Exploring Mont Saint-Michel

Exploring Mont Saint-Michel

We chose to visit Mont Saint-Michel for two reasons: firstly, Rob has been desperate to see this in real life for some time; secondly, looking at a map of France, this was one of the few areas in sunshine yesterday and today. Having spent a couple of nights in rainy Rouen we needed some sun on our bones!

Mont Saint-Michel is a bucket list destination for many. We spoke to a group who were staying on the island overnight because that had always been their dream, but for us the sight of the tower on the hill out along the causeway was the draw. Therefore our hotel was a brilliant match for us – check out the view from the room!

the view from the terrace of the room at relais saint michel hotel
The room at Relais Saint Michel Hotel was excellent; a suite with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a large sitting area. The boys got a brilliant sleep in their double bed in a blacked out room. As did we, in ours!

We arrived on Sunday with enough time to wander along the causeway to the island. Buses run every ten minutes in the daytime and every twenty at night. Buses are free, however we wanted to stretch our legs. Don’t take the pushchair – there’s only so far up the street you can go.

visiting mont saint michel with children
In the walls of the town the main street is lined with shops and restaurants. Our hotel had given us a discount card to use in most of the snack vendors or restaurants. However, our main focus was to explore!

exploring the outer walls of mont saint michel
We had a really good look around. James absolutely loved running everywhere! He was so excited and asked a million questions about everything he could see. Anything we ‘wondered’ too, James confidently told us all about it, whether it was some iron gates, the drain holes in paths, or a lift!

exploring the outer walls of mont saint michelThen we went and ate the worst evening meal of our lives. Well, that may be an exaggeration, but it was certainly no stretch to say we have enjoyed much better food on aeroplanes. The menus and prices  are almost identical in most of the restaurants – you just need to find a setting you like. Alas, the chefs are not the same, or maybe they are. Maybe all the meals are terrible!

We left just in time to see the sun set, then back to bed.

mont saint michel painted cowred painted cow mont saint michelblue painted cow bench mont saint michelcolourful cow mont saint michel
There are a lot of cows in the town at the moment. We spent some time trying to get a photo of the boys with them, alas, no good shots of them together! We also almost played on a bouncy castle but just as James had psyched himself up to step inside it was switched off! It is a good idea to have one in the cafe outdoor area.

During our second visit to Mont Saint-Michel we explored the Abbey. It’s absolutely enormous inside. You can really appreciate the scale of the construction when you look at models of how it’s changed over the years. How they got the stones over to the island must be an interesting story in itself. Monks and their quest for solitude, eh?

mont saint michel abbeychurch of mont saint michel where mass was being held during our visit with children so we couldnt staytour of the abbey at mont saint michel
Inside the Abbey is quiet apart from tour guides. Tour guides seem the absolute exception to the rule of silence in churches. Children may not speak, and if they do are loudly shushed (even by tour parties) but guides get away with a normal speaking voice. We’ve found this to be true in a few places now, not just Mont Saint-Michel. I don’t think it would bother me if it wasn’t Noah’s simple baby babble they were shushing!

croque monsieur pizza au pelerin mont saint michelLunch time in Mont Saint-Michel was a thousand times better than our meal the night before, and a fifth of the price. Pizza, croque monsieur, beer and ice cream – fresh, tasty, and served in a tiny room with high stools and slim bars.

Souvenirs purchased we caught the bus back to our car and off to our next destination – Amboise in the Loire Valley!

We thoroughly enjoyed Mont Saint-Michel, especially as the sun was shining! However I think visiting with children needs some extra planning; you can’t take a pushchair and see much, so take a baby carrier. There isn’t anywhere to leave buggies or prams. Inside the Abbey the children need to be quiet, and age of the child isn’t taken into consideration, so the whole excursion needs to be given thought as to nap times and meal times.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall



  1. May 27, 2016 / 2:56 pm

    Looks like you had a good time . Loving all the cows lol

  2. June 4, 2016 / 9:01 am

    It sounds like a great place to visit. Love the architecture. Judging by your photos you chose the right place to visit for the weather. Mont Saint Michel looks quite impressive on it’s island. #CountryKids

  3. June 4, 2016 / 9:06 am

    Oh wow – that looks an amazing place to visit and somewhere that I have always wanted to go to visit. What a shame that you had an awful meal! Apart from that though it looks like you had a fab time 🙂 #countrykids

  4. June 4, 2016 / 9:26 am

    Sounds like a wonderful place to explore with amazing architecture. The sun sounded like a welcome change on your holiday and made for some gorgeous photos. I love all the coloured cows too. Such a shame about your evening meal, always disappointing when that happens. Good advice for anyone with a pushchair, sounds like it is perfect for children of James’s age and older.

    Thank you for sharing your adventure with me on #CountryKids

  5. June 4, 2016 / 2:28 pm

    Love this place! Your pics really take me back. My husband and I went like 5 years ago and we can’t wait to go back some day with kids! We actually spent the night and it was extra magical to see the abbey at night and at sunrise.

  6. June 4, 2016 / 2:45 pm

    Beautiful place to explore, plus the cows are pretty darn cute.

  7. June 4, 2016 / 2:47 pm

    Adorable pictures of your kids! And the castle is beautiful!

  8. June 4, 2016 / 2:59 pm

    OooooooMG – I have never heard of this castle and it is absolutely beautiful! Your pictures are just fab – what a wonderful experience for your kids!

    • June 4, 2016 / 3:01 pm

      Thanks so much, has it gone on your bucket list now?

  9. June 4, 2016 / 4:59 pm

    These photos are STUNNING. Wow. Visiting a castle is on my bucket list. Absolutely beautiful! And your babies are so sweet. Love the photo of one of them kissing the cow. Too cute! 🙂

  10. June 4, 2016 / 11:14 pm

    Oh my goodness Mont Saint Michel looks stunning! I would love to visit it one day! I’m so glad that you shared this 🙂

  11. June 4, 2016 / 11:34 pm

    Wow! This looks like an amazing place to visit! Great pictures!

  12. June 5, 2016 / 8:04 am

    Mont Saint-Michel looks magical! Thank you for sharing your pictures and some details about your trip.

  13. caratsandconfetti
    June 5, 2016 / 3:40 pm

    These are beautiful photos. It looked like you had a wonderful trip!

  14. June 5, 2016 / 6:15 pm

    Wonderful pictures and that castle is amazing.

  15. June 5, 2016 / 11:01 pm

    YOu have captured the essence of the place! So gorgeous to visit and I am just scrolling up and down and up to look at the photos =) #countrykids

  16. Caroline (Becoming a SAHM)
    June 6, 2016 / 5:32 am

    I remember visiting as a kid and loving it. I’d love to take the kiddies but may wait until they are a bit bigger. Shame about the evning meal and it certainly seems a bit harsh to shush baby babble! Xx #countrykids

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