Top 10 unmissable springtime experiences




Paddle the tranquil waters of Lac d'Aiguebelette

Not open to motor boats, the smallest of Savoie Mont Blanc’s four major lakes is a stunning emerald colour. Sheltered from the wind by Epine mountain, this beautiful triangular lake forms the centrepiece of the Lac d'Aiguebelette Regional Nature Reserve. The lake boasts Neolithic lake village sites, two little islands at the southern end and some pretty boathouses.

Other options:

Set sail on the replica vintage sailing boat La Savoie, explore the Canal de Savières in a solar-powered sightseeing boat or enjoy a cruise on the Upper Rhône.

Balade en vélo à Chanaz




Bike the Tour des Bauges

It’s time to put away your skis and get out your bike for this gentle 130km (80-mile) cycling circuit through the incredibly varied countryside of the Bauges. Along the way you’ll come across picture-postcard towns and villages packed with historical interest. A lovely way to get away from it all, exploring the area on a leisurely 3 or 4-day route. Alternatively, simply complete one section as a day ride!


Other options:

The ViaRhôna or Bella Via are good choices if you’re after a long-distance cycling route, or you can bike the Tour of Lake Annecy – one of France’s first greenways. There are also the quiet backroads of La Mauriennaise (Route 35) that lead you from village to village through the Maurienne Valley.




Potter around the backstreets of historical Annecy

What are your plans for next weekend or the May half-term holiday? Why put up with the noise and bustle of a European capital when you can take a city break in an Alpine lakeside town brimming with charm? Try a stroll along the Canal de Thiou, tasting (and stocking up on!) the local specialities, taking a boat out on the lake, dining on a sunny restaurant terrace or a spot of sightseeing in Annecy, the Venice of the Alps.


Other options:

Historical Chambéry, former capital of the Dukes of Savoy, the romantic spa town of Aix-les-Bains with its swanky casino, or medieval Yvoire, a ‘Plus Beau Village de France’.




Take a cable car up to 3,842 metres altitude

Without even getting out of breath! Everyone should ride the Aiguille du Midi cable car at least once in their lifetime. In just twenty minutes, it whisks you from the centre of Chamonix up to a high-altitude world of snow and rock. And from the top the panorama is – breathtaking! And that’s not all: the Aiguille du Midi boasts a museum, immersive cinema and ‘Step into the Void’ skywalk.


Other options:

If you’re not good with heights and prefer to keep your feet firmly on the ground, alternatives include the fairytale Château de Menthon-St-Bernard, the unusual Esseillon Fortresses and the magnificent Abbaye d'Hautecombe.




Spend the day with knights at Grand Parc d'Andilly

At the Grandes Médiévales d'Andilly festival, you are whisked back in time to the days of old. There’s jousting, stunt riding, birds-of-prey demonstrations, troubadours and acrobatics – all in a replica medieval village deep in the forest. Spend the day in the Middle Ages, browse around the craft village and enjoy a fabulous day out for all the family.


Other options:

Other major events around the region include the International Animation Film Festival, the Printemps de la Grange classical music festival, the Critérium du Dauphiné pro cycle race, and more... This spring there’s plenty going on, with something for everyone!




Have dinner with a view at La Chambotte

Where’s the best viewpoint over Lac du Bourget, we hear you ask? At the top of La Chambotte, just minutes from Aix-les-Bains. From up there you get a 360° panorama of the whole lake and the Alps beyond. And if you want to savour the moment with more than just your eyes, why not book a table for two on the restaurant terrace and watch the sun go down as you dine?


Other options:

Experience sustainable gastronomy, lunch on a private lakeside pontoon or treat yourself in a Michelin-starred restaurant in a vineyard.




Follow the herd up to the mountain pastures

Every spring, local farmers drive their livestock up to graze in their summer home. This is known as the ‘emmontagnée’, a special day for the farmers and their families who leave to spend several months at high altitude. A chorus of tinkling bells accompanies the cows, goats and sheep as they climb to graze the sweet summer meadow grass that gives our cheeses their delicious and distinctive flavour.


Other options:

Explore the Route des Fromages, enjoy the Petit Mont farm experience and visit the Beaufortain Dairy Cooperative.




Walk the Cozon Trail

You don’t need to climb up high to take in stunning views. This spring, why not set off into the woods for your first walk of the year? In the heart of the Chartreuse Regional Nature Park, the Cozon Trail is a footpath that leads you along the river of the same name to see the beautiful waterfalls and deep pools carved out over millennia. Magical!


Other options:

The Legend of the Moulin de la Serpe themed trail in Sciez, a circular walk to take in the views at the top of Taillefer and the Granier vineyards walk on the shore of Lac Saint-André.




Try yoga on a paddleboard

With winter – and more importantly the Covid crisis – finally behind us, we’re all looking to regain a feeling of serenity and well-being. Set out on a journey of self-discovery and immerse yourself in rejuvenating surroundings. And what is the perfect way to attain a state of absolute calm and inner peace? Yoga on a paddleboard, against the magnificent backdrop of the Lac du Bourget. ... And relax!


Other options:

a post-lockdown spa pampering session in Saint-Gervais Mont-Blanc.




Slip on your skis for one last hurrah

There’s nothing better than spring skiing! Who needs a jacket when you can ski in your t-shirt? Sunny pistes, soft snow and lunch on a restaurant terrace, stretched out in a deckchair to soak up the rays – bliss! In Savoie Mont Blanc you can ski until early May – a time when there’s a relaxed and festive mood in the air. And in Val Thorens, come and celebrate the last weekend of the season with a bang at the Grande Dernière


Other options:

party on the peaks at Subli'Cimes in La Plagne, dare to ski the water slide at Défi Foly in La Clusaz, or have a go at telemarking at the Black Shoes festival in Tignes.