Lille (Rijsel in Flemish) may be France's most underrated major city. In recent decades this once-grimy industrial metropolis, its economy based on declining industries, has transformed itself – with generous government help – into a glittering and self-confident cultural and commercial hub. Highlights for the visitor include an attractive old town with a strong Flemish accent, three renowned art museums, stylish shopping, some excellent dining options and a cutting-edge, student-driven nightlife scene. The Lillois have a well-deserved reputation for friendliness – and are so proud of being friendly that they often mention it!
Thanks to the Eurostar and the TGV, Lille makes an easy, environmentally sustainable weekend destination from London, Paris or Brussels.
Best places to stay in Lille
Bienvenue, Louvre number two: France's newest cultural treasure trove
The former French coal-mining town of Lens will be in focus for art lovers around the world this year, as Louvre-Lens (www.louvrelens.
Lille destination guides
France sans frontières: the best French border towns
Looking for a new angle on the well-trodden paths of France? Then travel to its borders.
Lille City Pass
A practical must-have, the Lille City Pass is the answer to all your visiting needs, whether you're staying one day or longer. Make considerable savings in Lille, the capital of the Nord-Pas de Calais region.
Lille City Sightseeing Tour
Discover the city of Lille with a one hour city tour. You will travel by minibus around Lille's historical sites, along water and green spaces to appreciate an extraordinary panorama of the city, from the origin to the most contemporary districts.