Lille Weekend Breaks

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Weekend Breaks to Lille

Planning a short break to Lille? Check out Travel Library's recommended Top 10 Things To Do in Lille. It's a perfect companion for weekend city breaks to Lille. Once you've been you can add your own tips and suggestions to help other visitors.

Musee des Beaux-Arts

Housed in a beautiful 19th century building, this is one of the most important museum in France. The displays contain excellent European paintings; sculptures; 17th and 18th century ceramics from all over europe; a department of the Middle Ages and Renaissance; and an important collection of drawings.

The museum is open Monday from 14h00 - 18h00; Wednesday, Thursday and weekends from 19h00 - 18h00; and Friday from 10h00 - 19h00. Admission is $6 for adults; $3.20 for children 12 - 17 and students; and free for children 11 and under.

Museum of Natural History

19 rue de Bruxelles, take the metro to Mairie de Lille. This museum is a great place to take the children, here they can learn about every kind of animal or insect from the past to the present. The museum was founded in 1822 and many additions have been added since then. You can come and see two massive whale skeletons; look at displays of extinct species; wander through the giant insectarium; and so much more. The museum also exhibits geology collections that tell the story of the whole region. The museum is open Monday, Wednesday to Friday from 09h00 - 12h00 and 14h00 - 17h00; and Sunday from 10h00 - 17h00.

Vauban's Garden

Located between rue Desmazieres, avenue Mathias Delobel and boulevard Vauban. This beautiful English garden was created in 1865, with ponds; lawns; tulips; hyacinths; forget-me-nots; 500 trees; and 4 000 shrubs. The garden also contains a chalet built in 1879, which has been restored and currently hosts puppet shows for children. The garden is open daily and there is no admission charge.

Christmas Market - Place Rihour

The Christmas Market in Lille has been a tradition for centuries, and attracts visitors from all over the world every year. There are many activities on offer during the market, including a funfair; concerts; exhibitions; and entertainment. The market also has over 50 stalls that sell a wide range of goods, including traditional foods; local produce; regional specialities; cakes; sweets and chocolates; traditional decorations; local arts and crafts; as well as other ideas for gifts. The Christmas Market runs from the beginning of December to just after Christmas.

Lille Zoological Gardens

Located at the Citadelle, take bus line no.14 to le Parc de Loisirs de la Citadelle. This excellent zoo is a must for families with children. The zoo participates in conservation by breeding rare and endangered species in captivity, and not capturing them in the wild. The animals are all housed in enclosures that closely match their natural habitat. The zoo has a few new aditions, including a 14-year-old 2.7 tonne White Rhinoceros, Christian, which was born in captivity in a Dutch zoo. The zoo is open daily from 09h00 - 17h30; weekends and public holidays from 09h00 - 18h30. Admission is free.

For further information visit the zoo's website:

Cathedral Notre-Dame de la Treille

12 rue Jean Moulin, off rue de la Monnaie. The body of this cathedral is a fairly homogeneous, but still beautiful. Neo-Gothic construction begun in 1854, but the new facade, which was completed in 1999, is completely different. Its translucent marble front supported by steel wires is best appreciated from inside, or at night when lit from within. This is a sight not to be missed when in Lille. The cathedral is open daily from 10h00 - 17h00. Admission is free.

Hotel Carlton

3 rue de Paris. This elegant and stylish hotel is one of the best in Lille, it is located in the centre of the city near the Grand Place. The hotel has a range of facilities, including a restaurant; a bar; a fitness centre; a sauna; a UV room; and hydrojet showers. The comfortable and soundproof rooms all have air-conditioning; TV; in house movies; telephone; Internet connection; minibar; a lounge; and a full bathroom.

For more information visit the hotel's website:

The Citadelle Park

Located at the Citadelle, take bus line no.14 to le Parc de Loisirs de la Citadelle. This is the largest park in the city, and covers 5o hectares. The park also includes the Boulogne Woods, named in the 19th century after the famous woods in Paris. The park is a great place for the whole family to relax and take a break from the city. There are playgrounds and merry-go-rounds for children, as well as many paths to take a relaxing stroll while admiring the beauty of nature. The park is open everyday and there is no admission cost.

Manoir de l'Estracelles

Located at Rue de l'Estracelles. This manor dates back to the 16th and 17th centuries. Located in the manor are two 18th Century barns; and historical monuments, which are surrounded by rare birds and plants not native to the area. This is a great place to relax and take a break from sightseeing around town. The manor is open everyday from 10h00 - 18h00, and admission is free.

Les Trois Brasseurs

22 place de la Gare. Dark, smoke-stained dining stalls surround copper cauldrons in this genuine brasserie that brews its own beer on site. They do serve some excellent French food as well, but it's the beer that's the main attraction.

This bar is a great place to relax and sample some of the excellent beers on offer.

It is open everyday from fairly early to late, except Sundays when they close earlier.

User Suggestions

Le Coq Hardy

Its a restaurant set on three floors with the additional de riguer outside seating. I ate on the third floor and had to navigate some rather rickety and twisted stairs but my meal was so french and so delicious and so well priced that I am going to Lille again just so that I can eat there another time.


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