Grenoble at a glance
Because it’s a vibrant, historic city, nestled between three mountain ranges.
The place to hang out is the top of the Bastille, a magnificent spot for sundowner drinks with views over the city.
You probably didn’t know
You can “fly” over Grenoble on a 300m zip-line from the top of the Bastille.
Watch The Trilogy (2003), starring Gilbert Melki, which was set in Grenoble.
- Population: 161,000
- Annual visitors: 649,359 (2014)
- January mean temperature: 2°C
- August mean temperature: 20°C
Things to do in Grenoble
Pain et Cie
A local favourite for a lazy breakfast is Pain et Cie in the old town, which has exceptional bread, spreads and pastries.
Restaurant le Téléférique
For panoramic views while you eat local and seasonal specialities, head to La Bastilleand dine on the terraces of Restaurant le Téléférique, which specialises in local produce, orthe gastronomic restaurant Chez le Pèr’Gras, from where you can see across to Mont Blanc on clear days.
La Petite Idée
Cosy café-restaurant La Petite Idée is popular with locals and tourists alike, with a menu that changes daily according to what produce inspires the chef from the local markets.
Restaurant Auberge Napoléon
Set in a beautifully restored townhouse - where Napoléon Bonaparte once slept - is the restaurant Auberge Napoléon, where Chef Agnès Chotin, one of France's top female chefs, conjures ups dishes such as wild boar stewed in port wine with a lemon crust.
Café de la Table Ronde
For evening buzz, head to the historical centre where you’ll find a succession of squares, each with bars and restaurants, such as Place Saint-André (known by locals as Place du Trib’), where you will find the second oldest French café, Café de la Table Ronde, which serves up wonderful ravioles, a typical dish of the area.
Le Vieux Manoir
Le Vieux Manoir, located in Saint Laurent district, is the oldest nightclub in Grenoble made out of stone, and with three different spaces within.
Keen clubbers can head to Club Vertigo, which flies DJs in from all over Europe for party nights that go till dawn
Le Barberousse isa wood-panelled, boat-shaped bar that serves 60 different types of rum.
The London Pub has an international crowd and is also popular with students, with a wide mix of music – and two dancefloors.
The creative heart of the city is the Championnet district, with boutiques, craft creators, unusual items for sale, galleries, music shops and a bohemian chic vibe. Not to mention plenty of cute cafés and bars to sit and sip.
If you love old-world jewellery, head to Gabriel Gay, renowned for its quirky, hand-crafted trinkets and located in the city centre.
Saint Bruno’s Market
For down-to-earth bustle, hit Saint Bruno’s Market where all walks of life converge to buy popular goods, every morning from Tuesday to Sunday.
Fromagerie Les Alpages
Take advantage of the fact that you are in a region of devoted cheese producers, and visit Fromagerie Les Alpages where Fromager Bernard Mure-Ravaud will guide you through a delicious selection of Gruyère, rigotte and St-Félicien, as well as other regional specialities.
Les Halles Sainte-Claire
Les Halles Sainte-Claire, Grenoble's lovely covered market with an ornate glass-fronted façade and fountain, was founded in 1874 and is the place to find fresh fruit and flowers, while enjoying the nearby charcuteries (delicatessens).
From December until April, Grenoble offers a fantastic launch pad for excursions to ski resorts. The closest is Chamrousse, a favourite with local freeriders. A little further are the big hitters of Alpe d’Huez and Les Deux Alpes, both of which have huge ski terrain areas as well as some buzzing après ski bars.
Fort de la Bastille
Formerly a military fortress, Fort de la Bastille is now home to several museums, such as the Centre d'Art Bastille, offering contemporary art, and the Musée des Troupes de Montagne, which traces the history of soldiers in this mountainous region.
Le Musée de Grenoble
Le Musée de Grenoble, founded in 1798, has more than 900 works of ancient and modern art, with a special collection of Egyptian antiquities. 1000m² are reserved for contemporary exhibitions, such as Marc Chagall, Gaston Chaissac's and Alberto Giacometti.
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