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France, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (➤ map)(➤ map)
Town and commune (less than 1,400 inhabitants) in France, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, department Haute-Savoie, situated 613 km southeast of Paris, 61 km east of Geneva , 27 km from Thonon-les-Bains , the historic capital of Chablais (➤ map)(➤ map). A year-round resort, considered to be particularly suitable for families with children. It is included in the so-called Portes du Soleil, a famous ski region including twelve villages in Switzerland and France. Access: from Thonon-les-Bains 11 km on the D902 (known as Route des Grandes Alpes) and then 16 km on the D22. If coming from Switzerland (from Valais) the best choice is the pass Pas de Morgins .

photo: AL
The village is located at an altitude of 920 m above sea level, in the valley of the Dranse d'Abondance river, known as Val d'Abondance, approx. 15 km from the Swiss border. Two other Portes du Soleil towns lie between Abondance and the border: Chapelle d'Abondance and Châtel. Abondance, although it is a small town and situated relatively low for an Alpine ski resort, has a well-developed accommodation and catering base, as well as a good ski infrastructure, built since the 1960s (although the first investments were made before World War II). As a ski station, Abondance is considered the perfect place for winter family stays: the slopes here are mostly considered easy, suitable for children or adult beginners, and at the same time the village offers tourists with children a wide variety of natural, sports and cultural attractions. Please note that Abondance is not linked by lifts to other Portes du Soleil stations (but can be reached by bus).

It is worth remembering that in the entire Val d'Abondance, in addition to downhill skiing and snowboarding, you can go tobogganing, use snow parks, cross-country skiing routes (several dozen kilometers of routes connecting Châtel, Chapelle d'Abondance and Abondance) or walking on snowshoes, sleigh rides, dog sleigh rides and other winter recreation forms.

In summer, the Abondance can be a good base for hiking and cycling.

the Abbey
photo: AL
In the town itself, the main monument is the abbey (Abbaye d'Abondance), originally a monastery of canons regular, founded at the beginning of the 12th century. In the fifteenth century, the monastery began to decline. First, it lost its independence under the supervision of the king, later, at the beginning of the 17th century, it was taken over by the Cistercians, but finally in 1761 it was closed. For some time it was abandoned and deteriorated. In the first half of the nineteenth century, attempts were made to restoration, which were continued later until the 1990s. The monastery buildings that have survived to this day come from the 14th century. Some of them are the seat of the Abondance commune, some are open to the public (it is worth paying attention to the patio and the fresco complex from the 15th century).

Most tourist guides mention the numerous traditional wooden houses from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries preserved in the village and in its hamlets - spacious, with facades with decorated balconies and a decorated gable, and with shingled roofs.

Additional information
  • It is worth knowing that the name "Abondance" also refers to the cheese made in Savoie, the production of which uses only the milk of the French Abondance breed.