LYON 100% ENGLISH

The Traboules: Lyon secret passageways

The traboules: lyon’s secret network.

Traboules in Vieux-Lyon

Typical traboule in a Renaissance building in Vieux-Lyon

What is a Traboule?

Winding their way through buildings, courtyards, and up and down staircases, Lyon’s secret covered passageways, or traboules , are an ideal way of visiting the city’s hidden and colourful past . Every traboule is different though. Each has a unique pastel colour, a particular curve or spiral staircase, vaulted ceilings or Renaissance arches.

Some have counted as many as 400 traboules in Lyon, but just over 40 are open to the public , each clearly marked with a small identifying seal. It’s the atmospheric Vieux Lyon and the arty Croix Rousse that house the lion’s share.

Half of the fun is finding them of course, but failing that, you can skip to it and go on a guided tour on Saturday morning. They say if you want to be a true Lyonnais, you have to know your traboules . So what are you waiting for?

Why do we say “traboule”?

The word ‘traboules’ is a corruption of the Latin ‘trans-ambulare’, or ‘to pass through’, dating back to the 4th century, allowing folk more direct access to the town’s fresh water source than the winding streets provided.

A wander through the history of the traboules

The first examples of traboules are thought to have been built in Lyon in the 4th century. Due to lack of water and malfunctioning aqueducts, the inhabitants of what was Lugdunum had to move to the banks of the river Saône, in the lower town, at the foot of Fourvière hill. The traboules were dreamed up to allow people to get from their homes to the river quickly.

Later on, they were taken up by the Canuts silk workers of the Croix-Rousse (1 st and 4 th districts), the beating heart of 19 th century silk trade. The passageways were used for Canuts workers to carry their heavy loads from their workshops in the Croix-Rousse to the textile merchants at the foot of the hill, as well as for workers’ meetings.

La Cour des Voraces, traboule in Lyon

Famous traboule on Croix-Rousse hill: the “Cour des Voraces”

In Vieux Lyon (5 th district), most streets run parallel to the river, making it tricky to get from one street to the next without having to make a huge detour, so courtyards with connected through a network of passages and a large number of shortcuts were created. The traboules of the Lyon’s Old Quarter thus allowed workers and craftspeople to transport clothes and other textiles more quickly through the city while remaining sheltered from the miserable weather.

A century later saw a different use entirely. During the Second World War , the traboules were used by the resistance for secret meetings, thus preventing the Nazis from occupying the whole of Lyon.

The landmark traboule

In the 1830s there were as many as 25,000 Canut silk workers in Lyon.

As further silk workshop s opened, merchants started to take advantage of the artisan class weavers by slashing their wages and benefits.

Struggling with the combination of increased competition, new technology, uncertain economic forces and the exploiting merchants, the workers decided to rebel.

Joining forces, the Canut silk workers closed workshops and marched into town, picking up weapons at the armory as they went, seeking to hold the industry hostage until a set wage was agreed to.

A traboule in Lyon Croix Rousse

Croix Rousse traboule in Lyon

However, the Canut revolts were bloodily suppressed. 10,000 Canuts were reportedly tried in Paris and faced criminal deportation, but their motto of “live free working or die fighting” inspired other workers uprisings in future years.

Believe it or not, the spirit lives on in the Croix-Rousse to this day. You just have to dig a little.

One of the landmarks of the Canut Revolts is to be found in the Croix-Rousse district. It’s called “Traboule de la cour des Voraces” and is also the oldest reinforced concrete stairwell in Lyon.

How to visit the traboules?

Guided tours.

For the Canut workshops and traboules , the meeting place is Place de la Croix-Rousse, in the 4th district of Lyon, outside the underground station Croix-Rousse. For navigating the traboules in the Croix-Rousse, follow the arrows accompanied by the lion’s head.

tour rose lyon traboule

Follow this sign to discover the traboules

For the Vieux-Lyon traboules , the meeting place is outside the Vieux Lyon metro station. In Vieux-Lyon, these passageways are marked by a bronze shield.

  • Arrive 10 minutes early
  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Price: 12 euros
  • 8 – 18 and students: 7 euros

Reserve the Vieux Lyon traboules here or phone +33(0)4 72 77 69 69 Reserve the Croix Rousse traboules and Canut Workshop here or phone +33(0)4 72 77 69 69

The longest traboule

The longest traboule in Lyon runs between 54 Rue Saint-Jean and 27 Rue du Bœuf, and a famously picturesque traboule begins at 9 Place Colbert/14 bis montee Saint Sebastion, and features a historic six-story external staircase.

If you’re a bit of an adventurer, here are a few traboules to discover on your own:

  • 27 Rue St Jean connecting with 6 Rue des Trois Maries
  • 54 Rue St Jean with 27 Rue de Boeuf
  • 31 Rue du Boeuf with 14 Rue de la Bombarde
  • 2 Place du Gouvernement with 10 Quai Romain Rolland
  • 9 Rue des Trois Maries with 17 Quai Romain Rolland

Where are the Traboules in Lyon

Or have a look here at a map of Traboules located  in the Vieux Lyon .

Further reading about these famous landmarks in Lyon

  • Traboules on the  Atlas Obscura
  • Lyon Traboules official application

Listen to our Podcast on these secret passageways

Other landmarks of interest near the old lyon.

tour rose lyon traboule

Place Bellecour

Place Bellecour is the largest pedestrian square in Europe. A landmark to visit in Lyon.

The Basilica Notre Dame de Fourviere in Lyon, France

Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière, treasure of Lyon

Fourvière basilica is a speactacular landmark to visit in Lyon, and the view from the esplanade is mind-blowing.

tour rose lyon traboule

Lugdunum: Museum of Gallo-Roman Civilisation in Lyon

The Museum of Gallo-Roman Civilisation astounds the visitor with its avant-garde architecture and carefully-chosen exhibits, nudging you to uncover more of what Lyon’s Roman, Gaul and Celtic forebears got up to.

Related story

tour rose lyon traboule

15 Top Tips To Visit Lyon On A Budget

Travelling, visiting, discovering new places does not always have to be expensive.

Privacy Preference Center

Consent management, advertising.

The information we learn from customers helps us continually improve our websites and your shopping experience at thisislyon.fr. We use the information to handle orders, deliver products and services, process payments, communicate with you, services and promotional offers, update our records and generally maintain your accounts with us. When you vist our website or when you purchase something from our store, as part of the buying and selling process, we collect the personal information you submit in the purchase process including name, contact Information such as email addresses and telephone numbers; Automatic information: We receive and store certain types of information whenever you interact with us. For example, like many websites, we use Cookies, and we obtain certain types of information when your web browser accesses our websites and other content served by or on behalf of Ledger on other websites. Therefore , we may also collect the following Data from you: IP address (automatically collected), Web, browser type and version (automatically collected), Operating system (automatically collected), A list of URLs starting with a referring site, your activity on this Website, and the site you exit to (automatically collected); You can choose to enable or disable Cookies in your internet browser. By default, most internet browsers accept Cookies but this can be changed. For further details, please consult the help menu in your internet browser. You can choose to delete Cookies at any time; however you may lose any information that enables you to access the Website more quickly and efficiently including, but not limited to, personalisation settings. Data which we collect from you may be stored and processed in and transferred to countries outside of the European Economic Area (EEA). For example, this could occur if our servers are located in a country outside the EEA or one of our service providers is situated in a country outside the EEA. These countries may not have data protection laws equivalent to those in force in the EEA. If you would like to: access, correct, amend or delete any personal information we have about you, object to their processing, register a complaint or simply want more information, contact us by email at [email protected]. All such requests are promptly examined and replies are issued by our teams.

Cookies Used

National Geographic content straight to your inbox—sign up for our popular newsletters here

a staircase leading down to a courtyard in the Old Town of Lyon, France

Hundreds of traboules connect residential neighborhoods to bustling streets in Old Lyon. From more than 400 created, 50 are still open to the public.

What secrets lie beneath Lyon?

A labyrinth of corridors conceals a complicated past in France.

Tucked between Lyon’s old-town streets and its Croix-Rousse neighborhood, the traboules —a vast network of around 400 hidden corridors, passages, and stairwells—have borne witness to historic moments from the silk trade to French Resistance meetings in World War II.

Tour guide Veronique Destombes has lived in the city for over 30 years and knows just where to dip into discreet doors, to climb stairs, and venture down subtly marked traboules to explore the 50 pathways still open to the public. Each route has its own distinct pastel color and unique architectural element, such as towering staircases, vaulted ceilings, or detailed, Renaissance arches.

