Escape to Annecy, France: Journal entries from a constant wanderer

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Annecy, France in all of its beauty. Photos courtesy Allison Barrett Carter
Annecy, France in all of its beauty. (Photos courtesy of Allison Barrett Carter)

You know the crystal clear alpine lake? The one that looks enticing with its blues, yet you know it will shock you through with a frigid blast?

Where merry-go-rounds from yesteryear spin round on its banks and children laugh? Where beautiful people picnic with wine under the little crease where the blue sky meets the water?

I’ve been there … it’s in Annecy, France.

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Annecy, France 4

With this article I am trying to talk less and let Annecy speak for itself through the pictures.

Perhaps this way you can see how this town merges old world, a time usually only imagined, with modern life. It whispers of Venice, as towering buildings seem to lean dangerously into the canals.

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Annecy, France 5

We took a day trip here from our home base in Chambery, France. We discovered it through my favorite book, “1,000 Places to See Before You Die.” So far, that book hasn’t let us down.

Yet it isn’t as though Annecy is an undiscovered hamlet. It was busy, clogged — even in the auto-free areas — by tourists from all over the world. This was a mild surprise, since Annecy is far from the beaten path and hard to get to. But I suppose when something is as unique and special as this, we do what we need to in order to make it there.

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Annecy, France 11

Fighting crowds certainly tampered what could have a near-religious experience of walking over worn cobblestone streets and communing with ghosts from centuries ago. But it was still worth craning my neck around and jostling fellow sightseers to take it in.

Places like this are why we travel: to realize how different life is across the globe and across the ages. Plus, it is eye candy you never forget. Worth every morsel.

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Annecy, France 8

Our favorite moment in Annecy was enjoying the picnic we had packed ourselves in the shade beside the lake. My niece chased the ducks, the waters blinded us with unreal colors, and the cool wind tickled our faces with fresh mountain air.

Annecy felt magical, a place where French families can live a movie-style life in a landscape and city that feels fresh out of daydreams.

Allison Barrett Carter is a freelance writer who moved from Chapel Hill, N.C., to Wilmington in search of more salt and sand. As a mom to two young kids, she struggles to find time to write but has gotten very good at making excuses for herself. Carter’s work has been featured in numerous national and local publications as anything left from her paycheck is set aside for travel. It’s a passion, not a problem. She can be reached at allisonbcarter@gmail.com

Allison Barrett Carter writes, "Annecy was still worth craning my neck around and jostling fellow sightseers to take it in." Photos courtesy Allison Barrett Carter
Allison Barrett Carter writes, ‘Annecy was still worth craning my neck around and jostling fellow sightseers to take it in.’ (Photos courtesy of Allison Barrett Carter)

For more information or to have your recent trip highlighted in our new travel section, please email travel editor Aaron Gray at aaron@localvoicemedia.com.

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