MONT SAINT MICHEL - GETTING AROUND
The drive from Paris to Mont Saint-Michel takes about 3.5 hours. Another option is the TGV train (rapid-velocity train) from Paris to Rennes, which takes 1.5 hours, and then a 30-minute taxi or 50-minute bus ride to Mont Saint-Michel.
If arriving by car, park in the parking lot which is located on the mainland 1.5 miles from Mont Saint-Michel. From the parking lot, a shuttle bus drops visitors off about 450 yards from the entrance gates to Mont Saint-Michel.
If planning to arrive by foot, first inquire about the tides. It is important to pay close attention to the schedule of the tides as it is extremely dangerous to venture into the bay when the water is rising. It is not unheard of for tourists to drown after being cut off by the tide, and the deep mud and quicksand surrounding the island can be treacherous. During spring tide days, visitors must cross two hours before the tides. Also note that walking across the bay is best done in bare feet. If you do decide to attempt the crossing, take an experienced guide.
Driving is probably the cheapest and easiest way of visiting Mont Saint Michel, although the traffic lines for entry to parking can often be very long and car-parking charges are expensive.
The Mont Saint Michel is a short drive from the A84 Caen-Rennes motorway. Within the region of Normandy, drive from Caen along the A84 south-west past Avranches to the exit for Pontorson. From Brittany and Rennes, the exit is just before Avranches. Then follow the signs to Mont-St-Michel for about 12-miles. The car-parks are huge and never fill up, but are a long way (over a mile) from the Mont itself and a free shuttle is available. Please make sure you pay at the ticket machines before returning to your car. The ticket machines are located at the rear of the information center where the shuttle buses depart from.
From Paris the total driving time is about 4 hours.
Parking for bicycles is free, and the ride from Pontorson to the Mount is not particularly difficult.Getting Around
The only way around Mont St Michel is on foot, and there are two gates into the walled city. The Porte de l'Avancée, the main gate at the end of the causeway, leads straight to the Grande Rue, which is packed full with souvenir shops and tourists. Escape right up the stairs to the ramparts, which are a little less packed and offer great views of the mudflats. The lesser-used Porte Eschaugette, to the left of the main gate, is the quietest route up. All three routes connect at the Abbey on top of the island.