The Mont Saint Michael is situated on the boundary of Normandy and Brittany and runs up to a height of 250 feet overlooking the bay between the two provinces, the bay having the highest and most impressive tides of Europe.
In 708AD, Bishop Aubert of the nearby town of Avranches was visited in a dream by the Archangel Michael and told to build a sanctuary on the top of the mount dedicated to the Archangel.
Thus this large offshore mount was dedicated as a monastic site and turned into a very active site of pilgrimage.
The Abbey, situated at the summit, grew wealthy on the donations of the many pilgrims who came to visit and its architecture and magnificence grew as the centuries passed.
A village sprang up around the Abbey at the base of the mount with strong defensive walls being added later as the site aquired a military strategic importance. On approaching the Mont St Michel today these walls still give a first impression today of a castle floating on the water.