Could I technically ask Qu'est-ce qu'il y a la distance entre Paris et Lyon? Would that make sense considering "il y a" can be used in questions.
What you suggest doesn't make any sense in French if you want to say -
What is there between Paris and Lyon? = Qu'est-ce qu'il y a entre Paris et Lyon ?
May I suggest you take a look at the following lesson -
Quel/quels/quelle/quelles ? = Which/what? (French Question Words)
Hope this helps!
Your query reads "Is there a distance between Paris and Lyon?" this would need to be expressed as "Quelle est la distance entre Paris et Lyon?"
An example, using il y a
"Est-ce qu'il y a un restaurant près d'ici?" --> "Is there a restaurant near here?"
Further information on usage in the following link:-
Hope this helps.
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