Tides and Causeway to Mont St. Michel

Mar 1st, 2001, 10:16 AM
  #1  
Mary
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Tides and Causeway to Mont St. Michel

I'm planning a visit to the Mont, and am rather confused about the causeway to it, its general access, and whether I need to consult a tide chart to figure out the timing for going there. Also, is the causeway closed at night, regardless of the tides? I would like to stay on the mainland and visit the Mont later into the evening. One other question: about how long does it take to drive from Bayeux to the Mont, going by the most direct route possible? Any info would be highly appreciated!
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 10:44 AM
  #2  
terry
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Hi, Mary, I was having these same questions as you before our visit to MSM last June. You will not have to worry about the tides and access to the Mont as the cause way is built way above the rise of the tide. There may be a few times a year where super tides might limit the access, but those are rare.

I do not know if access to the causeway is limited at night, as we arrived at 4PM and stayed on the Mont for the evening. That was our favorite part of our visit. MSM is very crowed during the summer and it was a relief when all the visitors left the island by 6PM and we could explore at our leisure. If you e-mail [email protected] , they will send you a nive packet of information, including lodging information and a tide chart for the year.

As for the length of the drive to Bayeau, I am not sure. We had an outdated map so we probably did not take the fastest route. I would say two hours approximately. Maybe someone else will be able to help you here.
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 10:52 AM
  #3  
terry
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Nice packet, not nive packet. Sorry. Also, here is another web site for information: www.monuments-france.fr
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 12:01 PM
  #4  
ooooooo
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To: Mary

Check out Tidal Waves thread for your info.
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 06:44 PM
  #5  
Mary
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Many thanks.
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 07:44 PM
  #6  
Kelly
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It was so weird to see your post - I thought that I had posted it, since I am having the same questions about MSM. I am too driving from Bayeux to MSM at the end of March. I am staying overnight at Les Terrasses Poulard, and was worried about parking overnight, getting my bags to the hotel, and avoiding the quicksand (!). Mary, let me know of any tips you get. Thanks.
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 08:49 PM
  #7  
LSKahn
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The parking on the causeway is marked so you know where it is safe to park if you will be there during high tide--if you want to have a car when you return.

Unless there is a super tide, you should have no trouble going at anytime of day. It is a really special experience to stay overnight on the Mont, but, if you can't do that (hotel space is limited and can be pricey), just go and have dinner and then go back to your hotel elsewhere.

The poster who said the Mont is very crowded during the day in summer is absolutely correct. In my opinion, the view of the Mont as you approach is more spectacular than the view from the top. If you have to climb it to say you've been there, go right ahead. It can be very unpleasant on a hot day in summer. It is much better to experience in the shoulder season when things are quieter.
 
Mar 1st, 2001, 09:42 PM
  #8  
clairobscur
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Perhaps the view to the Mont is better than the view from the mont, but on the other hand, the architecture of the abbey is quite extraordinary and worth the visit.

And yes, it's awfully crowded in summer. The mont is tiny.
 
Mar 2nd, 2001, 04:08 PM
  #9  
LSKahn
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The abbey at the top of Mont St. Michel is sometimes called "La Mervielle" or "The Marvel". I still prefer the view on the approaches when the Mont appears to float on the water. "The Marvel", in my opinion, is how it ever got built in the first place. Ponder that on a hot day after you huff and puff your way through the crowds to the top. Unbelievable!
 
Mar 2nd, 2001, 07:11 PM
  #10  
greg
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Here is a site showing high tide days for 2001:

http://www.normandy-tourism.org/w/ville/Marees.html

Few things about parking I remember from our trip; I think there were three parking lots near the Mont. Ones on the causeway itself, is at the highest point, but it was gated. There are parking spaces on the right just before getting to the last stretch of the causeway. There was also a low parking lost left of the causeway in front of the entrance, but that parking lot was under the water even on a plain high tide day.

We stayed at the Mont and watched the tide come in while we had a dinner overlooking the bay.
 
Mar 2nd, 2001, 08:12 PM
  #11  
Marilyn
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Kelly:

We stayed at Les Terrasses Poulard last May. When you register, they will give you a magnetic thingy (that's the technical term) which will get you access to the higher ground parking. You will have to go back to the parking lot and move your car.

It really is amazing how the place changes after sundown (i.e., after the tour buses leave.)

Have a great trip.
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 01:07 AM
  #12  
Mary
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This is great info. Thanks to all!!!

Kelly: Check out the Tidal Waves thread as one poster suggested. It really is helpful. I hope the Mont is not crowded in March when you visit. (I'm going at the end of April.) BTW, if you're wondering about the travel time from Bayeux to the Mont, check out www.michelin-travel.com. It offers a really good trip planner and estimated times of routes. Wish I could offer other tips! I'm still scrambling around trying to piece together information and make decisions. Sure hope you have a great trip!
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 09:46 AM
  #13  
kelly
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Marilyn - How did you like Les Terrasses Poulard?

Thanks for everyone's help. I'll try to stay out of the quicksand.
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 05:09 PM
  #14  
Jane
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Can anyone share any good restaurants to go to while in Mont St. Michel? I have heard something about a special "omelet" restaurant?? Thanks.
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 05:39 PM
  #15  
Mary
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Jane, I think that restaurant is in the hotel Mere Poulard. Here is what a poster said of it in another thread: "The restaurant in the hotel [Mere Poulard] is also very good. Famous for making huge omelets (one is enough to feed two or three people!) over an open fire."
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 05:43 PM
  #16  
StCirq
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Regarding the Mère Poulard Restaurant, I would advise all travelers to steer clear of this establishment, which exists SOLELY for tourists. The waiters make a big deal out of swirling the eggs for the omelette before you, but the result is runny and tasteless...you can make a better omelette yourself in your hotel room. It is a big ripoff as far as I am concerned. I have had FAR better omelettes in many places in France, including in my own kitchen!
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 05:59 PM
  #17  
Ger
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Mont St Michel trip.

I have long wanted to visit. I assume a day-trip from Paris, although available, will not do justice to the area.

Can anyone recommend a really nice hotel in the area? It will be a treat, so I'd like to stay somewhere really nice.

Thanks for your advice.
 
Mar 3rd, 2001, 08:42 PM
  #18  
Marilyn
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Yes, Kelly. We did like Terrase Poulard. It's a small, charming hotel and I remember the young woman at the desk was very friendly. Since everything at the Mont is a hike, it should come as no surprise that you have to climb a steep flight of stairs just to reach the door to the hotel. As you are walking up the main street, it will be in an "alley" on your left.

And, I must confess, that we did eat at Mere Poulard. I know, I know. Tourist with a capital T. The story of Madame Poulard and her omelette is just too famous. Had to go. However, we didn't have an omelet. (My husband thinks he makes the best omelet so there seemed no point.) Actually, as I recall we had rack of lamb and it was spectatular. Yes, the resteraunt is overpriced, but being there at night was a unique experience and we felt the splurge was worth it. We all make choices in travel and in life . . . and that was ours.
 
Mar 16th, 2001, 06:08 AM
  #19  
Kim
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I too am going to MSM in May and would like the names of hotels on MSN...would like to stay overnight there!
 
Mar 16th, 2001, 10:38 AM
  #20  
kalena
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Kim:
Check the normandy-tourism.org site for hotels. StCirq, it is so great when you contribute here...I remember enjoying moules on Mont St Michel. Is moule season also in the summer like oyster season?
Aloha,
k
 

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