Annecy is the largest city of Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France. It lies on the northern tip of Lake Annecy, 35 kilometers south of Geneva. Nicknamed the "Pearl of French Alps" in Raoul Blanchard's monograph describing its location between lake and mountains, the city controls the northern entrance to the lake gorge. Due to a lack of available building land between the lake and the protected Semnoz mountain, its population remained stagnant, around 50,000 inhabitants, since 1950. However, the 2017 merger with several ex-communes extended the city population to 124,401 inhabitants, 203,078 for its urban area, 6th regional position below Annemasse, which counts 292,000 inhabitants in the northern department. Switching from counts of Geneva's dwelling in the 13th century, to counts of Savoy's in the 14th century, the city became Savoy's capital in 1434 during the Genevois-Nemours prerogative until 1659, its role increased in 1536, during the Calvinist Reformation in Geneva, while the bishop took refuge in Annecy.
Saint Francis de Sales gave Annecy its advanced Catholic citadel role known as Counter-Reformation. The annexation of Savoy merged the city to France in 1860. Sometimes called "Venice of the Alps", this idyllic and touristic representation comes from the three canals and the Thiou river lying through the old city and whose initial role was to protect the city and to empower its handicrafts; the city experienced an industrial development in the 19th century with silk manufacturing. Some of its industrial legacy remains today with the headquarters of NTN-SNR bearings, Salomon and Dassault Aviation. Since the end of the 19th century, Annecy developed tourism around its lake summer facilities, winter resorts proximity and cultural attraction with its castle renovation and fine art museum opening in 1956 and the Animated Film Festival since 1960, hosted in Bonlieu's cultural Center; the municipal environmental policy managed to keep 40.3% of green spaces and the city and was awarded the "Golden Flower" in 2015, given to the nine most-flowered French cities.
Its educational area is growing since the University of Savoy establishment in 1973. The Fier forms part of the commune's northwestern border; the surrounding mountains are Mont Veyrier, Semnoz and Parmelan. Le vieil Annecy, was a settlement from the time of the Romans. Annecy was the court of the counts of Genevois from the 10th century, it passed to the counts of Savoy in 1401. In 1444, it became the regional capital of the provinces of Genevois and Beaufortain. With the advance of Calvinism, Annecy became a center for the Counter-Reformation, the old Bishopric of Geneva being transferred to it in 1535. Francis of Sales was born in Sales, France in 1567 and served as bishop of Annecy from 1602 to 1622. During the French Revolution, the Savoy region was conquered by France. Annecy became attached to the department of Mont Blanc; the Catholic diocese was suppressed in 1801. After the Bourbon Restoration in 1815, Annecy was returned to the King of Sardinia and the Catholic diocese restored in 1822.
When Savoy was annexed to France in 1860 with the Treaty of Turin, it became the capital of the new department of Haute-Savoie. Annecy was the site of the second round of General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade talks in 1949. In 2012, a multiple murder occurred in the Annecy area; the new municipality was established on 1 January 2017 by merger with the former communes of Annecy-le-Vieux, Cran-Gevrier, Meythet and Seynod. Annecy is part of 4 cantons and it is the Prefecture of Haute-Savoie. Since 2017, Annecy is formed of six delegate cities: Annecy, Annecy-le-Vieux, Cran-Gevrier, Meythet and Seynod; the local government is formed of the City council, composed of 202 members. Each commune delegate has a number of members depending upon its population; the Mayor is Jean-Luc Rigaut since 2007. The intercommunality of Annecy, Grand Annecy Agglomération, includes 34 municipalities. Annecy has hosted the Annecy International Animated Film Festival since 1960 and the Rencontres Internationales d'Annecy Cinéma & Architecture since 1999.
