A pretty river city with exquisite gastronomy.
Approximate flight time: 1 hour 40 minutes (total distance 557 miles)
Airlines that fly direct: easyJet (as of November 2023)
Airlines that fly indirect: Air France
No. of Airports in Lyon: Lyon Airport
Seasons: High = May - August; Low = November - March
Currency: Euro (€)
Departing from Birmingham Airport
Enjoy waiting to board your flight when you fly from Birmingham Airport. Our central location and fantastic facilities make us an excellent choice for anyone flying from the UK.
To make the most of the many amenities the airport provides, we recommend getting to the airport at least 2 hours before your flight to Lyon. You could even pre-book access to our Express Lane, designated to enable passengers to pass through the security area more quickly, so you have more time to explore. We’ve got lots of shops inside the terminal - great if you’ve forgotten any holiday essentials. InMotion has any last-minute electricals or head to Boots for anything health and beauty related. World Duty Free has all your favourite brands at discount prices, from makeup to liquor.
Once you’ve browsed the shops, why not grab some food from one of our bars, cafés or restaurants? If you’ve got the time, we’ve got a plethora of restaurants where you can to choose to have a sit-down meal like All Bar One and Factory Bar and Kitchen. There are also coffee shops, like Costa for you to grab a hot drink and a pastry, or if you want to grab something for the flight, head to Pret a Manger. Fast food lovers will be pleased to hear we have a Burger King too.
Need currency for your trip abroad? Then look no further and head over to our Travelex stores conveniently located in the Arrivals area of the terminal building and Departures Lounge. If you prefer, you can pre-order your currency and get next day collection if you order before 3pm at Birmingham Airport.
For those driving to the airport we have seven car parks on-site, all within walking distance of the airport terminal or accessible via a free shuttle bus. If public transport is more convenient, there are plenty of options to choose from. Birmingham International train station is just outside the airport, with the free and frequent Air-Rail that takes passengers to the terminal in just two minutes. You can also find public buses and coaches that travel from all over the country and drop you right at the airport.
To find out about our other services, head to our terminal facilities page.
Arriving at Lyon Airport
Lyon Saint Exupery Airport is about 15 miles from the centre of Lyon and is well connected to the city centre. The Rhônexpress tram-train takes about half an hour to reach the city. You can hop off at the city's main train station, Lyon Part-Dieu, or get off earlier at Vaulx-en-Velin La Soie and connect onto the metro.
A more convenient but more expensive option is to take a taxi, which you will find outside the first level of Terminals 1 & 2. You can also hire a car at Lyon Airport – we recommend booking in advance for better rates and to avoid disappointment.
Pre-book your transfer with HolidayTaxis and avoid the queues when you arrive.
What to expect in Lyon
Sitting at the junction of the Rhône and Saône rivers, Lyon has much to offer its visitors. Known for its historical and architectural landmarks, France’s third largest city is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Outstanding museums, a dynamic cultural life, busy bars, a thriving university and fantastic shopping make Lyon a lively place to be. Dotted with a seemingly endless supply of restaurants, many of which are Michelin starred, Lyon has developed a reputation as France’s foodie capital.
The main language spoken in Lyon is French and you will do well to pick up some local phrases for your trip – bonjour (hello), au revoir (goodbye), merci (thank you), excusez-moi (excuse me).
Lyon’s climate is rather unpredictable. The city has hot summers and generally mild winters, but you can expect rain all year round so pack an umbrella whenever you visit.
Culture in Lyon
Lyon truly embodies the illusive art of ‘French living’ – a life revolving around food, wine, friends and family – and it’s one to immerse yourself in.
Ride the funicular to be whisked from Vieuz-Lyon, the old town, to the top of the Fourviére hill and the basilica of Notre-Dame, with its golden statue of Mary watching over the city. There are many cultural institutions to visit in Lyon, including the Maison de la Danse, the Opera House, the Institut Lumière devoted to cinema and the Fine Arts Museum.
Lyon has a vibrant cultural calendar, hosting many events throughout the year. Some of these include the spectacular Fête des Lumières (December) and the Nuits Sonores electronic music festival (May).
Don't leave the city without sampling some Lyonnais specialities in a bouchon – a type of restaurant found in Lyon serving traditional Lyonnaise cuisine. Some dishes you should definitely try are rosette (dry pork sausage) and Coussin de Lyon (a pudding made with chocolate, marzipan and curacao liqueur).