Hindson Travels in France 2016 travel blog

Abbey sitting on the rock

map showing how the tide works (RED) around the island

model of the Abbey

inside the Abbey - with a big ball which enables you to...

Today was a big day. We went to Mont St Michel. This particular area of France is called the foodland of France. It grows almost 70% of all of its vegetables, dairying, eggs, lamb etc. The ground looks very fertile and there are farms everywhere with produce growing.

"Rising from flat white sands, the abbey sits atop a small island encircled by stout ramparts and battlements, connected to the mainland by an old causeway. Legend has it that the abbey was founded in the 8th century, when Aubert, the bishop of Avranches, was visited by the Archangel Michael in a dream; to this day the abbey is still crowned by a gilded copper statue of Michael slaying a dragon, symbolizing the triumph of good over evil.

The bay around Mont Saint Michel is famous for its extreme tides. Depending on the season and the gravitational pull of the moon, the difference between low and high tides can reach 50 feet (15 m), although the Mont is only completely surrounded by the sea during seasonal equinoxes. Regardless of the time of year, the waters sweep in at an rate; at low tide the Mont can be surrounded by bare sand for miles around, but at high tide, barely six hours later, the whole bay is often entirely submerged by the sea."

This old Abbey is huge and there are over 100 steps to get to the top of the church. We walked up all the steps and thankgoodnes it was not a hot day. Our guide was very informative and very friendly. She told us how it was originally made, and all about the people who actually live there now. There are only 20 people who live on the island. Can't remember exactly but about 6 nuns, 8 monks, and 1 priest and a couple of others.

We had lunch there and visited the obligatory souvenir shops and then came back to the bus. Our guide said goodbye to us as she had another group coming through - Japanese. She speaks numerous languages fluently.

We then came back to the room at about 5pm where I managed to catch up on some of the days blogs. We went for a walk to the sea and dipped our fingers in the Atlantic Ocean. The tide was out and you had to walk quite a distance to reach the water.

We had arranged to have dinner with Faye and Gary from New Zealand who we met up on our first day of the trip. They are lovely people and we went to another Hotel that Michaels travel book recommended. It was a lovely night and when we came out there were young people everywhere. I was a little uneasy about mixing with the big crowds so went a different direction - after what happened at Nice we are just being cautious. We still get updates from the SmartTraveller. Gov. in Australia letting us know that France is still on high alert.

Tomorrow bags out at 7.30 and off again at 8.30am. to Coen. We only have 2 more days left of this tour and then catch up with the river cruise ship in Paris.

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