As we walk along Rue du Boeuf, Destombes weaves tales of how the canuts , or Lyonnaise silk workers, used the traboules to transport the fabrics across the city safely, avoiding rain and dirt. In the 1800s, the traboules played a key role during the Canut revolts—one of the first documented uprisings of Europe’s Industrial Revolution. Exploited silk workers used the walkways to sneak into the city center and take over the town. During World War II, the French Resistance used the network to evade the Nazis. Runners would slip into the clandestine passageways to avoid capture and could use the alleys’ double doors to share important messages without suspicion.

In love with Lyon? This nearby region may be your next travel obsession.

Many of the traboules are now on private property, used only by residents. In the 1990s, Lyon city officials agreed to pay for maintenance and restoration of traboules that residents keep open to the public from morning until evening.

Where to find traboules

With a bit of detective work, savvy travelers can find their own moments of quiet in the traboules spread across the city. In Old Lyon, entrances are marked with shield-shaped bronze plaques, while in Croix-Rousse, a lion’s head on a blue marker guides the way. Here are four traboules worth sleuthing for.

Traboule de la Cour des Voraces

A sanctuary to silk workers during the Canut revolts, Traboule de la Cour des Voraces preserves canut history with its famous six-floor stairway façade—one of the oldest in the city—and a memorial that reads: “In the Cour des Voraces, a hive of the silk industry, canuts fought for their living conditions and their dignity.” The historical passage begins at 9 Place Colbert and 14 bis montée Saint-Sébastien.

traboules stairs in Croix-Rousse, Lyon, Département Rhône, France

The Traboule de la Cour des Voraces, located in the Croix-Rousse, was one of the landmark traboules during the 19th-century Canut revolts, where hundreds of enraged silk workers gathered and marched.

La Longue Traboule

At 54 Rue Saint-Jean, search for the green door and an engraving reading “La Longue Traboule” to find the longest traboule in Old Lyon. Stretching to 27 Rue du Bœuf, the walkway crosses through five courtyards and tunnels under four buildings. It’s one of the few traboules still used daily by locals to navigate Old Lyon.

Traboule de la Tour Rose

Enter at 16 Rue du Bœuf to discover a rose-tinted watchtower, complete with spiraling staircase, while traversing the Traboule de la Tour Rose. The stairs are closed to the public, but the delicate colors of the courtyard and Renaissance-style windows of the tower create a picturesque scene.

Traboule de Maison Brunet

Connecting 10 Rue Rivet with 5 Place Rouville, and 12 Rue Rivet with 6 Place Rouville, this traboule leads travelers to Maison Brunet, a structure built with references to periods of time—365 windows (days in a year), 52 apartments (weeks in a year), seven floors (days in a week), and four entrances (seasons in a year). During the Canut revolt, soldiers would use the numerous windows to hurl fireballs at the national guard.

  • Nat Geo Expeditions

For Hungry Minds

Related topics.

  • ARCHITECTURE
  • TREASURE HUNTING

You May Also Like

tour rose lyon traboule

A guide to Jaipur's craft scene, from Rajasthani block printing to marble carving

tour rose lyon traboule

From bazaars to block printing: 8 ways to explore Jaipur's art and design scene

tour rose lyon traboule

Visit Rotterdam as it transforms itself into a floating city

tour rose lyon traboule

The best compression socks for travelers

tour rose lyon traboule

The perfect wrinkle-free wardrobe to pack for your next trip

  • Environment
  • Paid Content
  • Photography
  • Perpetual Planet

History & Culture

  • History & Culture
  • History Magazine
  • Mind, Body, Wonder
  • Terms of Use
  • Privacy Policy
  • Your US State Privacy Rights
  • Children's Online Privacy Policy
  • Interest-Based Ads
  • About Nielsen Measurement
  • Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information
  • Nat Geo Home
  • Attend a Live Event
  • Book a Trip
  • Inspire Your Kids
  • Shop Nat Geo
  • Visit the D.C. Museum
  • Learn About Our Impact
  • Support Our Mission
  • Advertise With Us
  • Customer Service
  • Renew Subscription
  • Manage Your Subscription
  • Work at Nat Geo
  • Sign Up for Our Newsletters
  • Contribute to Protect the Planet

Copyright © 1996-2015 National Geographic Society Copyright © 2015-2024 National Geographic Partners, LLC. All rights reserved

  • Loire Valley
  • South of France
  • France Off the Beaten Path
  • Non-Touristy Paris
  • Arles & The Camargue
  • Haute-Marne
  • Loire: The Department
  • Nancy Art Nouveau
  • 9 Sensational Road Trips
  • How to Plan Your Route
  • 10 Days: South of France
  • 7 Days: Basque Country
  • 5 Days: Lake Geneva & Alps
  • France's Regions
  • France's Departments
  • France's Cities
  • Best Seasons
  • Official Holidays
  • Essential Planning Tips
  • Paris Hotels with Spa
  • Paris Hotels with Balconies
  • Cool Paris Hotels
  • Driving in France
  • Taking the Train
  • Renting a Car in France
  • How to Shop in France
  • Le Petit Shop
  • Christmas Gifts
  • Things to Do in Lyon
  • What Is Lyon Famous for?
  • The Food Capital of the World
  • The Lyon Murals
  • Public Transportation in Lyon
  • Best of France Know-How
  • Most Beautiful Villages of France
  • Flavigny-sur-Ozerain
  • Best Landmarks
  • Best Flea Markets
  • Best Books About France
  • Best Christmas Markets
  • France's Favorite Foods
  • A Typical French Breakfast
  • Apero Time!
  • Weird French Foods
  • Let Them Eat Baguette
  • French Pastry Desserts
  • The Bouillons of Paris
  • La Vache Qui Rit
  • French Christmas Meals
  • Did You Say Escargot?
  • French Revolution Tours
  • Ghost Tours
  • Paris Food Tours
  • Stereotypes and Myths
  • Facts about Ze French
  • La Loire: What's in a Name?
  • France's Backstory
  • France's Roman Ruins
  • Chenonceau Castle
  • La Belle Epoque
  • Most Haunted Places in Paris
  • Dark Tourism in Paris
  • France's Abandoned Places
  • Paris Catacombs
  • They Built a Wall
  • Legends of the Luberon
  • Lyon's Secret Passages
  • Small & Odd
  • Burgundian Life, Dijon
  • Counterfeit Museum, Paris
  • France's List of Lists
  • Food & Wine Brotherhoods
  • Vercingetorix, King of Gauls
  • The Salacious Count Bussy-Rabutin
  • Napoleon Bonaparte
  • General Charles de Gaulle
  • Breakfast in French?
  • Bathroom in French?
  • Free Resources
  • Most Popular Posts
  • Beyond the Baguette Newsletter

Unsure about your French table manners? Click Here to download > >  How to avoid these 10 food etiquette mistakes !

logo on offbeatfrance

Follow me on

  • Destinations
  • Lyon's Traboules

Uncover famous secret passages: the traboules of lyon

Updated 28 June 2023 by Leyla Alyanak

Have you heard of Lyon's secret passageways? Many are closed but some traboules of Lyon can still be visited... but quietly...

If you've ever been to Lyon, you've probably walked through a traboule at some point – possibly without even knowing.

Ready for your Lyon trip?

Here are some suggestions to make your visit even more enjoyable!

TOP LYON CITY TOURS  ➽   Vieux Lyon 4-hour Food Tasting Tour  - for inveterate foodies and gastronomes ➽   Discover Lyon Walking Tour - to explore the essence of the city

LYON DAY TRIPS ➽   Golden Stones Beaujolais - heart of the Golden Stone villages for wine lovers ➽   Northern Côtes du Rhône - meeting the winemakers ➽ Beaujolais and Pérouges - wine tasting and a medieval village visit

WHERE TO STAY IN LYON ➽   Villa Florentine  - stunning 5-star luxury overlooking the entire city ➽ Mi-Hotel Tour Rose - perfect apartments in historic Vieux Lyon ➽ Fourvière Hotel - elegant simplicity in a former cloister ➽ Hotel du Théatre - budget option in the heart of the classical district

Renting a car in Lyon? Compare prices here . Traveling here by train? Book your ticket here . To see the city, don't forget to book your Lyon City Card .

You may have pushed open a heavy door, driven by your innate curiosity, only to be surprised as you walked along dimly lit corridors above which people so obviously lived.

But then, doesn't every city have its secrets? It's just that some are more "secret" than others...

The origins of the traboules of Lyon

Where to find the traboules of Lyon

Vieux Lyon traboules

Traboules of croix-rousse hill, and finally, the traboules of the presqu'île, traboules throughout the centuries, resources to visit the city of lyon.

In case haven't heard of them, the traboules of Lyon are secret passageways that usually run through a building, connecting one street to the next, or through courtyards, whose exits have been sealed in history, or even stairways, which look like anything but a secret passage!

