Thonon-les-Bains is a town (commune) in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in eastern France. It is a sub-prefecture of the department. Thonon is part of a transborder agglomeration known as Grand Genève. The town is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva.

 Mayor (2020–2026)Christophe Arminjon
Area116.21 km2 (6.26 sq mi)
Population (Jan. 2017)34,756
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)


Thonon-les-Bains was the historic capital of Chablais, a province of the old Duchy of Savoy. The Chablais Savoyard is the portion of Chablais in France. Chablais Valaisan and Chablais Vaudois are those portions of Chablais in the adjacent Switzerland cantons Valais and Vaud. The town was the capital of the Dukedom of Chablais.

During the debates on the future of the Duchy of Savoy in 1860, the population was sensitive to the idea of a union of the northern part of the duchy with Switzerland. A petition circulated in this part of the country (Chablais, Faucigny, Northern Genevois), but it collected no more than 13,600 signatures. The duchy was reunited after a plebiscite organized on 22 and 23 April 1860, where 99.8 percent of the Savoyards answered “yes” to the question “Does Savoy want to be reunited to France?”


Thonon-les-Bains is a spa and tourist resort , an industrial town and an administrative capital (hospital, sub-prefecture, courthouse). One of the most important companies in the municipality is Veka, which has a turnover of 38 million euros.

Thonon-les-Bains is the headquarters of the Société Autos Transports (SAT) created in 1922 by Jean-Marie Degenève (1880 in Lullin – 1953 in Thonon-les-Bains). Thonon-les-Bains also has a dynamic city center with events such as the Journées du Très Bon Goût , the Printemps de la Mode or the Christmas market with a raffle showcase, organized by the Commercial Union of Thonon, the City and Thonon Events .


In 2014, the town’s reception capacity, estimated by the Savoie Mont Blanc organization , was 9,184 tourist beds spread across 1,218 structures. Accommodation is as follows: 260 furnished  ; 4 tourist residences  ; 11 hotels and 4 structures of hotel outdoor.


Cycle paths 

There are many cycle paths on the territory of Thonon-les-Bains. These form a 25 km route  , taking marked cycle lanes on carriageway.

The most important of these cycle paths joins the main sites of tourist and environmental interest from the Corzents park by heading towards the nature reserve of the Delta de la Dranse .

Rail transport 

The station of Thonon-les-Bains is a French train station of the line-Longeray Léaz Bouveret between open stations Perrigner and Évian-les-Bains . It is served:

  • by Léman Express line L1 on the Coppet ↔ Évian-les-Bains connection via Genève-Cornavin , Annemasse and Thonon-les-Bains;
  • by TER Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes trains on the Bellegarde ↔ Évian-les-Bains link via Annemasse and Thonon-les-Bains.

Transport lake 

The port of Thonon is served by ships of the General Navigation Company which provide connections with the port of Lausanne-Ouchy all year round . In mid and high season, connections are also provided with Morges , Switzerland.

Air Transport 

The nearest airport is Geneva International Airport , located 37 kilometers from Thonon-les-Bains.

the Thonon-les-Bains funicular


The town of Thonon-les-Bains is located in the Grenoble academy . In 2018, there are 13 primary education establishments , including three institutions under the private public primary regime listed on the site of the city of Thonon-les-Bains, bringing together 615 students . There are also ten secondary and higher education establishments, four colleges (two public, two private) and nine high schools (five public, four private).


A public intercommunal hospital center is located in the town, the Georges-Pianta hospital center. The hospital center is part of the Léman Hospitals grouping , also federating the Evian-les-Bains hospital ( Camille-Blanc hospital ), two retirement homes, a MAPAD, a multipurpose follow-up and rehabilitation unit, an adult and infant-juvenile psychiatry unit and a home hospitalization service .

Culture and heritage

Events and festivities 

The fair of Crete , created in the xvi th  century and takes place the first Thursday of September celebrated its . Today, there is a trade fair which occupies a large part of the city, as well as a fun fair which attracts the population of Chablais and neighboring Switzerland.

The Montjoux Music Festival has been held annually since 1996 at the beginning of July. For the first time, it is canceled for its 2020 edition, following the situation related to the coronavirus.  The city hosts a street festival in August called: Les Fondus du Macadam .

The city’s carnival called “Matagasse”, which crosses the city center of Thonon-Les-Bains, takes place every two years, during the spring of .

Cultural life 

In Thonon-les-Bains, there are two theaters, the Maurice-Novarina space, formerly MAL (Maison des Arts et Loisirs) and the theater of the Maison des jeunes et de la culture.

The main municipal library and the media library are located in the former convent of the Visitation . A heritage space devoted to contemporary art and its awareness, the “  Chapel of the Visitation  ” offers a program aimed at questioning the modes of expression explored by today’s artists. Some names of artists presented, among the most famous: Erro, Jacques Villeglé , Roman Opalka , Robert Combas and Ladislas Kijno, etc.

At the heart of the fishing port of Thonon-les-Bains, the “fishing and lake ecomuseum” immerses its visitors in the world of Lake Geneva fishermen of yesterday and today. Located in three traditional gatehouses, it lives to the rhythm of these professionals, whose work the public can admire.

