Rhone-Alps region features array of cultural sites

NEW YORK -- Delta's April 14 inauguration of nonstop flight service between New York and Lyon now gives travelers easier access to France's Rhone-Alps region.

The airline launched daily flights from New York (Kennedy) to Lyon's Satolas Airport, a service code shared with Air France.

The Rhone-Alps region lies midway between Paris and Nice, bordering the provinces of Burgundy and Provence.

The French Grenadiers, once Napoleon's elite Imperial Guards, marching through New York's Central Park. All 60 were in the city recently for the Rhone-Alps New York 2000 Festival. Rhone-Alps attractions include:

  • The University of Wine in Suze-la-Rousse, housed in a medieval castle and offering courses in enology conducted in English, is perfect for individual and group wine lovers.
  • La Route des Vins, north from Lyon, links Beaujolais villages whose wineries and cellars are open for tours and tastings.
  • Along the way in Romanche-Thorins is the Hameau du Vin de Georges Duboeuf, a museum illustrating the history of wine and wine-making, set in a turn-of-the-century rail station.

  • Specialty museums highlight regional creativity. They include the Fabrics Museum in Lyon; the International Shoe Museum in Romans, showcasing styles by Kelian and Charles Jourdan; the Hat Museum in Chazelles sur Lyon; the Clock Museum of Cluses; the Museum of Tableware of Roanne; the Ski Museum of Grenoble, showcasing Rossignols' latest models, and the Figurines Museum (16,000 miniatures) of Marboz.
  • Natural sightseeing includes Chamonix, which looks straight up at Mont Blanc, the highest peak (15,780 feet) in Europe. What is said to be the world's highest cable-car ride takes visitors to the summit of Aiguille du Midi (12,600 feet). The cog railway of Montenvers leads to the Mer de Glace glacier.
  • The Monastery of the Grande Chartreuse, where the Carthusian monks first created Chartreuse in the 16th century, is on the route between Lyon and Grenoble. In nearby Voiron, travelers are welcome at the distillery where the famous liqueur is still made.
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