The Best French City to Live in Has Been Revealed - And It's Not Paris!

Lille
Lille | ©Binayak Dasgupta/Flickr

A new study has revealed that Lille is the best city to live in France, and these are some of the reasons why nobody is really surprised by the results.

Why Lille?

In a new ‘lifestyle barometer’ published by Jobijoba, one of the French leaders in job searching, and meilleurtaux. com, specialist in the online brokerage market, a mix of data from France’s main cities was cross-referenced using indicators of the labour market, median wages, real estate prices and interest rates. Bingo! Lille, the capital of the north, came up as the number one city to live in France.

In truth, it is nothing new to the younger generations of Lille denizens, they had already figured it out on their own. Why pay a fortune for a postage-stamp sized flat in the capital when you have a great lifestyle in one of Lille’s trendier neighbourhoods, with access to culture, great spots to eat, shop and go out, beautiful green spaces and numerous cafés? Plus, you can jump on the Eurostar or the TGV and be in a European hub in a couple of hours.

Grand Place, Lille

A warm welcome

The north is known for its laid-back and friendly attitude, and Lille, as its capital, is no exception to the legendary Ch’ti welcome. The region has mining and industrial roots, and has taken a grounded, no-nonsense approach to reinventing its future. Lille has emerged as a commercial and cultural capital to be reckoned with, while at the same time retaining its tolerance and sense of humour that earned it first place as France’s friendliest city, according to the tongue-in-cheek ranking of travel site Topito.

Christmas market

Human scale

Walking around Lille’s attractive old town is a surprise to the first-time visitor, because of the richness of its Flemish architecture, but also because of how simple it is to find your bearings. Everything seems to be within easy walking distance or a short metro ride, including renowned art museums, world-class shopping, and myriad dining options. As a university town, Lille has a vibrant student life and night scene, and business and entertainment spots respond to a growing demand for new and fresh spots to live, work, meet, shop, and socialise.

The art of living in Lille

Living culture

A mix of old and new keeps renewing the cultural offering in the city. Lille is home to venerable institutions such as the Palais des Beaux-Arts museum with France’s second largest art collection after the Louvre, and it has made the most of its designation in 2004 as European Capital of Culture. The city enjoys a healthy contemporary art scene with regular events, exhibitions, performances and festivals.

Contemporary architecture in Lille

The business district

Strategically placed as a commercial hub, at the centre of the triangle formed by London, Paris and Brussels, Lille is home to retail megachains and is increasingly attracting new investment. The Euralille 3000 project proposes to further expand the business district, already the third most important in France, with a focus on developing business and transport infrastructure and also nightlife, shopping, culture and sports –another example of Lille’s approach to a well-rounded urban lifestyle.

Euralille business hub

Culture Trips launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes places and communities so special.

Our immersive trips, led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

close-ad
Edit article