On 23 July 2009, Annecy played host to Stage 18 of the Tour de France, as the start/finish point for an individual time trial around Lake Annecy. It will be the start town for stage 10 of the 2018 Tour de France on 17 July 2018. Annecy lost to Pyeongchang. If they had been chosen, Annecy would have been the fourth French city to host the Winter Olympic Games, after Chamonix and Albertville. Ligue 1 former team Évian Thonon Gaillard F. C. played. The club was founded in 2007, they grew up to reach Ligue 1, stayed for three years in the division, thanks to their emblematic trainer Pascal Dupraz; the Annecy basin is one of the world's leading locations for the sport of paragliding, an activity of some economic importance to the region. The area hosts major competitions, most a leg of the Paragliding World Cup in 2012. Due to its proximity with the lake and the mountains, Annecy is popular for watersports and wintersports. Le Semnoz, a small ski resort is 35 minutes away from Annecy. Other bigger ski resorts, La Clusaz and Le Grand Bornand, are only 40 minutes away.
Annecy is very popular among trail runners and many races are organized year round, such as the World Trail Running Champions
Arâches-la-Frasse is commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. Situated in the northern French Alps, the commune sits on a large sunny plateau overlooking the Arve Valley southeast of the town of Cluses, it is part of the canton of Sallanches. The main villages in the commune are Arâches, Les Carroz, La Frasse; until the 1930s the village of Les Carroz was a simple farming hamlet with only a few houses. It is now developing into the nearest large ski resort to Geneva. By 1981 Les Carroz had been linked to the nearby ski villages of Samoëns, Morillon and Sixt-Fer-à-Cheval, the resort of Flaine, developed in the 1960s; the Grand-Massif ski area had been born. The gondola and chairlift in Les Carroz can take skiers straight up to the extensive skiing in the Grand Massif. Communes of the Haute-Savoie department INSEE Les Carroz webcam: http://www.grandmassif.co.uk
Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, more known as Chamonix, is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. It was the site of the first Winter Olympics in 1924. Situated to the north of Mont Blanc, near the massive peaks of the Aiguilles Rouges and most notably the Aiguille du Midi, Chamonix is one of the oldest ski resorts in France; the Chamonix commune is popular with skiers and mountain enthusiasts, via the cable car lift to the Aiguille du Midi it is possible to access the off-piste ski run of the Vallée Blanche. Chamonix is the fourth largest commune in mainland France, with an area of 245 km2, its population of around 8,900 ranks 1,089th within the country of France. The valley was first mentioned in 1091, when it was granted by the Count of the Genevois to the great Benedictine house of St. Michel de la Cluse, near Turin, which by the early 13th century had established a priory there. However, in 1786 the inhabitants bought their freedom from the canons of Sallanches, to whom the priory had been transferred in 1519.
In 1530, the inhabitants obtained from the Count of the Genevois the privilege of holding two fairs a year, while the valley was visited by the civil officials and by the bishops of Geneva. But travellers for pleasure were rare. Chamonix was part of the historical land of Savoy emerged as the feudal territory of the House of Savoy during the 11th to 14th centuries; the historical territory is shared between the modern countries of France and Switzerland. The House of Savoy became the longest surviving royal house in Europe, it ruled the County of Savoy to 1416 and the Duchy of Savoy from 1416 to 1860. The first party to publish an account of their visit was that of Richard Pococke, William Windham and others, such as the Englishmen who visited the Mer de Glace in 1741. In 1742 came P. Martel and several other Genevese, in 1760 H. B. de Saussure, rather Marc Th. Bourrit; the growth of tourism in the early 19th century led to the formation of the Compagnie des Guides de Chamonix in 1821, to regulate access to the mountain slopes, this association held a monopoly of guiding from the town until it was broken by French government action in 1892.
From the late 19th century on, tourist development was dominated by national and international initiatives rather than local entrepreneurs, though the local community was dependent upon and active in the tourist industry. The commune lobbied to change its name from Chamonix to Chamonix-Mont-Blanc in 1916. However, following the loss of its monopoly, the Compagnie reformed as an association of local guides, retained an important role in local society; the holding of the first Winter Olympic Games in Chamonix in 1924 further raised Chamonix's profile as an international tourist destination. During the Second World War, a Children's Home operated in Chamonix, in which several dozens of Jewish children were hidden from the Nazis; some of those who hid them were recognised as "Righteous Among the Nations". By the 1960s, agriculture had been reduced to a marginal activity, while the number of tourist beds available rose to around 60,000 by the end of the 20th century, with about 5 million visitors a year.
