The American Historian

Analysis of Historical & Modern Political Topics

Mont St. Michel: A Visit of a Lifetime

In March 2017, Leslie and I visited France intending to see every bit of the country as possible in just 11 days. Mont St. Michel made the list as the pictures you’ll see below absolutely do not due it justice.

We used the Eurorail into Brittany, leaving a short 40 minute bus ride to the castle. The buses were completely amazing as they had steering wheels on both ends of the bus so they didn’t need to turn around on the narrow entrance to the castle.

The bus pulls in, then the driver walks to the other end to drive away!

The plan was to stay for one night on the property and due to sight-seeing after the crowds left. I arranged for a hotel inside the castle walls and remember being nervous about the stay. The first thing we noticed getting off of the bus was just how massive the meideval structure really was! Mont St. Michel began construction in 709 CE. The location proved to be popular seeing a montastery founded there in the 11th Century. Walls began construction an later in the 12 Century the west and south walls were extended.

There are multiple churches on the property, due to the constant building upwards that occrued throughout its history. Mass is still held there every Sunday for its sub-100 population. However, most of the time, its churches are packed with visitors from around the world.

The Lower Church

Once at the top of the Castle, you really cannot grasp how massive the structure really is. Look at this picture of the fireplaces for example!

The stay at night was unworldy. After the vistors left on their tour buses, we had the place practically to ourselves! We walked around unrestricted and found some beautiful views of the property. Just look at this picture of the town in the evening!

The next morning came fast and we slept well in our room. It was cold and it took forever to heat the room, but it did the job and the bed was comfortable. Getting on the bus the next morning was somewhat sad, as I wondered to myself if I had left anything unseen. I really enjoyed this beautiful place and hope to go there again one day.

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