Mont Saint Michel, one day getaway from paris
At Universal Tour Guide, we are currently developing Guided Tours and activities in France. So, my colleague Jacky and I (I am Elsa by the way) were sent to the Mont Saint Michel to see what to do, eat and see! We went there for the day from Paris! Here is what to do if you spend a day in the Mont Saint Michel:
Transportation from Paris to the Mont-Saint-Michel
From Paris, we took a OUIGO train (Massy TGV station – 30 minutes from the center of Paris by RER) for 10€ to Rennes – Unfortunately, our train was 40 minutes late and we kind of missed that time afterwards. Anyway, after reaching Rennes, we rented a car nearby the station. It is a nice 1h drive to destination and there were no one on the road (Lucky!) Otherwise, you can take a Keolis Armor autobus for 15€ (one-way ticket) The bus station is near the Tourist Information Center, close to the railway station. The bus leaves Rennes twice in the morning so check the schedule. It’s a bit more than 1 hour by bus.
When you arrive at the parking, you will have the choice between walking to the Mont (45 minutes) or taking a free shuttle bus (departures every 12 minutes) We took the shuttle. The road is nice and it’s a quicker way to reach the entrance of the Mont Saint Michel. But if you have time, chose the walk. The view over the bay and the mount is simply amazing!
Food at the Mont Saint Michel
Once we arrived, it was already 1PM so we were hungry. We decided to have a quick stop at the Auberge Saint Pierre which is in the main street. I had some mussels with cream for about 15€ and Jacky took the Express Menu with a salad, an entrecote and a piece of pie. The Auberge Saint Pierre offer some great specialties such as the famous omelet of Mont Saint Michel, Breton lobster, a rack of roasted lamb and more.
The “omelette de la mère Poulard” is the most famous specialties in the Mont Saint Michel. It is an omelette soufflé, sometimes with cream, whose white and yellow are most often beaten separately and cooked over high heat. It is an easy and quick dish to prepare at any time, allegedly invented by la Mère Poulard for pilgrims who arrived hungry at Mont Saint-Michel.
What to do at the Mont-Saint-Michel
Once we finished eating, we went for a walk along the Mont Saint Michel to have a look at the different museums. There are 4 of them:
– The Archéoscope : a great multi-media show to tell the story of the construction of the Mont Saint Michel, originally raised to the glory of God.
– Historical Museum: where you can admire an old collection of weapons, paintings, sculptures, watches as well as old prisons, dungeons and the reconstitution of the oubliettes.
– Museum of the sea and ecology: where an audio video system explains the phenomenon of the tides, the problems of the silting of the site and shows all the work that was realized to preserve the surroundings.
– Logis Tiphaine, home of Bertrand Duguesclin: the 14th century house is an evocation of the life of the Constable (commander of the local army) and his wife Tiphaine de Raguenel. There are very well-preserved furniture, paintings and tapestries to admire.
The Abbey of the Mont Saint Michel is very famous in many ways. Architecturally, this place of worship of the Archangel Michael could be called a miracle, with a medieval architecture from the 11th to the 16th century. The abbey rests at the top of the mount and offers an amazing view over the all bay. The entrance is 10€. The abbey was classified historical monument in 1874.
Tours in the Mount and around
You can enjoy a nice tour of the Mount with local guides. Book it in advance here! If you have some time left, you should do the walk around the Mount, across the bay. But beware of the tides!
The Mont-Saint-Michel Specialties
Outside the Mont Saint Michel, you will find the biscuit factory of the Mère Poulard where you will find crispy and tasty cookies. The perfect gift to bring back!
The omelette of the Mère Poulard is THE culinary specialty of Mont Saint-Michel as I said earlier, but there are many more specialties to try! This is the case of the pre-salted lamb. A culinary specialty to taste from the Mont-Saint-Michel. The lambs feed on the coastal pastures that are particularly iodized (thanks to tides), that’s why their meat benefits from an AOC and offers a finely salted taste.
Of course, you can also enjoy many homemade and galettes, as well as milk jam and toffees.
We then returned to Paris by the 07:39 PM train, after driving back to Rennes! That was a great day and definitely something you can do from Paris for 1 full day getaway, even if you can feel a bit pressed by the time sometimes 😉