Mont St. Michel is an island with so much history. I have been twice and still enjoy seeing this beautiful island. It invokes images of kings and queens of old.
It is an image from fairy tale books and movies, not that I know of any movie being filmed there. It looks like a castle on a hill, defended by water on all sides. The morning mist, shrouds the peaks of the towers giving a mystical silhouette.
The surrounding area is still predominantly farmland with lots of cows and sheep adding to the illusion of a castle with it fiefs and serfs, until you see the 4x4s to herd the sheep.
We are staying at a hotel where we can see the Abbey in the distance and are smack dab in the middle of the farmland. We get to be in the middle of the sheep herding. The restaurant clears every morning and night to watch the movement of the sheep with dogs and 4×4. Needless to say it does stop all traffic for approximately 10-15 mins twice a day. Locals take it in stride, visitors get their cameras and children try to get into the thick of things.
Mont St. Michel has become more geared to tourists than it was the first time I went. There are buses, horse drawn carriages or a dedicated walking path to the Abbey. They all originate at a visitor centre where cars are left, if you drove here yourself.
When I first went, there wasn’t a tourist centre or a boardwalk and the parking lot would be flooded when tide came in. Ah, the simple life. Oh well. It is still so worth it to visit this Abbey – even if you have had your fill of churches, abbeys etc. Mont St. Michel is unique.
Besides walking around the island itself, it is possible to take walking tours onto the seabed itself – obviously in low tide so you must time it well with your visit and book ahead.
Kids enjoy the climbing and endless exploration of the all the streets, ramparts, the sheep and the horses.
Mont St. Michel left such a lasting impression on me, that when Magpie was interested in travelling I knew this had to be on the list of places to see. The image could easily have been in Harry Potter.
I would love to know of any places you have been that feel similar.
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