Lyon is truly one of the most beautiful and interesting cities the Barefoot Blogger has visited in France. Aside from its magnificent river views, churches, and extraordinary food, Lyon hides some of its best features out of sight, behind closed doors.
Secret alleyways, or Traboules du Vieux Lyon, were created shortly after the Romans left this area of France, the aqueducts failed, and the citizens moved to the river Saone. The hidden, enclosed walkways were intended to provide protection from the elements to those living nearby as they made their daily treks to gather water.
Later, the traboules were busy passageways for the silk makers of the city. Their long rolls of silk were much too precious to transport by ordinary means through the streets.
When wars raged in and through Lyon, traboules were used as hiding places and hangouts for locals who knew how to find their way from one place to another.
Today, traboules act as hallways and elaborate entrances that lead to shops and apartments.
Some even open onto elevator entrances.
While wandering through a traboules, I ran into a most interesting shop. Medieval wear at Mandragore.
Imagine the fun going through the racks of gowns and robes and imagining times gone by in Lyon.