It is also known as ‘Rome of the Alps’ because religious beliefs in Annecy have been very strong and dominant since the Middle Ages. It’s proximity with Geneva and its position during the Calvinist reform, the establishment of the diocese and the presence of Saint François de Sales in 1602 are just a few examples that we can mention.
A marina, several beaches numerous walks and parks (Paquier, Albigny, Marquisats, jardins de l’Europe) are all situated along the lakeside.
Due to its proximity to the lake, a natural rampart and resource at the same time, it has been a strong influence on Annecy and this is clearly shown in the way the town has evolved. The old town still features its characteristic traboules (narrow hidden passages through buildings) and a chaotic entanglement of houses and streets dating back to the Middle Ages which separate the old town from the rest of the urban area can still be found (porte Sainte Claire, côte Perrière)
The old town is very popular with tourists and its small pedestrian streets (rue Sainte Claire, rue Carnot, rue Royale) along with its old prisons and castle are some of the highlights not to be missed by any visitor.
Situated at the northern end of the lake and encircled by Annecy le Vieux, Sevrier, La Puya bend, Cran, Seynod and the Semnoz mountain, this lakeside plain has been inhabited since prehistoric times. The Allobroges Gallic tribes surrended the place to the Romans who established the settlement of Boutae in 35.
The castle of the Count of Savoy, whose construction was started at the beginning of the 12th century, is located on the heights of Annecy. It became the capital of the Counts of Geneva in the 14th century before being ceded to the Count of Savoy. The town became French in 1860.
Extracts from the Annecy Tourist website