Since 1852, the French city of Lyon has celebrated the light-centred festival, the Fête Des Luminères. This year is no exception. Known as the Festival of Lights in English, this international and magical event draws tourists from all around the globe.

Lyon holds this glowing festival annually on December 8th. It runs for four luminescent evenings and is considered a very special time of the year for the people of Lyon.

The Tradition that Lives on

Known across the world for its temporary light installations, according to the festival's official website, this event harks back to the 19th century. It continues a tradition that was borne during a time of "social unrest, recurring floods and radical urban change." As a result, in 1852 it was decided that a statue of the Virgin Mary would be erected on the Fourvière Hill.

The initial date of the statue's erection was scheduled for September 8th of 1852. This is the date of the traditional procession of Aldermen. However, the statue couldn't be delivered to the city due to the flooding and ultimately, it was postponed. It was attempted again on December 8th, known as the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. However, poor weather meant the official plans for the celebration had to be abandoned once again. Despite this, the statue was still installed.

On the evening of December 8th, the people of Lyon spontaneously placed lit candles on their window sills and balconies as they noticed the weather beginning to ease. The candles lit their coloured windows and cast a rainbow of light on to the streets of Lyon. This was their own way of celebrating the statue.

This act showcased the people coming together in a spirit of great solidarity. The tradition of December 8th has continued over the following centuries and the citizens of Lyon now wouldn't be without this annual festivity of colour.

Modern Meaning of The Fête Des Luminères!

Nowadays, the meaning of the festival has grown as the event becomes even more magnificent and awe-inspiring. Light installations now stretch down streets, across bridges and along rivers, illuminating the veins of the prestigious city. Dragging itself from the shadows, Lyon is now well-renowned for its beauty and heritage, features that are especially well-highlighted during this magical time of the year after night fall.

To pay homage to the event, around the time of December 8th every year, Lyon employs thousands of lights to illuminate their city. Light now symbolises a renewed identity for the people of Lyon. And, for any tourists visiting the area, they'll be treated to a light show of simply stunning proportions.

Fête Des Luminères 2019

In 2019, the event will begin on Thursday, December 5th and last until Sunday, December 8th. If this festival has caught your imagination, we suggest booking your travel and accommodation now! The city will undoubtedly be filled to the brim with delighted tourists!

The Festival will use different artists and 40 light installations for the 2019 show. It aims to display the magnificent heritage of the Presqu’île and Vieux-Lyon. With heaps of medieval and Renaissance architecture in Vieux-Lyon, the lights only emphasise these impressive features. On the other hand, the lights in Presqu’île highlight the modern, majestic buildings that can be found in this area. These varied, beautiful buildings across Lyon serve as the stunning backdrop for the sound and light show known as the son et lumière. Billed as "huge" and "magical," these installations are not something that you want to miss!

Lyon and Energy-Saving LEDs

To enable the city to continue their annual tradition, the organisers "strive for maximum reduction of the event's impact on the environment." But how do they achieve this? Well, thanks to the fantastic energy-saving properties of LED lighting technology, the people of Lyon can help the environment in one easy movement.

Whilst they also rely on public transportation and "a reduction of printed programs in favour of electronic communication," opting for low-energy LEDs is a large part of their environmental policy.

At LED Monkey, we know the importance of energy-efficient lighting. In comparison to traditional lighting, such as halogen, incandescent and CFL lighting, LED's produce far less heat making them much more energy efficient. As a result, less energy is needed to power them, and the drain on our planet's energy-demand is greatly reduced. AND, you'll even save money when you install them in your home thanks to the low energy required!

Lyon now regards light as an inherent part of its identity. The lights proudly showcase the historic architecture of the city and attract visitors from around the world. And, thanks to LEDs, the city can continue this magnificent tradition whilst taking into consideration the needs of our environment too.

Check out the Fête Des Luminères!

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