Shopping in Lyon
Lyon is a shopper's paradise. The area of the Presqu'île boasts the most attractive streets for shopping, such as rue Victor Hugo and rue de la République.
Rue du Président Herriot, with its elegant 19th-century buildings, makes it an ideal setting for its luxury boutiques. Fine antiques and old books can be found on rue Auguste Comte or at La Cité des Antiquaires, 117 boulevard Stalingrad in Villeurbanne. Lyon also boasts one of the finest chocolate factories in the world: Bernachon at 42 cours Franklin Roosevelt. Bouillet, 15 place de la Croix Rousse and 14 rue des Archers, works wonders with its 'ganaches of chocolate' and famous macaroons.
Les Puces du Canal is Lyon's historical flea market (Sunday 0600-1300), located on the outskirts of Lyon at 1 rue du Canal in Villeurbanne. To better understand why Lyon is a gourmet's paradise, visit one of its food markets on quai St-Antoine or boulevard de la Croix-Rousse (Tuesday to Sunday mornings).
The Presqu'île area is where the big department stores like Printemps are located. For casual shopping, Lyon's Part-Dieu shopping centre, 17 rue du Docteur Bouchut, is ideal and is one of Europe's largest, with over 230 stores, including the famous Galeries Lafayette. The Confluence is the site of Lyon's newest and glitziest megamall, also called Le Centre Confluence. The tram goes here and there is also lots of car parking.
Most shops are usually open from Monday to Saturday between 0930 and 1900 (some close between 1200 and 1400) but are closed on Sundays. Some small grocery stores are open on Sunday mornings.
Rue Saint Jean in Vieux Lyon is the place to pick up a nice souvenir for folks back home. Leather goods, furniture and jewellery are all here as well as Lyonnais silk and fabrics. There are also a few delis around here to buy sausages, tinned confit duck legs, bottles of Burgundy and jars of foie gras.
VAT (Value Added Tax) can vary between 5% and 19.6%, depending on the goods bought. There is a tax free shopping scheme available for citizens from outside of the European Union. You must have spent more than €175 on the same day in the same store and obtain a valid customs stamp on final departure from the EU. Look for the Tax Free Shopping sticker in shop windows.
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