Life in Lille is full of history, culture and great food. The city has some fantastic restaurants, many of which borrow inspiration from both the French and Belgium cuisines of the region.
Most of the inhabitants are under thirty, thanks in no small part to the university. The city also caters to this younger population well with a host of quirky bars, cabaret shows and nightclubs.
For younger families, and those seeking the quieter life, there are streets in the oldest parts of town to wander through. Here Flemish architecture hides cute bakeries, comfy cafes, independent artisan shops and a wide array of boutiques.
The city also boasts a number of green spaces, with the Parc Les Poussins a favorite weekend haunt of young families thanks to its fairground rides, puppet theatre and zoo.
The French healthcare system relies on both public and private facilities, which cater to both residents and foreigners. Care is funded by a public health insurance scheme, which is financed by mandatory contributions to the state health system.
This funding covers the majority of costs; however, in most situations the patient is liable for a fraction of the cost (usually around 30%). This remaining charge can be funded directly by the patient or through a supplementary private health insurance.
Given the cost of treatment, it is advisable to take out supplementary cover. There are a number of insurers to choose from, some catering specifically to expats and English speakers living in Lille while others are targeted to certain professions.
Unlike in other countries, the French health system caters to all. Those without private health insurance are entitled to use the same facilities as everybody else, so you can take your pick of treatment facilities should you need them.
Lille has three hospitals including the university hospital. France has an excellent international reputation for medical services, so you can be sure to receive the very best care when living in Lille.
Public transport in Lille is among the most advanced in the whole country, with a network of buses, trams and a driverless metro system.
The city is well-connected, with an international airport just 15 minutes by car from the city center and the third largest river port of the whole of France.
There is also a Eurostar terminal in the city, with regular high-speed trains providing a direct service to Paris, London, Brussels and the southern border.