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Yvoire

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Yvoire, among the most beautiful villages in France

Unscathed at the end of the Middle Ages, the stronghold suffered violent assaults at the end of the 16th century from the Geneva and French armies. Its 13th century castle was then burnt down and remained without roof for three and a half centuries, symbol of a fallen military power. Yvoire once again became a simple fishing village on Lake Geneva. However, the village of Yvoire retains many vestiges of its defensive past: ramparts and fortified gates, deep ditches and medieval residences. With the development of tourism, the city took on a new face from the 1950s and became famous for its remarkable flowering. It is now labeled "flower city" with 4 flowers, and holds the silver medal at the European flowering competition. It is also classified by the association of "Plus Beaux Villages de France". 25 kilometers from Geneva, it is one of the most visited sites in Haute-Savoie.

Visits and places of interest in Yvoire

The heritage of Yvoire is immense. Among the city's architectural and historical treasures are the fortified gates of Nernier and Rovorée, which date from the 14th century. The 13th century castle, inhabited since the 17th century by the Savoyard family Bouvier d'Yvoire, underwent major restoration in the 20th century. Its interiors cannot be visited. On the other hand, its former vegetable garden has been transformed into a pleasure garden open to the public: in the heart of the village, this Jardin des Cinq Sens landscaped in the style of medieval lost paradises is classified as a remarkable garden in France. Its 2,500 m2 forms a labyrinth of ancient roses, fountains, aviaries, aromatics and fruit trees. Among the other remarkable buildings in the village stands out the Saint-Pancrace church, built in the 13th century and surmounted in the middle of the 19th century by a bulbous bell tower, today emblematic of the village. The shores of Lake Geneva are a particularly charming area in Yvoire: below the ramparts, there is a sublime view of the castle which rises above the waters. The swans meet there to add to the beauty of the landscape.

Activities in Yvoire

The flowery alleys of the medieval village of Yvoire are enlivened by numerous art and craft workshops: glass craftsman, art galleries, souvenir shops, local produce stores and welcoming terraces invite you to stroll. Guided tours of the village reveal many secrets, often off the beaten track. The House of History exhibits models and precious documents which bear witness to the 700 years of history of the fortified village. In the domain of the castle, the garden of the Five Senses is an essential visit to spend a moment of poetic renewal with the family. It can be visited freely, with a guide, or with a fun quiz book for children. On the lake side, the port of Yvoire is the starting point for the Compagnie Générale de Navigation shuttles that connect the village to other cities in Lake Geneva such as Geneva, Nyon or Lausanne. Other companies offer cruises on the lake, such as the solar shuttle Le Foué, which invites you to sail in silence off the coast of Yvoire. For more sporting activities, go for example to the Easy2ride wake and surf academy, for water skiing, kneeboard, wakeboard, wakesurf, or even towed buoys!