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Mont St. Michel - Crowd Avoidance Advice

Mont St. Michel - Crowd Avoidance Advice

Old Sep 23, 19, 10:59 am
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Mont St. Michel - Crowd Avoidance Advice

Hello,

Thinking of going with my elderly parents, my wife, and my 2 kids under 5 to Mont St. Michel on a Wednesday in April 2020. We will be driving from our hotel about 2 hours away in Bayeux.

We want to spend 1.5 - 2 hours there to visit and explore. Given my elderly parents and young kids would like to avoid crowds to the extent possible.

That time of year if we got there around 11AM would the crowds be unberable? Would it be materially different if we arrived at 4PM once most tour buses are gone? I am not sure how heavy the crowds are that time of year and during the week. Ideally for us 11AM type arrival would be better but if 4PM makes a huge difference we could overcome the inconvenience to us.

Thanks for your thoughts.

Beofotch
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Old Sep 24, 19, 9:52 am
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No idea on crowding, but will your elderly parents be able to navigate the hills/steps on MSM? It's built on a mountain, in case that wasn't clear from its name!
I think there's also a fair amount of walking (flat) to even access the site from the parking lots (even if you take the shuttles).
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Old Sep 24, 19, 10:32 am
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
No idea on crowding, but will your elderly parents be able to navigate the hills/steps on MSM? It's built on a mountain, in case that wasn't clear from its name!
I think there's also a fair amount of walking (flat) to even access the site from the parking lots (even if you take the shuttles).
Thanks for your thoughts. We are aware of the walking required and they are able - just very slow. It's more one of them has brain injury issues which crowds exacerbate significantly.
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Old Sep 25, 19, 8:41 am
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Avoid the weeks before and After Easter (12 APR 2020)
Outside of school holidays in the region you should be fine for crowds. French holidays in this region are between 11-27APR, Parisians between 4-20APR
Although if the walking is slow for your parents, plan the day there to climb up the hill, visit the monastery parts open to the public, have a stroll on the battlements, etc.
If you arrive at around 11, you won't be out there before 4pm I reckon
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Old Oct 2, 19, 3:08 pm
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I would recommend getting there by 9:30-10:00 to avoid the worst of the crowds.

However, a Wednesday in April shouldn't be too bad, except for kids on school holidays and their families -- and not just the French ones but also the Belgians, the Dutch and the Germans.
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Old Oct 6, 19, 2:21 am
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Originally Posted by kerouac2 View Post
However, a Wednesday in April shouldn't be too bad, except for kids on school holidays and their families -- and not just the French ones but also the Belgians, the Dutch and the Germans.
So it should be bad (= crowded)
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Old Nov 26, 19, 7:10 am
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You'll have to walk from the parking lot to shuttle bus location. Shuttle bus drops you off partway across
the bridge, and you have to walk into the island from there. It's a fair distance from the parking area to
the island so the bus (or horse-drawn buggy) are probably required.

The crowds, in my recollection, were larger in the town area which is below the monastery. Also, the
streets in the town area are narrow and full of shops which means people coming and going in a
haphazard manner.

Once you get to the monastery and start the walking tour, many of the rooms are large and wide open
so the crowds can spread out a bit.
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Old Feb 20, 20, 6:34 am
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I would recommend you stay over night there (assuming you can change your reservations) as for your parents it will be much easier and you can even walk later when many of the day trippers have left. In the spring, I am not sure how crowded it will be as I know the summer is busier (when I did visit), but we really enjoyed staying there.
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