Rome in Vienne

Another charming town that doesn’t seem to appear in many travel books. Don’t know why? Maybe I’m wrong?

Anyway, before we get started, I forgot to include this image of Marsha just finishing her classes at the Paul Bocuse Institute. Not really, but there it is in Lyon, the capital of eats.

Vienne, the gateway to Lyon’s countryside, has a truly rich Roman history as you can see everywhere; Roman ruins around every corner, some standing alone, and some integrated into the modern structures. It’s one of the oldest towns in France. We’re guided by Jeremy, the same guide that took Bonnie and Steve alone up the hill in Lyon the other day. This was a long uphill trek as well, but about 12 hearty souls from our boat took the challenge to be able to see some spectacular views and sites.


At the bottom of the hill was a beautiful combination Romanesque and Gothic cathedral, St. Maurice. Notice the missing heads in the arch. Bounty was paid for them.

St. Maurice himself looking very self-assured.

The Temple of Augustus & Livia dates back to the first century is just outside the Roman amphitheater that we’ll look at from above after our climb up Mont Pipet. The temple is pretty much in disrepair, blocked off on all sides for safety.

We made the long, steep ascent in 20 minutes or so, and were rewarded with some spectacular views over the town toward the Rhône. We’re situated right between Beaujolais and Burgundy.

The view down to the old Roman amphitheater. It’s still used, as you can see. It’s getting ready for an International jazz festival with some really big names in July. The theater can now hold over 6,000 patrons, a lot less than the original structure.

A not too spectacular church at the top still had some curiously unique tableau. Anyone have any ideas?

The way down was beautiful on this (another) spectacular day. It was really windy on top. This time of year this area around the Rhône can get gusts of over 60 mph when the winds come from the south. They died down as we descended.

Some young (protesters?) saw us photographing a park and decided to happily pose for us. A nice break from old Roman ruins.

As we walked back into town we saw these interesting brass plaques cemented to the sidewalks at regular intervals. It turns out they commemorate the town’s favorite elm trees that were killed by disease some years ago. A nice tribute. The town is still shaded by some enormous, old sycamores.

We took this for you, Alice…

And this for you, Max. It is true of course.

Back on the boat now, we were just about to leave a lock that dropped us probably 15 feet. I was unaware that there were so many locks on the Rhône. Have gone thru two as I have been writing this.

It is very luxurious cruising the river, having your dinner by sparkling picture windows as you dock by the RV park?! Actually just beyond the main dock at our next stop, Tournon, where we’ll hike the local Syrah vineyards tomorrow.

The sunset, at about 10 pm, exactly reflects our feeling about the adventure so far. Only a couple of days to go. Sometimes time moves much, much too fast.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Rome in Vienne

  1. Pauline says:

    All your photos and stories have been delightful! It looks like a wonderful trip.

  2. Sue Sholtis says:

    So pretty!

Let us know if you enjoyed the post!