Take a full-day tour from Paris to one of the most popular attractions in France, the fairytale island of Mont St-Michel off the coast of Normandy. Your guide will take you on a narrated walking tour of the exquisite Benedictine abbey, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most revered wonders of Europe. You’ll then have free time to explore the village at your leisure to browse shops and watch the incredible spectacle of the bay’s tide rising and surrounding the island.
You’ll be picked up from a central Paris meeting point or your hotel (depending on option selected) in the early morning to begin your full-day adventure to Mont St-Michel. Sit back and enjoy the views on the long coach drive north through the beautiful Normandy countryside.
Arrive at Mont St-Michel in the late morning for your guided walking tour of this iconic attraction, perched on a rocky island amid a vast bay and encircled by stout ramparts and battlements. After fueling up with lunch and refreshments (included), follow your expert guide on a walk to the top of the hilly village, where you’ll then travel back in time as you enter the fascinating abbey.
Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, Mont St-Michel was a major cultural and pilgrimage center during the Middle Ages. Legend has it that the abbey was founded in the 8th century, when Aubert, the bishop of Avranches, was visited by the Archangel Michael in a dream. To this day the abbey is still crowned by a gilded copper statue of Michael slaying a dragon, symbolizing the triumph of good over evil.
See the abbey’s remarkable cloister and refectory, and view how the ramparts have been added to support the Gothic monastery over the centuries. You’ll also hear about this attraction’s most well-known and alluring feature: the extreme tides. At low tide, the island can be surrounded by bare sand for miles, but at high tide — barely six hours later — the water swells up and fills the bay, surrounding the entire island.
After your tour, you’re free to wander the village around Mont St-Michel on your own. Walk around the abbey’s ramparts, browse the shops along the main street, visit the island’s museums, and watch the sea rush in from the Atlantic and surround Mont St-Michel at high tide.
You will spend approximately four hours at Mont St-Michel before departing on your relaxing drive back to Paris.