Lyon’s 7th arrondissement covers a large region of the east bank of the Rhône and is a young, trendy part of the city complete with great restaurants, small parks and, of course, access to the river. The vibe here is studenty, given the presence of Lyon’s Université II in the area, but it’s also full of other young creatives usually found enjoying a drink as the sun spills over the streets at the end of the day. There are plenty of surprises on every corner in this part of town for those willing to meander the intersections of Lyon’s most up-and-coming area.
Le Court Circuit
Situated in a courtyard next to the neighbourhood’s community garden, Le Court Circuit is a lovely place to sit out and take in the sun during the summer. Stocked with cocktails, wines, beers and plenty of great food options – including some excellent vegetarian fare – this bar serves up a plentiful atmosphere in the heart of Lyon’s 7th arrondissement.
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Right next to the Saxe – Gambetta metro stop is Hopper, a bar with friendly staff, 18 beers on tap – including London’s Meantime – and a pleasant atmosphere. The vibe is young here with its slightly industrial decor leaning towards steampunk in parts. Hopper, on the line between the 7th and 3rd arrondissements, has happy hour, plenty of food choices including a lengthy pizza menu for the bar and a coffee house spread over two floors. Its main draw is the plethora of benches just outside the bar, which makes it a perfect spot to sit and watch the world go by.
Nestled on a corner with a few outdoor tables to mark its existence, Young Lust Bar is small and unassuming at first view. Do not be deceived. The bar is a relatively new addition to the 7th arrondissement but comes with an excellent happy hour and a good range of drink options for a fair price in a trendy part of town. Named after the Pink Floyd song of the same name, this newcomer is definitely worth a visit having just celebrated its first birthday.
Perched just next to the Rhône, Ninkasi Guillotière is one of the multiple Ninkasi bars in the city, with the brand being something of an institution within Lyon. Although somewhat pricier than its alternatives, at Ninkasi, you’re getting quality, locally originated products and their own excellent range of award-winning beers. Ninkasi Guillotière’s main attraction is its large outdoor seating area, which is located just next to the bridge, making it a great spot for a drink. Sports fans may also be pleased to know that most major football and rugby matches are shown here.
Part bar, part game lover’s paradise, L’Atenium is a fun and different place in which to grab a drink. Proud of its board game and beer selection, this bar also sports local and often organic food options while occasionally hosting game nights (think Mario Kart and Twister). Replete with a large fake tree branching over the ceiling, L’Atenium is not a normal bar, but it’s probably all the better for it.
With its unique design replete with large red ants playfully decorating the walls, La Fourmilière (The Ant Hill) is a quirky but consistently excellent bar. With a large outdoor seating terrace, just a stone’s throw from the Rhône, and a good selection of drinks, this kooky bar is perfect for whiling away a summer’s evening. If peckish, the bar offers a good range of food as well as various apéros available to go with your drinks.
One of two La Kolok bars in Lyon, the edition in the 7th arrondissement is smaller but not diminished for it. The bar works on a system of self-service with drinks paid for using a card topped up on arrival before choosing from one of many available tapped beers, including some exceptional regional options. La Kolok also has a plentiful selection of board games, should drinking alone fail to excite.
La Faute aux Ours is strange, animal, small and uniquely decorated – this is not your expansive or indeed fancy choice in the 7th arrondissement. However, this is the place to be for cocktails, shooters and all other varieties of drink. Open late on weekends, with pizza and charcuterie also available throughout the week, this is the bar for those looking for a good time with other like-minded folks.