This is our guide to running in Lyon, second largest city in France, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its cuisine, architecture, and unique geography. The Rhône and Saône Rivers converge to the south of the city center, forming a peninsula called “Presqu’île”. The original medieval city, ‘vieux Lyon’, was built on the west side of the Saône, at the foot of the Fourvière hill, on top of which sits the grand basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière. Note: If you’d like to have a guided running experience in Lyon, we highly recommend our affiliate partner Go! Running Tours.
The best places to run in Lyon center on the two rivers, where numerous bridges allow for loops, even using Presqu’île to connect the two. For the Rhône, the best running is on east side, between Gerland Park and Parc de la Tête d’Or, while on the Saône there are good paths along both sides. We’ve mapped out a great ‘runseeing’ tour, incorporating many important Lyon sites and a climb up Fourvière. Runners who like hills and stairs will love Lyon! Other great runs in Lyon are the paths around the Parc de la Tête d’Or, one of the largest urban parks in Europe, and the Grand Parc Miribel Jonage, where the running highlight is the 10k lake loop.
Lyon is an easy city to get around. There are 4 metro lines and 5 tram lines, buses, and two funicular lines from Vieux Lyon to Saint-Just and Fourvière.