Lake Annecy, Rhone-Alps, France
Also known as: Lac d'Annecy
Welcome to the ultimate guide to Lake Annecy — things to do, where to stay, fun facts, history, stats and more. Let’s dive in!
Topics we cover in this article:
- All About Lake Annecy
- Things to Do
- Fish Species
- Where to Stay
- Vacation Planning Tools
- Lake Annecy Map
- Statistics / Weather / Helpful Links
- Shop Lake Annecy Gifts
Looking for Lake Annecy cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore our comprehensive list of favorite travel partners.
All About Lake Annecy
Paragliders sail like bright balloons over the clean mountain water of Lake Annecy, while hikers standing on the massive rock of Roc de Che`re look on. The hike through the 494-acre nature reserve is strenuous, but worth it. The view is breathtaking with Lac d’Annecy stretching below at the base of the mountain. Surrounded by mountains and set in the Rhone-Alpes region of southeastern France, Lac d’Annecy has been inspiring writers and artists for centuries, and drawing visitors from around the world.
Shaped like a twisted eight, glacial Lake Annecy formed about 18,000 years ago and today spans about 6,700 acres. Before the last ice age it was actually two lakes separated by a ridge. Today the ridge is underwater and its previous location is marked by a straight (channel) with the village of Duingt on the west and the village of Talloires on the east. The part of Lac d’Annecy to the north of the straight is known as Grand Lac or Great Lake. To the south is Petit Lac or Small Lake. The main inflow into the lake is from an underground spring, and the lake also receives water from the Rivers Ire and Eau Morte in the south and Laudon in the east. The main outflow is the River Thiou in the north which continues on to the Rhone River.
The area around Lac d’Annecy is one of the oldest inhabited areas in the northern Alps. In fact the remains of a lakeside village near the present day Annecy-le-Vieux may date back as far as 3,100 BC. Lac d’Annecy literally means Lake of Annecy. In 1107 “New Annecy” was established on either side of the River Thiou eventually growing into today’s city of Annecy on the north end of the lake. Annecy has a long rich history, and the charming city has prominent buildings from almost every century. During the 12th through the 16th century a castle was built in Annecy that became the home of the exiled Counts of Geneva. In 1953 the castle became a museum. On an island surrounded by water, the Palais de l’Ile was the 12th century home of the Lords of Annecy and then the administration center for the Counts of Geneva. It went on to serve as a prison from the Middle Ages through 1865. It is one of Annecy’s most photographed buildings and has been open to the public as a museum since 1952.
Lake of Annecy or Annecy Lake is surrounded with small, lakeside villages each with its own flavor and charm. There are markets to wander through, shops to browse and plenty of waterfront restaurants serving hearty mountain food. Annecy Lake caters to tourists so there are lakeside vacation rentals and lots to do while visiting. The lake buzzes with activity, but at 23 miles long it is large enough not to seem crowded. Guests can water ski, windsurf, sail, swim and boat either on their own or on a boat cruise. Fishing is popular, and fish species include lake trout, char, perch, burbot, and roach. There is a road around Lac d’Annecy, and in 2009 it was used for a Tour de France time trial. For anyone wishing to live permanently among this active lake’s markets, water sports, and history, there is real estate for sale.
With its clear water set against the backdrop of the majestic Alps and history layered century by century, it is no wonder artists and visitors alike have been charmed by Lac d’Annecy.
Things to Do at Lake Annecy
- Vacation Rentals
- Water Skiing
Fish Species Found at Lake Annecy
- Lake Trout
Find Places to Stay at Lake Annecy
If you’re considering a Lake Annecy lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.
Recommended Sites to Book a Lake Annecy Vacation
If you want to take a deeper dive to find waterfront lake cabins, cottages, condos, hotels or resorts, check out our favorite Lake Annecy lodging partners.
- VRBO – Use VRBO to find the perfect lake rental home, condo, cabin, cottage or other vacation property.
- Booking.com – One of the world’s leading digital travel companies, Booking.com connects travelers to everything from cozy B&Bs to luxury resorts.
- Expedia – Expedia is a popular online travel agency with more than 140,000 lodging properties worldwide.
- Hotels.com – With more than 325,000 hotels in 19,000-plus locations, Hotels.com is an industry leader in online accommodations.
- TripAdvisor – Read traveler reviews and compare prices on hotels, vacation rentals and more at TripAdvisor.
- Trivago – Trivago helps travelers compare deals for hotels and other accommodations from a variety of booking sites.
- KAYAK – KAYAK scours hundreds of other travel websites at once to find the best deals on hotels and other travel-related services.
- RVshare –RVshare connects travelers interested in renting a motorhome with owners who have RVs to rent.
- CampSpot – Campspot offers premier RV resorts, family campgrounds, cabins and glamping options across North America.
Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.
Lake Annecy Statistics & Helpful Links
Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Not Dammed
Surface Area: 6,672 acres
Shoreline Length: 22 miles
Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 1,467 feet
Average Depth: 136 feet
Maximum Depth: 212 feet
Water Volume: 907,999 acre-feet
Water Residence Time: 4 years
Drainage Area: 107 sq. miles
Trophic State: Oligotrophic
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