Romantic, medieval, flower-rich Yvoire is a small French town on Lac Leman popular with day-trippers from Genève, Lausanne, Nyon (by passenger ferry), Evian, and ski resorts. This traffic-free village has managed to preserve much of its medieval look with town walls and gates, a historic castle, and narrow cobblestone streets. Yvoire is a beautiful town year-round but particularly attractive during spring and summer when it is filled with flowers blooming from seemingly every balcony and windowsill. Yvoire is hugely popular with day-trippers and thus has a large number of restaurants, cafes, boutiques, art galleries, studios, and souvenir shops. It’s a small town and you can cover pretty much everything in a short time. Here are a few places worth mentioning about this town which I enjoyed.
Garden of Five Senses
Walking down the side street, I came across this mesmerizing botanical garden. It has been established in what used to be the former kitchen garden of the castle. Restored in a medieval style, it has been designed to awaken all of the sensations. It is a serene place to enjoy the scents, colour, sounds and textures of the plants. The garden remains open to visitors from May to October.
Church of Saint-Pancrace
The church of Saint Pancrace in Yvoire dates back to the 11th century and was transformed several times. A classified historical monument now, it’s an unavoidable place to the visit to this village. Enjoy in particular the onion dome, distinguishing feature. Repaired in the early nineties, the bell tower is covered with stainless steel. This is what gives it this shine, like a lighthouse on Lake Geneva.
The ‘Glaces Maison’ ice cream shop
Open from April to November, this place is home to delicious homemade ice creams and sorbets. This shop was recommended to me, and rightfully so. Enjoying a colourful sorbet while walking down the streets of this flower-filled village, it felt like I was walking in a wonderland, waiting to be discovered.
When I arrived here, I especially liked walking down the small harbour, admiring the beauty that is Lake Geneva on a clear and sunny day. Lausanne and Geneva can be seen across the lake from here. Few small boats anchored here make a very pretty picture.
This is a castle that stands on the shores of Lake Geneva on the edge of the village. It used to be a magnificent military dungeon in the 14th century. It’s now a private residence. One can click beautiful photos of this castle, especially from the harbour. However, it is not open to visitors now and can only be admired from outside.
Walk down the old stone streets
Being in this village is like stopping by while being carried away in a time machine. This place takes us back in time and that is what I loved about it. Take time to walk down the old streets and imagine how life would have looked like during the medieval ages. As I walked down the cobbled streets of Yvoire, admiring the old stone houses decorated with flowers, I felt a sense of peace and calm within myself.
Artistic Souvenir Shops and Restaurants
Yvoire is a favourite among day-trippers and that’s why it has a large number of restaurants, cafes, boutiques and art galleries. The souvenir shops offer artistic and unique stuff to keep as a memory of this place and some can also be used every day. You can find cool things like toys made of wood and also some souvenir items to decorate your home with.