The cleanest lake in Europe
Many visitors from all around the world are impressed by the unique spectacle offered by Lake Annecy, and also by the investments made in improving its water quality for the last 50 years. These efforts have been rewarded as it is nowadays considered to be the cleanest lake in Europe, to the point that its water is classified as drinking water and can be used untreated.
To stay in tune with nature, camping in a tent, mobile home, chalet or camper van is no doubt the best way to discover Lake Annecy. There are around thirty campsites in this region of Haute Savoie.
Things to discover nearby
I suggest starting with the lakeside town of Annecy. Like the Annecy locals, you'll love strolling around the Jardins de l'Europe park with its century-old trees by the lake, crossing the Pont des Amours bridge, a must for visitors, and dropping by Le Paquier, a vast esplanade by the lake. There is now a cycle path all around the lake, for a lovely bike ride with the family. You will also be charmed by the castle on the mountainside, overlooking the historic quarter. You can swim and enjoy free beaches like Les Marquisats, ideal for families since it is supervised and has the benefit of a grass beach.
Located to the north-east of Annecy, the little municipality of Annecy le Vieux is charming and mainly residential. You can enjoy its large beach (Albigny beach) as well as its harbour, which is no less charming.
In Menthon Saint Bernard you can practise the most water sports on the most "sought-after" part of the lake. It's also a residential municipality, highly prized by tourists.
Veyrier du Lac stands on the shores of the lake as its name implies ("Lac" meaning lake in French), and benefits from a splendid view of Mont Veyrier (one of the easiest and most popular mountains to climb in the area). Its name says it all, basically!
On the right shore of the lake, Talloires is the celebrities' favourite village. You might bump into Jean-Michel Jarre, Gérard Depardieu or the Queen of England, and at one time you might have seen Paul Cézanne or Napoleon III there…
Duingt is one of the smallest villages on the lake shore but still has two castles. Its narrow medieval streets will enchant you along with the view of the mountains surrounding the lake. There you will find the two-star Le Familial campsite.
Just next to Duingt, discover Saint Jorioz, very popular for its sandy beach, the only one near Lake Annecy. People love its marina and its cycle path, which replaces the old railway that ran alongside this part of the lake in the old days. There you will also find the three-star Le Cretoux campsite.
On the west side of the lake, the St-Jorioz cycle path continues as far as Sévrier, one of the oldest villages around the lake. This route will take you to a true mountain landscape and climate (1,100 metres).
There are lovely outings for families with children, but it's equally suitable for groups of friends or couples. A superb mountain region to discover, and also a perfect place to go camping.
Camping around the lake
Campsites are an ideal form of accommodation for anyone wishing to discover Lake Annecy and the surrounding area. La Chapelle Saint Claude, rated three stars in Talloires-Montmin and located on the edge of the lake, is one of them. Just like the La Nublière campsite in Doussard. Alternatively, La Ravoire, another campsite in Doussard, along with Les Fontaines in Lathuile, are on the mountainside, providing access to other popular sports in the region like hiking.
You've got it, camping and visiting Lake Annecy are two perfect ways to get in touch with nature and the great outdoors.