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Mont Saint Michel
The Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel

[ Le Abbaye du Mont-Saint-Michel ]
View all tours to Mont-Saint-Michel from Paris here
Tour Mont-Saint-Michel - Combo w/Normandy WWII Beaches or Loire Valley Chateaux

Le Abbaye du Mont-Saint-Michel
    The Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel is built in a tidal basin on a solid granite out-cropping off the Region of Lower Normandy.  The abbey dates back to Roman times, and was founded by Aubert, Bishop of Avranches.  It was called Mont Tombe [a sanctuary ] that was dedicated to the Archangel Michael, on October 16, in 708. 

Officially the name became Mont-Saint-Michel some two hundred years later, when the church was built on top of this granite out-cropping by Benedictine Monks.  However the old name still remained Mont Tombe until sometime in the 17th century. thus eventually became Mont Saint Michel.

The Romanesque abbey of today was not started until the year 1023.  It was built primarily as in those times for the church to enforce its authority during the crusades.

The structure had added additions to the point, that,  the summit could not hold the structure.  Designs for additional supports [artificial cliffs] were designed and built, however one failed to support the structure and collapsed. This was just one of many  disasters to trouble the abbey over the centuries.

Holding its own through many assaults during numerous battles over the centuries, but not without death and destruction, the popularity of the abbey was untold.  Through the influence of many foundations both English and French, the wealth and influence of the Abbey became powerful, but with the pilgrimage waning along with the reformation, by the time the French Revolution came along there were few monks still in residence and this remarkable and beautiful former abbey eventually became a prison.  Holding some very influential French including Victor Hugo.

The tides are some of the most dangerous in the world, for this seeming tranquil quiet abbey that stands so proud on the summit in rather calm looking tidal pools, yet the tides are fierce and have killed many people over the centuries.  The tides come in swiftly changing between low and high tides up to 60 feet, and with a force of over 3 feet per second.

You can travel and visit the abbey easily now, for they built a causeway in the year 1879.  However, do not try to walk the flats around Mont-Saint-Michel during low tides, it could cost you your life.  There are tour guides that lead these walks, and who are well aware of the tides schedule.  Only venture out of the flats with a guide.  The lower parking lot is submerged during high tide.
                                                                 More on Le Mont-Saint-Michel

Visit charming houses and shops in
this quaint village up to the Abbaye.   .
  The first chapel was founded in 708 
  by Aubert, Bishop of Avranches

Mont Saint-Michel was built on a strong rock that measures 84 meters high. It is pure granite and is so hard that it has resisted the passage of time. 

    View more detailed information on Mont-Saint-Michel
    Links about and to the Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel
The Official site of Le Mont Saint Michel
Le Abbaye du Mont-Saint-Michel
Le Monument Saint Michel
UNESCO World Heritage Site

NEW for 2013
& Normandy


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 © Copyright 1999 - 2016 by Sharon Atchley.  All rights reserved.  Updated:  05/06/2016