Excursion to mont st Michel

May 16th, 2014, 12:35 PM
  #1  
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Excursion to mont st Michel

We are looking for recommendations for a tour company to take a one day excursion from Paris to Mont St Michel. We realize it is a long trip but it is all the time we have and a place we would love to visit. Thanks for any help!
margreee is offline  
May 16th, 2014, 01:22 PM
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It is easy to go on your own and set your own pace - take a TGV train to Rennes from Paris and there waiting at the station are buses that take you right to Mont-Saint-Michel - ditto for coming back in the afternoon. www.voyages-sncf.com has train schedules and fares. Takes about 3 hours each way, maybe as fast as a group tour since those trains part way go up to about 190 mph.

Once there there is no need for a tour - your ticket to the basilica includes a guided tour. Otherwise just wonder around the island at your own pace.
PalenQ is online now  
May 16th, 2014, 06:14 PM
  #3  
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Thank you so much. I am a little concerned about planningbto meet the return train. Do I need to purchase train tickets in advance? How much time would you allow for exploring?
margreee is offline  
May 17th, 2014, 04:34 AM
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You do not need to buy ticket in advance but you will get a good discount perhaps by doing so - www.capitainetrain.com is the same as www.voyages-sncf.com but seems easier to work - same trains same fares - but those tickets are non-changeble and train specific so book one out to Rennes as early as you can and return in late afternoon - depending on bus schedules.

for lots of info on French trains check out www.seat61.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com and www.ricksteves.com.

I'd say the main thing on the island is the famous basilica that tops it - the island itself is tiny so I'd say 4 hours or so would be comfy on the island itself.

I'll see if I can track down bus schedules but the bus needs to reservation and is coordinated to meet three morning trains and also returning trains in the afternoon.
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May 17th, 2014, 09:25 AM
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http://www.keolis-emeraude.com/en/mo...st-michel.html

Rennes buses that are coordinated with TGV arrivals and departures - buses to Mont-Saint-Michel.
PalenQ is online now  
May 17th, 2014, 10:43 AM
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If you don't plan and book this far in advance, it could be cheaper just to take a bus tour through Parisvision, and probalby more convenient as you won't have to worry about bus connections. You don't get there any quicker by the train becuase you have to transfer at Rennes and then take a bus. Both are about 4 hours each way. It isn't 3 hours to Mont St Michel by train plus bus, it is about 3:30-4 depending on time of day, because it is 2:15 to Renne, you have about a 10-30 min transfer time and then the bus to Mont St Michel takes 1:15 hrs.

Pariscityvision charges 125 euro for the entire day trip, it leaves and returns from their office on rue de Rivoli, leaving around 7:15 am and returning around 9 pm.
http://www.pariscityvision.com/en/mo...ichelonyourown

About the cheapest the train plus bus will be if you book far in advance is around 75 euro roundtrip, and it can easily run to at least 160 euro if you don't buy far in advance (second class). I clearly would do Pariscityvision if I had to pay more than the bus tour for the train plus bus.
Christina is offline  
May 17th, 2014, 02:37 PM
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How much do you have to tip the ParisCityVision bus driver and or tour guide - the latter is often nearly a mandatory gratuity in many cases.
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May 17th, 2014, 03:00 PM
  #8  
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Trains are getting very expensive and pariscitivision does not appear to offer this trip on sundays. Has anybody used a group called france tourism
margreee is offline  
May 17th, 2014, 04:25 PM
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Trains are not at all expensive if you know when and how to book, 30-40 euros for a PREM fare if bought ahead of time.
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May 17th, 2014, 09:23 PM
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Just read through the reviews of ParisCityVision on TripAdvisor. Shocking. Shockingly bad, that is. So many paid in advance and then had no tour and no refund. Some got a tour that was a horrible experience. I wouldn't take a chance that I would be among the few for whom it went without trauma.
cynthia_booker is offline  
May 18th, 2014, 02:05 PM
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Yes tours are in the fine print not guaranteed to go off often sans enough clients.
PalenQ is online now  
May 18th, 2014, 03:02 PM
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You cannot get a RT train fare to Mont St Michel for 30-40 euro no matter when you book, though. That is the rate about one way if you book far in advance.

The Paricityvision tour to Mont St michel is basically just transportation, as I glanced through it, so there really isn't a tour to not get or any bad experience to expect in that case. I took a tour by them and it was excellent, BTW. Tips are never mandatory, either. I can see the problem that they won't go if not enough people sign up, that is the case with tours everywhere.

If one doesn't want to book far in advance, I'd still go with Pariscityvision as it's just transportation. If you were in Paris, you could ask them if it were all booked up or not before deciding. I think the issue is someone may not want to book far in advance as they want to see which day works best or what the weather is like when there, I imagine.

I just glanced at the first couple of pages on Tripadvisor, and on those, the ones who claimed to have lost money just didn't show up for the tour and wanted a refund or cancelled and violated the contract terms, that's all. The one who just didn't show up said the metro was closed unexpectedly or something, but the tour still went, so I'm not surprised they didn't get a refund. I could get someplace if the metro were closed, obviously, anyone can. You can walk or take a taxi. The ones complaining said the tour wasn't good or it wasn't worth the money, etc. I don't see the risk if it's just transportation.
Christina is offline  
May 18th, 2014, 04:30 PM
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As I was thinking this tour group might work out for me, I searched them out and when I saw the overall low rating, decided to read through carefully. I am glad it worked out for you, Christina, and it might for the OP, but after reading back a couple of years worth of reviews, including by those who actually took the tour, I don't think it is worth taking a risk. Many said they could not get a refund, even when they were not late or at fault in any way.
cynthia_booker is offline  
May 19th, 2014, 10:06 AM
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Is a day trip do-able?
Hoai is offline  
May 19th, 2014, 11:45 AM
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Is a day trip do-able?>

Yes - see some posts way up in this thread that tells you how to do this.
PalenQ is online now  
Apr 4th, 2015, 07:05 AM
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A day trip is totally doable if you Wake up early !

We left Paris at 6, get there at 10.30 (we had a break on our way since it's a lot of driving)

we even managed to drive to St Malo for ice cream (it's about an hour away) from Mont St Michel, and came back to Paris at midnight after enjoying our day to the fullest...
I tell more about it here
http://sandrineboutry.com/visiting-m...ichel-in-july/
ssaanndd is offline  
Apr 4th, 2015, 07:08 AM
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and about prices, well, renting a car car be cheap (Sixt is among the cheapest), and although gas is expensive in Europe, it's Worth doing it....

you can get a rental car for 30€ a day if you book early... so definitely Worth doing it
ssaanndd is offline  
Apr 5th, 2015, 06:46 AM
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Not only is petro expensive compared to the U.S. at least but highway tolls can be devastatingly high - freeways or autoroutes that is - predatory IME.
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