Is parking a problem?

May 19th, 2001, 07:25 AM
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Is parking a problem?

We are doing a driving tour of Normandy and the Loire Valley in September. Just assumed we could stop and explore anywhere along the way that looked interesting. Now wonder if parking the car may be a problem. Are there any places where a car is a nuisance? Specifically, is there parking at the major WWII sites? Chateaux? What about Mont Saint Michel? Do you actually drive onto the Mont? This site is always so informative, so I'm hoping you can fill me in a little. Thanks in advance, Adam
May 19th, 2001, 07:45 AM
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Hi Adam

We drove in Normandy last summer and had no problems parking. There is parking at the WWII sites, and there are huge lots at Mt. St. Michel with attendants to direct you. The composition of the lots changes depending on the tides--if a certain area will be submerged you will not be directed to park there. Parking in Honfleur was tight, and we left our car in a public lot not far from our hotel.

We found driving in Normandy to be easy and fun.

Bon voyage
May 19th, 2001, 08:17 AM
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parking was no problem at either WW2 or WW1 sites , all had ample areas. No problem either at any chateaux we visited. Most of the towns will have a public lot , and walking is easy from there to most anyplace you will be visiting. We found driving to be quite easy in France, actually better than it is here at home whe our tourist season hits! We took mainly the minor roads to see more but the N or A roads ( I forget which ae the major ones)) we did take were not bad at all.
May 19th, 2001, 11:13 AM
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No parking on Mont St. Michel itself -- no cars or any other vehicles, for that matter. You have to hoof it up and down jillions of steps, and it's worth it. Be careful about the tides. They come in faster than you can run. Roads in Normandy and Brittany are quite good, two-land blacktop -- except for the autoroutes which compare with interstate highways in the US. Avoid them if you want to see the countryside at a leisurely pace. We put on many miles in Normandy and Brittany and enjoyed the villages, seaside, and scenery very much. Keep a close eye on your gas tank; it's sometimes tough to find gas stations. Top up each day.
May 20th, 2001, 07:38 AM
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No parking problem in Normandy or most of the rest of France outside the cities. Regarding the comment on Mont Saint Michel, you have a long causeway that runs from the mainland to the mont. Parking is outside the mont just off the causeway. No, your car won't drift away. The tides, while as noted, do come in very fast, but don't flood where your car is parked so ignore the tides unless you intend to walk way out on the tidal flats. If you want to spend the night on the mont there are 3 or 4 hotels. It would be worthwhile to do so, but have your overnight things in a small bag inasmuch as your hotel main not be close to the gate and would therefore require a short but steep walk up the winding street that runs from the gate all the way to the monastery.
All said, do not let yourself be detracted from spending a night there if it fits into your schedule. If it doesn't, I'd not change my schedule. In Sep be prepared for monstrous crowds, elbow to elbow once in the gate. Disneyworld has nothing on MSM in the crowds department!

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