First learn how the city came to be with my telling of the city's founding legend about Lydéric the giant slayer.
Then check out some of my posts about this city, as well as some helpful external links.
Where to Eat, Drink, and Be Merry:
-For regional specialties, check out Les Compagnons de la Grappe.
- For the most delicious pizza ever, be sure to visit Le Ch'ti Bello (+ an additional photo).
- For traditional and not so traditional Northern pastries, visit Meert. Be sure to try their gauffres.
-For testing all that Belgian beer, be sure to visit Le Chopp'ing.
- For an American style coffee drinking experience, check out Lille's own version of Starbucks, Notting Hill Coffee. Great for curing homesickness, but also for enjoying beautiful views of Vieux Lille.
What to Do:
- For a great view of the city, go to the bell tower at the city hall.
- Visit Lille's free zoo.
- Learn about the city's history as you view the beautiful old city gates, dating from the 1600s.
- Make sure to take a stroll in Vieux-Lille and soak up the beautiful Flandres architecture.
- Explore the city's many beautiful and historic statues:
Au Pigeon Voyageur
Lille À Ses Fusilles
- While at La Grand Place be sure to stop inside La Vieille Bourse.
- If coming for the Fall, be sure to get here during the first weekend of September in order to experience La Braderie de Lille.
- If visiting in the winter, be sure to check out the Marché du Noël.
Day Trips (Around Lille):
- The movie about the North, Bienvenue Chez Les Ch'tis, takes place in a city called Bergues. It's about a 45 minute drive from Lille, and is a charming walled in town done in the Flandres archetecture (also there's a tour for the movie!).
- Being so close to Belgium, a day trip to Bruges is a must!
Brussels is only an hour away by train, and is worth it for the Grand Place alone. I took my parents there when they visited (Top Ten #4 for pictures).
- A trip to the Abbey of Saint Sixtus should be on any beer aficionado's itinerary! And even if you're just starting to learn about the wonders of Belgian beer, who wouldn't want to taste the best?
How to get around:
- A free downloadable PDF map made available by Lille's city hall can be found here.
For a better one, be sure to visit the Office du Tourisme at La Place du Rihour.
- Lille has many buses, a tram, and two metro lines to help you navigate around the city. A ticket costs 1.40 euro. Check out transpole.fr to help you get around. There is a pdf map of public transportation available.
- As of the 15th of September, Lille has vlille, a bike sharing system. Similar to other bike sharing in Europe, there are bike stations throughout the city for public use. It costs 1.40 to use in 30 minute intervals for 24 hours, or if you go past the first 30 minutes it costs an additional 1 euro/half hour.