The commune of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc includes 16 hamlets. From north to south: Le Tour 1,462 m, Montroc, Le Planet, Argentière 1,252 m, Les Chosalets, Le Lavancher, Les Tines, Les Bois, Les-Praz-de-Chamonix 1,060 m, Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, Les Pècles, Les Mouilles, Les Barrats, Les Pélerins, Les Gaillands, Les Bossons 1,012 m. Due to its elevation, Chamonix has a humid continental climate, with an average annual precipitation of 1,275 mm. Summers are mild and winters are cold and snowy. Population change Sources: Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 · Population Over Time Chamonix is a winter sports resort town; as the highest European mountain west of Russia, Mont Blanc attracts mountain climbers. There is a cable car up to the 3,842 m Aiguille du Midi. Constructed in 1955, it was the highest cable car in the world and remains the highest vertical ascent cable car in the world; the town of Chamonix is served by French Route Nationale 205, nicknamed the Route blanche, or "white route", due to its snowiness.
This is an extension of French autoroute 40 nicknamed the autoroute blanche, which ends at Le Fayet, a village in the commune of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains. The 11.6-km Mont Blanc Tunnel originates here. Chamonix is linked to Switzerland by. In 2006, it was converted to a Route Départementale 1506, with a part of it integrated into RN 205; the nearest airport to Chamonix is Geneva Cointrin International and it is 88 kilometres in distance. Chamonix is served by the metre-gauge St Gervais-Vallorcine Line, operated by SNCF; the line from Saint Gervais to Chamonix opened in 1901. The line ho
The Alps are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies in Europe, separating Southern from Central and Western Europe and stretching 1,200 kilometres across eight Alpine countries: France, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria and Slovenia. The mountains were formed over tens of millions of years as the African and Eurasian tectonic plates collided. Extreme shortening caused by the event resulted in marine sedimentary rocks rising by thrusting and folding into high mountain peaks such as Mont Blanc and the Matterhorn. Mont Blanc spans the French–Italian border, at 4,810 m is the highest mountain in the Alps; the Alpine region area contains about a hundred peaks higher than 4,000 metres. The altitude and size of the range affects the climate in Europe. Wildlife such as ibex live in the higher peaks to elevations of 3,400 m, plants such as Edelweiss grow in rocky areas in lower elevations as well as in higher elevations. Evidence of human habitation in the Alps goes back to the Palaeolithic era.
A mummified man, determined to be 5,000 years old, was discovered on a glacier at the Austrian–Italian border in 1991. By the 6th century BC, the Celtic La Tène culture was well established. Hannibal famously crossed the Alps with a herd of elephants, the Romans had settlements in the region. In 1800, Napoleon crossed one of the mountain passes with an army of 40,000; the 18th and 19th centuries saw an influx of naturalists and artists, in particular, the Romantics, followed by the golden age of alpinism as mountaineers began to ascend the peaks. The Alpine region has a strong cultural identity; the traditional culture of farming and woodworking still exists in Alpine villages, although the tourist industry began to grow early in the 20th century and expanded after World War II to become the dominant industry by the end of the century. The Winter Olympic Games have been hosted in the Swiss, Italian and German Alps. At present, the region has 120 million annual visitors; the English word Alps derives from the Latin Alpes.
Maurus Servius Honoratus, an ancient commentator of Virgil, says in his commentary that all high mountains are called Alpes by Celts. The term may be common to Italo-Celtic, because the Celtic languages have terms for high mountains derived from alp; this may be consistent with the theory. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the Latin Alpes might derive from a pre-Indo-European word *alb "hill". Albania, a name not native to the region known as the country of Albania, has been used as a name for a number of mountainous areas across Europe. In Roman times, "Albania" was a name for the eastern Caucasus, while in the English languages "Albania" was used as a name for Scotland, although it is more derived from the Latin albus, the color white; the Latin word Alpes could come from the adjective albus. In modern languages the term alp, albe or alpe refers to a grazing pastures in the alpine regions below the glaciers, not the peaks. An alp refers to a high mountain pasture where cows are taken to be grazed during the summer months and where hay barns can be found, the term "the Alps", referring to the mountains, is a misnomer.
