The Lake Geneva – French part of Switzerland

The Lake Geneva (also called Genfersee or Lac Léman) combines the French Switzerland and France by water. The Lake Geneva is not only the biggest Swiss lake, but also the second-largest European lake after the Hungarian Lake Balaton.

The Lake Geneva area of about 582 km² is largely located on Swiss ground (343 km²) and provides a fascinating, varied ambience with a manifold environment as well as two Swiss cities (Geneva and Lausanne).

The feeder rivers into the Lake Geneva arise from the river of Rhône, which flows into the lake via a delta in Le Bouveret, as well as from the rivers of Dranse, Venoge and Aubonne. Remarkably the Rhône also has an outlet from the lake near Geneva. The water needs about 11 years for crossing the lake, this means from water supply from the Rhône until water outlet into the Rhône near Geneva.

The Lake Geneva, also known as Lac Léman, therefore allows for its former Latin name. Derived from the Latin landscape name Lemanus or Lemannus, the canton adjacent to the Lake Geneva, nowadays called the canton of Valais, was formerly called “Léman“ as well. Also the neologism Lac Léman is attributed to the Romans; derived from the Celtic “Lem“, meaning “big water“, the Roman name Lac Lemanus arouse.

The Lake Geneva has largely lost its importance as a rich fishing ground; the ship-owners’ substantial source of income is no longer the transportation of goods or the fishing industry, but the Lake Geneva tourism. A variety of hotel offers as well as events such as the Geneva Motor Show turn the Lake Geneva into a pleasant destination for business as well as private travellers.

In this connection the hotels at the Lake Geneva enjoy an independent degree of popularity. The La Réserve Hotel for example is surrounded by 4 hectares of park and has a straight connection to the Lake Geneva; it is one of the gladly visited hotels of the Lake Geneva with world-wide reputation.

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