11 Best Day Trips From Annecy France

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There are so many incredible day trips from Annecy you could take during your time in this charming alpine city. 

From exploring the gorgeous lakes and mountains in the surrounding area to even popping over to Geneva for a day, why not take a chance to go on a day trip from Annecy to explore this part of France (and even Switzerland)? 

After having lived in Grenoble and visited Annecy many times, I know ample day trip ideas that will leave you with a greater appreciation for this part of the world!

So, without further ado, let’s talk about the 11 best day trips from Annecy. 

Lake Annecy with mountains in the background

11 Best Day Trips From Annecy

For a quick list to reference, here are the 11 best day trips from Annecy. 

  1. Day Trip to Geneva, Switzerland
  2. Annecy to Chamonix Day Trip
  3. Day Trip to Lyon
  4. Relax at Aix-les-Bains
  5. Bike Around Lake Annecy
  6. Hike La Tournette 
  7. Sip the Best of the Savoie Wine Region
  8. Hit the Slopes Around Annecy in Winter
  9. Explore Chambery
  10. Visit Evian-les-Bains
  11. Explore Massif des Bauges Regional Nature Park

For more details on the best day trips from Annecy, keep on reading! 

Best Things to do in Lyon

Day Trips From Annecy, France

From alpine adventures to relaxing spa days, these are the top day trips from Annecy, France!

1. Annecy Day Trip to Geneva, Switzerland 

Lake Geneva in Switzerland - Best Day Trips From Annecy

Located less than an hour from Annecy via bus or car, Geneva is a fun and easy day trip to take from Annecy. Via train, it is closer to about 1.5 hours away. 

Pop over to this international city on the banks of Lake Geneva. Geneva is known for being the headquarters of many organizations including the World Health Organization, United Nations, World Trade Organization, and more. 

But some fun things to do in Geneva for a day include wandering around Lake Geneva and spotting the Jet d’Eau, a huge water spout in the lake. Enjoy exploring Geneva Old Town and walking along charming cobblestone streets. 

It is also worth stopping by the Palace of Nations, the United Nations office in Geneva, and finding the broken chair statue outside, which was built to honor those who have lost limbs due to land mines. 

There are also ample gardens, museums, and more to check out during your day trip to Geneva from Annecy. But no matter what, be sure to try some famous Swiss Chocolate! 

2. Day Trip From Annecy to Chamonix

Chamonix in France - Cutest Towns in France

Located about 1.5 hours via car or bus, or about 2.5 hours via train, you could visit Chamonix to see the mountains up close and enjoy some stunning views.

Definitely be sure to take the Aiguille du Midi cable car up to the top of the mountain for the most incredible scenery. Standing at a whopping 12,605 ft (3,842 m), you’ll be able to see mountains all over! Be sure to purchase a ticket in advance

If you’re daring enough, you can Step Into the Void at the Aiguille du Midi Skywalk to see the ground below your feet! 

From here, you’ll be able to see Italy, France, and Switzerland! And if you want to see these peaks, definitely opt for summer, as parts of this experience can close in the winter due to the weather. 

Chamonix is also a great place for a day of skiing in winter or hiking in the summer. You can also go on white water rafting trips or perhaps try paragliding! 

Even the town itself is endlessly charming. 

3. Day Trip to Lyon

Lyon during the day

For foodies, the ultimate day trip from Annecy has to be to the gastronomic capital of France: Lyon.

Lyon is about a 1.5-2 hour drive from Annecy or about 2 hours via train. 

Explore the Old City and learn all about the silk industry back in the day, find the Gallo-Roman amphitheater and visit the Gallo-Roman Museum of Lyon-Fourvière, and definitely be sure to take a food tour

Known as the foodie capital of France, Lyon has some fantastic restaurants and cuisine, many of which can be enjoyed on a food tour of the city. Regardless, though, be sure to stop by Les Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse. This food market is well known for its amazing produce, baked goods, meat, and more! 

Lyon is also situated along the banks of the Saone and Rhone rivers, and they even meet in the city. You can visit the confluence of these rivers and check out the Musée des Confluences which has exhibits on science and anthropology. 

This ancient city is always a great day trip from Annecy. 

