11 Majestic Lakes in France You Can’t Miss

majestic lakes in france

France is a rich and diverse country that is visited by thousands of tourists annually. You can visit numerous places in the country, and you are not limited to the famous monuments in the country. The countryside is pristine, and you can never get bored when you visit the fantastic beaches and spectacular ski stations. There are vineyards in southern France that rival those found in Italy. You can discover the natural beauty that France has to offer by visiting the country any time of the year. Whether the lakes are artificial or naturally made, you should see some exquisite lakes in France. Some of them are small, and they offer an aura of peacefulness and tranquility that will give you a moment to rejuvenate and meditate. You can surf or sail in these lakes as you are surrounded by rolling hills and mountains that the scenery provides.

One of the fun activities that people love when they visit France is water sports. Numerous lakes in the country are worth visiting. Whether you love kayaking, canoeing, or any kind of watersport, you are in for a treat when you visit the country. The lakes in the country are both natural while others are manmade. You can relax and unwind as you enjoy the view of the lakes scattered across the country or immerse yourself in the sandy beaches as you soak in the sun during the winter period. Depending on the type of experience you want to have while visiting the country, France is the best destination. There are so many activities that you can do around the lakes or in the lake. Here are some of the top lakes in France to visit.

Lake Serre-Poncon

Lake Serre Poncon

This lake is situated in southern France, and it is surrounded by mountains giving it the serenity that it requires to offer a perfect holiday destination. It is ranked among the most enormous manmade lakes, and it was constructed as part of the flood control project. As a visitor, you are not limited in the activities that you can do in the region. You can camp along the lake and enjoy swimming, windsurfing, and sailing, among other activities. 

The outer side of the lakes provides lined beaches with beautiful lakes before you move to the region with the craggy coast. You must avoid this lake from September to October because the weather can be quite unpredictable. This lake is worth exploring, and you can take your family to enjoy the great activities as you get to understand the French culture and cuisine. Besides, the lake is in one of the most accessible regions in France.

Lake Annecy

Lake Annecy

Lake Annecy is one of the lakes that is considered as the top-notch in France and across Europe. The lake is immaculate, and it is located in the Haute-Savoie region. This is a natural lake formed as a result of the ancient glaciation period, and the pure water covers an area of about 28 kilometers of square kilometers.

If you’re situated in Geneva, then visiting lake Annecy is one of the best day trips you can take from the city.

While in the region, you can have a glimpse of the majestic alps mountains. There are numerous fun activities that you can do in and around the lake, and these include diving, sailing, cycling, rowing, fishing, and water skiing, just to mention a few. You are not limited to the listed activities. You can be adventurous and try new fun activities.

Lake Grand Lieu

The Lake Grand Lieu is among the largest lakes in France as it covers a surface area of about 65 kilometers square during the peak season and 35 kilometers square during the off-peak season. The peak season is during the heavy rains, while the off-peak is during the low rain season.

The lake is rich and diverse in fauna and flora, and you are sure that you cannot miss something to do around and in the lake. Around the grand lake is a national reserve and this national reserve is rich in wetlands. There are over 270 bird species in the region, and if you are a fan of birds, then this is a must-visit lake. There is a great emphasis on environmental conservation and the lake’s protection; therefore, you will find it in its most natural state.

Lake Aix

Lake Aix

Lake Aix, or what is popularly known as Lake Bourget, is an exquisite lake situated in the Jura mountains, and this exceptional lake was formed thousands of years ago. It is a natural lake that was developed through glaciation. The lake boasts of unique fauna and flora. It has a wide array of fish species you should check out. It is critical to note that fishing for marketing or consumption is not allowed in this lake.

Further reading: Amazing French souvenirs to get

Nevertheless, visitors can practice fishing in the lake. Several watersports are available, and you can enjoy them in the area. You can enjoy some of the accessible beaches around the lake. There are multiple iconic sites that you can stay in a while touring the region. 

Lake Geneva 

Lake Geneva

The exquisite Lake Geneva is one of the most popular lakes in Europe because it covers several countries and it is a primary tourist attraction site. The lake is 580 kilometers square vast, and it is situated between France and Switzerland. This is a glacial lake, and it was created naturally during the glaciation period.

In case you’re traveling around Switzerland, make sure to read my guide on the most beautiful lakes in Switzerland.

You can sail on the banks of the exceptional lake as you enjoy the sight of the mountains and the surrounding scenery. You can enjoy many activities in Lake Geneva, such as sunbathing, swimming, and surfing, among others. There are islands in the lake, and you can make a visit and explore what nature has to offer.

Lake Gérardmer

Lake Gérardmer

Lake Gerardmer is a lake that is located inside the Ballon des Vosges Regional Natural Park. This lake is primarily featured in postcards because of the beautiful view you get on the surrounding and the fantastic peaks reflected on the lake’s waters. This is the largest natural lake in the Vosges region.

Further reading: What is Paris famous for?

The lake is a perfect destination where you can explore what nature has to offer. During the summer, you can enjoy water sports such as sailing. During the winter period, the lake freezes, and you have some skiing activities. Besides, you can hike around the lake as well and explore the fauna and flora around it.

Lake Carcans-Hourtin

This is the largest natural lake in France, and it covers an area of 5600 hectares of space. The lake extends from the northern region of the country to the southern region along the Atlantic coast. Lake Carcans- Hourtin is part of the Great Lakes of the Landes. The lake’s landscape is majestic, and you should not miss a visit to the remarkable region.

The natural environment is well preserved, and you can learn more about the history and culture of the people from this region.

Lake Gaube

Lake Gaube

Lake Gaube is situated in the Pyrenees region near Cauterets, and it is a perfect location where you can enjoy your holiday or vacation. The turquoise water is surrounded by mountains that give it exquisite scenery and one of the best places to take photographs.

There is a cable car that will take you to this fantastic destination, and you should not worry about the mode of transport to get to this destination. The trail is captivating, and you can explore the magical features surrounding the lake.

Lake of d’Oô

Lake d’Oô is situated closer to the Spanish border, and it is a place that you should visit and see the majestic waterfalls in the area. The water pours over seventy-five-meter height, and you can get to this lake.

You can take the GR10 pathway, and it will lead you to this exquisite location. There are other unique features of the lake that you can explore once you are in the region.

Lake Settons

This is an artificial lake that is located in the heart of the Nièvre region. The lake has a great history, and it can be traced back to the 60s when it was constructed. There is accommodation for visitors who can enjoy a myriad of leisure activities such as water skiing, rowing, sailing, among others.

If you are an outdoorsy person, this is the right place to visit because there is a biking and hiking trail to explore the area. Besides, there are areas around the lake where you can go fishing and check out the fish species that are in the lake.

Lake Clairvaux

The great lake of Clairvaux is situated in the department of Jura, and it is a popular location in France because of the gentle slopes that attract swimmers. This lake covers sixty-four hectares, and it has a shallow depth which means that the water will warm up quickly during the summer period. You can enjoy numerous fun activities in this lake as many people visit it annually.

In conclusion, you are not limited to the lakes mentioned here, France is a diverse country, and you will find many more lakes. Be adventurous and explore what the beautiful country has to offer.

Aurimas Bio

Hi there! I’m Aurimas, a man behind Go Look Explore. I’m passionate about hiking, exploring off-the-beaten-path destinations, and everything outdoors related. Let’s connect.