Annecy is located on the southeastern region of France, an overnight train ride or about a six hours car drive from Paris. Rightly named ‘ Pearl of the Alps ‘, Annecy is neither Amsterdam nor Venice ; it’s a place where the mountains meet the glorious lake on one side and the natural translucent waters of the city canals continue to reflect its beauty. The bucolic villages around the lake are simply charming. We stayed at a village in the mountainside and used a car for transport to and from Annecy.
Lake Annecy has such a magnificent landscape; green grass, deeper green mountains and the glistening lake. It surely left me mesmerised.
Popularly called the cleanest lake in Europe, it naturally becomes a summer destination for everyone from families with kids, to couples and solos. Summertime (June to August) would be the best to visit the lake for activities on and around the lake. There are various boat and ferry rides available at the lake to enjoy the scenery more closely.The lawns and surrounding area of the lake make it a perfect place to relax by the waterfront. As for kids, it is an ideal place to use little cycles and scooters to race around. Taking a walk alongside the lake, we spotted a carrousel towards the Lovers bridge or Pont des Amours. Standing on the bridge, you can view the lake on one side and the canal on the other.
We experienced some summer rain the day we were about town. But it had been pretty hot the previous day, so the rain was kind of a relief. It didn’t dampen our spirits all that much, as the sun came out soon enough and we could continue strolling the city.
Next we came across Palais de l’Isle which is a central landmark in the old town of Annecy. It has been a residence of a Count, a courthouse, a mint and a prison over the centuries. Now it serves as an art and history museum. It’s located in the middle of the Thiou canal, you can’t miss it when in town. Also the ice cream shops and eateries around this central part of the city will draw you here quite naturally.
After grabbing ourselves some gelato, we continued our walk to get just a glimpse of the 13th century tower of Château d’Annecy (Annecy Castle) .
Annecy is also a town filled with churches and cathedrals. We visited one church in the centre of town that had its doors open. It was a good time to take a small break from walking about and the perfect place for some quiet reflection.
On another day, it was nice to attend Sunday Mass in french at the beautiful basillica of Visitation, which stands high up on a hill. The Basilique de la Visitation was built on the edge of town in the 20th century and has the tombs of saints François de Sales and Jeanne de Chantal. Early that morning, the view of the city from up here was splendid.