Abondance is picture perfect. It offers traditional Savoyard beauty and history but with the added bonus of unrivalled accessibility. It has a solid infrastructure, direct access to its own ski slopes and is linked to one of the largest ski areas in the world.
Located on a plateau backing onto Mont Jorat (1830m), Abondance lies in a valley dominated by Mont de Grange (2432 m) and the Pic de la Corne (2084m). Situated at 1000 meters, Abondance is just 30 kilometres south of Lake Geneva. It is a 20-minute drive from Thonon with its abundance of shops, cultural events and the beaches of Lac Leman. It is a 10-minute drive to Chatel and Pre-la-Joux, giving access one of the largest ski areas in the world and it has direct access to its own ski slopes. The valley is an area of spectacular mountain beauty year round and the local area offers an variety of activities from hiking, biking, swimming and golfing in the summer to every conceivable winter sport.
The commune of Abondance dates back as far as the 6th century but it was the arrival of monks around 1108 that helped shape the town we know today. The monks constructed an abbey around 1400 and started to produce cheese at the Sainte Marie d’Abondance Monastery for the papal conclave at Avignon.
Abondance is now famous for its local produce and its cheese was awarded the AOC label (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée) in 1990. In 2003 the Abondance valley was acknowledged as an area of art and history (Pays d'Art et d'Histoire) by the Minister of Culture, in recognition of its remarkable heritage and treasures.
One of Abondance’s most beautiful features - apart from the famous cows that graze in its meadows– is the aesthetics of the area. Many of the buildings here are the original stone and wooden farmhouses which are hundreds of years old. Chalets constructed more recently have respected the traditional look of the valley and are nestled upon the typical farms and chalets of the valley creating a picture postcard beauty. These comprise most of the properties for sale as well as apartments within buildings that sit naturally in the beauty of the valley. Offering views, history and a very modern level of accessibility and amenities, Abondance brings so much to the table when considering a property purchase.
Access to slopes
Abondance also delivers on skis. Firstly it has its own ski area. The ski station is known as Essert and was reopened in 2009 with a 12-year commitment from an American investor. A gondola rises up from the edge of the village, taking you up to a variety of slopes ranging from green to black offering something for every level of skier. But Abondance is also one of 12 ski stations of the Portes du Soleil which is one of the largest ski areas in the world. From Abondance village there is a regular free bus service (ColomBus) running through the valley to Chatel and Pre-la-Joux where you can access over 650kilometers of Swiss-Franco skiing.
The village has all the local amenities one could need. From restaurants, cafes, supermarket, boulangeries, patisseries, boucheries and delicatessens to the more practical pharmacy, doctors, gym, banks and post office. There are also lots of specialist food shops where you can enjoy the regional produce that Abondance is famous for. There is a bustling Sunday market in the village square with stalls selling meat, vegetables, local produce, honey and the famous Abondance cheese. You can also easily access Thonon and Geneva for anything else you may need.
You can take the Eurostar and TGV from London to Cluses, changing at Paris. Cluses train station is just over an hour away.
Thonon train station is approximately 20-30 minutes away
Geneva Airport is 70 - 80 minutes away and is the most convenient. There are regular transfers during the season but these can become more expensive out of season.
You can also fly into Turin, Chambery, Lyon but transfer times are then closer to three hours.
Paris is a 6 hour drive.
Calais is 8 hours 30 minutes.