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Normandy

Churches & cathedrals

Our most recommended Normandy Churches & Cathedrals

Day Trip to Mont-Saint-Michel from Paris

1. Day Trip to Mont-Saint-Michel from Paris

Travel through Normandy on the way to the medieval Mont-St-Michel on a day trip from Paris aboard an air-conditioned bus. Choose to go alone, with a live guide, or with an audio guide. Discover the UNESCO-listed island and its Gothic abbey. Learn of its fascinating history and legendary stories. Depart Paris and travel through the French countryside by an air-conditioned bus to the amazing fortified city of Mont Saint-Michel off the Normandy coast. Sit back and relax and get stunning views of the countryside along the way. Stop for a break at a nearby village dating back to the days of the Normans, and stroll the winding streets and narrow pathways to find the best views of the bay. Continue to the mouth of the Couesnon River, where Mont-Saint-Michel was built on an islet just a few hundred meters from the mainland. Spend the afternoon exploring the remarkable monuments of the walled city, classified as a world heritage site by UNESCO since 1979. Take time to discover the rocky islet at your own pace. Climb along the ramparts to make your way up to the abbey at the top of the town. Visit the Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel with an included entrance ticket. this Benedictine building has played a vital role in the history of the commune and the feudal society it represents. Marvel at this magnificent example of Gothic architecture from the early 13th century. Admire views of the surrounding bay before leaving Mont-Saint-Michel in the late afternoon. Be driven back to the French capital to get dropped off at the starting point.

From Paris: Mont Saint Michel Guided Day Trip

2. From Paris: Mont Saint Michel Guided Day Trip

Visit Mont Saint-Michel on a guided day trip from Paris. Discover the highlights with your guide before taking an audio-guided tour of Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey. Enjoy some free time after to explore on your own. From Paris, board a private coach to the island of Mont Saint Michel. On the journey, listen as your guide provides interesting stories from the history of the abbey. Follow your guide on an orientation tour to ensure you see the most important attractions, including the hilltop Abbey of Mont Saint Michel. Enjoy a few hours at your leisure to explore the abbey and soak up the splendor of its interior with an audio guide tour, or stroll in the picturesque streets. Choose from a variety of lunch options ranging from dining rooms with rustic meat to sophisticated restaurants with bay view terraces specializing in seafood. Or, stop by one of the Mont Saint Michel's creperies to feast on galettes (buckwheat pancakes) with Normandy cider. In the late afternoon, board the coach for a return journey to Paris.

Mont-Saint-Michel: Abbey Audio-Guided Tour

3. Mont-Saint-Michel: Abbey Audio-Guided Tour

Listen to a guided tour on your phone as you stroll through the UNESCO World Heritage site of Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey. Immerse yourself in this religious site that was constructed over centuries. Find sloping stairways behind hidden doors as you uncover its past through content on the app. Make your way to the fairytale castle with a scenic walk across the bay as the outline of Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey grows on the horizon. Buy a ticket to the abbey and start your audio tour on your phone. Travel back in time to when monks lived within these walls and lived according to their scriptures. Enjoy picturesque ocean views from the towers of the castle. Follow the audio guide up and down winding staircases and through secret doors into long halls. Uncover dark dungeons from the Middle Ages. Immerse yourself in stories of holy knights and pious pilgrims.

From Paris: Full-Day Mont Saint-Michel Guided Tour

4. From Paris: Full-Day Mont Saint-Michel Guided Tour

On this full-day tour from Paris, you will discover Mont Saint-Michel, a traditional Norman village. On the drive through Normandy, your guide will recount the rich history of the region marked by invasions, first by the Romans and then the Barbarians, before the region was fought over in the Hundred Years’ War. You will tour the famous Abbey and admire the Gothic buildings built on top of each other over the centuries, such as the Cloister and the Monks’ dining hall. You will then be free to stroll around the village and let yourself be taken back to the medieval atmosphere in its narrow paved streets.

From Paris: Small-Group Mont St Michel Tour & Cider Tasting

5. From Paris: Small-Group Mont St Michel Tour & Cider Tasting

Discover one of the most unique settlements in France on a day trip from Paris to the mountainous city island of Mont St-Michel on the Normandy coast. Transfer from Paris by comfortable minibus or van, and then enjoy some free time on arrival at the stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site. Rising from the sea or sand (depending on the tide), the town is known for its soaring spires, imposing ramparts, and steep streets. Crowned by the fortified Abbaye du Mont St-Michel (dedicated to Saint Michael the Archangel), Mont St-Michel remains little changed since the Middle Ages. Explore the village at your own pace, and the interior of the abbey (where Benedictine monks still hold early morning mass) by audio guide. Hear stories of the legends of a unusual jewel of France. Normandy is also known for it’s wonderful apple production and you’ll make a special stop to taste some of the famous Cider Pommeau and Calvados.

