Aix-les-Bains, ranked 4th amongst the spa towns of France with 28,000 visitors who come to take the treatments, nestles beside Le Bourget Lake, the largest natural lake in France, at the foot of Mount Revard (height 1550m). It is the gateway to the Bauges Massif Regional Natural Park, and offers an exceptional natural environment, breathtaking panoramic viewpoints, and varied activities to enjoy, whatever the season.
Aix-les-Bains has been listed as a “France Station Nautique” (French Watersports Resort) since 2001, and has gained an excellent reputation as a really welcoming town, for its hotels as well as its facilities.
However, above all, Aix-les-Bains is an accessible town, with its station in the town centre (3hrs from Paris by direct service), the two international airports close by (Lyon St Exupéry and Geneva) and convenient motorways.
The Le Bourget Lake is the largest natural lake in France, and 2/3 of its shores have remained undeveloped. It is listed as a site of community importance, and a wetland area of international importance, and includes vast unspoilt, natural areas where the flora and fauna can flourish, as for example in the reed beds, inaccessible to man.
Surrounded by the foothills of the Jura and the Pre-Alps, Le Bourget Lake is a real “inland sea” which, contrary to what everyone thinks, is not cold. Lying at 231 metres above sea level, its waters proudly achieve an average temperature of 26°C in summer.
Aix Les Bains
Top things to do
in Aix Les Bains
Wellbeing in the service of health
Apart from the treatments provided as part of 3-week state-funded courses or shorter health treatments, the thermal waters have been used since 2004 for fitness activities at the Thermes Chevalley.
A relaxation area was created and a whole treatment area was dedicated to wellbeing using the spa waters.
Beyond the spa waters, Aix-les-Bains offers attractive short wellbeing breaks in 4 fitness centres within the hotels, 10 hotels with spa facilities, and 15 beauty and wellbeing salons in the town centre.
Hautecombe Abbey and heritage
Hautecombe Abbey, top site visited in Savoie, is definitely one of the jewels that dominates the lake.
Founded in the first half of the 12th Century by the monks of Cîteaux, today it houses the Chemin Neuf Community. The Abbey Church, necropolis of the House of Savoy, is a masterpiece of the Gothic Troubadour style. More than 40 princes and princesses were buried there.
Hautecombe Abbey is also a training centre, welcoming young Christians each year from countries such as Africa, Asia, or Eastern Europe
Land of stars and flavours
In Savoie there is cuisine beyond tartiflette (dish made with potatoes, bacon and cheese), fondues and raclette (melted cheese served with potatoes and cold meats)! The richness of the area is only matched by the richness of the local products. Bourget Lake is a fantastic breeding ground where around thirty species live (pikeperch, pike, barbell, arctic char, pollan, etc). Milk from the high mountain pastures is turned into cheese – the most famous is Tome des Bauges (AOC). The breeding of animals produces high-quality meat, and tasty cold meats and salamis. The diversity of the vineyards, especially in Chautagne, is reflected in the richness of wines from Savoie and the AOC vintages. Finally, we must not forget honeys, jams, and “Génépi” liqueur – so many delights extolling the gifts of nature. This is not less than a four-star area, with four starred restaurants to shine day and night over Le Bourget Lake. Alain Perrillat, of the Atmosphères Restaurant (one star), Pierre Marin of the Auberge Lamartine (one star) and Jean Pierre Jacob of the Bateau Ivre (two stars) are wowing the tastebuds of the gourmet.
Bauges Regional Natural Park
Aix-les-Bains is the gateway to the Massif des Bauges Natural Regional Park, and the base camp for practising outdoor sports. As well as watersports, hiking and riding bikes, acrobatics (hang-gliding etc) and via ferrata are other activities through which you can explore an exceptional natural area.
Between them, traditional villages and the wide open spaces of the Les Bauges Regional Park – only 30 minutes from Aix – offer an opportunity for complete rest, in winter and summer alike, in perfect harmony with nature. Extending over an area of 5,214 hectares of forests and alpine pastures, the park is listed as a National Hunting and Wildlife Reserve. The richness of its natural plant life (more than 1300 species) and the variety of animals (150 species of nesting birds, 9 species of amphibians) is the obvious sign of an exceptional area, in very good health
Vignobles & Découvertes: Savoie, Lac du Bourget
Vines flourish along the hillsides of the Haut Rhône and around the banks of the Lac du Bourget to give the unique wines of the Vins de Savoie AOC, including the Jongieux and Chautagne crus.
This wine tourism destination boasts a rich personal, natural, rural and wine-producing heritage.
The “Savoie, lac du Bourget” destination offers a selection of many partner cellars open to tourists, accommodation options and restaurants serving traditional cuisine with set menus suggesting wine pairings.
Visitors will be welcomed by the tourist offices of Aix-les-Bains, Yenne and Chautagne.
Visitors will be able to discover key sites such as the town of Aix-les-Bains, the village of Chanaz, Hautecombe Abbey, the listed wine-growing site of Jongieux-Marestel and the Espace Vignesens, and will be able to enjoy a host of activities linked to wine available in several languages, along with events that highlight the region and its savoir-faire