The usual swarm of visitors were kept at bay as we were treated to a day of dramatic cloudscapes and un-rushed meanderings through its peaceful cloisters, four massive crypts, along its meandering serpentine ramparts and the central drag lined with hotels, restaurants, and souvenir shops of varying hue.
This symbol of French national identity was never taken by the English as they battled one another in this part of France, and it is easy to see why. The rest of Normandy fell to the English army, but not Mont St Michel. This had something to do, in part, with its remote location and difficult access, but also because of the battlements that were put in place with one purpose in mind, to defend against a newly developed weapon: the cannon.
You can avoid the crush though. Simply decide to arrive later in the day as the crowds and the tour busses are retreating. That way you can spend the night and enjoy this island, one of the top four pilgrimage sites in the Christian world, the way few others do. And, in the morning, have your coffee and croissants in peace, and really centre yourself.
Why visit this place?
"Few places have the allure of the abbey looming in isolation on the rock off the country's north-western coast, at the mouth of the Couesnon River. The romance and history of this place draws visitors and pilgrims by the score."
When is the best time of year to visit?
One of the most important things to know about the Mont St Michel weather is that it is directly related to the strong tides of the area. The strongest and highest tides take place in March and September of each year. During these months, it can be difficult, if not impossible, to travel in the area by car, as the roads and parking lots are often under floods.
New! CommentsHave your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.