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Best History Museums in Lyon

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Musée Gallo-Romain de Lyon-Fourvière

To better understand the history of Lyon, you have to start with the Gallo-Roman Museum, on the hill of Fourvière. It shows the prehistory and the proto-history of the Lyonnaise region, as well as the birth of Lyon (43CE) up until the 7th Century. The museum is made up of areas with different themes - ceramics, glassware, tools, objects showing domestic life, belief systems relating to death, the army, religion, Roman Gaul circus games. More uniquely to Lyon, the key pieces are sarcophagi of the 3rd century, a processional chariot (700BC), which was found intact (area 1), the engraved Claudian table, which is fundamental for the understanding of the Roman state (area 4). There is also a lunar and solar calendar in the Gaelic language but using Latin characters, which allowed them to regulate religious life (area 9) and mosaics of circus games (chariot races), which are truly extraordinary (area 10). You can see that these give a good representation of what Lyonnaise's life would have been like under Roman occupation. Worth seeing in the surroundings is the Gaelic-Roman site of the large theater and the Odeon. The shop sells books, magazines, mock-ups, and copies of objets d'art. On top of this, there is a workshop to entertain and occupy children.

Lyon, France
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Center for the History of the Resistance and Deportation

The Centre d'Histoire de la Résistance et de la Déportation (Deportation and Resistance Historical Center) is located in what used to be the offices of the Gestapo and Klaus Barbie. While it avoids being too downbeat, the CHRD will leave no one unmoved. The themes of the exhibition are the onset of war and the beginnings of the resistance and deportation. Using an infra red audio system [trilingual], you can move through the exhibition at your own speed. The centre also organizes temporary exhibitions, such as the photographic exhibition of the World Press Foundation (war reportage and refugees of today). There is a library, studio, and conference space available on site.

Lyon, France
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African Museum

Since 1927, the African Museum has exhibited more than 2,500 artifacts, which are diverse objects from West Africa (Ivory Coats, Ghana, Mali, Benin, and Nigeria). These objects, which are of great ethnological value, show the everyday, social and religious life of the different cultures that make up this geographical area. The strong points of this collection are the weights for weighing gold dust, traditional masks, machetes and statuettes that bear witness to the multiplicity of the rights and rituals of West Africa. The museum offers audio-visuals on African life and a library.

Lyon, France
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Lumière Institute

Institut Lumière, a museum and former home of famous inventors Louis and Auguste Lumière, is dedicated to all things related to the world of theater and cinema. Exhibitions include a display of the brothers' inventions, and there is a screening room for documentaries, conferences, or film showings, as well as a library. Many events, festivals, conferences and meetings are organized throughout the year and, during the summer, there are free open-air films in front of the building.

Lyon, France
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Musée des Confluences

Musee des Confluences is an attempt to understand the complex nature of the interaction or the 'confluence' between the human being and the society that surrounds him. This is explicitly announced by the host of numerous exhibits on display that charts the process of evolution and diversifies into fields like natural history, archaeology, and anthropology. Workshops are regularly arranged for children, and so are a huge number of activities. The museum also organizes various temporary exhibitions that highlight the nature of communication between man and culture and related themes.

Lyon, France
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