Le Grand Tour: Day 43 – Tain L’Hermitage To Lyon (By Train)

CURRENT LOCATION: Beside the Rhône, Lyon

Caught the train to Lyon this morning. After all the heat it’s perhaps not surprising that when the rain decided to fall it put on quite an impressive thunder and lightening show. The downpour was, at times, torrential but as I stand here looking over the Rhône in the centre of Lyon, the rain has stopped, the clouds are breaking and perhaps we are in for a better afternoon. 

Not that I’ll be cycling again today. I booked myself into what must be Lyon’s cheapest hotel a couple of streets away. Wanda is chained to a radiator in a function room on the ground floor and my panniers in the left luggage. Perhaps my decision not to cycle today was a little premature. Not only is the weather improving (although the forecast isn’t), I had thought that I could use the opportunity of being in a big city to replenish my wardrobe. I’m in desperate need of a couple of new T-shirts and, with the bike secured in a hotel, I would have the chance to do a little shopping. Alas Lyon is one of the first places I’ve visited recently that still keeps Sunday special. Almost all the shops are closed – even those in the Westfield centre next to Lyon Part-Dieu station – so my early afternoon wander has come to nothing. The fact that it’s August might be a factor, and that tomorrow is the 15th August bank holiday. But the city just seems to be sleeping in the damp.

I’ll try and make the most of the opportunity of having a little planning time this afternoon once I’m allowed to inhabit the room at 2pm. Today is the first day of week 7 of the trip. 3 weeks to go. I’m feeling more positive about my chances of making it back to Rotterdam by September 3rd; a week to cycle from here in Lyon to Andermatt in Switzerland and then two weeks to cycle the Rhine. I was hoping for 10 days minimum but if I do indeed have two weeks, I may not even have to use any more trains. I now have a maximum of three remaining. And then, of course, there’s my washing…


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