LAKE ANNECY, FRANCE

LAKE ANNECY CONQUER & EXPLORE

Relay places from £675pp (3 nights) | Soloists from £975pp (4 nights)
2017 dates: 29 Sept – 2 Oct (FULL) | 2018 dates:  please contact the office for details

OVERVIEW

Lake AnnecyAnnecy is a truly iconic swim and a great long distance challenge to add to any open water swimmer’s repertoire. If you think 14.6km is a little too far, but are still keen to swim in the beautiful turquoise waters of Annecy – we don’t blame you! Because of this, we have engineered this tour carefully so that it is possible to swim it in sections, or even with friends in a relay. Whether you are a soloist or a relay swimmer, our Annecy weekend also factors in time to explore and relax too. The day after your big swim, there will be an opportunity to join a fun exploratory swim along the cliffs and caves by Talloires. Our solo swimmers join the tour on the Thursday, with the aim of completing their big swim on the Friday. Relay swimmers join the tour Friday evening, with the aim of completing their swim Saturday morning. See the ‘Itinerary’ tab for further details.

ABOUT LAKE ANNECY

Immortalised by the impressionist painter Paul Cézanne in 1896 with his work Le Lac Bleu (the Blue Lake) and set against a backdrop of spectacular Alpine peaks, Lake Annecy promises to be a magical swim. The turquoise lake is enclosed in the Haute-Savoie, one of France’s most beautiful regions. At 14.6km, it is one of the largest lakes in France and often hailed as “Europe’s cleanest lake”. Formed about 18,000 years ago at the time when large alpine glaciers melted, it is fed by many small rivers from the surrounding mountains; the Ire, Laudon, Bornette and Biolon and, together with the underwater source at Boubioz, it has a depth of 82m. If you would like to chat to a member of SwimQuest staff about this tour, please contact the office.

USEFUL INFORMATION:

  • Duration: Soloists: Thursday to Monday, relay swimmers: Friday to Monday
  • Water temperature:  15 - 20˚C (wetsuits advised, please advise the SwimQuest office should you wish to swim non-wetsuit)
  • Swimming distances: Solo option: One long swim at 14.6km All swimmers will start early morning between 6-7am in Annecy on the Friday, and swim to the end passing Bout du Lac keeping on the west shoreline.  The early start ensures that a majority of the swim is completed before the lake becomes busy. Relay option: Swim 14.6km in a team Swim the length of the lake in a team - we advise swimming in 45 minute rotations. You can either swim with friends or we can put you in a group. Relay swimmers will arrive Friday evening and swim their relay Saturday morning.
  • Swimming ability: You should think carefully about which option you would like to undertake - and, if swimming the full length in one go, you should have trained accordingly. We are more than happy to talk to you beforehand and advise on training and preparation if you are unsure.
  • Are non-swimmers welcome? Due to the nature of the swim, we cannot guarantee space on the escort boat for non-swimmers, however they are welcome to join us and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

WHAT'S INCLUDED?

  • Accommodation in the four-star, eco-friendly Cote Ouest apartments
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Swim itinerary (tailored to your solo / relay needs)
  • Swim Guides
  • Boat safety cover
  • Transport during the day (for the swims)
  • VAT

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED?

  • Travel to and from Cote Ouest
  • Any alcohol purchases
  • Wetsuit hire and fins (if required)

ACCOMMODATION Cote Ouest SwimQuest Annecy

Part of the charm of this trip is staying in the modern, stylish Cote Ouest apartments. All meals are provided on this trip, home-cooked and served in Le Loft, with a spectacular view of the lake. Due to the various apartment sizes within Cote Ouest, please choose your required apartment from the below and indicate which apartment you would like on your booking form.

AZUR

  • Azur Cote Ouest Annecy SwimQuest£675pp sharing place (double share only)
  • £810 single occupancy
Azur is a small studio apartment (27m2) with a private garden area, and is an ideal room for a couple. The studio contains a double bed, bathroom and a kitchen area.

INDIGO

  • Indigo Cote Ouest Annecy £700 sharing place (double share only)
  • £840 single occupancy
Indigo is 27m2 studio apartment, with a large kitchen and lounge area, bathroom and one double bed (an extra bed can be added for a child).

HORIZON

  • Cote Ouest Horizon AnnecySharing place - main room £755, sofa bed - £675
  • £860 single occupancy 
Horizon is a two room 33m2 first floor apartment, with lake views, one bathroom, kitchen area and a balcony. This apartment is ideal for a couple or a group of three (couple and friend). Given the fact the second bed is a sofa bed, it is possible to book into this room as a sharing place and take either the main room, or sofa bed.

CIEL

  • Ciel Cote Ouest AnnecySharing place - main room £775, sofa bed £705
  • £930 single occupancy 
Ciel is an easy-access, two room 40m2 apartment. Based on the ground floor, it has a private garden. This apartment is ideal for a couple or a group of three (couple and friend) and has one bedroom, bathroom and a kitchen area. Given the fact the second bed is a sofa bed, it is possible to book into this room as a sharing place and take either the main room, or sofa bed.

