The largest lake in Western Europe – a perfect link between France and Switzerland
Situated in the north of Haute-Savoie, Lac Léman or Lake Geneva is the largest lake in Western Europe, stretching from Geneva to Montreux, via the towns of Lausanne and Vevey. At 372m altitude, Lake Geneva has scenery with the atmosphere of the French Riviera. The 53km shoreline on the French side follows the rolling countryside of lower Chablais and includes the 2 spa towns of Thonon-les-Bains and Evian-les-Bains.
Apart from its beautiful scenery and multiple water sports, Lake Geneva also has a long history, wonderful historic heritage and unique gastronomy.
Beaches and water sports : Classed as a 4* water sport resort, Thonon-les-Bains offers a myriad of different water sports including sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, kayaking, rowing and diving.
With its natural beach of fine sand, Excenevex offers swimmers a little air of the Mediterranean.
From Belle Epoque paddle steamers to a solar-powered water bus and « La Savoie » traditional sailing vessel, sailing on Lake Geneva is a real pleasure. Marinas at Thonon-les-Bains, Evian-les-Bains and lakeside villages have numerous berths for visiting pleasure boats.
The villages on the shore of Lake Geneva each have their own particular charm : Chens-sur-Léman and its château, Nernier steeped in literary and artistic memories, Amphion les Bains where Anna de Noailles spent part of her childhood and the fishing village of Meillerie.
Local produce : the wine-growing areas of Crépy, Marignan, Ripaille and Marin grow chasselas grapes which produce a dry white fruity wine.
Lake Geneva is also inextricably linked to spa treatment. Firstly, Thonon-les-Bains has been a thriving spa town for over a century with a mild climate and mountain traditions. Its well-reputed mineral water, long-standing experience and newly renovated spa in beautiful leafy gardens make it a popular venue for exacting clients.
The spa town of Evian-Les-Bains is ideally located on the shore of the lake.
In 1789, Comte de Laizer, a man of science, discovered the properties of Evian mineral water. Initially the water was mainly consumed as a drink as a cure for diuresis. The first thermal establishment opened in 1824 in what is now the Palais Lumière d’Evian, an exhibition venue and ‘taking the waters ‘became very popular during the Belle Epoque.
Ever since this time, the Thermes d’Evian has continued to refine medical and therapeutic treatment procedures for use in its wellness centre.