From Bayeux: Full-Day Mont Saint-Michel Tour

6. From Bayeux: Full-Day Mont Saint-Michel Tour

The Mont Saint Michel is an island off the coast of Normandy in the English Channel, and sees some of the biggest tides in Europe. The first church was built on the mount in 709 at the request of Archange Michael. The construction of the Mont Saint-Michel Abbey as we know it today was finished in the 13th and 14th centuries. Those hundreds of years of architectural prowesses have left us with a magnificent monument, now referred as the “Wonder of the Western World” and deemed a UNESCO world heritage site. Travel with a friendly driver and professional English-speaking guide from Bayeux to the Mont Saint Michel, which you will access via shuttle across the bridge in accordance with local requirements. Head to the very top of the mount and enter the abbey. The history of its construction will be explained in detail, while you marvel at stunning views of the surrounding bay. After visiting the abbey, explore the town at your own pace and pick up some souvenirs for friends and family. Your guide will suggest some great restaurants for lunch, suitable for all budgets. At the end of the tour, your chauffeur will take you back to your original meeting point in Bayeux.

From Paris: Full-Day Small Group Trip To Rouen

7. From Paris: Full-Day Small Group Trip To Rouen

Meet your guide and take a seat on-board a comfortable air-conditioned vehicle. Head towards the Normandy countryside en route to Rouen, which is widely considered among the region’s most beautiful cities. After your tour, enjoy the impressive views of the city and the Seine Valley before returning to Paris by minibus. Discover the authentic Norman city of Rouen. This is where Claude Monet painted the Rouen Cathedral series. Just try to resist the charm of this city in the heart of Normandy with its courthouse, Rouen Cathedral and Joan of Arc Square. Your guide will lead you through this captivating place to discover its many facets. Stroll through the antique dealer's district among the stunning half-timbered houses. This atmosphere inspired Pissaro in his famous urban series. Walk down the famous rue du Gros Horloge with its unique double-faced Renaissance clock. Enjoy a delicious lunch before discovering the Museum of Fine Arts in Rouen. Visit one of the most impressive collections in the region with paintings, sculptures and drawings dating from the end of the Middle Ages up to the present day from Veronese, Caravaggio, Rubens, Poussin, Fragonard and Ingres. Admire the famous paintings of the Impressionist masters such as Monet, Sisley, Pissaro, Caillebotte and Renoir.

Mont Saint-Michel & Chateaux Country 3-Day Tour from Paris

8. Mont Saint-Michel & Chateaux Country 3-Day Tour from Paris

Drive through the beautiful French countryside to discover Middle Age and Gothic-inspired architecture, and learn the intriguing history of Normandy and France from an expert guide. Cross to the tidal island of Mont Saint-Michel, and soak up the refinement of prestigious Loire Valley castles, such as the vast royal Château de Chambord. Day 1 (Friday): Traveling by luxury air-conditioned coach, depart Paris via the western districts and take the Normandy motorway as far as Mont Saint-Michel. Arriving at approximately midday, stop for lunch at the 4-star Relais Saint Michel, offering fantastic views across to the island. After lunch, ascend to the Abbey on the summit of the mount for a guided visit of its Gothic and Romanesque interior. Enjoy some time at leisure exploring the narrow, hilly streets before your departure for Angers, cradle of the Plantagenet dynasty, where you will enjoy dinner and an overnight stay at the Hotel Mercure Lac de Maine (or similar accommodation). Day 2 (Saturday): After a hearty breakfast, drive to Langeais, passing Cunault and Saumur en route. Driving by vineyards, enjoy views of romantic castles on the horizon. Arrive at Château de Langeais to explore one of the best-known examples of late medieval architecture. Continue with a guided visit of Clos-Lucé, Leonardo da Vinci's last dwelling place. Stroll through the stunnning gardens of Villandry, and visit the old historic district of Tours on the lower reaches of the Loire. An evening meal will be served at your overnight stop in Tours at the Hotel Mercure. Day 3 (Sunday): Take a guide tour of the Château de Chenonceau, built on the site of an old mill across the River Cher. Continue to the decorative Château de Cheverny, used by Tintin creator, Hergé as the inspiration for his fictional Château de Moulinsart. After lunch at the Hotel Saint-Hubert, go to the Château de Chambord to explore the largest and most imposing castle in the Loire Valley. Admire the distinctive French Renaissance architecture, which blends impressively with traditional medieval forms.

