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Lille

Country
France
State
Nord-Pas-de-Calais
City
Lille
Type of Location
Multiple
About Location

Lille is a medium-sized city in the Nord-Pas de Calais region of northern France with a very large student population. This city has a strong industrial background, but, after some difficult years, it is now known throughout France for its handsome city centre and its very active cultural life.
Lille is France's fifth largest metropolitan area. It is located to the country's north, on the Deûle River, near the border with Belgium.The whole metropolitan area of Lille, both on French and Belgian territory (Kortrijk, Tournai) was estimated in 2007 at around 1,885,000 inhabitants, ranking as one of the major metropolitan areas of Europe.
 



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How to Reach

By plane

The Lille Lesquin International Airport is small but convenient for entering Lille or travelling on to nearby areas across the border in Belgium. Both major and budget airlines operate scheduled services. Unlike larger airports there is hardly any walking as the checkins are directly inside the entrance and the security gates are directly behind the checkins. However, there may be a walk from the gate area to the aeroplane if it is parked on the taxiway rather than at a jetway. A direct coach connects to central Lille (stops outside the main railway station) in 20 minutes, and runs once an hour costing 7 Euros (return ticket is 9 Euros). A taxi would cost about 20 Euros.

By train

Lille lies on the Brussels-Paris-London connection. TGV and Eurostar trains stop here. The journey to Brussels takes little more than 30 minutes, to Paris about an hour, and to London about an hour and 25 minutes following the new high speed train link to London St Pancras which opened in October 2007. Coming in by ferry from Calais, train connections run fairly regularly, though it can be hard to get accurate times online. The journey takes about an hour and a half. Lille is also linked by TGV (fast trains) to Lyon (3 hours), Nantes (4 hours), Strasbourg (3.20 hours) and Marseille (5 hours).

Key places to visit
Lille Cathedral, Citadel of Lille, Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille, Museum of Natural History, Musee d'Art et d' Industrie de Roubaix


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Places to Visit

Lille Cathedral

Lille Cathedral, the Basilica of Notre Dame de la Treille is a Roman Catholic cathedral and basilica, and a national monument of France, located in the city of Lille.
It has been the seat of the Bishop of Lille since the creation of the diocese in 1913, although construction of the church of Notre Dame de la Treille began in 1854. The church takes its name from a 12th century statue of the Virgin Mary.

Citadel of Lille

The Citadel of Lille is a pentagon-shaped citadel of the city wall of Lille, in France. It was built around 1668. It hosts the Corps de réaction rapide France.Dubbed "Queen of the citadels" (Reine des citadelles) by Vauban, it is one of the most notable citadels designed by Vauban. The citadel was part of a double line of fortified towns of Gravelines, Dunkirk and Maubeuge-Rocroi. It was famous pré carré ("square field"), conceived by Vauban comprising 28 fortified cities.

Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille

The Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille is one of the largest museums in France, and the largest French museum outside of Paris.It was one of the first museums built in France, established under the instructions of Napoleon I at the beginning of the 19th century as part of the popularisation of art : Jean-Antoine Chaptal's decree of 1801 selected fifteen French cities (among which Lille) to receive the works seized from churches and from the territories occupied by the armies of Revolutionary France. The painters Louis Joseph Watteau and François Watteau, known as the "Watteau of Lille", were heavily involved in the museum's beginnings - Louis Joseph Watteau made in 1795 the first inventory of the paintings confiscated during the Revolution, whilst his son François was deputy curator of the museum from 1808 to 1823.

Museum of Natural History

Museum of Natural History, a large collection of stuffed mammals, insects, fossils, etc.

Musee d'Art et d' Industrie de Roubaix

La Piscine, a 20th century art museum hosted in a beautiful "Art déco" (start of 20th century) former swimming pool.
 

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