A Travellerspoint blog

Driving to Mont-Saint-Michel

September 17, 2021 - Friday - We left Bayeux, drove to Mont-Saint-Michel and climbed a thousand stairs (no, I did not count them)


View Brittany and Normandy on Beausoleil's travel map.

Slept ‘til 7:00 and it felt good. No leg cramps tonight and not much jet lag. We ate at the hotel, packed and bid our lovely hostess farewell. Ed loaded the car, and since my phone still wasn’t using data, I programmed the car sat-nav for Mont-Saint-Michel . . . sort of. It wouldn’t recognize one of the world’s most famous landmarks so I set it for Pontorson nearby. We zipped across Normandy on a beautiful day and as we approached Pontorson, we ignored the GPS and followed signs to Mont-Saint-Michel. With the help of a traffic lady, we found parking lot #3, parked and got in line for the shuttle bus to the Mont. We jammed in with a zillion other tourists and rode, standing, to the Mont.

Got off the bus and walked to the entry gate with all our luggage and started the hike up to our hotel. When we arrived, a very cheerful man greeted us and our room was ready so we checked in, a bonus we weren’t expecting!

Went back down to see if we could eat lunch at the hotel and we could. We’re eating in their bay-view restaurant tonight so we just had a salad for lunch.

Next, we set off uphill to visit the Abbey. We climbed up and up and then the stairs started. I’d forgotten how many steps there are! We climbed and climbed and it got pretty hot with the face masks on. Made it to the ticket area and I sat down while Ed got in the long ticket line. It’s very crowded here. He got the tickets so we started up more steps to the Abbey . . . Made it!

The Abbey was as lovely as we remembered . . . for about three minutes when the first of an unending parade of children from age 7 to 17 on field trips entered the church. They were like ants, very noisy ants, all over the place blocking paths, yelling and goofing around. It was not the peaceful experience we were expecting and with all the steps, it’s probably our last trip to Mont-Saint-Michel so a bit disappointing.

Nevertheless, it is a magic place and we’re glad we came. We hiked back down to our hotel and Ed rested while I managed to figure out how to get data working on my phone. It took some exploration, trial and error, but I finally got it fixed. When Ed woke up, he gave me his new phone and I got that one working too. Cybervictory!

This evening at seven o’clock we have dinner reservations at our hotel restaurant with a window seat.

Later: Wow . . . fabulous view of the bay, warm welcome, half board got us the most expensive menu and our waiter was a gem. I got the agneau pré salé and it was melt-in-your-mouth tender. The veggies were a winter medley served on a pumpkin purée and the roasted potatoes were on caramelized onions. It was great. We had an apple-Calvados specialty for dessert. The restaurant was packed and deserved to be. Wonderful evening. When the lights went on at dark, the whole restaurant said a collective “Oh,” laughed and said it again. [Hôtel Du Guesclin, 50170 Le Mont-Saint-Michel, Grande Rue; tel: +33 (0)2 3360-1410; email: hotel.duguesclin@wanadoo.fr; Click here for the Hotel de Guesclin web site]

Leaving Bayeux for Mont-Saint-Michel, last view of the Cathedral

Leaving Bayeux for Mont-Saint-Michel, last view of the Cathedral


Driving to Mont-Saint-Michel

Driving to Mont-Saint-Michel


Avranches from the N175 driving to  Mont-Saint-Michel

Avranches from the N175 driving to Mont-Saint-Michel


A Round-a-bout seen while driving to Mont-Saint-Michel

A Round-a-bout seen while driving to Mont-Saint-Michel


Our first view of Mont-Saint-Michel on this trip

Our first view of Mont-Saint-Michel on this trip


Getting closer to Mont-Saint-Michel

Getting closer to Mont-Saint-Michel


Shuttle stop at Mont-Saint-Michel

Shuttle stop at Mont-Saint-Michel


Mont-Saint-Michel - view from near our hotel looking up . . . way up

Mont-Saint-Michel - view from near our hotel looking up . . . way up


Mont-Saint-Michel - lots of steps

Mont-Saint-Michel - lots of steps


Mont-Saint-Michel - a fountain on the climb up the hill

Mont-Saint-Michel - a fountain on the climb up the hill


Mont-Saint-Michel - sea gulls everywhere . . .

Mont-Saint-Michel - sea gulls everywhere . . .


Mont-Saint-Michel - view from the top

Mont-Saint-Michel - view from the top


Mont-Saint-Michel - at the top

Mont-Saint-Michel - at the top


Mont-Saint-Michel - inside the church

Mont-Saint-Michel - inside the church


Mont-Saint-Michel - a chapel

Mont-Saint-Michel - a chapel


Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont-Saint-Michel


Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont-Saint-Michel


Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel

Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel


Ed at the restaurant in Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel

Ed at the restaurant in Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel


View from the restaurant at Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel

View from the restaurant at Le Hôtel du Guesclin on Mont-Saint-Michel

Posted by Beausoleil 21:06 Archived in France Tagged hotels france church restaurants museum abbey bayeux mont-saint-michel

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Comments

The view from your hotel restaurant looks fantastic, and the food sounds delicious :) I've never been to Mont-Saint-Michel and I don't see myself visiting in the future tbh, especially after hearing your account of all the steps!

by ToonSarah

Your description of dinner has made me quite hungry. It sounds fabulous. Mont San Michel looks really beautiful. I'd have thought it would be less crowded during COVID, but it seems not.

by irenevt

I suspect it was a lot less crowded during COVID. We've been there before when you could hardly walk because there were so many people. I'd go on a nice cool winter day, especially if they are still requiring face masks. The stairs are daunting but even and doable. I was really out of shape. Diagnosed with arthritis at the beginning of COVID, not able to get out much and really couldn't do much walking including climbing our stairs at home for more than a year. I was just getting back on my feet when we left. I'm sure I'd have no trouble now as I am easily climbing up and down stairs at home. It just took me a long time, but we go out walking 6 days a week again like we used to and I'm fine. Lost a few pounds, do special exercises, changed my diet a bit and have learned to be a bit more careful when I move around. I'm always in a hurry and that's not a good idea at my age . . .

by Beausoleil

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