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The lake of Annecy (Haute-Savoie department)

France has thousands of lakes, ponds and marshes.

Located in the Haute-Savoie department (Rhône-Alpes region), the natural lake of Annecy (in French: lac d’Annecy) is the second largest lake in France, after the “lac du Bourget“, except for the French part of lac Léman (Lake Geneva).

It is the “Europe’s cleanest lake” because of strict environmental regulations introduced in the 1960s. It is a popular tourist destination known for its swimming and water sports.

The lake was formed about 19,000 years ago when the large alpine glaciers started melting. It is supplied with water by several small rivers from the surrounding mountains (l’Ire, l’Eau morte, le Laudon, la Bornette, le Biolon…), and by a powerful underwater source, the Boubioz, which is 82 m deep.

The lake is surrounded in the east by the “massif des Bornes” (la Tournette – 2 351 m, les Dents de Lanfon, le mont Veyrier and le mont Baron), in the west by the “massif des Bauges” (le Semnoz and le Roc des Bœufs), in the north by the urban areas of Annecy like Annecy-le-Vieux, and in the south by the valley towards Faverges, which extends the “Bout-du-Lac” (the end of the lake).

More details:

  • Surface area: 2,759 hectares (27,59 km²).
  • Maximun lenght: 14,6 km.
  • Max. width: 3.3 km Veyrier and Sévrier.
  • Perimetre: 38 km.
  • Altitude: the mean is 446,80 m at the “Bout-du-Lac” (the end of the lake) and 446,40 m at Annecy.
  • Water volume: 1,124.5 million m³
  • Average depth: 41,5 m
  • Maximum depth: about 82 m
  • Average depth: 41 m
  • Surface elevation: 446.97 m
  • Time of water renewal: 4 years
  • Average water temperature: 6 °C in January and 22 °C in July.
  • Water supply: 7 main streams and mountain streams and the source of the Biouboz.
  • Water evaporation : 15 million m³ in a normal year.

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