Cascade d'Angon

Haute-Savoie / Annecy, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes, France

About Cascade d’Angon


Hiking Distance: 2-3km round trip
Suggested Time: 2 hours

Date first visited: 2012-05-19
Date last visited: 2012-05-19

Waterfall Latitude: 45.83391
Waterfall Longitude: 6.22819

Waterfaller Newsletter

Get over the hump of the mid-week blues! Subscribe and get exclusive curated content delivered to your inbox every Wednesday.

Cascade d’Angon provided us the perfect waterfalling excuse for enjoying what we think was one of France’s “hidden” gems – the charming canal town of Old Annecy or La Vieille Ville d’Annecy.

Just imagine something like France’s miniature version of Venice mixed in with a picturesque alpine lake and that pretty much sums up what the Annecy experience would be like.

Agnon_063_20120519 - Cascade d'Angon
Cascade d’Angon

But the waterfall itself allowed us to enjoy our time in Annecy that much more!

Being only about 30 minutes drive away from the charming canal town, we visited this waterfall attraction as a way to experience other parts of the neighboring Lac d’Annecy (Lake Annecy) region.

After all, there was only so much strolling around and eating within Old Annecy that we could do in a day.

So why not check out what else the beautiful area had to offer without breaking the bank?

Hiking to Cascade d’Angon – Following the Footpaths

Agnon_101_20120519 - Looking towards the neighboring mountains and hamlets from the early part of the trail to Cascade d'Angon
Looking towards the neighboring mountains and hamlets from the early part of the trail to Cascade d’Angon

Indeed, after finding the trailhead (see directions below), we hiked on a shaded and gradually descending path.

It initially followed alongside some rural farms with a teasing view of the neighboring snow-crusted mountains towering over the scene (the same mountains that were backdrops to Lake Annecy making it so picturesque).

The signage along the trail indicated to us that the hike from La Pirraz (the small parking area by some basketball court that we started from) to Cascade d’Angon was about 20 minutes.

However, that seemed to underestimate the actual time we had to spend to get all the way to the end of the trail (which I’ll get into later).

Agnon_090_20120519 - View of a chateau in South Lake Annecy from the trail leading to Cascade d'Angon
View of a chateau in South Lake Annecy from the trail leading to Cascade d’Angon

The trail was pretty benign with wide paths, lots of tree cover, and some rock step sections (where we had to be careful of the slippery footing thanks to the heavy rains during our visit).

However, as we got further along the trail, we noticed there was one lookout through an opening in the foliage that provided us a view of some chateau jutting out to a peninsula on the southwestern part of Lake Annecy.

Hiking to Cascade d’Angon – The Cliff Hugging Section

Continuing forward, the trail began to transition from the easy and tame trail to a more narrow cliff-hugging path that seemed to be cut right into the cliff itself.

In a way, this half-sheltered cliff-hugging trail kind of protected us from the rain (at least before the weather started clearing up).

Agnon_026_20120518 - Context of Julie walking beneath the overhanging cliffs on the way to Cascade d'Angon
Context of Julie walking beneath the overhanging cliffs on the way to Cascade d’Angon

Nonetheless, given the heavy rains we were experiencing the morning that we did this hike, the rocky surface made for some real tricky footing the further we went (i.e. it was very slippery).

However, the trail also allowed us to look behind and get glimpses of the southernmost extreme of Lake Annecy surrounded by pretty snow-crusted mountains.

All throughout this section of trail, we could appreciate the steepness of the gorge while also getting teasing glimpses of more mountains slowly revealing themselves above and across the gorge.

The trail got a bit steeper as it descended towards the head of the gorge it was hugging.

Agnon_037_20120518 - The sheltered cliff-hugging trail
The sheltered cliff-hugging trail

It was at the head of this gorge where it became apparent that there were really two waterfalls coming together here!

Hiking to Cascade d’Angon – Experiencing Two Waterfalls

I’m not sure how permanent the first waterfall (on the left) was given its lighter flow relative to the second waterfall (on the right), which I suspect was the main Cascade d’Angon (said to be 35m tall).

In any case, the slippery trail descended behind this first waterfall before climbing up to a little “nose” section.

This was where the trail momentarily left the overhead shelter of the cliffs above and allowed us to get attractive views back at this first waterfall while also getting partially obstructed views of the second waterfall.