OPALE

  • Room Opale Cote Ouest Annecy£955 sharing place (private room, shared bathroom)
  • £1145 single occupancy for whole apartment
Opale is a beautiful 3 room apartment (50m2), consisting of two bedrooms and a living / kitchen area. The apartment has a lake view and lake facing balcony. One room contains a queen size bed, and one room contains a trundle double (made up of two single beds). Should you choose the 'sharing place' for this apartment, you would get your own private bedroom, however you would share the rest of the apartment, bathroom and the kitchen / living area with a fellow swimmer. If you are a group of 4/5 and are happy to share this apartment between you, please let us know and we can offer a group discount on this price. 

LE GRAND BLEU

  • Le Grand Bleu Annecy Sharing place sofa bed - £1215 / main room double bed - £1315
  • £1590 single occupancy 
A large, luxurious 50m2 second floor apartment, with beautiful views of the lake. A large kitchen / seating area, one bathroom and one double bedroom. This apartment is ideal for a couple or family looking to spoil themselves. Given the fact the second bed is a sofa bed, it is possible to book into this room as a sharing place and take either the main room, or sofa bed.

cote ouest address

Cote Ouest 765 Route d'Albertville 74320 Sévrier

Click to read reviews of Cote Ouest on TripAdvisor.

ITINERARY

Annecy solo swim SwimQuest

A soloist heads out ready for the big swim

N.B. This trip is tailored towards you completing your solo / relay swim of Lake Annecy. As such, the itinerary will be carefully structured and based upon the needs of each individual, to ensure you have the best possible chance of completing your swim and enjoying your short break. The below is a rough guide, but may be adapted depending on individuals’ needs and the prevailing weather. Swim guides will advise you each day on what is best for you, but in all cases guides will encourage you to achieve your personal goals in safe conditions.

THE GROUP

This tour caters for a maximum of 4 soloists and 8 relay swimmers. You will be looked after by three experienced SwimQuest guides. Lake temperatures vary from 15-20 degrees Celsius and wetsuits are advised for the swim unless pre-arranged with SwimQuest Head Office.

THURSDAY (soloists only)

Annecy solo swimSoloists for this weekend break are required to arrive one day earlier than relay swimmers. Soloists should arrive Thursday night, in time for a safety briefing, and their preparation dinner at 7pm.

FRIDAY AM (soloists only)

Lake Annecy SwimQuestThe soloists will be woken up early, ready to start their swim at daybreak. Each soloist will have been given full instructions by their swim guide, and will be escorted down the lake by their guide, with regular feeds (your swim guides will use maxim unless otherwise advised). Feel free to speak to the SwimQuest office beforehand to discuss your feed plan.

FRIDAY PM (RELAY SWIMMERS ARRIVE)

Cote Ouest SwimQuest AnnecyWe will all meet in the main apartment at Cote Ouest for the mandatory safety briefing for relay swimmers, and welcome drinks for the relay swimmers. After which, we can relax and have dinner as a group. (Should guests have any unforeseen delays, we may defer the briefing to the following morning).

SATURDAY AM

Feed stop for the Annecy solo swimmersWhilst soloists take a well deserved rest, the really team/s will start their relay at daybreak. Each relay team will have their own dedicated swim guide and boat. At lunchtime, soloists will be picked up and taken to meet the victorious relay teams, in time for a picnic lunch.

SATURDAY PM

swimquest annecy swimOn Saturday afternoon we will offer an additional swim along the east side of the lake for anyone who would like one. After the swim, we will return to Cote Ouest for afternoon snacks on the terrace, before eating together in the evening as a group, watching darkness set over the lake.

SUNDAY

Talloires annecySunday gives us time to take a day trip to Talloires. After breakfast, we will take a picnic and explore the stunning cliffs and caves by Talloires village. Swim along the shoreline, experiencing the part of the lake you missed in your length swim of the lake. In the evening, the guides will prepare a delicious meal which we will serve on the terrace, overlooking the lake.

MONDAY

Check out is at 10am on Monday. Guides will prepare an early breakfast and will put on a local sunrise swim for anyone interested.

TRAVEL TO LAKE ANNECY

Lake Annecy SwimQuestAir

The nearest airport is Geneva Airport French Side and is serviced by many airlines – Easyjet, KLM, Swiss and Air France. We would recommend using a flight search engine such as www.skyscanner.net or www.kayak.co.uk to find the cheapest available flights from your location.

BUS

This is an easy and cost effective way to get to Lake Annecy from Geneva airport. We would recommend taking the Transalis Geneva - Annecy shuttle bus. Tickets can be booked in advance here. The trip will be about 1 hour and 40 minutes. Prices start at about CHF 15-20 one way.

TRAIN

The French trains SNCF have a train service to Lake Annecy. Tickets can be booked here. The trip by train is about 2 hours and the price of a one-way ticket starts at CHF 22.

