Lille has an active nightlife, catering mainly for the thousands of students who live and study in the city. If you want to let your hair down, the area around Rue Masséna is home to bars and drinking opportunities galore, while the Rue Solférino at the end has similar venues. For more quirky spots, try the old town, where there are little bars and colourful cafés serving long into the night.
Music lovers will appreciate the variety of live performance venues on offer, ranging from clubs through to family friendly spaces showcasing cultural events. Keep an eye out for listings in La Voix du Nord newspaper and the website Sortir (www.lille.sortir.eu).
Should you be in attendance at the annual Braderie flea market event, held on the first weekend of September, you'll see that night-time shopping is as popular as the daytime bartering.
Bars in Lille
Something of a Lille institution, Chez Fred is named after its Lillois owner who offers a warm welcome to anyone who steps over the threshold. There's music and drink aplenty – enjoy wine by the glass at the bar or at one of the pavement tables outside. There's always a convivial atmosphere at this Vieux Lille hotspot when locals and visitors mix during the summer.Address: , 4 Rue du Palais de Justice, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2074 0295.
Les 3 Brasseurs
Les 3 Brasseurs is a big and bustling microbrewery opposite Lille Flandres train station. It serves a range of excellent beer, which locals and tourists mop up with cheap and cheerful pub grub. Chatter and clinking of glasses give this place a buzzing atmosphere, and if you enjoy what's on offer, there's also the option to buy bottles of beer in gift packs or in authentic style wooden crates to take home.Address: , 22 Place de la Gare, Lille, 59800
Telephone: (03) 2006 4625.
Peek a Boo
With its retro décor and cool vintage style, this quirky bar-cum-café behind the Place Rihour is a great place to people watch. The drinks menu has a varied selection of cocktails and local beers (a 'tasting board' of three beers is available for the indecisive) as well as wines and spirits, while the food on offer features burgers and their infamous cheesecake. Peek a Boo also hosts regular live music performances, check the website for details.Address: , 92 Rue de l'Hôpital Militaire, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2057 0515.
Clubs in Lille
Created in 2004, during Lille's period as European City of Culture, this artistic and cultural hub in a former postal sorting office (hence the name) was never intended to be a permanent fixture. However, its location close to the Euralille shopping centre and its popularity with younger crowds has seen it remain open as venue for club nights, as well as art exhibitions and cultural events.Address: , Avenue Willy Brandt, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2014 4760.
Billed as 'the most international club in Lille', this formerly sparse industrial building now boasts three bars. It soon fills up with crowds of up to 1,500 revellers who take in international DJs in this cool fluoro-lit space. Thriving and dynamic, this is the place to be seen if you want to really let your hair down. Don't run out of steam too fast, it goes on until the very small hours.Address: , 84 Rue de Trévise, Lille, 59100
Telephone: (03) 2090 8862.
If you like unpretentious, good old-fashioned dancing-till-you-can't-dance-no-more night out, then pay a visit to Radio Club. Owned by the man behind the ever-popular Chez Fred drinking spot just round the corner, this place has a great atmosphere with a music playlist that tends to lean towards soul, groove and funk, with a bit of retro disco thrown in for good measure.Address: , 60 Avenue du Peuple Belge, Lille, 59000
Telephone: 06 1627 4003.
Live music in Lille
Located to the east of Lille city centre, in the city's Fives district, this small-but-perfectly formed venue doesn't look like much from the outside, but step through the doors and you'll be greeted with what was once a 1950s cinema. It has now been fashioned into an intimate venue where the energy between audience and performer is second to none. There's also a bar in the foyer for those in need of refreshment.Address: , 1 Place du Mont-de-Terre, Lille, 59800
Telephone: (03) 2033 1734.
Lille has long been a city of music and dance lovers. Rock musicians, jazz artists and emerging stars are all worshipped at L'Aéronef. Originally set up in 1989, L'Aéronef moved to its current location in the high-tech Euralille area in 1995, and now hosts more than 70 concerts a season. It also runs workshops and cultural events organised through its website.Address: , 168 Avenue Willy Brandt, Lille, 59777
Telephone: (03) 2013 5000.
This impressive historic building in the République - Saint-Sauveur quarter of the city still sees the stage decked out with red velvet curtains and seating to match. Don't let the old-fashioned interior fool you though, as Théâtre Sébastopol is home to an eclectic mix of scheduled music performances almost every day, ranging from big name concerts and operas, through to more niche artistes.Address: , Place Sébastopol, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2033 1734.
Classical music in Lille
Dance in Lille
Theatres in Lille
Le Grand Bleu
Catering for both young children and teenagers, Le Grand Bleu is a drama centre that puts a particular emphasis on new styles like hip hop and theatrical contemporary dance performances. Its eclectic programme also includes storytelling and puppetry. The centre, which has national theatre status, can accommodate up to 320 people in the canal-side building by the Citadel of Lille.Address: , 36 Avenue Marx Dormoy, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2009 8844.
Music and Dance in Lille
Culture in Lille
This former train station has been converted into a multi-faceted cultural arts centre, with an exhibition space, outdoor area and a handy eating quarter in the form of Le Bistrot de St So. There's a stage set out in the main hall (Halle A) with a cinema screen behind, while the adjoining hall (Halle B) is the mainstay for major cultural events. An alternative bohemian atmosphere prevails here, with a laidback and friendly vibe.Address: , Boulevard Jean-Baptiste Lebas, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2031 3000.
Opéra de Lille
The Opéra de Lille offers a varied lyric programme, ranging from the baroque period to the creations of contemporary composers, as well as major masterpieces. Modern dance plays a leading role here too: the programming explores today's major aesthetic directions, put into perspective with the presentation of founding works. Outside, the neo-classical exterior of the building offers an impressive welcome, and once inside visitors will find that the plush red velvet seats and soaring domed ceiling overhead live up to its promise.Address: , 2 Rue des Bons Enfants, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2838 4050.
Théâtre du Nord
The Théâtre du Nord operates under the directorship of Christophe Rauck, and comprises two performance spaces: one in Lille and another in nearby Tourcoing. Lille's offering takes the form of an impressive listed building, originally constructed at the beginning of the 18th century. Its striking façade now welcomes visitors into the drama centre where scheduled performances range from the classic to the modern.Address: , 4 Place du Général de Gaulle, Lille, 59000
Telephone: (03) 2014 2424