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For more information, visit Lac Annecy Tourism at https://en.lac-annecy.com/.
City region: Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Population & what they are called: 126,000 inhabitants, called Annéciens
Access from Paris:
- by road: about 5 h 30 min (350 miles) via the A6, A40 and A41 autoroutes
- by train: about 3 h 45 min by TGV from the Gare de Lyon
- by plane: about 1 hour to Geneva Airport, then 1 hour direct bus to Annecy
Famous native daughters & sons:
- André Dussolier, actor
- Edgar Grospiron, Olympic skier
- Aimé Jacquet, soccer player and coach
Most distinctive and/or unique fact or trait (or little known fact):
- Annecy is sometimes called “Venice of the Alps” due to the Thiou River and three canals that traverse the old city and, along with many bridges, add to its special atmosphere.
- The Château de Menthon-Saint-Bernard, 7½ miles from the city, is a historic medieval monument said to have inspired Walt Disney's version of Sleeping Beauty's castle.
- Palais de l'Ile – on an islet in the Canal du Thiou, this historic monument, parts of which date to the 12th century, has been a prison, courthouse, mint and mansion, but is now a local history museum (patrimoines.annecy.fr/eng/Palais-de-l-Ile)
- Col de la Forclaz – one of the world's most famous paragliding spots (150,000 flights a year), complete with unforgettable views over mountain-ringed Lake Annecy
- Talloires – a neighboring, popular resort town notable for its artists and writers, excellent outdoor activities and 1,000-year-old Abbaye de Talloires (talloires-lac-annecy.com)
Top annual events:
- Festival International du Film d'Animation – the major annual international festival and market devoted to animated film (annecy.org)
- Fête du Lac – tens of thousands attend this annual summer lake festival featuring Europe's grandest fireworks show (70 minutes long) (annecy.fr/551-fete-du-lac-d-annecy.htm)
- Maxi Race – 10 trail-running races, from just 4km long to the 117km Ultra, take 7,600 participants around Lake Annecy via the mountains (maxi-race.net)
Most notable museums:
- Musée-Château d'Annecy – restored castle overlooking the old town and transformed into a museum and temporary exhibition space (patrimoines.annecy.fr/eng/Annecy-Castle)
- Musée du Film d'Animation – hands-on, family-friendly displays chronicle a century of animated film (patrimoines.annecy.fr/eng/Animated-film-Museum)
- La Turbine Sciences – this center for industrial, technical and scientific culture is an interactive exploration of knowledge for all ages (laturbinesciences.fr)
- fish – like fera, perch and Arctic char caught fresh in Lake Annecy
- Savoyard cheese-based dishes – fondue, raclette and tartiflette top the list, using local-area cheeses such as Beaufort and Reblochon
- roseau du lac – dark chocolate treat coated in sugar and infused with a mountain liqueur like génépi
Local wines & spirits:
- Savoie wine – noted for dry and light whites like Apremont and, especially, Roussette de Savoie AOC, as well as light and fruity reds like the native Mondeuse
- Rue Carnot – top commercial avenue, including its extension to the Courier shopping center
- Opinel – famuos Savoy-based wood-handled knife and tool company (opinel.com)
Most popular night spots:
- Le Moon – a brasserie and bar with a lakeside terrace and private beach
- La Queue du Coq – relaxed and cozy cocktail bar with a 1950s ambiance
- Pop Plage – one of the most popular nightclubs in town
Local population’s favorite activities (or hangouts):
- Le Haras – a favorite, peaceful, urban park for picnics and concerts, with on-site food by Armony Saveurs
- Pâquier – large lakeside lawn/garden, perfect for resting, exercise and lake-based activities
- cheese – in addition to many small cheese producers in the region, Annecy is home to Entremont, a large manufacturer of dairy products (primarily cheeses) and frozen food
- sporting goods – what started in 1947 as the Salomon family wood saw and ski edges workshop is now a major international outdoor sport equipment company
- jets – Dassault Aviation is an international manufacturer of military and business jets
In Pop Culture:
- Claire’s Knee (Le Genou de Claire) – a 1970 melodramatic romantic film written and directed by Eric Rohmer
- Killer by the Lake (Le Tueur du Lac) – the 2017 television crime drama series followup to Vanished by the Lake
- Floride – the 2015 comedy drama about family and aging, directed by Philippe Le Guay
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