4. Relax at Aix-les-Bains

Ariel view of Lake Bourget near Aix-Les-Bains

Only about a half hour from Annecy via car or 25 minutes via train, for those who prefer to have a relaxing day trip from Annecy, definitely head to Aix-les-Bains. 

This place is along the shores of Lake Bourget and is a thermal spa town. So if you want to indulge in spa treatments or just want to soak in a thermal bath, this is the place. 

Some great spas to check out include Spa Parenthesis Aix Les Bains, Valvital – Thermes Chevalley Aix-les-Bains, and Hotel & Spa Golden Tulip Aix Les Bains.

Aix-les-Bains is also a lovely place to enjoy the beaches along Lake Bourget. 

5. Bike Trip Around Lake Annecy

Sunny day on Lake Annecy

If you prefer to stick around Lake Annecy, why not rent a bike and bike the circumference of this stunning alpine lake? 

This bike ride is about 27 miles (43 km) of distance, and if you only have time for a half-day trip from Annecy, you can do this in about 3 hours or so. 

But, there are ample smaller towns and beautiful beaches to enjoy along the way, making this bike ride really fun for taking your time and enjoying all the sights! 

Enjoy little towns like Sevrier, Saint-Jorez, Duingt, and more as you bike along the rim of the lake. Stop by the Château de Duingt for beautiful castle views along the lake, the nature reserve at Bout-du-Lac, and, of course, spot ample mountains around the lake. 

6. Hike La Tournette 

La Tournette in the mountains

If you want to get really active, why not hike at La Tournette? This is the highest peak overlooking Lake Annecy at 7,713 feet (2,351 m) high. 

I recommend perhaps getting a guide for this hike, as it always helps to have a local guide. This hike starts at Chalet de l’Aulp and takes about 6.5 hours to complete with an elevation gain of 3,117 feet (950 m).

It definitely isn’t for the faint of heart, as there are some steep hills, but the views of the mountains, lake, and even the chance to spot wildlife are well worth the effort. 

I recommend going with a guide for safety reasons but you’ll also get more context about the flora and fauna of the area. 

Check out this guided hike here

7. Sip the Best of the Savoie Wine Region

Mountains and vineyards of the Savoie wine region

Want to sip wine amongst old castle ruins while you’re staring at a glacier off in the distance? 

Wine regions are truly stunning worldwide, but the Savoie seriously takes the cake. And what better way to enjoy this area than with a hiking and wine day trip?

Take the 40-minute train from Annecy to Chambery and get picked up by Bernard with Alpes Flaveurs for a fun day of hiking, vineyard and mountain views, and amazing wine. 

You can book this day trip by emailing [email protected]

Some notable white wines to enjoy during your time around the Savoie wine region include Jacquère,  Roussette, and Roussanne, as well as red wines like Mondeuse, Pinot Noir, and Gamay. 

8. Hit the Slopes Around Annecy in Winter

Skier on the slopes in France

Visiting Annecy any time of year is amazing, but Annecy in winter is the place to be for winter sports enthusiasts. 

With ample ski resorts nearby, you could easily take many day trips from Annecy to the alps for skiing and snowboarding. 

Some resorts nearby include Le Semnoz, La Clusaz, and Le Grand-Bornand. Spend a day zipping down the slopes of differering challenges and enjoy some apres-ski afterward! 

9. Explore Chambery


I mentioned the town of Chambery before as a place to take the train for your wine tour, but it is also well worth exploring. Located about 45 minutes via car or 40 minutes via train, Chambery is a lovely town in a valley in the Alps. 

A notable thing to do in Chambery includes visiting the Fontaine des Elephants, a large fountain with the front of an elephant on each of the 4 sides. 

You can also learn about the history of the Savoie region at the Chateau des Ducs de Savoie, which was the former home to the dukes and counts of Savoie. 

A walk around the old city is always lovely! And, being in the heart of the Savoie wine region, you can expect to find many lovely wines in the area to enjoy. 

10. Visit Evian-les-Bains

Pool at Evian-Les-Bains

Located along the shores of Lake Geneva (or Lac Leman) you can visit the town where this famous brand of water comes from! 