Cultural heritage and monuments 

Port de Rives 

The port of Rives is the marina of the city of Thonon-les-Bains, it is also a very popular place to walk. In the port is the ecomuseum of fishing and Lake Geneva, dedicated to fishing on Lake Geneva, it is in fishermen’s huts, preserved and rehabilitated. The fishing village was built in 1987 by a quay, as an extension of the creation of the landing stage. The port funicular connects the port of Rives to the upper town, built on a plateau overlooking Lake Geneva .

Also present in the Rives district, the tower of languages which still dominates the village of fishermen. It is here that the butchers came to pay their tax to the lord, thus depositing the tongues of the oxen or cows they slaughtered.

Port de Rives 

Ripaille Castle 

The castle of Feast is a pleasure palace of the xv th  century located in an area on the edge of Lake Geneva. Its supposed miter is kept in the treasury of the abbey of Saint-Maurice d’Agaune . The domain preserves a forest of 53 hectares, an arboretum composed of 58 different species and a wine domain, classified among the AOC Savoie wine . Within the forest park, a monument to the Righteous was inaugurated in 1997.

Chateau de Sonnaz 

The Château de Sonnaz is a residence belonging to the noble Gerbaix de Sonnaz family which was built in 1666 on the ruins of the old Château de Thonon. 

Other castles 

  • the Château de Thonon 
  • the castle Thuyset 
  • the castle of Rives , located in the district of Rives.
  • the castle of Bellegarde or Maison-Haute
  • the stronghold of Marclaz
  • the Château des Guillet-Monthoux
  • The Castle of Sonnaz now houses the tourist office

Religious buildings 

  • Church of Saint Hippolyte.
  • the Basilica of Saint Francis de Sales , impasse St. Francis de Sales, was built next to the church of Saint-Hippolyte , at the end of the xix th  century and early xx th  century;
  • the Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes church , avenue de genève , in the Grangette district, built by the architect Maurice Novarina;
  • the Sainte-Jeanne-de-Chantal church ,
  • the chapel of the Visitation , former chapel of the convent of the Visitation , rue des Granges, is now devoted to contemporary art exhibitions;
  • the Saint-Bon chapel , avenue de Léman,
  • the Chapel of St. Sebastian ,
  • Chapel Rives Avenue du Général Leclerc
  • the chapel of the monastery of the Visitation, route de la Visitation in the district of Marclaz and created by Maurice Novarina in 1968 . This convent cannot be visited;
  • the Chapel of the Capuchins, rue des Allinges.
  • the chapel of the institution of the Sacred Heart, place de Crête.
  • the reformed temple, avenue d’Évian, built in 1907 by the Geneva architect Pierre Fatio, in a “picturesque village” style ( heimatstil )
  • the Evangelical Baptist Church, avenue d’Évian.
  • the evangelical assembly church, impasse du Clos Brûlé.
  • the evangelical church E. Elim, route de Tully.
  • the Don-Bosco chapel designed by Maurice Novarina, inaugurated in 1945, is located near the Etoile shopping center;
  • the chapel of the Georges-Pianta hospital designed by Maurice Novarina inaugurated in 1970;


The atrial are a delicatessen traditional Thonon-les-Bains, consisting of meat and liver pork minced, spiced and wrapped in a strainer. The Ripaille estate produces a white wine with the Savoie wine appellation , Le Ripaille .

Ripaille estate

Thonon-les-Bains is a wine-growing commune in the Savoie vineyard, however it is also located in the geographical area of ​​the IGP Comtés Rhodaniens, IGP which is shared between several vineyards (Savoie, Bugey, Rhône, Beaujolais and Loire). This wine-growing municipality has the authorization to produce the wines: AOC Roussette de Savoie, AOC Vin de Savoie and IGP Vin des Allobroges.


  • The Chablais museum , located in the castle of Sonnaz, on the lower level of the tourist office, in the vaulted cellars of the residence.
  • The Ecomuseum of fishing and the lake, located in the fishing port, is placed in the middle of traditional gatehouses, living to the rhythm of fishing professionals that visitors can observe during a visit. 
  • Chapelle de la Visitation – Contemporary art space dedicated to contemporary art.

Green spaces 

The city is bounded to the east by the Dranse and the Dranse Delta nature reserve located at its mouth in Lake Geneva . Created in 1980, the reserve is home to many species of birds. A pedestrian path allows you to visit it.

Contiguous to the domain of the castle of Ripaille , the forest of Ripaille and an arboretum extend over 53  hectares. These spaces are surrounded by the enclosure wall of the estate and can be visited freely. The arboretum, created in 1930, with an area of 19  hectares, presents many exotic species (including the Douglas fir ). In the center of the arboretum, the clearing of Ripaille shelters a monument of the Righteous among the nations .

The town wood extends over an area of 118  hectares to the south-east of the town to the town of Armoy at the foot of the Hermones massif . 

Located below the hospital center, the pond of the Lady is the largest landscaped green space in the city. The park covers 25,000 m 2 . Formerly an unhealthy marsh, it was restructured several times and fitted out in 1996. The pond is an outcrop of the water table at the source of the Versoie.


2 rue Michaud - Château de Sonnaz 74200 Thonon-les-Bains
+33 4 50 71 55 55