Who doesn’t want to hang out drinking wine, practicing French and well, drinking lots more wine on a private castle island?!? I thought as much… welcome to Mont St Michel!
Mont St-Michel is an easy day trip from Paris but exploring the rest of Northern France is in my opinion, essential.
Once an Island, a long bridge now connects the mainland to it. During high tide, however, the ocean covers the road and returns it back to it’s Island history
This rock first became home to a church and then settled on over a thousand years ago. It was during the 11th century however that the Abbey was founded before the military construction surrounding it was built in the 14th century. After a short stint as a prison during the French Revolution it was beautifully restored in the 19th century and now is one of the most popular tourist attractions in France.
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Looking back from the Island you can enjoy sweeping views of the Normandy coastline and appreciate just how remote of a position this once was.
There are countless souvenir shops, small restaurants and even hotels you can stay in overnight to soak it up once the day-tripping crowds leave.
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Getting there: From Paris, you can drive to Mont St Michel in around four hours and park on the mainland. If you are reliant on public transport there are buses for around €20 or you can take the smooth but over priced national railway and make a bus connection. Alternatively, Brittany Ferries sail from the UK to Caen Port or St Malo either overnight or by day.
I actually visited Mont St Michel during the winter, and although there was a chill in the air I was so pleased it was reasonably quiet and not as crowded as some of the summer reports I have read.
If you plan to head here it’s well worth coming later in the day to catch the sunset or match up with the tide schedule to capture it completely as an island.