Traboules of Lyon pin

Much of Lyon's core is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and contains the vast majority of traboules, which are concentrated in Old Lyon (or Vieux Lyon), the former silk-weaving center of Croix-Rousse hill , and the Renaissance neighbourhood of the Presqu'île.

Ancient map of Lyon

There appear to be some 400 traboules in Lyon Or 500. No one really seems to know and I've had city officials give me both figures.

There would seem to be some 200 or so in the Vieux-Lyon, around 160 in Croix-Rousse, and 130 on the Presqu'île. Sadly, though, only 40 or so are open to the public.

Some are signposted at the entrance, others don't even seem to have an entrance, and this unpredictability is part of their charm. 

The word traboule, we're told by historians, comes from the latin "trans-ambulare", or to move through, which makes sense when talking about a passageway.

For some reason the word is particular to Lyon, which is odd, considering plenty of other towns have their own passageways – Chambéry has allées , Nantes has cours , Marseille has traverses and Besançon has traiges . You'll find plenty more passages in  Villefranche-sur-Saône, Mâcon,  Saint-Étienne and Louhans.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg.

How to find the traboules of Lyon

Before you visit Lyon's traboules, you'll have to know where they are. You can find out in several ways:

  • You can download an app to your iPhone (sadly not available for Android)
  • You can take a guided Lyon traboules tour  with an expert guide for secrets and insider knowledge
  • You can watch a video of the traboules (see the bottom of this story)
  • You can follow a Lyon traboules map right after this section (they are divided by neighbourhoods)

The maps provided in the various sections below show many of the Lyon passageways.

The light green squares are those which "in theory" can be visited, whereas the orange ones are closed to the public. I say "in theory" because they are supposed to be open, but sometimes you'll find the doors locked.

At one point, the city bought up many of the properties surrounding the "traboules lyonnaises" and made them available as low-cost housing, but with strings attached. Residents had to agree to keep the traboule open to the public between 8 am and 7 pm.

While many residents do comply with the agreement, others are fed up with the steady stream of tourists who speak loudly, eat and laugh as they walk through, disturbing the peace.

The best traboules to visit in Lyon are in the Vieux Lyon, which has the most traboules and some of the best secret passageways.

As you can see from the map below, they are grouped closely together so if you have little time, this might be your best bet for traboule hunting.

Traboules of Lyon - map of Old Lyon

The rue St-Jean is particularly bountiful. A few parallel streets closer to the river may seem to have more, but in my experience, many of these are often closed to the public, unless you visit them with a guide.

The key to the numbers on the map can be found on this site (explanations are in French but at least you can get the addresses). 

Narrow winding street in Old Lyon, leading to several traboules of Lyon

The longest traboule, 54 rue Saint-Jean

One of the most popular (and my favourite) is at 54 rue St-Jean. It also happens to be the Lyon's longest traboule.

Secret passages Lyon: One of the most popular traboules of Lyon

It slices through several small courtyards and opens up onto the rue du Boeuf. If you turn right upon exiting, you'll soon find yourself outside the Food Traboule. Nothing to do with Lyon secret passages but an indoor food court I happen to love.

If you've eaten your fill of traditional Lyon food in a typical bouchon, this should be your next stop. It also serves local specialties, but with a modern twist.

Upstairs, you'll find the giant, aptly named "XXL Profiterolle". Either have one before lunch or share it because it is huge!

The food traboule is a food court that gets its inspiration from the traboules of Lyon

La Maison des Avocats, 60 rue St-Jean

You'll probably find this one without looking for it: it is a pink building with several stories of pink arcades on the rue St-Jean. 

The House of Lawyers isn't typical of the traboules of Lyon, because it is outdoors rather than indoors

The "house of lawyers" was built in the 14th century and was known as the "Ostel de la Croys", an auberge for local legal assistants. The auberge evolved and expanded upwards with the addition of several arcaded floors.

By the 19th century it was in decline, turned into rental apartments, and eventually it was scheduled for destruction, despite its listing as a historical monument (sadly, these things happen).

But an association dedicated to restoring Old Lyon stepped in and saved it. Parts were still razed, but what was once an internal patio surrounded by arcades is now open to the street for all to see and ornamented with a small public garden.

You can't miss the serene lion sculpture facing the street, although I'm still trying to ascertain its origins.

The Lion of Lyon is a landmark of the city and is on the way to many of the traboules of Lyon

THE EMBLEM OF LYON IS A LION, BUT...

The word for lion, "lion" in French, is pronounced the same way as the city, Lyon.

So adopting the lion as the city's emblem would make sense. But that's not what happened at all.

The lion was adopted as the city's symbol nearly 1000 years ago, when it still went by the Roman name of Lugdunum. Nothing to do with our beloved feline. It was originally pictured as a white lion on a red background with its mouth open, but would evolve over the centuries, for example by including fleurs de lys.

Lions also have another connection with Lyon, as several actually lived here, offered as gifts to the city over the years. The last lion of Lyon lived in the majestic Parc de la Tête d'Or, where he died in 2021.

Today, Lyon's lions are the inanimate kind: statues in the city, the emblem of the Only Lyon tourist office, or even at the heart of the logo of the city's football club, the Olympique lyonnais.

La Tour Rose, 16 rue du Boeuf

This is another of Old Lyon's stunning internal courtyards that qualifies as a  traboule: la Tour Rose, also known as la Maison du Crible.

Just a word about the glorious pink spiral stairway that gives the tower its name: it wasn't always pink. Apparently the pink colour only surfaced in the 1970s.

La Tour Rose, or pink tower, is part of the network of traboules of Lyon

It is part of a splendid private house dating back to the Middle Ages and a once-derelict traboule which has now been restored.

The complex has been turned into a prestigious rental accommodation a which patrons rave about ( you can book a suite here ). To get a good view of the tower, head into the traboule and look up, or visit the upper floor of the Food Traboule and gaze through its glass ceiling.

WANT TO EXPLORE VIEUX-LYON IN DEPTH?

➽   Lyon Highlights and Secrets Walking Tour

➽   Vieux Lyon 4-Hour Food Tasting Tour

➽  Free Walking Guided Tour of Lyon

➽  Private Walking Tour of Authentic Vieux-Lyon

The second largest concentration of Lyon underground tunnels is on Croix-Rousse, a low-lying hill in Lyon which was once home to the city's silk weavers.

Whether the traboules were designed to fetch water from below or transport bolts of silk without wetting them from the rain doesn't matter. The fact is that Croix-Rousse is riddled with traboules, except unlike the flat tunnels in Lyon Old Town, these take you to another level of the hill, in addition to opening up onto a different street.

(More details about the traboules Lyon plan at Croix-Rousse East and Croix-Rousse West  – again, you'll get the addresses but the explanations are in French.)

Traboules Lyon map, west Croix-Rousse

La Cour des Voraces

The Cour des Voraces (roughly translated as the Courtyard of the Voracious), is undoubtedly the most famous of the traboules Croix Rousse, although it looks nothing like the ones you've seen in the Old Town.

At first sight, this is a concrete stairway. But it does lead from one street to another, and from one level to another. In fact, it has three entrances: on Place Colbert, on Montée Saint-Sébastien and on Rue Imbert-Colomès.

The Cour des Voraces, one of the most famous traboules of Lyon, is more of a stairway than a passageway

It also happens to be Lyon's most famous traboule: it was the site of two notorious events. The first is the fabled Revolt of the Canuts, the 19th-century rebellion by silk workers, with a plaque commemorating the event on the wall of the traboule.

The other is the Nazi occupation of Lyon during World War II, when the traboule was used to help Resistance fighters escape or communicate with one another. (Lyon was a major backdrop to World War II so if you're interested by places related to this era, book a  private tour of the high points of the French Résistance  in Lyon). So yes, this Lyon tunnel may not look like one, but it most certainly is a true traboule.

THESE PRIVATE TOURS WILL DELVE INTO LYON'S WWII HISTORY:

➽   World War II and the Résistance

➽   Lyon and the Shoah

➽  Jewish Lyon

There are plenty of others, like the traboule that connects 5 rue Royale with 3 quai André-Lassagne. Its 17th-century stairwell was recently renovated and is protected as a historical monument. This one is actually a dual traboule, because you can follow a hallway and emerge in the Cour des Moirages, another Croix-Rousse traboule.

If you're a fan of historical stairways, then do visit the traboule that links  4 rue de Thou to 5 Petite rue des Feuillants. Interestingly, there are several traboules in Croix-Rousse with stairways at their heart.

