What to Do and What to See in Annecy

Annecy is a charming town in the French Alps and a very popular tourist destination with many attractions including its own lake.

Annecy is a charming town in the French Alps and a very popular tourist destination with many attractions including its own lake.

Lake Annecy

Lake Annecy promenad
Cycling path and Lake Annecy promenade (Photo: Patrick Nouhailler)

Lake Annecy is also known as the “Blue Lake”, and under a sunny sky, its very clean and sparkling waters show why this is a very apt moniker.

Lake Annecy offers many water sports, including boating, swimming, fishing, wind-surfing and scuba diving. The lake has its own beaches.

It has cycling routes around it and is a cyclist’s paradise.

Lake Annecy even has its own festival. On the first Saturday in August a massive firework display is staged as part of the Fête du lac d’Annecy (Lake Annecy Festival).

Annecy Castle

Annecy Castle
Annecy Castle (Photo: Guilhem Vellut)

Besides the obvious attraction afforded by Lake Annecy, another popular location for visitors to Annecy is the castle.

Chateau d’Annecy is a restored castle that is part of the old town and, built on a hill, it overlooks Annecy as it is today.

The castle was constructed between the 12th and 16th centuries and served as the place of residence for the Counts of Geneva and the Dukes of Genevois-Nemours. Listed as a historic monument, today Annecy’s castle houses a museum.

Speaking of places of residence, if you are taking a holiday in Annecy you will need to find some accommodation there. Fortunately the town has hotels you can choose from.

Learn French

Annecy also has a French language school if you want to learn to speak like the locals do, and what better way is there to learn French than in France.

Palais de l’Isle

Palais de l’isle
Palais de l’isle (Photo: Kosala Bandara)

Likened to Venice,and nicknamed the “Venice of the Alps,” due to its canals that are actually part of the Thiou River, Annecy has its own waterways in addition to its lake. In the middle of the Canal du Thiou on a small islet stands the imposing turreted building known as the Palais de l’Isle.

The countryside around Annecy

Gorges du Fier
Gorges du Fier (Photo: Guilhem Vellut)

Located in the Haute-Savoie region of the French Alps means that Annecy is surrounded by mountains and offers some truly spectacular countryside outside the town. One of the most popular locations is the Gorges du Fier, though you will possibly need a good head for heights. The Gorges du Fier has a walkway that is attached to the walls of the gorge.

There are free carparks for the Gorges du Fier and it is well worth a visit. The walkway around the gorge is an incredible experience but don’t look down!

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