The term for the mountain peaks varies by nation and language: words such as Horn, Kopf, Spitze and Berg are used in German speaking regions. The Alps are a crescent shaped geographic feature of central Europe that ranges in a 800 km arc from east to west and is 200 km in width; the mean height of the mountain peaks is 2.5 km. The range stretches from the Mediterranean Sea north above the Po basin, extending through France from Grenoble, stretching eastward through mid and southern Switzerland; the range continues onward toward Vienna and east to the Adriatic Sea and Slovenia. To the south it dips into northern Italy and to the north extends to the southern border of Bavaria in Germany. In areas like Chiasso and Allgäu, the demarcation between the mountain range and the flatlands are clear; the countries with the greatest alpine territory are Austria, Italy and Switzerland. The highest portion of the range is divided by the glacial trough of the Rhône valley, from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn and Monte Rosa on the southern side, the Bernese Alps on the northern.
The peaks in the easterly portion of the range, in Austria and Slovenia, are smaller than those in the central and western portions. The variances in nomenclature in the region spanned by the Alps makes classification of the mountains and subregions difficult, but a general classification is that of the Eastern Alps and Western Alps with the divide between the two occurring in eastern Switzerland according to geologist Stefan Schmid, near the Splügen Pass; the highest peaks of the Western Alps and Eastern Alps are Mont Blanc, at 4,810 m and Piz Bernina at 4,049 metres. The second-highest major
Saint-Gervais-les-Bains is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. The village is best known for tourism, has been a popular holiday destination because of its beauty and location since the early 1900s, it has 450 km of ski pistes, reputed to be the third largest domain in France, is one of the least busy ski areas of its size. In 1892, two hundred people were killed when a water pocket in a glacier above the town burst open, causing destructive flooding; the wider administrative area of the commune of St Gervais encompasses several separate villages, as well as the summit of Mont Blanc. The commune has a large variation in altitudes, ranging from the village of Le Fayet at 570m up to the summit of Mont Blanc at 4810m, with the main town of St Gervais at just under 900m in altitude. St Gervais les Bains is not a purpose built resort, so has a significant year round population, rather than just seasonal and is full of historical buildings giving it the traditional charm much sought after in the Alps.
In winter, the main draw is of course snow sports, the resort has a multi-national client base. It is increasing in popularity among British holiday-makers; the summer sees tourists arrive from around the world to explore the numerous fair weather alpine activities available such as Mountain Biking, Hiking, Rafting, etc. as well as making use of the all year thermal spa'Les Thermes' which sits within the beautiful'Parc Thermal' in the lower village of Le Fayet. Recent holiday companies have expanded in the area following increased demand, although the majority of chalet holiday companies offering accommodation to guests are independent "owner-run" chalets and therefore the town and the ski domain manage to avoid the heavy congestion of some of this resorts more famous neighbours; the main railway station for Saint-Gervais is the Gare de Saint-Gervais-les-Bains-Le Fayet. The fabulous and historic Mont Blanc Tramway departs from Le Fayet station and reaches the Nid d'Aigle station at the Bionnassay glacier at an altitude of 2372 m.
The Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine railway departs from Le Fayet station and takes you to Chamonix and across the Swiss border to Martigny. Numerous other destinations throughout France can be accessed from the main SNCF station at Le Fayet, the main resort is just a 10-minute descent to the nearby A40 Peage motorway to Geneva, Lyon and connecting to the rest of the French motorway network; the French ski jumper Marie Hoyau is a native of St. Gervais. On 11 July 1892, a hidden lake burst out of the Tête Rousse Glacier on the slopes of the mountains above the town, it flooded the valley, razed the hamlet of Bionnay, reached St Gervais and Le Fayet, killing 200 people in its path. In 2010, the rediscovery of a large water pocket deep within the glacier caused alarm and to this day has the potential to threaten another outburst flood. Melt-water pumping, formal evacuation plans and installation of a siren alarm system in 2013 have all been implemented to reduce the threat to life. Communes of the Haute-Savoie department Tourism Office website Official site of the commune INSEE Saint-Gervais Village at Google Cultural Institute
The river Arve flows for 100 km through France, in the département of Haute-Savoie, in Switzerland. It is a left tributary of the Rhône. Rising in the northern side of the Mont Blanc massif in the Alps, close to the Swiss border, it receives water from the many glaciers of the Chamonix valley before flowing north-west into the Rhône on the west side of Geneva, where its much higher level of silt brings forth a striking contrast between the two rivers; the Arve flows through Chamonix, Sallanches, Oëx, Bonneville and Geneva
Megève is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France with a population of more than 4,000 residents. The town is well known as a ski resort near Mont Blanc in the French Alps. Conceived in the 1920s as a French alternative to St. Moritz by the Rothschilds, it was the first purpose-built resort in the Alps, it was a prime destination for the French aristocracy. It remains one of the most fanciest ski resorts in the world; the town started its development as a ski resort in the 1910s, when the Rothschild family began spending their winter vacations there after becoming disenchanted with the Swiss resort St. Moritz. In 1921, Baroness Noémie de Rothschild opened the Domaine du Mont d'Arbois, a luxury hotel which boosted the resort's development. By the 1950s Megève was one of the most popular ski resorts in Europe and attracted many wealthy individuals and celebrities. Nowadays it is still visited by affluent people as is evidenced by the real estate prices.
For the 2015–2016 winter season a six-seater chair opened replacing the two old Mont Joux chairs. Further additions include the latest branch of Folie Douce at the top of Mont Joux, introducing the chain’s trademark Austrian-style afternoon party scene, which opened in the 2014–2015 season; this will be the fifth in the Folie Douce chain, which started in Val d’Isère and spread to Val Thorens, Méribel and Alpe d’Huez. Megève's Alpine skiing area, known as the "Domaine Évasion Mont Blanc", comprises Megève itself; the "Evasion Mont-Blanc" range covers 445 km of the ski slopes. On an area of 8 km² there are 116 lifts providing access to 219 slopes totaling 445 km; the 445 km of slopes are thusly divided from hardest to easiest: 35-km blacks, 58-km reds, 110-km blues and 76-km greens. The lifts: 67 platter lifts, 35 chairlifts and 13 gondola lifts and one cable car. In addition, the "Domaine Évasion Mont Blanc" includes 18 cross-country skiing trails totaling 65 km; the first three World Junior Figure Skating Championships were held in Megève in 1976, 1977 and 1978.
The Megève Polo Masters is an international polo tournament played on snow. The Snow Golf Cup is a unique golf tournament held on snow on Megève's Mont d'Arbois plateau; as well as these winter sports, Megève hosts winter events including an international curling tournament, a ski cross World Cup and a mogul skiing cup. There is night skiing in February, a ski cross slope, an open-air ice rink and dog sledding plus 38 km of Nordic skiing in the region. Megève is a popular summer holiday destination and is renowned for its golfing opportunities, it was the start town for stage 20 of the 2016 Tour de France. Oberstdorf in Germany has, since 1970, been a twin town of Megève, it is located in the mountains and famous for summer and winter holidays. People awarded the honorary citizenship of Megève are: Megève is the ski resort featured in the beginning of the 1963 film Charade, where Audrey Hepburn's Regina Lampert meets Cary Grant's character, it is the title of one of the tracks by composer Henry Mancini on the film's soundtrack.
Megève was one of four World Cup venues in the Alps featured in the 1969 film Downhill Racer, starring Robert Redford and Gene Hackman. Communes of the Haute-Savoie department Megève Aerodrome INSEE Official tourism website of Megève. / Official website of the municipality of Megève. Megève local people, tradition