For some reason, it is easier to get lost visiting the traboules of Croix-Rousse than in those of the Old Town – I'm not quite sure why, but they're not as well signposted and some of the entrances lack numbers, so a bit of map reading and sleuthing might be involved, but that's part of the fun!

If you'd like to get to know Croix-Rousse better:

I have to confess I've never visited these traboules. I've been so keen to explore the ones in the Old Town and in Croix-Rousse that I've utterly neglected the Presqu'île, an otherwise gorgeous part of town.

This is the heart of the downtown district, and also the site of many of Lyon's stunning outdoor murals .

I promise to explore them on one of my monthly trips to Lyon so I'll definitely come back and report.

Maps of the traboules of Lyon in the Presqu'ile, both in the eastern and central part of the neighborhood

The traboules don't all date from the same period, nor did they serve the same purpose in each time period.

Lyon hidden passageways were first built in the 4th century

Lyon was still called Lugdunum when the first traboules began appearing.

Lyon's streets had been built parallel to the city's two rivers, but getting to one of the rivers was no easy task, since the buildings were in the way.

Residents of Croix-Rousse hill who needed water, whether for the home or for industry, had to make their way down to one of the many wells located in the Old Town. Covered passages began to appear, making it easier to head straight downhill than along small, winding streets. 

Those traboules that remain today were built far later...

They expanded in the 19th century 

Traboules continued being built during the Renaissance, especially those in the Old Town, but they experienced a rapid spurt of growth during the 19th century, as the silk trade expanded and Lyon became its European center.

An increasing number of silk workers gathered on Croix-Rousse, as many as 90,000 at one point, and the traboules evolved to serve them: they became convenient shortcuts for workers carrying their heavy silk bolts down from the workshops to the stylish businesses below (and also helped keep the silk dry).

In 1831, the Canuts, as the silk workers were called, rebelled against their poor working conditions in one of history's first industrial uprisings, and this happened right in the Cour des Voraces. The Canuts, highly familiar with the city's traboule network, used them to reach the town below and took control. Their victory was short live and the rebellions eventually suppressed with great force.

They remained important during World War II

During World War II, Lyon was a Nazi stronghold (initially a part of the Free Zone, the Nazis eventually invaded all of France in 1942) and Gestapo headquarters, but was also the center of the southeastern France Résistance.

This maze of passageways also played an important role during the war: the traboules were used to escape the Nazis or to meet other rebels unnoticed. The Germans would eventually become familiar with them but initially, they were well-kept Lyonnais secrets.

Some of them became shabby and neglected and this is why, in the 1990s, the city agreed to subsidize their restoration in exchange for public visiting privileges. In 1998 the entire historic site of the city of Lyon came under UNESCO protection, and the traboules, being part of this heritage, can now rest assured they will probably survive yet another few centuries.

➽   If you need to get around Lyon, the  Lyon City Pass  is really useful if you want to save time and money: it covers all public transportation, as well as entrance to most monuments and sites.

You won't need a car in Lyon – in fact, you're better off with one and should rely on its excellent public transportation system .

BUT - if you want to take some day trips from Lyon , you will definitely need one and can check what's available here .

If you plan to rent a car, consider visiting Lyon on foot and picking up your car at the airport. You can catch the Rhonexpress bus from the Part-Dieu train station. Check the timetables here .

Where to stay in Lyon

Traboules of lyon: faq.

How many traboules are in Lyon?

No one knows exactly, but between 400-500. However, only about 10% of them are open to the public.

What is a traboules in English?

A traboule is a passageway found in Lyon, France. Usually covered and often hidden, these were once used by silk workers to keep their bolts of silk dry from the rain. They were also used to ferry water up from the river to the hills of Croix-Rousse.

What is Lyon famous for?

Lyon is famous for its traboules, or secret passageways, but also for its 150  monumental murals, its reputation as France's capital of gastronomy, and its Roman heritage.

Traboules Lyon video screenshot

Before you go...

Want to know even more about Lyon? Here are a few stories to help you delve into the city:

  • Weird, Whimsical And Wonderful Facts About Lyon
  • Irresistible Things to Do in Lyon
  • Fourviere Hill: Basilica, Ruins, And The Best View Of Lyon

Did you enjoy this article? I'd love if you shared it!

Offbeat France newsletter sign-up

Bonjour! I’m Leyla! I was born in Paris and now live in the bucolic mountain foothills of Eastern France between Lyon and Annecy. 

I'm rediscovering my own back yard after years of living abroad in Canada, Spain and Switzerland as a journalist and a diplomat - and I'm loving every minute.

Passionate about history and culture, I’ve created Offbeat France to seek out my country’s mysteries and legends, less-traveled destinations, along with plenty of food stops and many castles - I am French, after all!

What's New!

RSS

Visiting The D Day Beaches? This Is The Only Guide You'll Need

May 21, 24 01:06 AM

3 Fascinating Castles Near Paris That Are Way Under The Radar

May 19, 24 07:23 AM

La Maison Picassiette In Chartres: The House Of A Million Pieces

May 12, 24 12:49 PM

How To Get To Mont Saint-Michel: The Ultimate Hassle-Free Guide

May 02, 24 04:09 PM

The Best Giverny Day Trip From Paris (+ Orsay)

Apr 17, 24 05:32 AM

© Copyright 2024  OffbeatFrance.com    |  All Rights Reserved   |   Privacy Policy & Disclaimer    |   Contact Me   |  ABOUT

As an Amazon Associate offbeatfrance.com earns from qualifying purchases

Lyon visite: Guide tours of Lyon

Old Lyon town: a tour of the famous “traboules” and the elegant Renaissance courtyards

Self-guided tour of Old Lyon town and its mysterious traboules

We have prepared for you below an itinerary for visiting the famous traboules and Renaissance courtyards that you can do alone in 1h30 to 2h, alone, as a couple, with your family or in a group.

“Traboules” definition: the old French word “traboules” refers to secret passages between streets, through Renaissance houses and courtyards.

Would you prefer a guided tour?

Enter your request here:

The Old Lyon town, from the 4th century to today

At the end of the Gallo-Roman period, in the 4th century, Lugdunum at the top of the hill of Fourvière was abandoned, its inhabitants settled on the banks of the Saône and the bishopric of Saint-Jean was the new center of Lyon. An episcopal complex develops around, its chamarriers hold the keys of its doors which they close every night. Comes the 16th century, the golden age of Lyon. Drawing what is now called “Old Lyon” town. These are the Italian wars, the arrival of the Renaissance in France, Lyon is the gateway. Large European fairs four times a year, Lombard, Flemish and Champagne merchants. Seventy banks. The population doubled, reaching 20,000 souls, hence this tight habitat like a surprise bread. The wars of religion tumble, Catholics and Protestants kill each other, everything is swept away in twenty years.

In 1998, the whole of the Vieux Lyon district was listed by UNESCO as an International Heritage Site. Old Lyon town is now well restored, in Florentine ocher tones. Its cobbled streets, traboules and courtyards restored to their former glory, with architectural gems from the early Renaissance. We feel here in Italy.

tour rose lyon traboule

Your tour on the map

Saint-Jean Cathedral

Departing from Saint-Jean Square, you can spend time in the cathedral at the heart of Old Lyon. Its astronomical clock is one of the oldest in Europe (1383, at least) and will give you the exact time until 2019… Why? We would be happy to explain it to you during one of our guided tours. It chimes several times a day with a procession of characters. The ENS Lyon has devoted a very detailed scientific page to it.

tour rose lyon traboule

This cathedral was actually a primatial church, as the head of the French church was long the Archbishop of Lyon, the Primate of the Gauls. Religious power counted here. Archaeological excavations have uncovered the traces of three attached religious buildings dating back in part to the 4th century. Adjacent to the cathedral and housing its treasure is what is probably the oldest building in the neighborhood (partly from the 11th century), the Manécanterie.

If you stay at the Youth Hostel above Saint-Jean, you will have the chance to admire the light on this cathedral. It is sublime at sunrise. As at sunset. This sunset that gives a warm light inside through the 12 meters in diameter stained glass of its West Rose.

The Saint-Jean Square, which has (finally) been cleared of cars, has a beautiful fountain in its center where you can find interesting photo subjects. It is also an alternative to the Louis XIV statue in Bellecour Square for some appointments.

The neighborhood has a history of over a thousand years. It almost disappeared after the Second World War when a Lyon mayor wanted to establish marinas on the banks of the Saône. Fortunately, resident associations relayed by Malraux were able to stop it. The site is now classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and as you will see during your visit, attracts many tourists and visitors… including you, we hope, because it is a magnificent neighborhood where you can feel what Lyon was like during the medieval fairs.

Take the Saint-Jean Street.

