Located near Chambéry, Lake Aiguebelette is nestled at the bottom of the Épine mountain. Its turquoise waters are very popular with swimmers and fishermen.
History and geography
The lake is located in the Savoie department, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. Its surface area is 545 hectares, making it the 7th largest natural lake in France. It is bordered by the Epine mountain range and Mount Tournier. Its formation, similar to Lake Geneva, dates from the melting of the ice during the Quaternary era. Its name comes from the Latin “Aqua Bella”, which means “beautiful little water”.
Its maximum depth is 71 metres. In its southern part, there are two islands, surrounded by reed beds. In order to preserve its flora and fauna, motorboats have been prohibited since 1967. The lake is private. It belongs jointly to a private individual and to EDF. This stretch of water is served by the A43 motorway, with an access ramp less than 500 m away.
The edges of the lake
In the Avant-Pays Savoyard, the lake welcomes you in a remarkable natural setting, suitable for swimming, water sports and relaxation. We offer you a guide to possible activities.
Classified as a nature reserve
Since 2015, the natural area has been classified as a Regional Nature Reserve covering more than 844 hectares. The site has more than 60 endangered species and about 20 natural biotopes, ranging from wetlands on the plains to drylands under Mediterranean influence. However, the reserve allows existing activities such as fishing, hunting,rowing and dragon boating.
Water sports activities
The water of the lake can reach up to 28°C in summer. Swimming is only allowed on the supervised beaches, in order to preserve the natural environment. The mountain of Epine protects the site from the wind. Its calm waters are therefore ideal for rowing. The lake hosted the World Rowing Championships in 1997 and 2015. The fishermen catch lavaret, which is one of the local culinary specialities.
Fans of free flight such as paragliding have a magnificent playground at their disposal. There are various take-off areas on the Chaîne de l’Épine. The only landing area is at Le Marais. For cycling enthusiasts, there are many passes to climb, such as the Épine traverse. A network of signposted routes is located nearby.
Cyclists can cycle around the lake on the cycle path.
The site has been popular with tourists since the early 20th century. There are beautiful villas and many boat garages. The Maison du Lac is a cultural place which presents temporary exhibitions. Located in the commune of Nances, the Francépoque workshop offers a magnificent collection of porcelain dolls.
Not far away, in Saint-Genis-sur-Guiers, a museum presents the legend of the smuggler Mandrin. It is also in this village that the tasty praline cake is made.
Hikes and walks
The area around the lake offers interesting walks combining history and nature. On the historical side, we recommend the Mandrin cave, the ruins of the Montbel castle and the Sougey educational trail. For hiking, the Mont Grêle and Epine routes are recommended.
Top rated hotels
Depending on your budget, we have selected five hotels near Lake Aiguebelette. They offer excellent value for money and get very good reviews from guests.
This beautiful hotel is ideally located on the lakefront, a 5-minute walk from the beach. The rooms are spacious and contemporary in style. They offer a beautiful view of the lake. Enjoy the large terrace, the private beach and the excellent restaurant.
From € 120 per night.
Hotel La Villa Ginette
This hotel in Aiguebelette-le-Lac is a 6-minute walk from the beach. Entertainment is organised in the evening. The location is very convenient, especially for cycling and hiking. The view of the lake is exceptional.
From 82 € per night.
Chateau de Candie
This luxurious 4-star hotel is located near Chambéry. It is set in a 14th-century castle, decorated with antiques and old paintings. Guests have access to an outdoor swimming pool and can enjoy a meal in the 2 gourmet restaurants.
From €198 per night.
This hotel has a beautiful private beach and a traditional restaurant. You can go for a walk along the marked paths to discover the fauna and flora of this natural region. Cycling enthusiasts can also take advantage of the cycle path.
Prices start at € 67 per night.
Les Lodges du Lac
A beautiful 3-star hotel located in Saint-Alban-de-Montbel, which is 400 metres from the lake. It has a large outdoor swimming pool which is open in season. It has beautiful rooms, a terrace and a 2 hectare park. A beautiful address with fairy tale cabins.
From € 80 per night.
The beaches of Aiguebelette
From mid-June to mid-September, the turquoise waters of Lake Aiguebelette are a call to swim. The lake is protected from the wind and the water temperature is very pleasant during the summer. We propose you a tour of the most beautiful beaches of the site.
- The beach of Lépin le Lac: it is particularly popular with the locals. It offers many activities for families (minigolf, pedal boats, kayaks and paddles) and consists of sand and grass. It is a supervised beach with a fee.
- The beach of Aiguebelette le Lac: it is recognizable thanks to its pontoon and its port. Located on the south side of the lake, it has a picnic area where you can have a barbecue. The beach is not free and is supervised.
- The beach of Bon Vent: it is located at the north of the lake. It is well shaded and has a full range of facilities: petanque court, beach volleyball court, snack bar, children’s playground and pedal boat hire with slide.
- La Crique beach: small in size, it is nevertheless one of the prettiest. The view is magnificent and you can enjoy a buckwheat pancake in its small restaurant. The fine sand is particularly appreciated. The beach is not free and is supervised.
- The beach of Saint Alban: it is intended in particular for the children, who can benefit from the water park with baby splash, water slides, bucket trees and spitting frog wheel. Boat hire for children aged 3 to 12 years. Paid and supervised beach.
- The Pré d’Argent beach: this is the largest beach on Lake Aiguebelette. Ideal for families, it is possible to rent paddles, pedal boats and deckchairs. Paid beach with lifeguard surveillance.