Annecy is a truly beautiful town, and its narrow streets remain remarkably quiet even during peak summer months. The picturesque canals, old-style architecture and numerous historical sites make this a fantastic holiday destination for culture lovers and hidden gem seekers, so why not find out what there is to discover? Here are the top spots you won’t want to miss.
This Roman Catholic Church is a famous national monument that has stood (partially on the canal) since the sixteenth century. The building is stunning to look at – you may be surprised to hear that it was only given its cathedral status in 1822. Inside the building visitors will find the famous organ, built by Nicolas-Antoine Lété, and the tombs of Francis de Sales and Jane Frances de Chantal.
The Old Town
The picturesque medieval town located on the Thiou River is a place you’ll want to come back to visit again and again. The narrow streets are alive with colour, and the buildings each have their own unique character – yet remain distinctly French! On some days you will find a vibrant food market which brings the locals out from every corner of the Old Town to haggle for goods. It’s a place unlike any other, and definitely worth a visit.
For those looking to relax and enjoy a little peace and quiet, Lac d’Annecy is the ideal spot. Famed for being “Europe’s Cleanest Lake”, this watery paradise is remarkably peaceful and is surrounded by glorious verdant scenery. If you enjoy the clear waters, then you will love the two nearby beaches, Plage la Brune and Plage Municipal. Both are equally stunning and have been awarded the Blue Flag for their impeccable cleanliness.
Here are some interesting ways in which visitors can enjoy the views of the lake.
History buffs will love discovering this famous landmark. Built around the twelfth century at the top of a steep hill, this castle has since been transformed into a fascinating museum, showcasing furniture, manuscripts and various other artefacts dating back hundreds of years. Though recently restored, much of the original architecture can be admired around the building.
Château de Montrottier
If its castles you’re into, you’re in luck – there’s another just around the corner! Montrottier Castle dates back to the thirteenth century and has mightily impressive architecture. Its tall, circular tower and various other turrets dominate the surrounding landscape, and there’s a beautiful river flowing just beside the hill – it looks like something out of a fairytale. Inside the castle visitors can admire the antique weapons, tapestries, furniture, armour, glassware and various other periodic items.
Gorges du Fier
The Gorges du Fier is the river flowing just beneath the castle. Whether you’re a nature lover or an avid explorer, this natural marvel is certainly a must-see. In the summer months, this is the perfect place to come for a cooling dip. A suspended walkway above the river allows visitors to enjoy the waters from a new perspective. The clarity of the water makes the years of rock erosion clearly visible – a highlight for keen geographers.
If you’re looking to do your own exploration around the city, why not hike in the mountains? There are plenty of fantastic viewing spots for opportunities to capture the picture-perfect landscape with your camera. Here are a few lookouts worth travelling to:
- Le Taillefer
- The Oratory in Entrevernes
- The Semnoz Plateau
- The La Frasse Pass
- The Laudon Circuit
Where to Stay
Les Filateries Chambres d’Hotes – Located right at the heart of the city, this property is perfect for those wanting to get out and about to explore. The rooms are modest and simply decorated – ideal for solo travellers. Guests can enjoy a continental breakfast before heading out to see the wonders of Annecy.
Gîte B&B – Haute Savoie – Chez Louise – This accommodation is extremely homely and includes a garden, barbeque and plenty of other additional facilities. Enjoy a continental al fresco breakfast and admire the verdant scenery around you.
Le Paquier – If you’re looking for a little more style, La Paquier is a dream come true. Situated in the centre of the Old Town, this property has everything – modern furnishings, a hot tub, great amenities and a comfortable living space.
How to Get There
A flight to Geneva Airport is the best way to get to the resort if you’re travelling from London – it will take just an hour and a half and there are four airlines that fly direct. Plus, with almost 200 flights scheduled every week, you will have no trouble finding times and prices that suit your needs.
From the airport, I would recommend travelling with Shuttle Direct to your destination; the transfer to Annecy should take about 45 minutes. If you pre-book, the journey will be even less of a hassle since your driver will be waiting for you and you won’t have to queue.
About Shuttle Direct
At Shuttle Direct we provide safe and reliable transfers for our customers. With our easy-to-navigate website, you can pre-book your airport transfer today and save yourself queuing for taxis and public transport services after your flight. What are you waiting for?