La Clusaz

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La Clusaz
Coat of arms of La Clusaz
La Clusaz (France)
La Clusaz
region Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
Department Haute-Savoie
Arrondissement Annecy
Canton Faverges
Community association Vallées de Thônes
Coordinates 45 ° 54 '  N , 6 ° 25'  E Coordinates: 45 ° 54 '  N , 6 ° 25'  E
height 995-2,611 m
surface 40.62 km 2
Residents 1,734 (January 1, 2017)
Population density 43 inhabitants / km 2
Post Code 74220
INSEE code

Winter in La Clusaz (January 2004)

La Clusaz is a French commune in the department of Haute-Savoie in the region of Auvergne Rhône-Alpes . La Clusaz has the largest ski area in Aravis (132 km of ski slopes).


La Clusaz is located at 1039  m , east of Thônes , about 23 kilometers east of the city of Annecy (as the crow flies). The holiday and winter sports resort extends in the Nom basin, at the junction of two valleys, in the Bornes Alps at the northwest foot of the Chaîne des Aravis .

The area of ​​the 40.62 km² municipal area includes a section of the Bornes Alps. The central area is occupied by a basin in which the valley of the Nom (rises at the Col des Aravis ) from the south and the Vallée des Confins from the east come together. The Nom, a tributary of the Fier, leaves this basin through a narrow gorge to the north.

The valley of La Clusaz is flanked to the west by the extensive alpine meadows in the area of ​​the Pointe de Beauregard ( 1647  m ). In the north, the height of the Tête du Danay ( 1730  m ) separates the basin from the Borne valley to the north. The wide saddle of Les Confins ( 1410  m ), on which the Lac des Confins mountain lake lies, creates the connection to the uppermost part of the Bornes valley. In the southeast of La Clusaz rises the high chain of the Aravis with its rocky mountain peaks. From southwest to northeast follow Pointe de Merdassier ( 2313  m ), Col des Aravis ( 1486  m ), Pointe des Aravis ( 2325  m ), Pointe des Verres (at 2616  m, the highest point of La Clusaz), Tête Pelouse ( 2539  m ) m ), Roche Perfia ( 2500  m ) and Tardevant ( 2500  m ).

In addition to the actual town center, La Clusaz also includes various hamlet settlements and farms, including:

  • Gotty ( 1140  m ) in the Nom valley on the ascent to the Col des Aravis
  • Le Bossonnet ( 1080  m ) adjoining La Clusaz to the east
  • Le Fernuy ( 1200  m ) in the Vallée des Confins
  • Les Confins ( 1413  m ) on the wide saddle at the foot of the Aravis chain

Neighboring municipalities of La Clusaz are Saint-Jean-de-Sixt and Le Grand-Bornand in the north, Sallanches and Cordon in the east, La Giettaz and Manigod in the south and Thônes and Les Villards-sur-Thônes in the west.


The place name La Clusaz is derived from the word cluse (gorge), meaning the gorge of the Nom below the village. The area around La Clusaz belonged to the Abbey of Talloires . In the 13th century the Latinized name Clusa Locus Dei appears in the documents, from which the French name La Cluse-Lieu-Dieu developed, which was in use until 1772.

With the opening of the road from Thônes via La Clusaz over the Col des Aravis to Flumet in the Arly valley , La Clusaz transformed from a remote mountain village into a holiday resort. People have been skiing here since around 1910. However, the actual development into a winter sports resort did not begin until the early 1960s.


The parish church of Sainte-Foy was given its current appearance when a new building was built in 1974. The bell tower with onion-shaped dome, built in 1762, comes from the previous building. The baroque church in the hamlet of Fernuy was built in the 18th century. There are other chapels in Gotty (17th century), in Les Confins (19th century), in Vard (17th century), in the gorge of La Clusaz (Chapelle du Parc, 17th century) and on the Col des Aravis (Chapelle Sainte-Anne, originally from the 17th century). In La Clusaz there are numerous houses built in the traditional chalet style.


With 1734 inhabitants (as of January 1, 2017), La Clusaz is one of the medium-sized communities in the Haute-Savoie department. A significant increase in population has been recorded since the early 1970s.

Population development
year 1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2008
Residents 1,234 1,382 1,695 1,687 1,845 2.023 1,960

Economy and Infrastructure

Until the beginning of the 20th century, La Clusaz was a village dominated by agriculture and alpine farming. Today there are various small business enterprises. However, most of the workers who work in the village find their income in the tourism industry. In the last few decades, La Clusaz has developed into an important holiday resort. The municipality mainly specializes in winter tourism. Numerous mountain railways and ski lifts open up the slopes and peaks of the Aravis chain and the Pointe de Beauregard, which offer slopes of all levels of difficulty. The La Clusaz ski area is linked to that of Le Grand-Bornand. Cross-country skiing and ski jumping can also be practiced. Even in the summer months, La Clusaz is a suitable starting point for beautiful hikes and other summer leisure activities.

The place is well developed in terms of traffic. Access is either from Annecy via Thônes through the Fier valley or from Bonneville through the Borne valley. Other road connections exist via the Col des Aravis with Flumet or via the Col de la Croix Fry with Manigod.


Web links

Commons : La Clusaz  - collection of images, videos and audio files