France

Things to do in Annecy

Going to Annecy is like stepping into a fairy tale due to its castle, canals, snow-capped mountains, and pretty pastel coloured houses.

Located between the French Alps and Geneva, you can reach this beautiful destination in 8 hours from Calais by car, and the drive is so scenic that it will feel like part of your holiday.

Although it is the perfect place to relax, unwind, and watch the world go by, there are plenty of things to do in Annecy when you visit. However, we guarantee that you will spend most of your trip simply admiring your surroundings.

DVR

Dover Port

CQF

Calais Port

Morning

01:25

04:30

06:15

09:20

Midday

11:05

Afternoon

14:10

15:55

Evening

19:00

20:40

23:55

Thiou River in Annecy, France

Things to do in Annecy

Visit Annecy Old Town

The most popular part of Annecy is its Old Town, and when you see how picturesque it is you will understand why. The whole area is pedestrianised so you can explore the narrow streets and crooked alleyways with ease, and you’ll soon notice the unusual combination of medieval buildings and pastel coloured homes which make this place so unique.

Take time to wander past lemon, pistachio, and rose facades, discover crumbling churches, and stumble across secret gardens, as there really is something amazing hidden around every corner in Annecy. You will also want to make sure that you go to see the Palais de l’Isle, a castle that sits on an island in the river.

Don’t forget to make your way to the Perrière Bridge which is the most photographed spot in Annecy. The bridge crosses over the River Thiou connecting the Quai de I’lle with the Quai des Vielles Prisons and is the city’s most famous footbridge.

Palais Isle in Annecy, France

Eating and drinking in Annecy France

Eating in Annecy

You will be spoilt for choice when trying to find somewhere pretty to eat in Annecy as there are a number of lovely bistros and cosy cafés lining the waterways, many of which offer the chance to sit outside and eat when the weather allows.

Annecy delicacies include tartiflette, fondue, bilberry tart, and lavender ice cream, and as the city is located so near to Switzerland you will also find many Swiss specialties, including raclette, a round cheese which is warmed and served with dried meats, potatoes, gherkins, and pickled onions.

If you fancy cooking up a local treat of two for yourself, visit the outdoor market where you can buy anything from garlic frog’s legs to cheese. The market also has a number of takeaway options for those on the go, such as sausages or stew.

Lac d’Annecy

Named as the purest urban lake in Europe, the glacial Lac d’Annecy is protected by strict environmental guidelines which ensure that the water continues to look beautifully clean despite the number of people that spend time there.

With its mountain backdrop and mesmerising azure water, this lake offers the perfect photo opportunity, and you can choose to walk, cycle, or Segway around it to see as much as possible. Cyclists can travel around the lake using cycle paths which span 50km, and many like to have a dip in the water to cool off afterwards.

Those looking for something a bit more active might enjoy paragliding, water-skiing, or wakeboarding on the lake instead, or you can opt for a luxurious boat ride if you’d prefer to just sit back and admire the view.

Cycling at Lake Annecy, France

Paquier Garden in Annecy, France

Gardens in Annecy

Annecy boasts a number of gardens and green spaces where you can either walk or sit down and relax. The most famous gardens are the Jardins de l’Europe which face the lake and are home to plantations which are over 100 years old. You’ll often see painters here using the view to inspire them, and each year the park is home to the Little Lost Ball which is held under the trees.

The Paquier is the other green space where you might like to spend time. Seven hectares in size, this expanse of grass is home to an old carousel and a little train which kids will love, and is the perfect place to have a picnic or play games.

We don’t think that you will find anywhere as pretty as Annecy in Europe, so book your Dover to Calais crossing today and see if you agree with us.

You will be spoilt for choice when trying to find somewhere pretty to eat in Annecy as there are a number of lovely bistros and cosy cafés lining the waterways.

Featured blog post Tips for Driving in France

Take a look at our tips for driving in France so that you can reach Annecy with confidence.

Attractions in Annecy

Electric Mountain Biking Adventure

Chamonix   .   France

Discover the Aravis Valley with little effort as you ride an electric mountain bike above Annecy.

Electric mountain biking adventure
Segway tour of Annecy

Segway Tours of Annecy

Annecy   .   France

See the sights of Annecy during a Segway tour of the city.

Walking tour of Annecy

Chamonix   .   France

Enjoy a three hour walking tour of Annecy with a local guide to explore the Old Town and Local Market.

Walking tour in Annecy
Local wine and cheese making tour

Local wine and cheese tasting tour

Annecy   .   France

Enjoy a guided tour of a wineyard before visiting a local cheesemaker.

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