• Around the lakes

Bourget, the wildest of the four lakes

Stretching 18 km, Bourget is the largest natural lake in France, surrounded by viewpoints, stunning peaks and the vast Bauges mountain range.  This lake, which has inspired the greatest poets, offers visitors an array of water sports and bathing opportunities in waters which can reach up to 26°C in summer. 





Lake Bourget’s glistening shorelines ripple around Aix-les-Bains. On the other side, up from Bourget-du-Lac, the wild shoreline runs alongside the forested slopes of la Dent du Chat. To the north of the lake, along Savières canal, lies Chautagne with its rolling hills and poplar groves.


Thermes Chevallay à Aix-les-Bains

From lakeside to mountain top, there is no end of spectacular landscape for visitors. 

Year-round activities


Aix-les-Bains, known as the Riviera of the Alps, has been given French Water Resort approval, and Lake Bourget therefore offers a wide range of water sports, including sailing, rowing, canoeing, kayaking, rafting, fishing, diving, water skiing and wakeboarding. A perfect spot for swimming, Lake Bourget also has 14 ports, and over 2,600 sailing berths. The lake is also a reputed site for fishing, home to some thirty species including char and whitefish. 


From guided tours unveiling the belle-epoque charms of Aix-les-Bains or Chambéry’s old town, to long, challenging hikes, Lake Bourget’s surrounding area has much to offer. Bauges regional nature reserve, just a 25-minute drive away, offers a whole host of walking and hiking opportunities including the viewpoint on Revard and at Nivolet cross. Further afield, towards Chautagne you’ll find the GR® 65 long-distance hiking trail on the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route, offering stunning views over Jura. 
To the south of the lake, the Dent du Chat and Molard Noir mountains are also very popular. Further still, towards Chambéry, there is an array of walking and hiking routes which start in the city centre, one of which follows in the footsteps of the philosopher and writer Jean-Jacques Rousseau. 

Walks around the lake
History and heritage


East of the lake, in Aix-les-Bains you can visit the Roman remains and former palaces. Across the water, Hautecombe Abbey, the Savoy counts’ stately necropolis, watches over the lake in exuberant Gothic style. 
To the north, Savière canal, Chanaz (named Town in Bloom) and local vineyards are the pride of the local area. On the opposite shoreline, Bourget-du-lac is home to a priory, the remains of Thomas II’s château and Bourdeau fishing village. The past and present interweave along the streets of Savoy duchy’s former capital, Chambéry, only ten kilometres away. 

Places to see around the lake

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    The Good Life


    North of the lake, discover the vineyards of Chautagne, where varieties such as Gamay, Pinot, Mondeuse, Roussette, Chautagne and Aligoté are grown. Lake Bourget and its surroundings are home to many gourmet and Michelin-starred restaurants: Atmosphères 1*, L'Auberge Lamartine 1*, and Les Morainières 2*. 
    Lakeside life is also synonymous with relaxation and well-being. The spa town of Aix-les-Bains specialises in ear, nose and throat, as well as rheumatic illnesses, and offers a wide range of health and fitness treatments and short-stays.





     Revard, at a commanding height of 1500 m, has a long history. Once accessed by cog train, and later by cable car until 1969, today’s visitors can simply drive to the top. 
     Grumeau viewpoint in Ontex, standing at 1158 m, overlooks Lake Bourget and Hautecombe Abbey, as well as Chambotte across the waters, and the Bauges mountain range beyond. 
     Chambotte viewpoint, above Chindreux, looks out over the village of Chautagne, Hautecombe Abbey, Savière canal, Aix-les-Bains and the Chambery gap. 
     The Dent du Chat viewpoint can be reached on foot from the Col du Chat. This pleasant stroll takes walkers on a woodland route. Beware, however, it is far from flat, and the last part of the trail is dizzyingly steep. 
     Grande Mollière in Tresserve, is one of the most accessible viewpoints, from the hillside surrounding the lake. The transparent panels set up there help visitors get their bearings.  

    Discover lookouts