I say mostly because we actually spent the morning still in Annecy. Our train to Lyon wasn’t until 2pm today so there was plenty of time to wander.
The first thing we saw was this cool art installation! It was on the way to the main park for one last view of the lake and mountains. There were several of these lovely groupings together in a square to form a giant metal flower garden. We’ve seen public art like this before but never as much as we saw in Annecy (this was only one of at least four installations we saw in just our neighborhood!)
This was another one, appropriately titled “Funny Bird”. The red sticks you can just barely see behind the fence was yet another installation around a few flower beds on three other side of the canal. So much public art!
We also stopped by the historic city hall – yup, it looks rather like someone’s house but this used to be the Annecy city hall! They have a much newer, bigger one now but kept this as a historical site for its interest and beauty.
Then it was on to Lyon! This is the view that greets you as you leave from one of the city’s two train stations, Gare Perrache. What a lovely welcome!
This statue, “To the glory of the Republic”, is on the other side of the fountain.
Here’s something a little more utilitarian but still pretty awesome. As you leave this welcoming plaza and enter the city, you come across this sign. We’ve seen similar ones in a few other French cities, but the placement of this one was so smart it made me realize I should take a picture. This is free electronic advertising for any group or organization holding events in the area, including official city events and announcements! It slowly flips through as many screens as it has that day before starting over again at the beginning; one of they brilliant things about this set-up is they can show as many or as few as they need with no extra effort! It’s a fast, easy way to get your information out to a lot more people than normal, not to mention how useful it is for tourists like us who have no idea what’s going on otherwise!
Then it was off to dinner. Lyon is known as the “Stomach of France” and for good reason. Even other French people admit the best food in the country comes from this area! They’re known for what’s often called “mother’s food” (the French version of comfort food), and are particularly known for their excellent local sausages. We started with just three, but there are plenty more to choose from here! Counterclockwise from the left, we have tablier de sapeur (a pan-fried sausages made from tripe, the inside of a cow’s stomach), boudin noir (a very rich sausage made with pig’s blood), and andouillette (a coarse sausage sometimes made with tripe and sometimes made with intestines; we’re not sure which was used in ours).
What did we think of them? The tablier was tasty but way too chewy for us; the sauce (in the little dish) was good too but couldn’t fix the chew factor. After a while you started to wonder if it was secretly made from some kind of sausage flavored gum instead! The boudin was absolutely delicious but very rich; we had to split one sausage between us and eat it with some bread just to get through it. It was like eating a very rich, thick, heavy dessert – tasty, but you don’t want a giant plate of it or you’ll be tired of it long before the plate is empty. The andouillette was our favorite! It was well-balanced and tasty all the way through without getting to be too much, and the mustard sauce they served it with was a very nice addition. We’re definitely looking forward to trying more tomorrow!
On our way back to the hotel, a little preview of tomorrow…I’ve always loved this church and hill primarily because it gives you views like this every night!
Our comments winner for today is…Vanessa W! Congrats Vanessa! Tomorrow is our only full day in Lyon before we head to Belgium, so it’s going to be a full one – be on the lookout for lots of cool posts!