A major plaza and a popular meeting point, Lille’s historic Grand Place is also an architectural showcase. The Old Town square features buildings that span the centuries, from Flemish-style stepped-gable constructions from the 17th century to modern, 20th-century landmarks. The square is crowned by the Column of the Goddess, which commemorates the Siege of Lille in 1792. See the Grand Place on a host of tour itineraries, including walking, biking, and driving tours.
Things to Know Before You Go
Be sure to visit Le Furet du Nord bookstore when you stop by Lille’s Grand Place—it’s one of Europe’s largest.
The Grand Place hosts a popular annual Christmas market, complete with stalls, a tree, and a luminous Ferris wheel.
Venture into the Vieille Bourse’s courtyard on afternoons from Tuesday–Sunday, when it hosts a flower and used book market.
How to Get There
The Grand Place can be reached by numerous forms of public transit. The square is a quick trip from Lille’s two main train stations (the Gare de Lille Europe and the Gare de Lille Flandres) and is served by Lille’s Metro and numerous bus lines, including the Vieux-Lille Shuttle. It’s best explored on foot.
When to Get There
Lille’s Grand Place is a must-visit, whether drenched by sunlight or illuminated after dark. Many of the area’s landmarks operate according to typical business hours, so it’s best to explore earlier in the day to take full advantage of area attractions.
Major Landmarks Near the Grand Place
Many tours of Lille’s Old Town begin at the Grand Place—and there's little wonder why. The square is surrounded by several of the city’s top attractions, including the Vieille Bourse (Old Stock Exchange) and the Théâtre du Nord. Other nearby highlights range from the Opéra de Lille to the Notre-Dame-de-la-Treille Cathedral.
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- Lille Old Town (Vieux Lille)
- Hospice Comtesse Museum (Musée de l'Hospice Comtesse)
- Grand Place
- Lille Museum of Fine Arts (Palais des Beaux Arts de Lille)
- Birthplace of Charles de Gaulle (Maison Natale de Charles de Gaulle)
- Lille Cathedral (Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-la-Treille)
- Lille Métropole Museum of Modern, Contemporary and Outsider Art (LAM)