Agnon_043_20120518 - Approaching the surprising pair of waterfalls on the way to the end of the trail at the Cascade d'Angon (the one on the far right)
Approaching the surprising pair of waterfalls on the way to the end of the trail at the Cascade d’Angon (the one on the far right)

Regarding why I chose “the nose” when referring to this section, I guess for some reason, I had imagined that the waterfalls were the eyes crying and the trail between them as the bags under the eyes.

Anyways, beyond this little spot that I’m calling the “nose”, the trail dove right back into the shady confines of the sheltered cliff-hugging path.

It steeply descended at first before making a final steep ascent towards the upper-middle section of Cascade d’Angon (see photo above).

As a testament to how slippery it became in this section, I actually managed to slip and fall on my back here despite holding onto the railings.

Agnon_046_20120518 - Julie walking past the 'nose' towards the Cascade d'Angon and the end of the trail
Julie walking past the ‘nose’ towards the Cascade d’Angon and the end of the trail

Luckily, my day pack broke my fall.

The Cascade d’Angon represented the end of our hike and the turnaround point.

It was difficult to get a clean look of the entire waterfall while en route to it given all the trees blocking the view.

Plus, the tendency of this waterfall to drop right into a very narrow gorge made it difficult to get clean looks of its relatively concealed base.

The net effect was that pictures didn’t do this waterfall justice as it always seemed to appear shorter than it really was.

Agnon_057_20120519 - As much of the Cascade d'Angon that I could reasonably capture in a single photograph
As much of the Cascade d’Angon that I could reasonably capture in a single photograph

From the very end of the trail, we could really feel the sense of vertigo as it was possible to peer up at the brink of the Cascade d’Angon while also peering down at the bottom of the falls.

It was almost appearing like it dropped into a hole though it was really just a tight alcove.

Further downstream, we could see another tier of that first waterfall joining the stream of this waterfall before the combined stream ultimately drained into the Lake d’Annecy.

Another thing worth noting about Cascade d’Angon was that we noticed there was a chain and rope above this impossibly narrow and slippery-looking ledge.

Agnon_072_20120519 - Close-up look at the rope and chain where I'm presuming the point of having them is to swing closer to the Cascade d'Angon to touch it?
Close-up look at the rope and chain where I’m presuming the point of having them is to swing closer to the Cascade d’Angon to touch it?

I believe the purpose of this was to make it possible to hang onto the rope-chain while precariously inching along the scary ledge to get right up to the waterfall and touch it!

As both Julie and I saw this, we thought whoever has done this must have a death wish!

Finally, I have to add that even though the signs indicated it was only about a 20-minute hike in each direction, I think that time table only pertained to just getting to the first waterfall.

It easily took us another 20-30 minutes of very slow and ginger walking (no thanks to the effects of rain and the resulting slippery surface) to go from the first waterfall to the second waterfall.

Agnon_078_20120519 - After having our fill of Cascade d'Angon, we returned the way we came just as the weather dramatically improved compared to when we got started
After having our fill of Cascade d’Angon, we returned the way we came just as the weather dramatically improved compared to when we got started

So all things considered, it took us about two hours for the entire out-and-back hike, including all the time taken to enjoy the scenery and take lots of photos.

Authorities

Cascade d’Angon resides near Annecy in the Hautes-Savoie department of the Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes province of France. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their local tourism board website.