Taxi

A private taxi from Geneva Swiss side to Annecy will cost about CHF 150-175 one way. If you would like to book this method of transport, please email Karine at resa@annecy-coteouest.com, give your times and mention you are on the SwimQuest trip. Sometimes this is a good option if you are arriving in a group at the same time.

Car Hire

Car hire costs can be defrayed if shared amongst the group and gives greater independence during the weekend. If hiring a car, do so from the French side of the airport. The French side of Geneva airport actually called Geneva Ferney-Voltaire Airport. Once you have picked up your luggage go through to airport arrivals, turn left and follow French flag signs to enter the French Sector. There are many car hire companies to choose from (e.g. Europcar, Avis etc).

N.B. - Returning to Geneva Airport (French Side):

If you have hired a car from the French side of the airport you will have to return the car to the same side. If you accidently return it to the Swiss side, you will have to pay a big fine. This seems straight forward enough but if you just follow signs to Geneva airport it will only take you to the Swiss side. In addition, if you want to avoid the 40 euro Swiss road tax you will have to take the longer “scenic” route back to the airport, avoiding entering Switzerland!

Directions to Lake Annecy From The Airport

Once you have picked up your rental car there are two routes to get to Annecy. The most direct route crosses into Switzerland and you will have to drive along the Swiss Autoroute. For this you will need to purchase a vignette (toll sticker) which costs around 40 euros. The alternative route does not cross into Switzerland, is slightly longer but more scenic. This is the route that we would suggest taking and details can be downloaded from the internet. Most hire cars offer satellite navigation for additional help if required.

WHAT DO I PACK?

  • LAKE ANNECY SWIMQUESTAt least 2 swimming costumes
  • Wetsuit (please advise SwimQuest office if you intend to swim wetsuit free)
  • 2 pairs of swim goggles – one clear and one tinted
  • Towel(s)
  • Small daypack/rucksack to use for your personal equipment/clothing during the day (note you will receive a SwimQuest dry bag)
  • Sandals/aqua shoes / flip flops – for getting wet
  • Insect repellent
  • Fleece or warm jumper
  • Wooly hat, warm clothes for post-swim
  • Sun hat, sun cream and sunglasses
  • A waterproof watch (optional)
  • A memory stick should you wish to take your photos and videos home with you immediately
  • Travel insurance details
  • Trainers / sports gear (optional - if you like to run, there is a lovely running track around the lake – non guided, at your own risk)
  • Any additional food you may require for your swim feeds (SwimQuest provide standard Maxim feeds, bananas, jelly babies however if you use specific feeds then please do bring them).
We’re excited about meeting you on tour. To book your Annecy trip, simply fill in the booking form below. Once you have submitted the form, Charlotte (our bookings co-ordinator) will be in touch to request payment and to help you with any additional requirements. A deposit of 30% is required to secure your place, and the final payment is due 8 weeks prior to departure. Payments can be made by debit / credit card, by cheque, or by bank transfer. SwimQuest financial protectionSwimQuest is a proud member of the Travel Trust Association, the only travel network in the UK to guarantee 100% financial protection to the consumer, ensuring total consumer confidence.

BOOKING FORM

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

In booking with us, you accept our terms and conditions, which can be found here. If at any point you have any questions, feel free to contact us: Charlotte Benton | +44 7743 233803 | charlotte@swimquest.uk.com Alice Todd | +44 7825 301443 | alice@swimquest.uk.com

TRAVEL INSURANCE

Please ensure you have adequate travel insurance before your tour, including cover for all the activities you are participating in. If you are in doubt that an activity is covered, you will need to contact your travel insurance provider for advice on cover. Fogg Travel Insurance are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and are used to covering escorted open water swimming trips. To book travel insurance through Fogg, please click here.  

SOLO SWIMS OF LAKE ANNECY - 2018 DETAILS

A soloists reaches the castle ready for the final stretch

A soloists reaches the castle ready for the final stretch

In 2018 we are changing the way we run our Annecy trips, to provide guests with a more flexible, affordable option to swim the length of the lake, whilst still being fully supported and encouraged by the SwimQuest team.

SWIM ONLY

We will be providing a dinner & swim price of £680 per soloist, which includes:
  • A dedicated one-to-one SwimQuest guide, who will accompany you in a safety boat, to feed and encourage you for the duration of your swim
  • A personal safety boat
  • Your swim feeds during your swim (maxim based)
  • A second, land-based dedicated SwimQuest guide, who will be driving along the side of the lake whilst you do your swim, in radio contact with your main guide
  • Transport back to the swim start after the swim
  • An opportunity to get to know your swim guides with a home-made pre-swim dinner the night before
  • A pre swim safety briefing the night before an an opportunity to discuss any last minute swim requirements
  • VAT
Annecy solo swim SwimQuest

A soloists heads out ready for the big swim

WEATHER CONDITIONS

In the unlikely event that your swim cannot take place due to weather conditions, we will do out very best to organise another slot for you during your stay in Annecy, however as the weather is unpredictable, this cannot be guaranteed.

BOOKING FOR 2018

June and September dates are available for 2018. Please email the office on info@swimquest.uk.com for details and to register your interest.