It is about 4 hours from Paris by TGV. The beautiful village, Annecy, is situated near the border which is shared with Switzerland and Italy. Since I saw a picture of the town in a guide book, I have always wanted to visit there. And finally the day came.
Map of Savoie: click here
In the summer of 2006, my husband and I were on the train bound for Annecy. His parents already arrived at Annecy Station from Marseille, and we started a one-week trip in the Alps.
After walking a little from the station, a panoramic view came into my sight. This is a park called Champ de Mars. Many people were enjoying their holidays peacefully and tranquilly. Some people were playing sports, some swimming in the lake (it is banned, though), and some other people were taking a nap on the grass. I was so excited to see the grand nature that I could hardly control my excitement!
It is indeed picturesque. What a place!, I wonder how many times I said so in my mind. I was shocked by the beauty and the blue of Lake Annecy and the sky. Behind the lake are the Alps.
Colorful boats are floating on the clear water. The water is so clear that you can see the bottom of the lake.
We walked around the park and came back where we started. The building in the right-hand picture is Le Chateau d’Annecy (the Annecy Castle), which was built by a baron in Savoie in 1445.
The inside of the city is full of flowers, and all the buildings are also colorfully painted. Annecy (or Savoie prefecture) is well-known as a city of flowers. That’s why in all directions there are a lot of flowers, and the elaborate landscape pleases our eyes. I can’t imagine people are really living in such pretty houses.
These pictures were taken in the old town, and the canal called La Thiou runs through it. I hear that this is the most popular spot in France for taking a picture. The building in the center is Le Palais de l’isle (the island palace), which was built by a feudal lord in the 12th century. It has a long history. It was once a city hall, a court, a mint bureau, and a prison. It was playing many roles, and now it is used as a history museum.
Of course, many cafés and restaurants are standing along the river. You can enjoy Savoie food (famous for ham).
This is Saint Piere Cathedral. Annecy is also known as a place where Jean-Jacques Rousseau was living when he was between 16 and 27 years old. It is also well-known that he played the flute at this cathedral.
And don’t forget Annecy chocolate. We bought a lot at a shop named Meyer: 4, Place Saint Francois (tel) 04 50 45 12 08
It was a wonderful summer vacation. One of the best vacation trips in my life, and one of my favorite places in France. If you wish to escape from a busy urban life, this is one of the options!
Annecy tourism office
1, rue Jean Jaures Bonlieu 74000 ANNECY
Tel: + 33 450 45 00 33
Fax: + 33 450 51 87 20