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History on display in Lyon, France

France’s second city, Lyon, is renowned for its food, but it should be equally famous for its fine collection of unusual museums.
TheMusée des Confluences in Lyon.Quentin Lafont

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As well as conventional art and history collections, there are museums here devoted to the cinema, fabrics, marionettes and Lyon’s role in the resistance movement during the World War II.

To those, now add the Musee des Confluences, which opened in December 2014.

This stunning new museum takes its name from its location at the spot where the city’s two rivers, the Saone and the Rhone, meet. The building itself looks like a spaceship, and the museum’s aim is nothing less than to tell the history of the world. It’s a lofty ambition, but when you’re still there after several hours, you might decide it has achieved it.

With over 3,000 items on display, from dinosaurs to waffle-makers, and all shown with imagination and flair, this has instantly become one of the world’s great museums.

For more advice on traveling in France, go to www.insightguides.com.

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