Only a little over an hour by car or 2 hours by train from Annecy, this lake town is another great spa town to visit. 

Definitely swing by the Cachat Springs Point of Emergence where you can drink the famous (and sometimes pricey water) straight from the source for free! Be sure to pack your water bottle on this day trip from Annecy! 

From there, head to the Funiculaire d’Evian to ride up to enjoy a blast from the past on this vintage funicular. This funicular was built to get the people staying at the fancy hotels in the hills to the town itself. 

And, you can’t leave Evian-les-Bains without some much-needed spa time. Enjoy some R&R at places like Le Spa Evian Source – Hôtel Royal, Spa Taaj-Ayurveda, and Evian les Thermes

While you’re here, you can also get out on the lake and see beautiful Switzerland on the other side.

11. Explore Massif des Bauges Regional Nature Park

Semnoz in France

This could easily take up a long time, but if you only have a day, you could certainly see some highlights of the Massif des Bauges Regional Nature Park. 

This park is massive and sits between Annecy, Chambery, and Aix-les-Bains. There are so many cute little villages and hiking trails in the area to explore. 

This is one of the day trips from Annecy that makes sense if you have a car, as it’ll be hard to do without your own transportation. Go hiking at the Semnoz Plateau, eat local cuisine in charming villages, and perhaps visit the monastery of La Chartreuse d’Aillon. 

This place is a great spot to learn about the heritage of this area and explore an old monastery. 

Either way, this is a lovely place to explore for a day! 

While there are so many great places to visit in a day from Annecy, these are the best day tours from Annecy, France that you’ll want to enjoy ASAP! 

Which day trip from Annecy would you most like to do? 

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4 thoughts on “11 Best Day Trips From Annecy France”

  1. Hello, Kate
    I am planning the details of a mother/daughter river cruising trip in May from Lyon to Arles. Since my daughter would really like to see the Alps, I am thinking that, arriving in Lyon, I will immediately take the train or bus to Annecy to spend the rest of the day and then take a day trip to Chamonix the next day. We will then return that evening and head back to Lyon the next day. Does that sound like too extensive of an itinerary? To see a good view of the Alps, does one need to travel as far as Chamonix from Annecy? Thank you so much.

    • Hi Pauline! That sounds like fun! I will say that does sound a bit rushed. Annecy is an alpine town, and you can see the Alps on the other side of Lake Annecy. So if she wants to see the mountains, she’ll be able to do that in Annecy. There are also great hikes from Annecy for hiking in the mountains. If you want to go to Chamonix for the Alps, I recommend just going straight there from Lyon and skipping Annecy then since you only have a couple of days. It is about a 2.5-hour drive from Lyon to get to Chamonix (depending on traffic) so you could just do that. There is also the option of visiting Grenoble for a day from Lyon. This city is surrounded by mountains and is stunning. You can hike up or take the cable car to the Bastille and see incredible views of the Alps. I hope this helps and have a great time!

  2. HI Pauline, I have 8 nights from Geneva to Paris (i.e. my flight will be departing from Paris). Intending to go to Chamonix, Annecy and Lyon before reaching Paris. Not sure how many nights I would need for these places and I don’t ski. So wonder if the below makes sense.

    Geneva – 3 nights with a day trip to Chamonix
    Annecy – 2 nights
    Lyon – 2 nights
    Paris -1 night

    Not sure If I should stay in Geneva 3 nights or Annecy just 1 night or Lyon 3 nights? And if I am being too ambitious to cover so many places. Thanks for your help and looking forward to you advice.

    • Hi Grace! I think that schedule does make sense. I think a day trip to Chamonix from Geneva is doable, and you can even book a day trip from Geneva on GetYourGuide which is great. I loved Annecy and think 2 days is a good amount of time to really explore it. And the train from Geneva to Annecy is about 1.5-2 hours so you won’t lose too much time transferring to Annecy. I do recommend leaving early to get to Lyon, as it does take a little longer to get there. I think you can see a lot of Lyon in 2 days as well. I’m assuming you’ve been to Paris before since you’re only planning to spend a night. If that’s the case, then I think this works, as long as you don’t mind a couple of earlier mornings to get between cities.


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