For the past several months, the husband and I have been planning a grand European adventure for our goods friends from the U.S. I already shared about our first stop in Piedmont Italy. Our next stop was the beautiful Lake Annecy in the French Alps! We had never been there before, but I had been dying to go after seeing some photos on various travel blogs. It did not disappoint! Our final stop was the small town of Beaune in Burgundy which we had been to last year. Truth be told, I did a pretty terrible job of getting outfit photos on the French portion of the trip because I was more focused on enjoying quality time with our friends and was taking tons of photos of everyone else. Oh well…at least I have a ton of travel photos!
Part 1 – Relaxing on Lake Annecy
Imagine a crystal clear Alpine lake with dreamy, bright blue water surrounded by mountains and charming villages. That pretty much sums up Annecy which is the name of both the lake and the main village. The lake is only a 50 minute drive to Geneva Switzerland and has a claim to fame as being one of the cleanest lakes in Europe.
We arrived in the afternoon and immediately wanted to get out for a walk around the lake since the weather was nice at that moment but dark clouds were rolling in. After we settled into our lake-view apartment, I changed out of this dress and into my bright pink lace-back tall tee from Dutch shop Pretty Tall, Banana Republic skinny jeans and my trusty Cole Haan Air flats for a refreshing walk around the lake.
That night, we went to a lovely dinner at the 2 Michelin starred restaurant Yoann Conte. If it hadn’t been raining, we would have been able to take a boat across the lake to dinner! How amazing that would have been! Alas, the weather had other plans. Since the weather was uncooperative and we had to run from our apartment to the car and into the restaurant, I unfortunately don’t have any photos of my dress but you have seen it many times before. I wore my trusty teal lace Tory Burch dress. Here’s a photo that we took of the restaurant/hotel during our boat ride around the lake a couple of days later. The food, wine, ambiance and service were truly superb and I highly recommend eating here if you’re in the area.
Unfortunately, the rain was here to stay most of the next day and the temps had dropped significantly. We finally ventured out in into the town of Annecy the next afternoon to check out the quaint canal town. Yes – I am indeed wearing my J.Crew wool peacoat, a scarf and my LTS Chelsea boots. A far cry from my short sleeve tee from the day before!
One of the things that surprised me a bit was how fast the water moved in the canals and, again, how amazingly clear and pretty the water was!
As I’m sure you can imagine, Lake Annecy offers a whole host of activities from hiking in the moutains, to bike riding around the lake, to boating, to swimming. Since the weather was a bit chilly on our one full day in the area, we didn’t really get to avail ourselves of any of these. We did, however, hop on a little 1 hour boat tour the next day before we hit the road. I am really happy we did so because it seems like it would be a shame to not get out on the lake a bit. Here are some scenes from the boat.
I hope to make it back to this area someday because 2 days just wasn’t enough and I’m dying to take the boat to the little village of Talloires!
Part 2 – Exploring Burgundy
The husband and I first visited the small town of Beaune in Burgundy in February 2015 and couldn’t wait to return. Since our visiting friends also love food and wine, taking them there was a no-brainer. We lucked out with absolutely gorgeous weather which made me super happy!
On our first day in town, we linked up with Fabien from Wine Me Up for a private tour of the Burgundy region. Fabien had shown me and the husband around on our first visit to the area and we were excited to see him again. It certainly was a full afternoon with visits to several unique wineries and vineyards, a monastery and a place that makes cheese. It was a tiny chilly to start out so I wore my J.Crew black jeans and J.Crew field jacket with my Long Tall Sally lace top and LTS Chelsea boots. As the day warmed up, I ditched the jacket and scarf and realized that I had totally forgot to put on a necklace! Oops!
One of my favorite things was seeing the horse plowing the ground between the Romanée Conti vineyard. This vineyard produces some of the most expensive and famous wine in the world with bottles selling for thousands of dollars! That completely blows my mind but now back to the horse. I was quite enamored of the horse and found him to be a lot more pleasing to the eye than the tractors I had seen in other vineyards.
Another favorite stop of the day was to the small village of Gevrey-Chambertin. We had a nice visit with a winemaker there and I loved the charming flower lined lanes in the village.
On the very last day of our trip, we rented bikes and rode on the narrow vineyard roads through a few villages ultimately stopping at Mersault for some refreshments before heading back. I went sporty on the top with my Elle Mayers tall activewear shirt and not-so-sporty on the bottom with some skinny jeans. I immediately regretted wearing the jeans on such a nice warm day…not sure what I was thinking! It was still a really fun and relaxing ride (except for the huge bug that flew down my friend’s shirt and bit her!) The Burgundy countryside with its rolling hills and beautiful vineyards is so delightful and experiencing it by bike is a great way to get up close and personal with the vineyards.
The village of Mersault was quite charming. Almost seemed like something out of a storybook!
I didn’t really delve into all of the food we ate on this trip but if you are ever going to the Beaune area and have questions, feel free to contact me for recommendations. I was so sad to see this trip come to an end. It truly could not have been a more perfect time with our friends and we all have so many amazing memories from it.
Have you ever been to Lake Annecy or Burgundy? How about other places in France? Do you like to rent bikes when you go on vacation?