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Day 2: Lyon to Grenoble

We woke up to a beautiful sunny morning in Lyon :) We hadn't paid to have breakfast in our hotel as it was quite expensive, so as soon as we were properly awake we went for a stroll around the town on our way to find somewhere to eat.


Because the streets were so quiet in the early morning, we were able to notice some things which we'd missed when walking around yesterday, like this pretty church...


... and the rather unusual golden cockerel on the top of this building.


We also realised that the bookshop where we'd been shopping yesterday evening was in a really ornate building too.


After breakfast we made our way to the main square.


I hadn't realised when we were there yesterday, but you can get a great view of the basilica on the hill from here.


We had to check out of our hotel by 11am, so soon it was time to head back through the still empty streets.


Once we'd packed up and collected our stuff, we set off again for the train station. Tim found a more direct route this time, which was a bit more scenic. We crossed the huge river Rhône...


... and passed by this church, which we hadn't seen at all yesterday.


There's one regional train an hour between Lyon and Grenoble. The tickets cost €22.50 each, which seemed quite expensive for a journey of less than two hours, but when the train came it was nice and modern, and we had some good views as we made our way through the increasingly hilly countryside towards Grenoble.

We arrived in Grenoble around 13.45, which is an awkward time to arrive anywhere in France because it means you are just on the verge of having missed your opportunity for lunch. We were in luck, however, as we managed to find a small restaurant with tables outside that was still happy to serve food, and today we even managed to get the right piece of steak each from the start :D

It was a walk of about a mile to the aparthotel where we are staying. When I was trying to book accommodation in this part of France it seemed virtually impossible to find actual apartments, but aparthotels seem to be very popular.  We found this one without any difficulty, but checking in was a slightly confusing experience, as they wanted to authorise my credit card... despite the fact I'd already paid for the room in advance and so all we had to pay was the city tax, which we were attempting to pay in cash. It turned out to be some sort of fraud check to prove that I had really used my own card to book the room, or something like that.

The hotel is in a nice location anyway. This is the view you get when you step outside the door.


Once we'd settled in, we went out for a walk to find the centre of town.


The centre of Grenoble seemed slightly smaller than I had expected, but really attractive, with brightly coloured buildings.


There were also some really grand buildings, like the church of St Louis, which was built in 1699.


We wandered through the little streets of the old town.


Eventually we came out in this little square, place Saint-André.


I particularly liked the church in the background with its pointy tower :)


This square brought us to the edge of the town centre and the river Isère.


We crossed the road and walked alongside the river a bit. From here we had a fantastic view of the colourful houses on the opposite bank and the fortified Bastille hill behind.


We crossed the river on one of the several bridges.


From the opposite side we now had a view back towards where we had been, including the church with the pointy tower and Grenoble's theatre, which is the orange building that has windows cleverly painted on.


There was a rather unusual monument beside the river, which seemed to be commemorating the first bridge being built across the river at Grenoble, nearly 2 000 years ago.


We strolled along the river for a while, enjoying the views.


I was quite excited to see the little "bubble" cable cars which go up from the town, across the river and onto the hill beyond. We're hoping to take one up tomorrow...


... and hopefully get a good view of Grenoble from up above :)




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