Lake Bourget France
Wheelchair travel in the French Alps is easier than you think. Lake Bourget didn’t disappoint my hopes of accessible outdoor fun in fabulous surroundings.
Wheelchair Walks & Cruises
The Esplanade du Lac in Aix les Bains is a romantic tree lined, lakeside promenade. From Petit Port to Grand Port there is a long stretch of smooth wide path. After Grand Port there is a small beach Plage Memars and Vagabond Gardens, some of which is good for wheelchair users.
There is a new greenway (voie verte) cycle path that runs alongside the lake which is perfect for wheelchairs. It’s smooth and wide with glorious views. We rode from Aix les Bains to Les Mottets and back (on the new wheelchair bike) along this route. The path is near the road so it is a bit noisy sometimes, but the path is usually below the road (so noise is lessened) and does veer away into lovely lakeside park areas. Views of the lake make it very worthwhile.
The greenway around Lake Bourget is perfect for wheelchair walks.
Site des Mottets
This is a large park that leads to a lakeside beach. Reedbeds, moorhens, ducks and wild rabbits give it a nice wildlife feel. The paths are easy access and compressed gravel suface. There are disabled toilets and barbeque areas. It is next to a small marina and a nature reserve. It also has a duck pond, skate park and kids playground.
Cruise on the lake
Scenic alpine drive and panoramic views anyone? Le Revard Bellevedere is good day out for wheelchair users. On the drive up we enjoyed the picturesque alpine vistas. Cows with bells jingling on the grassy slopes, layers of mist floating amongst pines, conifers and ski chalets looking cosy with their stacks of wood ready for the winter. At the top is a large car park, restaurant, shop, disabled toilet and 3 wheelchair accessible viewing platforms. If you go on a clear day the views of Aix les Bains, Lake Bourget, Mont Blanc and the surrounding Alps are astonishing. The glass floor viewing platform definitely enhances the feeling of being on the edge! The paths between the platforms are easy access compressed gravel.
From Aix les Bains we took a drive around Lake Bourget for a day out in the quaint canal side village of Chanaz. There are disabled parking bays in the village. On the other side of Canal de Savieres there is more parking and a lovely canal side path which is perfect for wheelchairs or wheelchair tandems. Here we soaked up the lovely view of the village with its turquoise/ jade canal while the fishermen sat on the banks waiting for a catch.
Veloroute Near Chanaz
From Chanaz we rode the wheelchair bike on the veloroute to Les Mures and back, alongside the Rhone. It was peaceful and mostly car free. Although the long flat bit was a bit monotonous, it was very scenic (and hilly) between L’Ecoincon and Les Mures.
Wheelchair Access In Aix les Bains
Wheelchair users may need assistance in the town due to the slopes. The town gardens are smooth and accessible. In the pedestrian shopping area and around the roman arch, the surface is often stone tiles which are only slightly bumpy. Fancy a dip in the public hot springs? Visit Thermes Nationaux d’Aix les Bains. Entrance to the thermal pool, hammam and sauna is wheelchair accessible and costs 19euros per person per day. There is disabled parking in the underground car park and there is a lift to all floors.
Aix les Bains Accessible Accomodation
Camping Alp’Aix is a lovely spot for trees and birds. It’s fairly peaceful and is very near to the Esplanade. It has smooth paths and a basic disabled toilet.
Campings du Sierroz is a bigger campsite with disabled facilities and is also near the esplanade. They also have a wheelchair accessible static caravan for hire.