Mont-Saint-Michel: Private Full Day Tour from Caen or Bayeux

9. Mont-Saint-Michel: Private Full Day Tour from Caen or Bayeux

Enjoy a guided day trip to this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Marvel at its coastal, Gothic splendor. Start your day with pickup in Caen or Bayeux at 9 AM, or straight off the train from Paris. Your knowledgeable, expert guide will tell you the story of the island during your journey before arriving at Mont-Saint-Michel by 10.30 AM. Take time to visit the village and explore its ancient cobblestone streets. Head to the top to discover the Abbey in all its glory. Look in wonder at a structure dating back to 708 AD. Pause for a delicious gourmet lunch in the island's best restaurant. Enjoy a walk on the bay, admiring the view of Mont-Saint-Michel from the ground. Next, experience an afternoon visit to Avranches and its medieval manuscripts, and stop at the bell-making factory in Villedieu les Poêles. Finally, sit back and relax for your journey back to Caen, Bayeux, or your train, arriving back at around 7PM.

Rouen: Castles and Abbeys Private Full-Day Tour

10. Rouen: Castles and Abbeys Private Full-Day Tour

Embark on a day tour of Rouen and its surrounding sites to discover the medieval past of Normandy, the so-called land of North Men, home of William the Conqueror and Richard the Lion Heart. Historic abbeys and medieval castles will open their doors to you on this trip. After pickup, you'll head first to Rouen's historical center. During the ride, there will be digital resources provided so you can get some content about the places visited throughout the day. For the first stop, enjoy an extensive visit to Notre Dame Cathedral, then stop at Rue du Gros Horloge to see the Gros Horloge, the first clock of France, built in 1389. Having ancestors who fought in the crusades, the history of Richard the Lion Heart and his Chateau Gaillard is the next focus of the tour. See his story come to life during a visit to the Chateau Gaillard overlooking the River Seine. After having lunch below Chateau Gaillard (costs not included), continue the trip to Jumièges Abbey, the first Abbey of Normandy, destroyed by the Vikings in 845 A.D. In Jumièges Abbey, see the marks of destructions led by the Vikings. Normandy wouldn’t be Normandy without the Vikings and their heir, William the Conqueror. You’ll get to explore two significant abbeys that William built and see where he married Mathilda of Flanders, the woman he loved so much. Next on the itinerary is the Abbey of Saint-Georges, Boscherville, the most preserved abbey in Normandy. Before heading back to Rouen to conclude the tour, admire the walls of the church of the abbey that still have the original paintings and sculptures from the 11th century.

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What people are saying about Normandy

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 59 reviews

This is a very long day from Paris, with 9 hours in the bus and only 3.5-4 hours actually at Mont St. Michel, but that isn’t the fault of the tour company or the guide. I only mention it so that you’ll have reasonable expectations. Our tour guide, Minnie, did an excellent job of letting us know what to expect, and of giving us the history of Mont St. Michel. She was fun and knowledgable. As for logistics, we stopped about 2 hours after departing Paris at a very nice, clean gas station/truck stop I order to use the restrooms and/or buy coffee, drinks and food. There were many prepackaged foods, as well as pastries and sandwiches. You’ll stop at a similar place on the way back to Paris. This I was my second trip to Mont St. Michel, and this is what I recommend: get a sandwich or something else fulling when you stop on the way there. Eat it on the bus late morning so you don’t have to spend time at a restaurant once you arrive. You will want every minute you have to explore, an…

Buying tickets in advance is necessary because we could pass a long line… very busy in the restaurants but had a relaxed meal along the track: no people, many were already closed!

We reached the Mont Saint Michel carpark around 12.30pm. You can chose to take a 5mins bus ride or walk 40mins to reach the base. Bus queue was very long

It was amazing, I just think I should stay longer, it's time to go up and down and we have to go back, for the cost I thought it was little used

It’s a location not to be missed. Mont Saint Michel is simply beautiful and breathtaking.