Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Dinan or Avranches to visit Le Mont St. Michel?

Dinan or Avranches to visit Le Mont St. Michel?

Old Jul 30th, 2016, 08:12 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 528
Dinan or Avranches to visit Le Mont St. Michel?

We are renting a gite in Bayeux for a week this fall and are considering staying one night closer to Le Mont St. Michel so we can visit early in the morning and/or late in the afternoon. Dinan is a bit farther, but it appears charming. Avranches is, of course, closer. Would appreciate feedback and suggestions for hotels. Thanks!
artsbabe is offline  
Old Jul 30th, 2016, 08:37 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 9,295
On a visit to Mont Saint-Michel years ago I stayed on Mont Saint-Michel. Unless you have a particular reason to stay in one of the other places, why not stay on the Mont itself? I loved it and it becomes wonderfully intimate in the evening and in the morning before the crowd returns.
MmePerdu is online now  
Old Jul 30th, 2016, 04:25 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,963
Absolutely - if you make the trek all the way from Bayeux, stay on the mont! If that doesn't appeal, look at Granville - an often overlooked seaside town and port, with the impressive Roc lookout - check it out.
michelhuebeli is offline  
Old Jul 30th, 2016, 04:31 PM
  #4  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,479
Another vote for the magic of Mont St. Michel before and after daytrippers.

And Dinan is charming, IMO.
kja is offline  
Old Jul 31st, 2016, 01:24 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,520
Dinah is very charming. I recommend the Cottage restaurant, great food.

Have a great trip!
cafegoddess is offline  
Old Jul 31st, 2016, 06:21 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 528
Thanks for your ideas. I've read recently, perhaps on this forum, that, if you stay on the Mont, you have to trek back down to get a ticket to go back up into the abbey. Is this true or am I tripping?
artsbabe is offline  
Old Jul 31st, 2016, 11:06 AM
  #7  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,479
Although things could have changed since I was there, my understanding is that tickets for the abbey are available only at the entrance to the abbey. See
http://www.ot-montsaintmichel.com/en/lieux-visite.htm

So if one climbed the ramparts, one would need to get back down, but the entrance to the abbey is above all the hotels.

Hope that helps!
kja is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 05:43 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 528
Thanks to everyone for your suggestions. I've been looking at hotels on the Mont and at Trip Advisor for reviews. Now, I don't believe everything I read, but the hotels get mixed reviews.

Does anyone have a particular hotel recommendation?
artsbabe is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 06:25 PM
  #9  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,479
My impression is that none of the hotels on Mont St. Michel are without problems. Consult tripadvisor reviews (with all the standard caveats) and those on booking.com and select the hotel that seems to have the fewest issues that are troubling to you and the most positives that matter to you. IME, even a flawed hotel was worth the experience of seeing the Mont before and after daytrippers! (Sorry, I don't feel comfortable commenting on the hotel in which I stayed as my experience is too dated to bear on a choice of hotel for your trip.)
kja is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 06:46 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 9,295
My experience is dated, too, and I suspect the hotel where I stayed is long gone, or gone upscale if they were smart. It was a bit shabby but clean, a room over a restaurant on the main drag and, like kja, I was thrilled to be there. Just pick one that's as much as you'd like to pay and I have no doubt you'll be perfectly happy.
MmePerdu is online now  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 08:23 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,386
we stayed on the Mont 2 months ago. i was urged to on this forum, and am so very glad i did!! (and tickets are for sale up at the Abbey.)

We had a lovely evening stroll around town, a good dinner, a relaxed breakfast, then headed up to the abbey. we were the first ones there, joined by maybe 5 others by the time they opened the doors. sitting on the abbey steps, it was wonderful to see the workers arrive... they had 9-inch iron keys for the old door! unlock, shut. unlock, shut. don't know why, but that's a super fond memory!??

as we toured the abbey, we only ran into a few people in any of the rooms. many were empty. it was just a pleasure.

we paid a fortune (by our budget) to stay there and, yes the hotel was barely ok. you probably read my review on TA. unless you can afford to treat yourself to a fabulous balcony room over the water, i suggest you find the least expensive hotel and stay there. when we were researching, that was Hotel du Guesclin... but sadly, they are closed weekly on thursdays (maybe it was wednesday??) i also noticed that the day they are closed, the other hotels fill and SEEM to universally jack up their rates. hence the very expensive night.

still. don't care. it was a splurge and worth it. especially since it was windy and rainy. we could walk a bit, then warm up, then walk a bit more. it was lovely.

let us know what you decide!!
kawh is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 08:24 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,386
p.s. LOVED Bayeux. and surprised myself when i was moved to tears by the embroidery!
kawh is offline  
Old Aug 1st, 2016, 08:27 PM
  #13  
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 22,479
P.S. I agree with kawh about the Bayeux Tapestry (really an embroidery) -- utterly awesome!
kja is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 07:20 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 48,154
You might also consider staying in Dol de Bretagne, which is what I have done on a couple of trips to le MSM.
StCirq is online now  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 12:24 PM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 528
Thanks for all of the input. I'll let you know what we decide.
artsbabe is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 02:39 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 113
WE are staying in Sept on the Mont - we chose Le Mouton Blanc. It is thanks to this board that I even considered it!

I agree the hotels are a bit expensive,the basic double room was 180 Euros. But I do think the experience of staying on the Mont will be an everlasting memory.
mdinbc is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 02:59 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 412
Another thought... Check out this beautiful Chateau. The Count is utterly charming and has wonderful stories he will share with you. The website has a short video now. Also, the Count will have good suggestions for a lovely dinner nearby.

www.chateaudebouceel.com
kansas is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 03:05 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Just opposite the Mont is a gaggle of hotels - motel-style - I stayed there once (but in the camping) and walked to the Mont - a neat way to approach- like medieval pilgrims used to do and even if staying on the Mont be sure to trek over to the mainland to see the whole tiny island regally crowned by the basilica wondrously lit up at night.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 03:18 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,287
I agree with PalenQ. Stay at one of the hotels with a view of the Mont. As soon as we saw them we wished we had done that.
Scootoir is offline  
Old Aug 2nd, 2016, 03:32 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 7,584
If you do decide to stay on the Mont, I would suggest you put together a picnic dinner before you arrive and maybe pick a spot on the walls to have it. That way you can avoid the restaurants, which are as undistinguished as the hotels.
Fra_Diavolo is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO