Annecy

It is built around the River Thiou and has been commonly called 'Venice' because of the many canals cutting through the old town. The city, also known as the seat of Les Comtes de Geneves, has preserved the remains of previous époques and an old-time romantic spirit can still be sensed along the arcaded streets where Jean-Jacques Rouseau once took his walks and received his inspiration.

Today, Annecy is lively and energetic, and since 1980 it has turned into one of the most modern urban and resort centers of France. Thanks to the lakeside and the magnificent French Alps, Annecy welcomes a huge influx of tourists throughout the year. Despite its modern prosperity, the city has preserved the natural charm of the area, with its original freshness and beauty. Boat trips on the lake, water sports, mountain hikes or exploration tours are a top experience here. Near the city is the dramatic George du Fier, one of the most fascinating sites in the French Alps, offering an astonishing natural spectacle of water and rock formations. A few steps away from the Gorge, you will find Chateau de Montrottier. This beautiful castle hosts a museum of textile, costume and art objects.

The most famous city sights surely include the Palais de l'Ile. An amazing building set in the midst of the lake waters, the palace once served as a prison. To really get to know Annecy, a visit to the Musee Chateau d'Annecy is a must. The 12th Century tower of the building is known as the Queen's Tower, and its imposing silhouette dominates the resort. The museum offers various collections, from paintings and sculpture to a section revealing the mysteries of marine life.