A former capital of culture, Lille’s a lively destination for weekends thanks to its frequent Eurostar service. Full of life, music and festivals, it’s also one of the friendliest cities in France for young adults.
Head to the Vieille Bourse for a slice of 17th-century Flemish Renaissance architecture and a chance to browse secondhand books and watch chess players. Or stroll around Old Lille’s lively Estaminet bars to sample the artisanal beers and speciality food with Flemish accents.
The Vieille Bourse, or Old Stock Exchange, is one of the most beautiful buildings in Lille. It consists of a number of buildings that surround an inner courtyard in Flemish Baroque style.
The building was commissioned by King Philip IV of Spain and was designed to rival the stock exchanges in Antwerp, London and Amsterdam. The construction took place from 1652-1653 under the supervision of Julien Destree, a master cabinet maker and architect.
Besides being one of the most impressive sights in the city, it also hosts a book market every year. It is a lovely spot to browse for rare and antique books as well as art works.
It is situated between the Grand Place and the Place du Theatre in the centre of the city. You can find this wonderful building by taking metro line 2 to Gare Jean Lebas and then walking down Av. Jean Lebas (on the way you'll pass the tourist office).
Opera of Lille
The Opera of Lille is a spectacular neo-classical building built by Louis Marie Cordonnier after the old opera house burned down in 1903. It's facade evokes the architectural canons of the Belle Epoque era.
During World War I, the Germans occupied the theater, but it was reclaimed afterward. It is a gorgeous place to enjoy classical concerts, ballets and operas.
It's also the home of the Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille, a fine arts museum featuring works from all over the world. You can admire the sculptures on display, or simply stroll around the grounds to take in the atmosphere of this beautiful historic building.
Vieux Lille (Old Town) is the heart of this vibrant city, where you'll find cobblestoned streets and Flemish-style buildings from the 17th and 18th centuries. It's a lovely place to explore by foot, and the 350-year-old La Vieille Bourse stock exchange building is a must-see. Its interior courtyard is now a popular spot for flea markets and open-air book markets during the summer months.
Marche de Wazemmes
Lille is a city with many great things to see and to do. From the vibrant nightlife to delicious cuisine and beautiful markets, there is something for everyone.
One of the most popular attractions in Lille is the Marche de Wazemmes. This is a market that takes place in the town centre on Sundays and it is one of the largest in Europe.
This is a great place to shop for fresh fruit, flowers, and vegetables. There are also stalls selling clothing and other artisanal products.
You can also enjoy a nice meal at the restaurant in the market. It is very good value and the staff is friendly.
Another great place to visit in Lille is the Musee de l’Hospice Comtesse. This museum is located in the Old Town of Lille and it features a variety of exhibits that showcase the city’s history and culture. You can even take a walk in the garden to enjoy the beautiful scenery.
If you’re looking for something a little different to do during your visit to Lille, head over to La Piscine Museum. This amazing museum is housed in an old swimming pool and it’s definitely worth checking out!
- The building was built in the 1930s and it’s an architectural gem that really is worth a look. You can see some interesting pieces here, such as paintings and sculptures by artists like Picasso, Claudel and Gerome.
- You can also see a lot of textiles from around the world. There’s also a room that’s full of botanical plants.
- It’s a great place to see and you can spend a whole day there! It’s very well organised and it’s a bit of an art gallery too. So, if you’re interested in visiting this museum during your trip to Lille, make sure to check out the City Pass Lille and buy your tickets online.