Woke up to a gloomy day in Caen, not the end of the world as I spent most of the morning driving. Must mention the carpark I'd left the car in the the 2 days in Caen. Never been in such a nice carpark! The air was perfumed, classical music was playing in the background, and it was spotless....remarkable! Anyway, onto the events and sights of the day.......
I drove from Caen to the iconic and gorgeous Mont Saint-Michel. Unfortunately, they have made some changes since my last visit 2 years ago and you now have to park your car a few kilometres away from the causeway, which is disappointing. I guess from there you catch a shuttle or something. Given the outside temperature was only in single figures and it was slightly drizzling I decided to give it a miss....so the only photo was taken from a distance away.
Stopped a little further along the road and had a lovely lunch. Was just finishing my coffee when the waitress gave me a complementary glass of champagne, not sure why but I happily slurped it down! Some quaint and at times impressive houses dotted along the coast, this one caught my eye because it looks like a real hobbit house.
My intended destination for the day was Saint-Malo. We drove past here last time in France but didn't stop as it was too busy in the peak tourist season and I couldn't find a park! So I found my seaside hotel and spent an extra few euros and got a room with a sea view. Worth it! Am sitting here watching the kite surfers leap and bound across the waves; as the tide slowly comes in they are getting closer and closer. Here's the view taken earlier...
Wasn't exactly sure how far away I was from the walled Cite (yes spelt right but without the accent over the e), but decided to wrap up and go for a walk as the sun had emerged. Was delighted to discover that it wasn't too far way at all, and a brisk walk would do me good anyway!
One thing you notice straight away is that there is a fort on almost every rocky outcrop off the coast, this one is the Ancient Fort Royal, one of Vauban's constructions in the 17th century. Vauban was the go to man if you wanted a fort on a rocky spot back in the day.
So, the walled city itself is mighty impressive, dating back to the 12th century. It declared itself an independent republic from 1590 to 1594 and still flies its own flag at the highest point on the Chateau. Like most towns long this part of the coast it was bombed to buggery during 1944 and has had to be rebuilt.
Went for a wander along the outer ramparts and from there spotted this cool swimming pool, I guess at high tide it's completely submerged.
There was also this statue of Robert Surcouf, wasn't sure who he was so looked him up.
Famous privateer and slave runner! Good stuff!
And with that the kite surfers are starting to pack up so it must almost be time to check out the bar!