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tour around Lake Annecy by bike or on foot

TOP 8 Best things to Do and See in Annecy

If you wish to visit Annecy, you will discover the famous Lake Annecy, but there are more! You will see beautiful pastel-colored houses, canals, a stunning medieval castle, and cobblestoned alleys. So, how can you visit Annecy on foot? What to see and do in Annecy besides biking around Lake Annecy? Where to start your visit, where to eat, swim, and stay in Annecy? Let’s find out immediately in this blog article: let’s go!

  1. Visiting Annecy on foot: the TOP must-sees! 💚
  2. How long does it take to go around Lake Annecy? 🚲
  3. Activities to do around Lake Annecy 🪂
  4. Hotels to stay at on the shores of Lake Annecy 🤩
  5. Good places to eat in Annecy 😋
  6. Where to swim in Lake Annecy? 🏊‍♀️
  7. Festivals and events in Annecy 🗓
  8. What to do around Annecy? 📍

1. How to visit Annecy on foot? The must-sees!

Discover our TOP must-sees not to be missed when visiting Old Town Annecy on foot in 1, 2, or 3 days.

  1. See the medieval castle of Annecy
  2. Walk along the Thiou canal
  3. Visit the Palais de l’Isle
  4. Stroll in the Gardens of Europe with a view of Lake Annecy
  5. Walk on the Pont des Amours (Lovers’ Bridge)
  6. Stroll on the quays of the Vassé canal
  7. Visit the Basilique de la Visitation
  8. Visit Saint-Pierre Cathedral

If we discover these different places on foot, we will tour Old Town Annecy and visit the must-sees along the way without missing anything.

Private walking tour. You can book a walking tour with a local guide to get to know Old Town Annecy, its alleys, and its secrets better. It’s an opportunity to visit Annecy differently by discovering other facets of this pretty town, its history, and its culture.

2. How long does it take to go around Lake Annecy?

A 40km bike path goes around Lake Annecy. It is shared between pedestrians and rollerbladers. Moreover, it’s definitely one of the most beautiful paths in France (or even the most beautiful)!

By bike. If you are doing this bike tour around Lake Annecy, count on 1h to 2h30. You can find a map of the trail and safety instructions on the Annecy City website.

Visiting Lake Annecy on foot. It’s also entirely possible to walk around Lake Annecy. However, the journey time will count in days, not hours this time: plan about 3 days. Along the way, you can stop at hotels on the shores of Lake Annecy (see below).

Hiking and walking. If you are looking for possible hiking routes to do in Annecy and its surroundings, you can find them on the mobile app developed by the Lake Annecy Tourist Office: ViAnnecy.

tour around Lake Annecy by bike or on foot

3. What are the best activities to do around Lake Annecy?

What else to do in Annecy and around Lake Annecy? Here are some activities to give you ideas.

  • Go catamaraning on Lake Annecy: simple, but still quite physical!
  • Visit Annecy by Segway: during an hour-long ride, you will discover the shores of Lake Annecy and enjoy its impressive panoramas. An activity to do in Annecy if you are short on time or want to take a slightly more unusual tour of Lake Annecy!
  • Stand-up paddleboarding on Lake Annecy is an activity to do if you are not afraid of water and want to see Lake Annecy from a new angle!

Other activities to do around Lake Annecy:

  • Paraglide down onto Lake Annecy
  • Fly over Lake Annecy in an ultralight aircraft, hang glider, or even a hot air balloon
  • Canoeing on Lake Annecy

4. Hotels to stay at the edge of Lake Annecy

To fully enjoy the beauty of the location, you can choose a hotel by the shore of Lake Annecy. Discover our selection of places to stay in Annecy and by its beautiful lake in our article: Where to stay in Annecy.

5-star Hotel Annecy by Lake Annecy: Le Palace De Menthon. Located 10km from Annecy’s city center, Le Palace de Menthon has only 60 rooms and 5 suites. Some rooms and suites have a direct view of Lake Annecy. A private beach is available on-site, and from the palace’s restaurant, you will enjoy a breathtaking view of Lake Annecy!