Maison du Chamarier

Access: 37 rue Saint-Jean

Next stop on the right is a sublime courtyard that has just been restored. It is the “Maison du Chamarier” where a famous pastry shop is located on the corner of the street. Spend some time in this courtyard, soak up its beauty. Imagine yourself in the 17th century when Madame de Sévigné used to come here.

tour rose lyon traboule

The well is said to have been designed by Philibert Delorme, who had just returned from Italy at the age of twenty-six. We’ll see Philibert again later. This well is ideal for a selfie or group photo.

Maison des Avocats (Lawyers house)

Access: 6 Rue de la Bombarde

In front of you, at the end of a square named Place de la Basoche, a Tuscan-style gallery connects several buildings. The restoration of the Order of Lawyers has given it beautiful colors. The part of the building facing Saint-Jean Street was built in the first half of the 14th century. It was then the “Ostel de la Croys” inn, frequented in particular by jurists. They still occupy the building today with their training center. From 1406 to 2002, the Confrérie de la Basoche was located here.

Maison des avocats (layers house)

In the Middle Ages, this confraternity brought together jurists, defended their interests, and organized their training, in which theater played an important role. In the farces and sotties that they publicly performed behind masks, the satire of the powerful and customs, anticlericalism, and a certain materialism played an important role, so much so that they were banned in 1540. The confraternity frequented this island until the end of the twentieth century.

The Miniature and Cinema Museum

The building houses the Miniature and Cinema Museum (entrance on Saint-Jean Street), which notably contains the Alien Queen created by James Cameron. 6.50 meters tall, 500 kg of metal and latex.

Around the Maison des Avocats

A little above, at 14 Rue de la Bombarde, a plaque with a fire lighter that ignites a… bombard.

At 58 Rue Saint-Jean, with a bit of luck, the courtyard behind the creperie “Au Petit Glouton” will be open. It has a very pretty well adjacent to the room and kitchen of the creperie, open to this very lively courtyard.

Don’t miss out on the medieval shop Mandragore at 52, located at the end of a dead-end traboule. This shop offers everything from gauntlets to chainmail to all kinds of period clothing, velvet and long dresses.

The Long Traboule

Now, to give credit where credit is due, at 54, one of the highlights of organized visits to Old Lyon, “THE traboule”, the longest of them all, Guinness-worthy without delay: the Long Traboule. It crosses four buildings and four courtyards. Be careful, during rush hour, due to the crowds, it can get congested (in the feminine form). Some beautiful passages that deserve a little photo.

We come out onto Rue du Boeuf.

tour rose lyon traboule

That’s the miracle of the traboules. We turn right and walk along art and craft shops, the four-star La Tour Rose, where Molière played. We arrive at Place Neuve Saint-Jean, saturated with restaurant terraces. At the corner of the square and Rue du Boeuf, notice the wooden statue of an ox on the corner of the wall. You will see the same thing later at Place de la Baleine. We take this opportunity to recommend Thierry’s tour of Old Lyon in his travel journal, where he speaks and photographs his hometown and all these streets very well.

Maison du Crible, Tour Rose, rue du Bœuf

Access: 16 rue du Bœuf

There is a very pretty courtyard with a sumptuous rose tower, with an emotional cylinder shape. It has four floors and is pierced with beautiful openings. It was built in the 16th century. Doesn’t it look a little like the pink and round tower of Part-Dieu (Tour de la Part-Dieu) that the Lyonnais nickname “the pencil”? Admire the beautiful doors.

Renaissance pink tower in Old Lyon town at Maison du Crible

Place Neuve Saint-Jean, Palais de Justice

Come back to Place Neuve Saint-Jean. In the middle, there is a remarkable open courtyard with visible stairs. It looks like Rear Window by Hitchcock.

At the corner, there is the Palais de Justice bakery. There is often a line. It offers one of Lyon’s specialties, praline brioches. Be careful not to break your teeth!

The huge building opposite the bakery is the former courthouse. The Lyonnais call it “Les 24 colonnes” because of the Corinthian columns that decorate its facade facing the Saône. They correspond to the hours of the day. It was designed by Bathard, whose son designed the halles de Paris. In the building that preceded this one, hundreds of people were tried during the Terror, then guillotined in Place des Terreaux. The Court of Appeal and the Assize Court of the Rhône still sit here. The palace has its own prison for long trials. Maurras was tried there in 1945 and Klaus Barbie in 1987.

Traboule rue Saint-Jean to rue des Trois-Maries

Continue north on rue Saint-Jean, in descending order of street numbers. At 27 rue Saint-Jean, there is a new traboule entrance.

We come out at 6 rue des Trois Maries after two ochre courtyards and Italian galleries. A boomerang-shaped street with a visible curve. One of the most characteristic of the Vieux Lyon. You feel like you’re in the 16th century. Turn left towards Place de la Baleine. Beautiful cobblestones.

Place de la Baleine

At the corner of the very pretty Place de la Baleine and the street of the same name, we find the carved panel mentioned earlier representing a whale. It can be nice to have a drink on the terrace here in the summer, in the coolness. In the winter, there are often fire breathers. Imagine yourself here, in the Middle Ages, during one of the four major annual fairs that allowed Lyon to enter a new economic expansion, confirmed at the Renaissance by the installation of Florentine bankers who arrived in the wake of Catherine de’ Medici. They built many of the beautiful hotels that still exist today.

Traboule from Place du Gouvernement to Quai Romain Rolland

Access: 2, Place du Gouvernement

Continue down Rue Saint-Jean until you reach Place du Gouvernement. At number 2, a traboule begins with stairs leading to a beautiful courtyard. It is located above what was once the stables of the Hôtel de Saint-Christophe.

Beautiful building. It may seem almost too much due to the recent rehabilitation, but it should probably be imagined as such at its construction in the 15th century.

If you continue through the traboule, you will end up at 10 Quai Romain Rolland.

Let’s return to Rue Saint-Jean.

Gadagne Hotel and Museums

Access: 1, Place du Petit Collège

The Gadagne merchant-bankers were immensely wealthy. Simon fled Florence for Turin and then Lyon upon the return of Cosimo de’ Medici. His son, Thomas I, also succeeded in business and integrated into Lyon’s political life. His nephew, Thomas II, inherited from him, became even richer, and was elected échevin in 1537. The following year, he rented this private mansion built by the Pierrevive brothers, merchants from Piedmont. His sons Guillaume and Thomas III became its owners between 1545 and 1581. Rivals, the brothers lived at opposite ends of the hotel, where they nonetheless jointly organized sumptuous parties. In the 18th century, the building became a housing complex and was purchased by the city in 1902 and classified as a historic monument in 1920. It then housed the city’s historical museum. It was completely renovated from 1998 to 2008. The result is stunningly beautiful. The vast courtyard alone is a jewel. It contains two museums and elevated gardens.

Museum of the History of Lyon

Thirty rooms retrace the history of Lyon from Antiquity.

Its remarkable documentation center is accessible by appointment. It notably preserves manuscripts of Guignol plays (Guignol is a major puppet in the French repertoire of puppet shows).

Museum of Puppetry Arts

Organized around Guignol, it exhibits puppets in nine rooms. Paul Fournel photo Sophie Bassouls Paul Fournel © Sophie Bassouls/P.O.L

Regarding this, read our joint portrait of Laurent Mouguet, the father of Guignol theater, and Paul Fournel, the author of “Faire Guignol”.

High garden of Gadagne museum, a romantic place

Accessible without museum tickets, take the elevator to the 4th floor. You find yourself in the sky. Small terrace tables. Silence. A lawn and roses. One of the most romantic places in Lyon. You can have a drink, eat a light meal.

Place du Change, Soufflot’s spirit

Arriving at Place du Change. This is where you changed your currency before leaving the Kingdom of France. This square is often very lively with live performances. It is one of the entry points to Saint-Jean.

Temple of Change, by Soufflot

The Temple of Change, revamped by Soufflot in 1748, a famous architect, has been a Protestant place of worship since 1803. Soufflot, inspired by Andrea Palladio, who himself was inspired by the facades of Roman temples, gave it a remarkable facade, which is classified. Two clocks crown it, according to Soufflot’s wish, who had imagined an “ideal” clock marking days, months, and years. In 1999, for the turn of the millennium, his wish was fulfilled on the left of the building, in place of a clock that disappeared during the Revolution.

tour rose lyon traboule

Maison Thomassin, place du Change

tour rose lyon traboule

Another beautiful facade is the Gothic one of Maison Thomassin, built in 1493, which preserves a painted ceiling from the first house built in 1298 on its first floor.

Go up Rue de la Loge to the right of the Palais du Change, and at the top, take Rue de la Juiverie.

Rue Juiverie

Before entering the street, you can climb the first steps of Montée du Change to discover the Renaissance staircase of Maison Henri IV.

