Discovering Mont Saint-Michel

Aspire by API Summer Program in France- Approaching Mont St-Michel

Approaching the abbey


One of the coolest things about studying abroad is all the new things you get to discover. Wherever you go, you are bound to see the sites that you’ve only read about, sites you’ve never heard of, and sites that you’ve dreamed about going to for ages. In my case, it was the latter.  As a high-school student, I haven’t had a lot of experience in traveling as a tourist, so I was excited for 2013’s summer to see what it would bring.

In the five-week span of living in Paris, I had seen and taken in countless museums and new sights every day; however, one thing that stood out to me from the Aspire trip was one of the seven man-made wonders of the world, Mont Saint-Michel.  When I had first gotten the itinerary, the trip stood out to me from the others; I mean, a weekend trip outside of Paris? It’s bound to catch my attention.  At the time, I eagerly looked up the island and abbey on the Internet, and was taken aback by the beauty of Mont Saint-Michel.  It was artistic, and was captured in many different lights, giving me a good idea on what I was to expect.

Aspire by API Summer Program in France - Inside Mont Saint-Michel

The inside has a medieval feel to it


While descriptions and pictures of the site had fulfilled my immediate cravings for trip, it was nothing compared to the awe that I felt when actually seeing it in person.  It’s a while away from mainland, so the first glimpse anyone got of it was from the bus we traveled on; then a closer one from the shuttle bus that took us there.  A small walk followed, where we could take photographs with the abbey behind us.

Mont Saint-Michel, although a bit of a climb, holds beauty within itself.  On the way up, there are multitudes of little touristy shops one can purchase souvenirs at, all laid out similarly to a Renaissance Festival of sorts.  The climb to the top of the abbey continues, and it’s a bit long, but it is worth the beautiful view you will get upon arrival.  The land around the island is flat and empty as far as the eye can see, and it’s truly breathtaking to be able to enjoy it.  If you ever have a free day to do anything in France, I’d definitely recommend Mont Saint-Michel as a fun excursion for all.


This post was contributed by Zita V., who joined Aspire by API on our 2013 summer program in Paris, France.

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