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Annecy old-city : Thiou river Sunday morning market

Annecy [7] in the North of the French Alps, is called touristically the Venice of Savoie. The medieval town centre built around a 14th Century Chateau is dissected by small canals and streams running out of Lac Annecy, which is clean, fresh and a wonderful azure colour. Annecy is also the prefecture of the département of Haute-Savoie.

Get in[edit]

By bus[edit]

Annecy is a popular day trip from nearby Geneva, Switzerland. Buses leave from Geneva's intercity bus station about 5 times/day on Sundays, more frequently on weekdays. A round-trip ticket costs 32 CHF and the trip takes about an hour/direction.

Bus T72 [8] operated by Transalis goes from Geneva Airport and Geneva city centre to Annecy with a journey time of 1hr 30 min. As of 2017, a one-way bus ticket costs €10.50 if you buy online [9] or at a ticket office or €12.60 if you buy onboard.

By plane[edit]

At present, there are no scheduled flights to/from Annecy Airport.

Geneva Airport (IATA: GVA) is the nearest major international airport and is well served from across Europe and beyond. With the new motorway, it is now just over 35mins away by car. Bus T72 [10] operated by Transalis runs between Geneva Airport and Annecy with a journey time of 1hr 30 min. As of 2017, a one-way bus ticket costs €10.50 if you buy online [11] or at a ticket office or €12.60 if you buy onboard.

A little further away is Lyon–Saint-Exupéry Airport (IATA: LYS), which is also served by international flights. There is one daily TGV train service in each direction between Lyon airport (station name: Lyon-Saint Exupéry TGV) and Annecy with a journey time of just under 2 hours. Alternatively, there is a bus service operated by OUIGO [12] between Lyon airport and Annecy with a journey time of 1hr 45min, and also a more frequent (but more expensive) bus service operated by Transdev Haute-Savoie [13] with a journey time of 2 hours.

Another alternative is Grenoble-Isère Airport (IATA: GNB), which is served by low-cost carriers and charter flights. There is a shuttle bus service between Grenoble-Isère Airport and Grenoble railway station operated by Actibus. From Grenoble railway station you can take the train to Annecy.

By train[edit]

Direct train from Paris or Lyon. The railway station is situated in the city centre of Annecy.

Get around[edit]

By bus[edit]

From Annecy city center, regular bus around the Annecy lac. Some bus are going to Albertville via Faverge.

By train[edit]

In the direction of the Mont-Blanc, direct train to Le Fayet, Saint-Gervais-les-Bains

See[edit][add listing]

  • Palais d'Isle. A former palace-turned-prison. As the name says, it is situated on an island between the canals.  edit
  • Saint Maurice Church.  edit
  • Annecy Castle (Château d'Annecy), 3, Passage de l Île, 74000 Annecy, France, [1]. Situated on a hill overlooking the city and the surroundings. entrance 5€.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Swim, row or sail on the lake
  • Hike on the mountains around the city
  • Bike around the lake, or up in the mountains if you are in good shape.
  • Hangliding above the lake from the Col de la Forclaz (~20km)
  • Shop the many boutiques lining the narrow stone-paved streets. A large, modern mall can also be found in the newer part of the city.
  • Films a theatre near the large mall showing multiple films for your enjoyment. Located at 7 Avenue de Brogny.


  • April: A cozy village festival is held, a great place to bring the family. Rides and vendors are abundent, along with the great french cuisine. The festival lines Lac Annecy and is very peaceful and beautiful.
  • June : One of the biggest animation festivals is held in Annecy (6 days)
  • July : Noctibules festival during the nights (4 days)
  • The first week-end of August is the Lake Festival (Fête du Lac) with attractions around the lake and a great fireworks. This event brings more than 100'000 spectators.
  • October : "Descente des Alpages" or "Return from Alpine Pastures". Occurs once a year on the second Saturday of October. This is a traditional farmers' festival with local music, food and entertainment. See pictures from this festival

Eat[edit][add listing]

For between meals try the Italian ice cream shops, favored by the locals, located on the numerous pedestrian-only by-ways that weave the city and river together.

Another suggestion is the brioche (sweet roll) and other goodies to be found at the boulangeries (bakeries) in town.

  • Les Vielles Prisons, 1 rue Perrière, 04 45 06 53, [2]. The most interesting place to eat, with more than the usual things on the menu at a reasonable price.  edit
  • l'Heure Tourne, 21 rue Président Favre, [3]. The best burger bar in town run by two great guys. €9-14.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Annecy Hostel, 32 avenue de Loverchy, Annecy, 0033953120290, [4]. checkin: 2:00pm; checkout: 10:00am. Small and friendly hostel. In summer you can enjoy the big garden with terrace, a pool table and a tennis table. There is a fully equipped kitchen. Just 5 minutes from the old town. 22.  edit
  • PV-Holidays Adagio Annecy Centre, (next to train station in business district, short walk from the Old Town and lake), +33 1 58 21 55 84, [5]. An aparthotel offering studio style apartments for up to 4 people. A fitness room, sauna and private parking are also available. ~80 Euros.  edit
  • Peak Retreats (Annecy Accommodation Specialist), 0044 2392 839 310, [6]. A range of self-catering apartments & hotels around Lake Annecy. Bookable from the UK.  edit

Bed & Breakfast, youth hostel exist. Surrounding mountains and lake activities are draining a large number of tourist during the summer and more and more during the winter season. Several winter sport resorts being in 30' drive.

Buy[edit][add listing]

Annecy has a number of local artisan shops as well as many European chain boutiques.

There is a market (marché) most days at various locations. Le marché is an open air market with fresh fruits and vegetables.

Stay Safe[edit]

Crime rarely occurs here. Theft happens every once in a while but that's it.


The town itself gets busy in July but September brings less folk.

Get out[edit]

If you want to get away from the crowds, try the far side of the lake. The best way to get around is by bike.

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