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Palais de l’Île

Feel as though you are stepping back in time with a visit to this wonderful historic house and former prison set in the middle of the River Thiou. 

During your explorations of Annecy’s Old Town, you’ll soon come across the Palais de l’Île, instantly recognizable due to its location. Take photos of this interesting building set on an island then step through its gates and head to the museum to learn about the history of the site.

The house, or the palace as it is known, dates from the 12th century. Notice the many fort-like elements of its architecture, typical of a French palace dating from this period. In records from the mid 14th century, it is referred to as a prison. It later became a mint, a residence for the noble Monthoux family and then a residence for the Dukes of Savoy. 

Toward the end of the 16th century, the building returned once again to its early purpose as a prison. The local courthouse was also located here. The palace was still being used as a prison by the time of the French Revolution, but was subsequently converted to a barracks before becoming a prison again during World War II. Visit the palace today and you can still gain access to the gloomy dungeons where prisoners once resided. 

Make your way to the palace’s oldest area, the tower lodge, to see the exhibits on display in the museum. This is where you will learn about the local history. You can also visit other areas of the building, including the coin minting wing and the courtyard, as well as various rooms and cells associated with the courthouse and the prison. See where meals were prepared in the jailer’s kitchen and view tombstones marking the burial spots of the likes of Jean-Baptiste Simond, an 18th-century chief judge. 

The Palais de l’Île is open daily but note that it closes over lunchtime. The building is hard to miss, being located in the picturesque and historic center of Annecy. There is a fee for admission.


Top Palais de l Ile Flight + Hotel Deals

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See all 1,897 Properties near Palais de l Ile
Novotel Annecy Centre £77
Novotel Annecy Centre

Novotel Annecy Centre

1 Place Marie Curie, ancienne 1 avenue Berthollet, Annecy, Haute-Savoie
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in the heart of Annecy, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Centre Commercial Courier and Lake Annecy. Annecy Castle is 0.6 mi (0.9 km) away. Annecy Station is only a 3-minute walk.

    Hôtel du Palais de l'Isle £73
    Hôtel du Palais de l'Isle

    Hôtel du Palais de l'Isle

       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Annecy Old Town, this hotel is steps away from Church of St. Francis and Lake Annecy. Annecy Castle is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) away. Annecy Station is 9 minutes by foot.

      Splendid Hotel £112
      Splendid Hotel

      Splendid Hotel

      4 Quai Eustache Chappuis, Annecy
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Annecy Old Town, this hotel is steps away from Church of St. Maurice and Lake Annecy. Annecy Castle is 0.3 mi (0.5 km) away. Annecy Station is 7 minutes by foot.

        L'Impérial Palace £164
        L'Impérial Palace

        L'Impérial Palace

           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Nestled on the beach, this Annecy hotel is just steps away from Station Roller and Lake Annecy. Annecy Castle is 1.2 mi (2 km) away. Annecy Station is 24 minutes by foot.

          Morens Private Mezzanine Studio Old Town
          Morens Private Mezzanine Studio Old Town

          Morens Private Mezzanine Studio Old Town

          12 Rue du Pont Morens, Annecy, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes
             
            0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Annecy Old Town, this apartment building is steps away from Palais de l Ile, Lake Annecy and Annecy Castle. Notre-Dame-de-Liesse Church and Church of St. Francis are also within 5 minutes. Annecy Station is 7 minutes by foot.

            Best Western Hotel International £63
            Best Western Hotel International

            Best Western Hotel International

               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in the heart of Annecy, this spa hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Notre-Dame-de-Liesse Church, Lake Annecy and Annecy Castle. Centre Commercial Courier and Musee-Chateau are also within 15 minutes. Annecy Station is 6 minutes by foot.

              Les loges Annecy Vieille ville £158
              Les loges Annecy Vieille ville

              Les loges Annecy Vieille ville

                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Annecy Old Town, this luxury residence is steps away from Musee-Chateau and Annecy Castle. Lake Annecy is 0.2 mi (0.3 km) away. Annecy Station is 6 minutes by foot.

                Vegetal Cocoon in the heart of the city of Annecy £202
                Vegetal Cocoon in the heart of the city of Annecy

                Vegetal Cocoon in the heart of the city of Annecy

                11 Rue du Pâquier, Annecy, Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Annecy Old Town, this apartment building is steps away from Notre-Dame-de-Liesse Church and Lake Annecy. Annecy Castle is 0.3 mi (0.6 km) away. Annecy Station is 6 minutes by foot.