An article on Villefranche-sur-Saône, a small city near Lyon, with photos of its majestic church and its secret traboules.


Eglise Villefranche

Villefranche’s main church

Even though most of the pictures I post on this blog are of Paris, I don’t originally come from this city, but from Lyon, right between the Alps and the Massif Central, Burgundy and the South of France.

Near Lyon, there’s a tiny town called Villefranche-sur-Saône where I used to go to school when I was in my teens. It’s always been quite a boring town to me, too small and too far from Lyon, a bit ugly, and somewhat “provincial”. I’m used to saying that this town is lost in a time warp: people from Villefranche remain in Villefranche, they don’t go to Lyon that often, everything they need is in Villefranche… For a person who’s not coming from this place, it can be a bit oppressive.

However, as time goes by, I’m starting to reconsider the opinion I had of this town. I may get a bit more curious, maybe thanks to photography, and now, I realise I was strongly mistaken: Villefranche, more than Lyon, is a town that deserves a thorough exploration, and even though it might sometimes look not that beautiful from the outside, if you take your time, you will find some hidden but downright wonders: traboules, a wonderful church, convents, medieval buildings, lost chapels… I only wish the town would take better care of its heritage, for it really deserves more attention.

Anyway, if you ever cross Villefranche, don’t forget to visit its magnificent church, and the tiny traboules, which, for some, have nothing to be ashamed of compared to those of Lyon.

Orgue, Villefranche

Villefranche’s main church’s organ

Villefranche, Stairs

A window in a traboule’s stairway

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