Visit the Annecy website for even more information then I’m giving. If you love to bicycle, there is an old railway line that links Annecy to Albertville, covering 30km/18 miles that can be bicycled easily. I’ve been told that it is totally flat.
– For water sports, kayak, rent a pedal boat, motor boat, go sailing. There are innumerable places to rent along the lake.
– You can base yourself in Annecy and visit other places in the alps. Chamonix, Geneva, Chambery, Evian, Val d’Isere, Aosta, and La Clusaz are just a few of the towns in the Haute-Savoie.
– A travel agency in Annecy, Agence Crolard, place de la Gare, sells bus tickets to the destinations around Annecy and Lac d’Annecy and Lac Léman. It also arranges excursions by minibus to sites of panoramic interest in July and August.
– The Church of Saint-Maurice is a former Dominican Church built in the 15th century. The stalls date from the late 16th century and the pulpit, borne by Atlas dates from 1715.
– Annecy was selected as as France’s candidate city to host the 2018 Winter Olympics and Paralympics on March 18. The Haute-Savoie is the birthplace of the Winter Olympics and situated at the heart of the world’s top winter sports resort. The town can certainly count on Haut-Savoyard experience and expertise in accommodating and hosting international competitions. Since the area already hosts 60 % of world cup skiing competitions organized in France. Annecy’s has much in its favor. The IOC (International Olympic Committee) will announce the names of the finalists in 2010, and in July 2011 the name of the city that will host the 2rd Winter Olympics and the 12th Paralympics will be announced.
– Annecy’s history goes back to the neolithic period (before 4000 B.C.) and remains of “lake settlements” have been found. It was once a Gallo-Roman town and the seat of the Comtes de Geneve.
– There is a yearly triathon held in Annecy and the 22nd Triathon International du Lac d’Annecy was held July 5, 2009. The Annecy Triathon begins with a 1500m swim, 43km bicycle ride (from 448m to 949m before heading back down), and ends with a 10km.
– Besides the usual boutiques, there is a Galerie Lafayette, several Monoprix department stores and malls. Eye glasses appear to be a big business in Annecy and I counted three different large shops in just one block.
– The Tour de France was coming through Annecy on July 23, 2009 with a time trial. The time trial would begin in Place Annecy, and work it’s way around the lake through Letraz-Chuguet, Le Cret, Sevrier, Le Brouillet, Saint-Jorioz, Duingt, Bredannaz, Bout-du-Lac, Doussard, and end back in Annecy. A 40.5 km Individual Time Trial. The only way I knew this was some workmen were erecting a big bicycle sign in a section of the old town and taking a wild stab, they confirmed that mai oui The Tour de France was coming through Annecy. It was fun to find out that we have visited quite a few other stages that the 2009 Tour de France passes through. Perpignan, Colmar, and Monaco. This link shows all the towns and map for the 2009 tour.
– The Office de Tourisme sells pamphlets that describe about a dozen easy, family-oriented hiking and biking excursions in the forests around Annecy. More experienced hikers should invest in a topographic map. Walks in both categories last 2-6 hours. Some begin in the center of Annecy; others require a trip by car or bus from one of several towns in the area — such as Saint-Jorioz or Sevrier, to the west, or Talloires, to the east — to the excursion’s origination point.
– After seeing Annecy, consider a trek to the Gorges du Fier. This dramatic river gorge is one of the most interesting sights in the French Alps. If you’ve got the guts (I don’t), a gangway takes you through a narrow gully cut through the rock by torrents of water. Then you walk on a narrow footbridge fixed to the rock face above the river.