4-star Hotel Annecy by Lake AnnecyLe Clos Marcel. Situated on the shore of Lake Annecy, near the village of Duingt, this stylish hotel with contemporary decor offers spacious double rooms, a spa, and a private beach with direct Lake Annecy access. Overall, it is a perfect place to stay on the shores of Lake Annecy and spend a wonderful time with your significant other!

3-star Hotel Annecy by Lake AnnecyHotel Beau Site SPA. A private beach and shore, a playground for children, and a spa and wellness center are ideal for an unforgettable stay by Lake Annecy with the family!

In the heart of Annecy’s city centerHotel du Palais de l’Isle. A perfect place to stay to visit Annecy and make the most of the ambiance of its historic center! Some rooms overlook the canals or the medieval castle of Annecy, and the highest ones are over Annecy’s Old Town rooftops.

walking tour through Annecy

5. Tasty places to eat in Annecy

Here are some places to eat if you visit Annecy. Click on the address to open in Google Maps.

1er Mets (2 Pl. Saint-Maurice): located right in the center of Annecy, this restaurant serves seasonal dishes with high-quality products: an absolute pleasure for the taste buds!

COZNA (22 Fbg Sainte-Claire): another excellent place to eat in Annecy! Sandra and Leo opened this restaurant. Before opening COZNA, they worked for starred restaurants in Paris and New York. Seasonal cuisine and impeccable welcome: a perfect time to spend.

L’Esquisse (21 Rue Royale): a Michelin-starred restaurant with a 5-course delicious menu! French alpine cuisine with a modern and refreshing touch: perfect for a successful weekend in Annecy!

6. Where to swim in Lake Annecy?

Why not go swimming if you come to visit Annecy in the summer? There are several beaches around Lake Annecy to swim at. For example:

  • Marquisats Beach. This free beach is near Annecy’s city center, so it’s easily accessible if you visit Annecy on foot. Here, unsurprisingly, it’s pretty crowded. Many boats navigate around.
  • Albigny Beach. Also in Annecy, but a bit further from the city center, Albigny Beach is just as famous with swimmers and is only supervised during summer.
  • Sévrier Beach. 6km from the center of Annecy, you can swim in Lake Annecy at the municipal beach of Sévrier. It is a paid beach (a few euros), less busy, and the views over the lake and mountains are still just as magnificent!
  • Talloires Beach. 15km from Annecy, Talloires Beach is a free beach. The views are breathtaking. Several spots nearby are perfect for jumping into Lake Annecy.

7. Visiting Annecy during festivals and celebrations

Several noteworthy events punctuate the local life of Annecy:

Good to know! Many travelers visit Annecy during the summer, even more so during these events. If you plan to discover Lake Annecy during these dates, accommodations will have higher rates, and the choice will be more limited. So, we advise you to book accommodations in advance or to avoid these dates.

visiting the old town of Annecy on foot, houses

8. What to visit around Lake Annecy?

If you have more than 2 days to visit Annecy, you can discover other places around Lake Annecy. Here are some examples:

  • Menthon-Saint-Bernard Castle
  • Col de la Forclaz
  • Angon Waterfall
  • Parmelan
  • Gorges du Fier
  • Dents de Lanfon
  • Pas du Roc

These are the perfect places for hiking in nature.

Visiting Annecy and Lake Annecy is one of the favorite and must-see destinations to discover in France. Here, you will find nature in its purest form! The Old Town of Annecy can be visited in 1 or 2 days. However, if you want to breathe fresh air, you can easily stay here for a few more days.

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Louis and Emilie

We once heard visitors in Paris saying that the French are not the most welcoming people. It made us sad. That's why we started this blog! So you can get the best information for your travel to France! Of course, we love Paris. We have lived in multiple areas, from Canal St Martin to right next to the Eiffel Tower. We also explore regions of France whenever we can. Our favorites for a weekend away from Paris are Etretat and Mont Saint Michel. The beautiful French Riviera is a marvelous place to explore for a week.

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