Almost all the facades on the street are interesting: mullioned windows, true or fake gargoyles added by the inhabitants. Several theater troop workshops.

A clock restorer at No. 20, L’Horloger de Saint-Paul, as in Bertrand Tavernier’s film, shot in this neighborhood. A beautiful sculpture workshop at No. 15.

La Galerie Philibert Delorme

Finally, at n°8 Rue Juiverie, one of the MUST-SEE places on our visit: the Galerie Philibert Delorme. A plaque in the courtyard explains its construction by the young architect returning from Italy in the early 16th century. A marvel of lightness and symbolism that unites two houses.

tour rose lyon traboule

Place Saint-Paul

We arrive at Place Saint-Paul, the center of this neighborhood which, along with Saint-Georges and Saint-Jean, makes up Old Lyon. We continue to the beautifully restored Saint-Paul church, inside and out. It is adjacent to a quiet square, away from the tourist bustle of Saint-Jean, Place Gerson, with a cafe-theater characteristic of Old Lyon town and the spirit of cafe-theaters at their start in the 1970s on the slopes of Croix-Rousse.

Following your tour

You can leisurely retrace your steps to the cathedral, enjoying the pleasure of discovering what you may have missed.

You can also continue with a visit to the painted walls (this tour will soon on line), taking the Saint Vincent footbridge towards the Lyonnais fresco. This itinerary will bring you back to Place du Change, towards the wall of the Cour des Loges.

Do you want a guide in Old Lyon town?

Have a good tour in Old Lyon town!

Guided tour of Lyon

tour rose

Food Traboule

Food Traboule: this is more than just a food court, it’s a new welcoming place at the heart of La Tour Rose! Inviting you on both a culinary and social adventure, to experience the diversity of Lyon’s vibrant and creative gourmet specialities in a unique location that has been completely redesigned!

La Tour Rose, a famous restaurant and an exceptionally charming luxury hotel in Vieux-Lyon, had been dormant for several years. Tabata and Ludovic Mey have embarked on a new chapter, bringing renewed life to one of Lyon’s landmarks. They created Food Traboule as much more than just a food court, it's the creation of a new place to get together in the city. To sum up, Food Traboule is a historic 660 m2 location that includes 2 bars, 1 coffee shop, 7 rooms, 7 atmospheres, 1 event space, 240 seats and 12 chefs: Le Comptoir des Apothicaires, Ludo’s Pizza, Le Bistrot du Potager, Substrat - La Panifacture, La Meunière, Butcher Brother, Lyon’s Gastro Pub, Misto, Lob’s, MSB - Mon Salade Bar, La Baraque à Sucre and Le Bistrot du Sucré. There are vegetarian and vegan options available.

Plan your itinerary

Lyon Secret

La Tour Rose de Lyon ou la Maison du Crible

La fameuse tour rose du vieux-lyon .

Quel lyonnais ou visiteur de Lyon n’a pas déjà entendu parler de la fameuse Tour Rose de la rue du Bœuf du Vieux-Lyon,  qui présente le plus de traboules et de cours intérieurs de la ville, très représentatives de l’architecture de la Renaissance à Lyon.

Dans le 5e arrondissement, au cœur du quartier Saint-Jean, au 16 rue du Bœuf, se trouve une demeure, appelée la Maison du Crible, ou la maison de la Tour Rose.

tour rose lyon traboule

Parmi ses plus belles constructions, la maison de la Tour Rose est un des emblèmes du Vieux-Lyon et un des endroits les plus visités du quartier Saint-Jean. Elle est inscrite à l’inventaire supplémentaire des monuments historiques depuis 1937.

Architecture de la maison de la Tour Rose

La maison comprend quatre niveaux et trois travées. Sa façade donnant sur la rue est en apparence assez classique et ne laisse rien présager de ce que cette bâtisse renferme…

tour rose lyon traboule

Elle possède en revanche une entrée centrale pourvue d’un portail remarquable, unique dans le quartier, avec ses  bossages et ses colonnes annelées (colonnes ornées d’anneaux en relief).

tour rose lyon traboule

Surmonté d’un fronton triangulaire orné d’un bas-relief représentant une adoration, il est construit sur les plans de l’architecte bolognais Sebastiano Serlio, qui fait plusieurs séjours à Lyon au 16e siècle entre 1548 et 1552. Une porte en bois à panneaux sculptés est également assez visible. A titre de comparaison, les autres maisons de Saint-Jean n’ont en général que des portes d’entrée étroites et modestes.

Une fois passé cette entrée centrale, on entre dans une allée voûtée d’ogives (qui repose sur des culs-de-lampe sculptés) menant à une petite cour intérieure très dégagée.

tour rose lyon traboule

Nous voici maintenant dans la cour…

tour rose lyon traboule

Cette demeure doit à ses propriétaires du 17e siècle son apparence inhabituelle. Si à l’extérieur, hormis le portail, on ne trouve aucun signe d’une richesse particulière, à l’intérieur de la petite cour, c’est tout autre chose…une fois tout au bout de celle-ci, il suffit de se retourner pour voir une immense, monumentale et superbe tour circulaire, au crépi de couleur rose.

Totalement invisible depuis l’extérieur,  elle abrite un gigantesque escalier-belvédère en vis et est percée de baies en plein cintre qui font office de fenêtres. Un puits est également visible au fond à droite de la cour, tout comme des terrasses ou jardins qui s’étalent sur plusieurs étages. Les fenêtres de la Tour Rose offre une vue sur ces jardins.

tour rose lyon traboule

Cette construction « hors-oeuvre » domine largement l’ensemble de la maison et de la cour intérieure. Un crénelage est ajouté à l’édifice d’origine à l’occasion de travaux « d’embellissement » au 19e siècle. Le crénelage est retiré dans les années 1930 (sur les cartes postales de l’époque le crénelage n’apparaît plus).

tour rose lyon traboule

La maison de la Tour Rose doit naturellement son nom à cette magnifique tour et à la couleur de son crépi,  qui l’enrobe et qui s’élève dans la cour. Selon les sources, ce crépi est mis en place après une ultime restauration en 1975. L’expression de Tour Rose daterait donc de cette époque.

Les archives attestent d’un intérieur très richement décoré. Des fresques sont d’ailleurs mises au jour en 1978 : elles sont disposées sous la forme d’une frise au sommet des murs au sein de deux pièces et représentent des scènes de divertissement et des représentations mythologiques. Il existe également encore une salle d’armes.

Les travaux d’édification semblent débuter à la fin du 15e siècle pour se finir au début du 18e siècle, une époque où ce que l’on appelle aujourd’hui le Vieux-Lyon était occupé par beaucoup de marchants italiens.

Le plus célèbre résident est le roi Henri IV, qui y demeure plusieurs jours en 1600 lors de son alliance avec Marie de Médicis, célébrée à Primatiale Saint-Jean de Lyon. Entre le 16e et le 17e siècle, cette maison est successivement la propriété de plusieurs notables de Lyon.

C’est aussi et surtout au 16e siècle (dès 1541) l’ancienne maison de Martin de Troyes, percepteur des impôts du roi de France, appelé à l’époque « le crible ». Il passait en effet au crible (tamis permettant de trier les objets selon leur taille) les finances des mauvais payeurs. Martin de Troyes est receveur général des finances à Lyon de 1544 à 1555;  il est conseiller de ville en 1539 puis échevin en 1545. Il est ainsi un personnage important pour la ville.  Martin de Troyes aurait d’ailleurs eu  un impact majeur dans la reconstruction de l’édifice vers 1550.

Si ce nom de Maison du Crible alimente toutes sortes d’interprétations, on peut imaginer que c’est pour cette raison que cette maison a pris et porte toujours cette appelation.

tour rose lyon traboule

Pourquoi une telle construction dans une cour intérieure, invisible pour toute personne ne connaissant pas son existence ou ne pouvant à l’époque pénétrer dans cette demeure ?

Du temps des anciennes foires à Lyon au 15e et 16e siècles (mises en place pour concurrencer les autres  événements déjà installées en Europe et faire de la ville une plaque tournante du commerce à l’époque), il y a énormément de passage et de monde qui circule à Lyon. Ces moments sont d’ailleurs privilégiés par certaines personnes pour propager des idées hérétiques et contre le pouvoir en place. A cette époque, les lyonnais les plus fortunés souhaitent éviter toute cette foule et ce vacarme et ont donc voulu se retrouver “entre-soi”. Ils deviennent alors très secrets, discrets et fréquentent uniquement des gens faisant partie de leur microcosme.

