After 5 days in Le Mans I thought it was time to move on. My next destination was the west coast, I decided I would go and catch up with one of the Portuguese people I met from couch surfing, Francisco. He lived in Brittany country, at the time I had no idea where or what that was, I have since found out that it is an area in the North west of France where they speak a different language and have a different culture to the rest of France. It the landscape is absolutely incredible there, it was well worth the visit. It has such a diverse countryside with a coast line that was second to none. The parculiar thing about this area of France is that the tides move a dramatic amount, more than anywhere else in Europe. That makes the scenery change completely depending on the time of day and the tide movements. I arrived at low tide to see the entire bay completely empty with large boats lying on the ocean floor. The tides there move anywhere from 5 meters to 16 meters!
I met some nice people in Brittany and really enjoyed my time there. I headed to the east along the coast on my way back to the center of France and stopped at Le Mont Saint Michel, what a sight! There is a cathedral built on an island just off the coast built for Saint Michel. Aubert, Bishop of Avranches had a vision from the saint to build a cathedral in Saint Michel’s honour in 709AD. This impressive feat of engineering took place over some years. As I said earlier this part of Brittany country the tides move the most, up to 16 meters! Which made it a job to transport the tons of granite needed to build the cathedral.
The boats would bring the stones in at high tide with a serious time limit to think about, as you can literally see the tide move quite quickly when only watching for a short time. Once the cathedral was complete a bronze statue of Saint Michel was placed on the very tip. They set up a system to bring supplies from boats right up into the cathedral which was a large wheel where 3 people would walk inside which would lift a cart up the side of the hill.
I started making my way through the country taking the non toll roads which usually take about 1/3 times as long. It is amazing how the biggest and most impressive building in a town or city is usually a church. When traveling through Asia it was the same case, but it was the monestaries that were the most impressive places in the town.