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The lac du Bourget in the Savoie department

France has thousands of lakes, ponds and marshes.

Located in the Savoie department (Rhône-Alpes region), the lac du Bourget (lake Bourget) is the largest and the deepest natural French lake (except for the Leman lake that belongs to France and Switzerland). It was formed about 19,000 years ago, after the last glaciation of Würm when the large glaciers started melting. It is considered to be one of the most beautiful lakes in France.

The most important town on its shore is Aix-les-Bains. Chambéry, the préfecture of Savoie, lies about 10 km south of the lake. The lake was named after the town Le Bourget-du-Lac, on its south shore. It is mainly supplied with water by the river Leysse (and by other small rivers), and drains towards the river Rhône through the canal of Savières, an artificial channel.

More details:

  • Surface area: 44.5 km² (4,450 hectares)
  • Max.length: 18 km
  • Max. width: 3.5 km
  • Average depth: 85 m
  • Max. depth: 145 m
  • Water volume: 3,6 billion m³
  • Water renewal: 8 years
  • Surface elevation: 231.5 m

The average water temperature is about 7 °C in January and about 23 °C in July.

Near the lake, there is an interesting aquarium in Aix-les-Bains that presents the aquatic species living in the lake and in its surroundings. 50 species of fresh water fish are presented. The aim of this aquarium is not only to help preserve the local fauna but also to educate people during the visits.

  • Address:

Aquarium du Lac du Bourget – Le Petit Port – 73 100 AIX-LES-BAINS

  • Phone: +33 04 79 61 08 22 or +33 04 79 88 83 27
  • Fax: + 33 04 79 61 32 12
  • E-mail (for more information):
  • E-mail (administration) :

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