On retrouve ce trait de caractère dans les maisons lyonnaises de l’époque. Aucune signe de puissance n’est visible de l’extérieur, si ce n’est de très légers signes de richesse; au contraire de l’intérieur, bien plus évocateur. Finalement, cette maison de la Tour Rose peut être considérée comme une caricature de ce phénomène !  Sa façade extérieure est assez peu marquante, pas très jolie, peu colorée, elle n’attire pas l’œil (hormis son portail); tout au contraire de l’intérieur !

De plus, si ce n’est pour abriter un gigantesque escalier desservant les différents étages de la maison, cette Tour Rose ne sert à rien d’autre, à l’époque de sa construction, qu’à être un signe extérieur de richesse ! Le propriétaire a en effet fait bâtir cette tour dans l’unique but d’asseoir son statut social et de montrer sa puissance et sa richesse à ses visiteurs…avec un tel résultat et une telle hauteur de tour, l’effet était garanti !

Enfin,  si à l’époque les lyonnais les plus fortunés ne souhaitent donc pas faire état de leur richesse en dehors d’un cercle restreint, cette maison est (comme expliqué plus haut) le logement du percepteur des impôts…on comprend encore mieux la volonté de cacher tout signe de richesse  !

tour rose lyon traboule

L’ensemble de ces éléments expliquent donc pourquoi c’est à l’intérieur de cette demeure qu’est dévoilé ce trésor architectural, et non l’extérieur, plutôt commun et qui ne laisse aucunement imaginer cette construction monumentale !

Totalement invisible de l’extérieur, cette immense Tour Rose est la plus haute construction du quartier Saint-Jean. Elle reçoit chaque année des milliers de visiteurs et bénéficie largement au rayonnement et à l’attractivité du Vieux-Lyon et de ses traboules. C’est un repère patrimonial de du  quartier Saint-Jean.

Légendes sur la dénomination de l’édifice

Selon une légende du 19e siècle, le nom de Tour Rose tient à un événement tragique : une jeune femme désespérée, qui refusait l’homme que son père avait choisi pour elle, se jeta dans le vide du sommet de la tour. Le sang éclaboussé entacha les parois et donna à celle-ci sa couleur actuelle.

Il se peut également que  l’expression de Maison du Crible vienne d’une enseigne d’un artisan ayant jadis occupé les lieux.  Le crible était alors utilisé par de très nombreux et variés corps de métiers. Un artisan a ainsi pu édifié un crible sur sa façade comme symbole de son activité; la population aurait alors commencé à identifier ce lieu en utilisant le terme « Maison du Crible ».

Vue Panoramique 360°

Copie écran pour accéder à la vue panoramique de la Tour Rose de Lyon

Cliquez sur l’image ci-dessus  pour accéder à une vue panoramique de la cour et de la Tour Rose !

Accès à la Tour Rose

Il est possible d’accéder à la maison de la Tour Rose en empruntant les transports en communs lyonnais :

  • Métro ligne D | Station « Vieux-Lyon »;
  • Bus ligne C20 | Arrêt station « Vieux-Lyon »;
  • Bus ligne 19 | Arrêt station « Saint-Paul »;
  • Bus ligne S1 | Arrêt station « Saint-Paul »;
  • Bus ligne 27 | Arrêt station « Vieux-Lyon »;
  • Bus ligne 31 | Arrêt station « Romain-Rolland ».

Lyon Insolite | Balades à lyon et visites insolites

Pour vos balades à  Lyon , Eloïse Boisroux et Jean-Luc Chavent, conteurs de rues, vous font découvrir un  Lyon insolite , méconnu et mystérieux.

www.lyon-rvl.com www.guichetdusavoir.org 2001.jres.org www.vieux-lyon.org www.lyon-france.net numelyo.bm-lyon.fr

Articles similaires

Impasse Turquet de Lyon : plus vieille maison de Lyon

Impasse Turquet de Lyon : plus vieille maison de Lyon

Le Palais de justice « historique » de Lyon

Le Palais de justice « historique » de Lyon

6 comments to “la tour rose de lyon ou la maison du crible”.

' src=

magnifique!!!!

' src=

Merci beaucoup pour ce commentaire ! 🙂

' src=

Merci pour tes articles et tes bons conseils ! A bientot, bises !

' src=

M’interessant particulierement au sujet, je vous remercie pour ces excellentes infos ! Bonne continuation

Merci beaucoup ! A bientôt sur le blog !

' src=

Un grand merci pour cet article très clair !! Belle journée

Comments are closed.

  • Lyon, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes /

Traboule “Maison du Crible – Tour Rose”

 width=

Walking near Vieux Lyon , visit this restaurant. If you never happened to try French cuisine, take your chance at La Tour Rose . Order perfectly cooked parfait .

You will be delighted with the cool serviceIt is noteworthy that decor is nice. Google users awarded the rating of 4 to this place.

Restaurant menu

Frequently mentioned in reviews, ratings of traboule “maison du crible – tour rose”, visitors' opinions on traboule “maison du crible – tour rose”.

A Google User

Food guides for travelers

16 Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurants in Lyon, France

Similar restaurants nearby

Tasty dishes in lyon.

dish

Restaurant features in Lyon

dish

FOOD TRABOULE - 22 Rue du Bœuf, 69005 Lyon

  • LOYALTY ACCOUNT

logo

  • The Counters
  • How it works

How it works?

At Food Traboule, you sit where you want in the room of your choice. Two possibilities to order : you order and pay for your dishes at the table or directly at the counter. We'll let you know when it's ready, then you can pick them up. For ordering drinks, our waiters come to you and serve you directly at the table. For water, fountains of still or sparkling water are available free of charge on the ground floor and on the 1st floor so that you can help yourself right away. And when you're done, we take care of getting rid of everything.

tour rose lyon traboule

On the Table

Scan the QR Code on your table and then order all the dishes you want in just a few clicks. You can connect to the Free Wifi Food Traboule. You pay in one go directly online. As soon as it's ready, we'll send you a notification. All you have to do is pick up your order at the various counters and enjoy!

tour rose lyon traboule

At the counter

Order directly at the counter of your chosen restaurant: place your order, pay and take a pager. When it buzzes, it means your food is ready!

We reward loyalty! You will be given your own loyalty card when you place your first order. Simply show it every time you make a purchase, or log in to your customer account, to earn points and reap all the benefits!

tour rose lyon traboule

You’re curious to know more, sign up and follow us!

Tu es curieux d’en savoir plus, inscris-toi et suis-nous !

Mentions Légales

Éditeur : TLA Food Traboule SAS au capital de 10856€ 22, rue du Bœuf – 69005 Lyon- FRANCE SIRET : 838 168 599 E-mail : contact(@) foodtraboule.com

Hébergeur : OVH – 2 rue Kellermann – 59100 Roubaix – FRANCE

Responsable de publication : Tabata Mey Téléphone : +33 4 87 91 55 33 Adresse email : contact(@) foodtraboule.com

Propriété intellectuelle : La structure, la mise en page, la charte graphique, les textes, la base de données, les images, les photos, les sons, les vidéos et tout autre élément composant ce site sont la propriété exclusive de la société TLA FOOD TRABOULE et sont protégés par le droit d’auteur. Toute représentation totale ou partielle de ce site, par quelque procédé que ce soit sans l’autorisation de la société TLA FOOD TRABOULE est interdite et constituerait un délit. Les marques, les noms commerciaux et les logos figurant sur ce site sont des marques déposées sauf mention contraire. Toute reproduction totale ou partielle des marques ou logos, effectuée à partir des éléments du site, sans l’autorisation expresse de la société TLA FOOD TRABOULE est donc interdit. Toute utilisation du logo FOOD TRABOULE doit faire l’objet d’une autorisation préalable de la part de TLA FOOD TRABOULE.

Exonération de la responsabilité : TLA FOOD TRABOULE ne garantie pas l’exactitude et l’exhaustivité des informations communiquées sur l’ensemble de ses sites internet. Ces informations sont données à titre informatif seulement et peuvent être désuètes. TLA FOOD TRABOULE décline toute responsabilité en cas de difficulté d’accès à l’un de ses sites internet ou de difficulté de connexion, et ce quelle que soit la cause. De plus, il ne peut être tenu pour responsable en cas de dommage ou virus qui pourrait infecter votre ordinateur ou tout matériel informatique. Les liens hypertextes présents sur le site de TLA FOOD TRABOULE, renvoyant vers des sites tiers, sont donnés à titre d’informations complémentaires. TLA FOOD TRABOULE ne peut être tenu pour responsable de leur contenu, liens ou mise à jour.

