…and yet, somehow it is!
The phrase “this isn’t real” seems to have become the catchphrase to this trip and for me this really started upon first setting eyes on the fairytale setting of Mont St. Michele.
This place looks so much like Disney’s Tangled’s kingdom of Corona that it almost stopped this fangirl’s heart—later my older sister explained that this was, in fact, the animators’ inspiration, so the comparison makes sense.
As I wrote last week, we took the Bayeux shuttle here thinking we’d get some historical and interesting information of the day’s sights. Instead, I got to nap in and out for an hour and forty-five minutes, give or take. Nice for me, but, for the amount of money we put in, this just didn’t seem worth it.
To reiterate, nice driver, but shop around for sure.
But, back to the beautiful world that is Mont St. Michele.
It’s easy to see how Disney animator’s would be inspired by this place. Between the winding streets, panoramic views and castle like features that make up the abbey, you’ll be singing a happy tune and thinking about braiding flowers into your hair as well.
This isn’t to say that only us Disney-philes will fall in love with this floating city. The abbey is rich with local history, religious iconography and sights any enthusiast would die for. And for any hiker or exercise lovers out there, climbing around the keep will definitely help meet you calorie burn quotas!
Truly a place for all types of travelers.
But getting down to a few more details:
When you get past the parking lots you’ll have two choices: a cramped bus with two stops including getting to the final destination, or a thirty to forty-five minute brisk walk with tons of varied sites (we did the walk on the way back to the bus and it really was lovely!).
Mont St. Michele really doesn’t seem that big of a place—you can do a quick run through in probably two hours if you really push it and if you don’t want to do anything extra. We were there for two and a half hours and were able to wander the town a little, walk the ramparts, and tour the abbey with the audio guides.
So, what is it that we didn’t get to do?
There was no time to sit and eat a meal, we moved from one place to another for that whole period and we did not get to wander around the mountain city (If you can call it that) and that is actually one of the activities available.
When I get back here (and trust me, a full day is definitely in my future), I’ll be using both the walking options.
This abbey and city/town/whatever you wish to call it, it situated on a mountain surrounded by water at high tide. Throughout a good chunk of the day, however, it sits amid various streams, puddles, and sand which you are able to walk on. The “easy” walk is around the base of the mountain which is 960 meters/3.150 feet around and you don’t need any tour guide for this. however, you have to be very aware of the tides and it’s best to still check in with information just to find out the specific rules. You will need a guide if you choose to venture further out on the sands like older pilgrims (as well as more recent one’s) have, as there are some treacherous areas and features to watch out for, including quicksand.
In my next visit, I’d love to stay nearer this site (or take the train instead of a tour with a time limit) if only to see the water rise at high tide. Who knows, maybe I’ll bring a lantern and sing a little song! What can I say? I’m a Disney girl through and through. Trust me, there will be more to come!
This is Leave on the Wind, helping you soar.