Mont St. Michel, near the border of Brittany and Normandy is one of the most popular visitor attractions in France.
The Gothic-style Abbey perched on a rocky islet is a marvellous example of ancient architecture, built between the 11th-16th centuries; it is separated from the mainland at high tide. The founder of the Abbey was the Bishop of Avranches according to mythology a saint appeared and told the bishop to build a chapel!
It is worthwhile taking a guided tour of the Abbey to get the most out of your visit. You will see the famous cloister with the carved arches resting on granite pillars and the 13th century dining hall; in the guest hall are two huge fireplaces. The massive Abbey covering the summit of Mont St. Michel is very impressive. You can wander around the ancient ramparts enjoy the views over the sands and bay, and when the tide is out you can walk all the way round Mont St. Michel.
As you wander through the Grand Rue you will find plenty of restaurants (some of which can be rather expensive) souvenir shops to browse round and some museums that may interest you. If you enjoy bird watching the Bay of Mont St. Michel attracts thousands of migratory birds including waders.
The nearest town to Mont St. Michel is approximately 5.6miles or 9km away, Pontorson, it makes a good base for visiting other attractions in this part of France and hotels tend to be less expensive than in Mont St. Michel.
If you are on a touring holiday or a short break you will find many choices of accommodation from hotels, cottages, hostels and camp sites depending on your requirements. The tourist office in Pontorson can also help you with information on holiday accommodation.
A short journey away is Avranches it is one of the oldest towns in Normandy and since the revolution has stored in the town hall the outstanding collection of ancient books and manuscripts from the Abbey of St. Michel.
You should also make time to see the Jardin des Plantes a beautiful terraced garden where you can enjoy lovely views over the Bai du Mont St. Michel.
If you are looking for a sea-side resort in this area you should head for Granville, the walled town was built in 1439 by the English if you climb on to the top of the ramparts you will see some marvellous views.
The resort can be busy in the main holiday months and the town beach does get crowded but you will find the Plage de Donville beach a large stretch of sand has watersports available if you are looking for water based activities, you may prefer to enjoy a swim and relax on the beach.
You can wander around the cobble stoned streets and browse in the shops.
There are other activities and attractions that may interest you in and around the surrounding area, a visit to the Aquarium may keep children occupied and the Butterfly Gardens.
You may enjoy taking a boat excursion which are available from Granville or a wander to the harbour and see the coloured trawlers and yachts moored there.
Much of Normandy’s coast is lined with seaside resorts, the cities and towns have a wealth of medieval architecture Normandy has a lot to offer its visitors.