ornate porch with a carved dog standing up on his hind legs and holding a shield (unfortunately very damaged). The mullioned windows have fine carved columns. The galleries announce the refined Renaissance style of the first two floors: admire the intersecting ribs that are interlaced and sculpted; the first arch has a coat of arms, the second a lozenge pattern decorated with badges. The upper floors have wooden beams.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 27 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON 27 RUE SAINT-JEAN

Of late Renaissance style, this gorgeous house with mullioned windows has a yellow stone façade. Enter the vaulted alley.

COUR DU 27 RUE SAINT-JEAN

In the courtyard, notice the spiral staircase, half-Gothic, half-Renaissance and the vaulted galleries. Note the curious ventilation system of the staircase and the corbelled turret.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison Le Viste 29 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON LE VISTE

The house Le Viste (or Pinecone House) was owned by the Le Viste family. Jean Le Viste ordered the weaving of the magnificent fifteenth century tapestry 'The Lady and the Unicorn', world-famous for its symbolism, pride of the Cluny Museum in Paris. Only the first floor of this house is of the fifteenth century. Its arched porch is supported by carved columns. In front you can see the pinecones which give their name to the house.

PLACE NEUVE SAINT-JEAN

This site is located between Rue Saint-Jean and Rue du Boeuf, near a corner of the Palais de Justice. It bore the name of Cholet Street until the early seventeenth century. It was then enlarged: very aery, this square is a popular spot with its numerous outdoor restaurants which stay open late into the night. There are period facades on all sides and a small fountain in the centre on the west side.

RUE DU BOEUF

This road connects the Place du Petit College and the Montée du chemin Neuf and is in fact named after the sixteenth century carved bull in the corner of Place Neuve Saint-Jean. Formerly called Tramassac Street, Rue du Boeuf is one of the oldest streets of Old Lyon. It was inhabited by wealthy families which explains the presence of terraces and gardens on the hill side. Rue du Boeuf is less crowded than the Rue Saint-Jean but retains a charm and a tranquility which keeps it attractive. There are some prestigious hotels and restaurants: Cour des Loges, Tour Rose ...

MAISON DU CRIBLE, TOUR ROSE

This elegant building dates from the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries. The portal was built to plans by Serlio: on the front, note the low relief, a small Adoration of the Magi and the wealth of carved door panels. The courtyard is pleasant despite the buildings added in the seventeenth century. In the courtyard, the beautiful pink round tower of the sixteenth century is pierced with bays. It houses the spiral staircase, the well and its carved shell canopy in Renaissance style. This tower has given its name to the hotel, La Tour Rose, located at 22 rue du Boeuf.

Vieux-Lyon, Maison de l'Outarde d'Or by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

MAISON DE L'OUTARDE D'OR

Built in 1487, this street level house took its name from the carved stone sign in the form of a fowl merchant which was mounted in 1708 with the motto: “I am worth more than all the game meat”. The sign is of a bustard, a sort of wild fowl. Admire the building’s façade: mullioned windows, the arch over the door, the wrought iron covering the opening above all reflect the construction period. Enter the courtyard and enjoy the galleries, the spiral staircase and the two corbelled turrets.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 27 rue du Boeuf by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

IMMEUBLE 27 RUE DU BOEUF

This facade has five levels and three bays and continuous elbow rests on each floor. The ground floor has arched openings, a door surmounted by an impost and mullioned windows. In the courtyard, there is a staircase and a seventeenth-century gallery with arches.

Vieux-Lyon, Traboule 27 rue du Boeuf by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

TRABOULE 27 RUE DU BOEUF

This is the longest traboule of Old Lyon: it crosses three courtyards and four buildings to reach 54 Rue Saint-Jean. Note the seventeenth-century stairs, arches and gallery. As you exit the traboule, turn right into Rue Saint-Jean.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 54 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

IMMEUBLE 54 RUE SAINT-JEAN

This single facade has five levels and three bays, windows without mullions and continuous elbow rests on the first, third and fourth floors. The facade was modified in the nineteenth century. One courtyard has eighteenth-century balconies, another courtyard has an arched gallery and balconies.

Vieux-Lyon, Immeuble 58 rue Saint-Jean by Historical-Cities.orgHistorical Cities

IMMEUBLE 58 RUE SAINT-JEAN

The facade, rebuilt in 1832 during the widening of the street, is not of much interest but the courtyards are worth visiting. One is of 1406, the other was revamped in 1528. Take the alley: the vaults of the galleries are supported by bases of carved figures, different on each floor. Note the spiral staircase with carved mullioned windows in the yard. The ornate frescoes under the galleries had been found under the plaster in an apartment. The Renaissance well is one of the most beautiful of Old Lyon : access is via three sides of the yard and its vault is decorated with three shells.

RUE DE LA BOMBARDE

Turn right as you walk up Rue de la Bombarde. This street connects the Saône quay with the Montée du chemin Neuf at the corner of Rue du Boeuf. Here you have a beautiful view of the small garden and courtyard on the north side of the so-called ‘Lawyers’ House’. Rue de la Bombarde was the old limit of the cloister Saint-Jean au Nord. The southern part of the street was also known as Rue Porte-Froc.

MAISON DES AVOCATS

Here you can discover another example of beautiful Renaissance architecture in the neighbourhood. In 1979 the Order of Lawyers acquired the property and began restoration. From this fourteenth-century coaching inn, only the wide doorway that allowed carriages to enter the court remains. You can admire the twelve Tuscan arches resting on columns with flat capitals on three superimposed galleries, as well as the replaced well. All this dates from 1516. When a new school for training young lawyers was built, the Lawyers’ House became home to the Miniature and Cinema Museum in 2004.

RUE DES ANTONINS

This street links Rue de la Bombarde and the Place Saint-Jean where it is very narrow. It has also been called Rue de Talaru. This street was integrated in the cloister of Sean-Jean in the Middle-Ages.

PLACE SAINT-JEAN

You are now at Place Saint-Jean where the visit ends. Thank you for your attention and your interest in this beautiful district of Old Lyon.

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