Loi « Informatique et Liberté » : En application de la loi n°78-17 du 6 janvier 1978 relative à l’informatique, aux fichiers et aux libertés, vous disposez des droits d’opposition (art.26 de la loi), d’accès (art.34 à 38 de la loi), et de rectification (art.36 de la loi) des données vous concernant. Ainsi, vous pouvez exiger que soient rectifiées, complétées, clarifiées, mises à jour ou effacées les informations vous concernant qui sont inexactes, incomplètes, équivoques, périmées ou dont la collecte ou l’utilisation, la communication ou la conservation est interdite. Pour exercer vos droits ou pour prendre connaissance de la collecte et de l’utilisation de vos données personnelles, veuillez consulter notre politique de confidentialité.

Cookies : L’utilisation des cookies à travers ce site web, est détaillée au sein de notre politique de confidentialité.

Conception, rédaction, design et développement du site Internet : Je Sors en Ville – Agence Camille Carlier – Emmanuel Ruaz

Crédit photographique : Nicolas Villion

IMAGES

  1. Les traboules et cours de Lyon

    tour rose lyon traboule

  2. Carnet de voyage à Lyon. Visite d'1 journée du Vieux Lyon et ses traboules

    tour rose lyon traboule

  3. Visiter Lyon: TOP 20 Choses à Faire et à Voir Absolument

    tour rose lyon traboule

  4. La Tour Rose de Lyon

    tour rose lyon traboule

  5. Blog In Lyon

    tour rose lyon traboule

  6. Traboules, classic stairs tour from Lyon

    tour rose lyon traboule

COMMENTS

  1. Food Traboule

    Inscris-toi ! Food Traboule. Plus qu'un food court, un lieu de vie au cœur de la Tour Rose ! Tabata et Ludovic Mey , chefs du restaurant Les Apothicaires, ouvrent un nouveau chapitre de la célèbre Tour Rose au cœur du Vieux Lyon ! Bienvenue au Food Traboule, un lieu de vie unique de 660 m2 dédié à la gourmandise et à la convivialité.

  2. The secret traboules of Lyon: A complete guide

    Below is a list of the best traboules in Lyon to visit. 1. Traboule de la Cour des Voraces. Located in the Croix-Rousse neighborhood, the Traboule de la Cour des Voraces is the most famous traboule in Lyon. It's where many of the silk workers hid during the revolts. And, today, it stands as a symbol of resistance.

  3. Traboules of Lyon

    In Vieux-Lyon, these passageways are marked by a bronze shield. Arrive 10 minutes early. Duration: 2 hours. Price: 12 euros. 8 - 18 and students: 7 euros. Reserve the Vieux Lyon traboules here or phone +33 (0)4 72 77 69 69. Reserve the Croix Rousse traboules and Canut Workshop here or phone +33 (0)4 72 77 69 69.

  4. A labyrinth of corridors conceals a complicated past in Lyon

    Traboule de la Tour Rose Enter at 16 Rue du Bœuf to discover a rose-tinted watchtower, complete with spiraling staircase, while traversing the Traboule de la Tour Rose.

  5. Le Food Court

    Their dream has finally become reality with Food Traboule, a food hall for a unique experience. At the heart of the Tour Rose. 22 Rue du Bœuf, 69005 Lyon. See mapDirections. Directions and Practical information. By foot: . 10 minutes from Place Bellecour. By metro:

  6. Uncover Famous Secret Passages: The Traboules Of Lyon

    La Tour Rose, 16 rue du Boeuf. This is another of Old Lyon's stunning internal courtyards that qualifies as a traboule: la Tour Rose, also known as la Maison du Crible. Just a word about the glorious pink spiral stairway that gives the tower its name: it wasn't always pink. Apparently the pink colour only surfaced in the 1970s.

  7. Old Lyon town: a tour of the famous "traboules" and the elegant

    The long traboule, Old Lyon town — Photo: Lyon Visite. ... Maison du Crible, Tour Rose, rue du Bœuf. Access: 16 rue du Bœuf. There is a very pretty courtyard with a sumptuous rose tower, with an emotional cylinder shape. It has four floors and is pierced with beautiful openings. It was built in the 16th century.

  8. Food Traboule

    Lyon. Food Traboule: this is more than just a food court, it's a new welcoming place at the heart of La Tour Rose! Inviting you on both a culinary and social adventure, to experience the diversity of Lyon's vibrant and creative gourmet specialities in a unique location that has been completely redesigned!

  9. La Tour Rose de Lyon ou la Maison du Crible

    Totalement invisible de l'extérieur, cette immense Tour Rose est la plus haute construction du quartier Saint-Jean. Elle reçoit chaque année des milliers de visiteurs et bénéficie largement au rayonnement et à l'attractivité du Vieux-Lyon et de ses traboules. C'est un repère patrimonial de du quartier Saint-Jean.

  10. Lyon's Traboules

    Among the most famous of Lyon's not-so-secret passageways is the Traboule de la Tour Rose. The entire courtyard is painted in pleasing pastel and ochre tones, dominated by an elegant pink Renaissance watchtower housing a giant spiral staircase with arched windows all the way up. (The stairs are now off limits to the public.)

  11. Traboule "Maison du Crible

    Book your Traboule "Maison du Crible - Tour Rose" tickets online and skip-the-line! Save time and money with our best price guarantee make the most of your visit to Lyon! ... relax and enjoy a fun and entertaining tour of Vieux Lyon, at your own pace. The tour starts and ends in the Saint Paul neighborhood. See more. 2. Lyon: escape game ...

  12. Food Traboule

    Tabata and Ludovic Mey, chefs at the restaurant Les Apothicaires, have begun a new chapter in the history of the famous Tour Rose, which stands in the middle of Lyon's historic neighbourhood.. Welcome to Food Traboule: a unique, 660-m 2 venue where good food and good times are always on the menu. Using fresh, local ingredients, 12 counters across 2 floors offer a range of sweet and savoury ...

  13. Food Traboule

    Food Traboule - La Tour Rose | 1,285 followers on LinkedIn. Le Food Court made in Lyon au coeur de la Tour Rose ! | Tabata et Ludovic Mey, chefs du restaurant Les Apothicaires*, ouvrent un nouveau ...

  14. Traboule "Maison du Crible

    Traboule "Maison du Crible - Tour Rose", #2835 among Lyon restaurants: 252 reviews by visitors and 37 detailed photos. Find on the map and call to book a table. ... Planning your trip, pay attention to Vieux Lyon and remember to choose where to eat: this restaurant is right aside the mentioned attraction. Luckily you can degust French ...

  15. Traboule "Maison du Crible

    Book your Traboule "Maison du Crible - Tour Rose" tickets online and skip-the-line! Save time and money with our best price guarantee make the most of your visit to Lyon!

  16. La Tour Rose (The Pink Tower), Lyon

    La Tour Rose (The Pink Tower) in Lyon, France - sight map, attraction information, photo and list of walking tours containing this attraction. ... This incurred drastic renovations resulting in the creation of the Food Traboule - a unique covered food hall spread across three floors and featuring seven areas with a variety of open-kitchen ...

  17. Les Comptoirs Food Traboule

    Food Traboule, c'est 12 comptoirs qui proposent des plats gourmands, généreux et accessibles 7 jours sur 7. ... At the heart of the Tour Rose 22 Rue du Bœuf, 69005 Lyon. See map Directions. ... 22, rue du Bœuf - 69005 Lyon- FRANCE SIRET : 838 168 599 E-mail : contact(@)foodtraboule.com. Hébergeur :

  18. Traboule "Maison du Crible

    Book the most popular Rainy-day activities in Traboule "Maison du Crible - Tour Rose". Best price and money back guarantee! Read the reviews of your fellow travelers.

  19. Food Traboule

    Un Food Court lyonnais au coeur de la Tour Rose, porté par 12 chefs qui cuisinent sous vos yeux, pour vivre une expérience culinaire unique. FOOD TRABOULE - 22 Rue du Bœuf, 69005 Lyon GIFT CARD

  20. Maison du Crible

    La maison du Crible, également dite la « tour rose » en raison de son escalier de couleur ocre, est un immeuble situé au 16 rue du Bœuf, dans le 5 e arrondissement de Lyon, en France.Localisé au cœur du Vieux Lyon (), il s'agit d'un des plus remarquables édifices du quartier en raison de sa couleur ocre, de la tour qui l'orne et qui lui donne son nom. Le plus illustre des résidents a ...

  21. Comment ça marche ?

    At Food Traboule, you sit where you want in the room of your choice. Two possibilities to order : you order and pay for your dishes at the table or directly at the counter. ... At the heart of the Tour Rose 22 Rue du Bœuf, 69005 Lyon. ... 69005 Lyon- FRANCE SIRET : 838 168 599 E-mail : contact(@)foodtraboule.com. Hébergeur : OVH - 2 rue ...