6. Lyon: Croix-Rousse Audio-Guided Walking Tour
Discover the incredible story behind the scenes of the former City of Silk and the difficult lives of the silk workers.
Admire one of the most beautiful painted walls in Lyon: the "canuts" fresco. The largest trompe l'oeil work in Europe, it is representative of life in the Canuts district, a silk workers' district in the 19th century. As you experience Croix-Rousse and its special atmosphere, your guide unfolds the history and anecdotes of the silk workers, the canuts and their difficult living conditions.
You'll cross gardens with planted mulberry trees, the favorite food of silkworms! You'll learn how silk thread is made and discover typical popular architecture of the 1850's. It was here in the traboules that the Canuts revolts of the 19th century started, inspiring great trends of social movements in France.
Lyon was actually once a Roman city, and not just any city. Since it was the capital of the Gauls, you can see the ruins of the 1st century amphitheater which could accommodate 20,000 people on the itinerary. At the bottom of Croix Rousse, walk through the historical and more elegant streets where the rich silk workers used to live. Silk manufacturing continues here with the Atelier de Moirage and other scientific labs to save silkworms from diseases.
The tour ends at the Maison Tolozan, a trading house, with warehouses and workshops from where the rolls of silk woven by the canuts arrived for shipping on the nearby river.