Mont Saint-Michel Travel Infos
Rising up from the midst of vast mud flats and some of Europe’s most powerful tidal waves is the rocky island of Mont Saint-Michel, located off France’s northwestern coast in Normandy.
Le Mont-Saint-Michel is an island and mainland commune in Normandy, France. The island is located about one kilometer off the country’s northwestern coast, at the mouth of the Couesnon River near Avranches and is 7 hectares in area.
The tidal island is one of the most popular places to visit in France for its construction of medieval structures built as if stacked upon one another and crowned with the star attraction, the Abbey of Mont Saint-Michel. The awe-inspiring abbey was built by devoted monks in 708 AD after the Bishop of Avranches was allegedly visited by the Archangel Michael.
The island was originally called Mont-Tombe but became known as Mont-Saint-Michel in the 8th century, when St. Aubert, bishop of Avranches, built an oratory there after having a vision of the archangel St. Michael.
It rapidly became a pilgrimage centre, and in 966 a Benedictine abbey was built there. In 1203 it was partly burned when King Philip II of France tried to capture the mount. He compensated the monks by paying for the construction of the monastery known as La Merveille (“The Wonder”).