Old city of Lille
Once a year we try to visit our friends and family in Lille. Before I moved to Luxembourg I had known a little about this French city: located in North France, pretty big, has direct connection with London via Eurostar. That’s it. However, as from my very first visit back in 2o12 I continue discovering this big but charming city with picturesque old town and numerous events throughout a year.
This time it was beginning of May when we arrived to the Lille’s land. Spring in Europe is very complicated matter, and May is even more unpredictable: it may heat today and cover the ground with the snow the very next one. So we were ready to everything. Although, the weather was pretty good and we spent most of the time outside, enjoying the sun and city open-air festival of soups.
Lille, as many European cities, has well developed transportation system. Significant part of it is represented by the city bike service – VLille. It is easy and simple in use system with numerous bike stations across the city. Locals use it very often so don’t think that the city bikes are designed for tourists only. You may buy ticket for one day, seven days or a year. What you need it to pay caution and park you bike within 30 minutes, as first 30 minutes of the use are free. As I have already admitted, bikes are the best option to discover the city and do not pay sometimes very expensive transport tickets.
It was blossoming everywhere. Gardeners had worked well and the result of their work pleased eyes. Do you know that there is a contest in France between villages and towns for the most blossoming village or town – Villes et villages fleuris? Local governments compete with each other and garden flowers everywhere. As a result the village is covers with flowers and is more attractive for tourists and visitors.
Meanwhile we arrived to the city centre, the old Lille. Just look at these facades and window decoration. Every single window is a masterpiece. I bet, there is history behind each of them!
Place du Général de Gaulle or Grand Place. This place is the real heart of the city and, in addition, a connection between old and new Lille. The square is built in flemish style and you may find some elements which reminds your of a Grand-Place of Brussels.
Look at these faces at the left. All emotions are on one facade.
Brussels? No, Lille!
There is Sunday market on Grand place. Flowers, plants for the garden, a bit of food. Take your time, make a pause.
Balcony and stairs of the Theatre du Nord are the best view point.
This is what I call “to catch a moment”.
Fountain is the place where you may find all types of people: from backpackers to scouts, city Rain men, couples, tired parents and their energetic children. Fountain is a meeting point, fountain is a witness of love stories and dramatic break ups.
On the nearby street.
Everything was in blossom. I love spring for this beauty everywhere.
Also in an old town. Some buildings are so old that all decoration has been already disappeared and time has started its final count down.
This is, actually, very good souvenir. Lights which you may compose following your own idea and design. It is not very expensive – a basic set of 25 balls and an electric cable costs just 25 EUR. Definitely worth to visit if you have a bit of time and need to refresh your room. La case de cousin Paul also has an internet shop and delivers at least within Europe.
Paris has Ladurée, Lille – Meert. Famous for its waffles, this coffee shop and tea room offers amazing desserts, chocolate and of, course, waffles. Personally, I am not a big fun of their waffles, for me they are too sweet and wet. However, desserts are just perfect.
If you want to take a dessert and a cup of tea in their tea room be ready to stay in a queue for a while. The place is very popular, but definitely worth to visit.
Inside the tea room.
Desserts. Royal one.
Of course, I can’t leave this place without little souvenir for my colleagues and friends.
Other posts about Lille:
Zoo of Lille