Annecy_010_20120518 - View of Lake Annecy and the mountains over its southeastern banks on the route to the trailhead from Old Annecy
Annecy_184_20120518 - Looking across Lac d'Annecy towards the Old Town of Annecy as we had to hike a ways to retrieve our parked car (given the difficult parking situation)
Agnon_004_20120518 - When we finally started the hike to Cascade d'Angon, we had to contend with pretty lousy weather
Agnon_008_20120518 - Given the rain, these trees on the trail leading to Cascade d'Angon provided us with some degree of shelter though it wasn't ideal
Agnon_012_20120518 - We followed the signs at each of the criss-crossing trail junctions en route to the Cascade d'Angon
Agnon_018_20120518 - Looking towards the southern end of Lac d'Annecy during the bad weather on the morning of our hike to Cascade d'Angon
Agnon_019_20120518 - Given the rainy weather, it got slippery in rocky sections of the Cascade d'Angon hike like this
Agnon_020_20120518 - Signs at a trail junction where the way to Cascade d'Angon was about to get to a cliff-hugging section
Agnon_024_20120518 - Julie now on the section of the Cascade d'Angon Trail where it was now hugging the cliffs
Agnon_039_20120518 - Looking out towards Lac d'Annecy from the cliff-hugging part of the Cascade d'Angon Trail while it was still raining
Agnon_041_20120518 - Looking back at the context of the Cascade d'Angon Trail and the southern end of Lake Annecy
Agnon_051_20120519 - Looking back at the first waterfall (the one following the 'nose') after having just gone behind it en route to the Cascade d'Angon at the end
Agnon_054_20120519 - More full look back at the first waterfall on the way to Cascade d'Angon, which flowed over a column that I informally called 'the nose'. I guess technically this might count as a natural arch if the walkway was natural and the column touched the ground
Agnon_068_20120519 - Looking downstream at a lower tier of that first waterfall that we had passed by as seen from the end of the trail at Cascade d'Angon
Agnon_073_20120519 - Julie carefully making her way back towards the trailhead after having had our fill of the Cascade d'Angon
Agnon_098_20120519 - Plenty of tree cover sheltered us somewhat from the soggy weather, but by this time on the return hike from Cascade d'Angon, the weather dramatically improved and it actually got a bit warm
Agnon_103_20120519 - The weather really started clearing up and revealing gorgeous scenery just as we returned to the trailhead for the Cascade d'Angon
Annecy_105_20120518 - After visiting Cascade d'Angon and the nearby Cascade de Seythenex, we finally returned to the charming canals of Old Annecy
Annecy_246_20120519 - With the good weather continuing on into the late afternoon and evening, we took the time to unwind at the walkway around Lake Annecy. Those mountains in the background were where Cascade d'Angon was tucked away

join-booking-970x240-1.jpg


We’ll describe the driving directions to Cascade d’Angon from the town of Annecy since that was where we were staying.

From Annecy (or wherever you managed to find parking in the city, which was very difficult), we drove on D909 around the eastern side of Lake Annecy towards Talloires.

A few minutes past the village of Clos Don Jean, we then took the D42 road for 3km as it ascended towards the village of Vèrel.

At the 3km point (before reaching the village), we looked for a rather small sign telling you to turn right for Cascade d’Angon.

Agnon_104_20120519 - Looking back at the context of the small parking area (where we started the hike to Cascade d'Angon) by the multi-use basketball court
Looking back at the context of the small parking area (where we started the hike to Cascade d’Angon) by the multi-use basketball court

There’s a pullout area there for parking the car right next to some multi-use basketball court as well as at where the signs indicated this spot was “La Pirraz”.

The trail begins a few paces in front of both the car park and basketball court.

The drive from Old Annecy took us slightly over a half-hour.

For geographical context, Annecy was 42km (under an hour drive) south of Geneva, 107km (under 90 minutes drive) north of Grenoble, and 148km (90-120 minutes drive) east of Lyon. The city of Lyon was 466km or at least 4.5 hours by car from Paris.

However, we used the very fast and efficient TGV (high speed train or le train a grande vitesse), which wound up taking around 3 hours to cover this stretch between the two major cities.

Bottom up sweep from the front side of the first cascade before going behind it


Top down sweep of the first cascade after already having gone behind it


Top down sweep of the more forceful second waterfall


Sweep showing both waterfalls


Sweep of both waterfalls panning along the slippery trail


Top down sweep from right next to the second falls at the end of the slippery trail


Starting with a top down sweep from next to the second waterfall then panning over to a partial view of the lower tier of the first waterfall

Related Top 10 Lists

No Posts Found

Trip Planning Resources


Nearby Accommodations




Tagged with: haute-savoie, annecy, rhone-alpes, french alps, france, waterfall, la pirraz, verel, clos don jean, talloires



Visitor Comments:

No users have replied to the content on this page


Share your thoughts about what you've read on this page

You must be logged in to submit content. Refresh this page after you have logged in.

Visitor Reviews of this Waterfall:

No users have submitted a write-up/review of this waterfall


Have you been to a waterfall? Submit a write-up/review and share your experiences or impressions

Review A Waterfall

Nearest Waterfalls

The Waterfaller Newsletter

The Waterfaller Newsletter is where we curate the wealth of information on the World of Waterfalls website and deliver it to you in bite-sized chunks in your email inbox. You'll also get exclusive content like...

  • Waterfall Wednesdays
  • Insider Tips
  • User-submitted Waterfall Write-up of the Month
  • and the latest news and updates both within the website as well as around the wonderful world of waterfalls
Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of the award-winning A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
Read More About Johnny | A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls.