Lyon , traditionally spelt Lyons in English, is a city in east-central France in the Rhone-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Etymologically it relates to the Celtic God Lugoves, Lugh as does Laon and Leiden. Lyon is located approximately 470 km (292 mi) from Paris and 320 km (199 mi) from Marseille. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais.
The city is known for its historical and architectural landmarks and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lyon was historically known as an important area for the production and weaving of silk and in modern times has developed a reputation as the capital of gastronomy in France. It has a significant role in the history of cinema due to Auguste and Louis Lumiere, who invented the cinematographe in Lyon. The city is also known for its famous light festival 'Fete des Lumieres' which occurs every 8 December and lasts for four days, earning Lyon the title of Capital of Lights. Legend says that the Virgin Mary saved the city from the plague and, to thank her, a statue was built. On the day it was erected, the whole city was lit by candles that its citizens had put at their windows.
For several centuries Lyon has been known as the French capital of gastronomy, due in part to the presence of many of France's finest chefs in the city and its surroundings (e.g. Paul Bocuse). This reputation also comes from the fact that two of France's best known wine-growing regions are located near Lyon: the Beaujolais to the North, and the Cotes du Rhone to the South. Beaujolais wine is very popular in Lyon and remains the most common table wine served with local dishes. Lyon is the home of very typical and traditional restaurants serving local dishes, and local wines: the bouchons.
December 27th, 2011
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