We’ve visited Le Mont St Michel in France several times on our travels with groups of school students, and often commented that it was a pity we had never been to its Cornish counterpart.
Finally the opportunity presented itself earlier this year and we were not disappointed. On the contrary, we far preferred this miniature version to its bigger, busier, more ‘touristy’ French brother.
We made sure we had checked the website in advance to be certain we could travel out to the island by boat. These little ferries run when the tide is in, and amazingly even when it seemed mostly out! At low tide, access is via a walk across a rough stone causeway. Both involve walking along the beach to start. This patently makes life difficult for those with mobility problems. Further, the path to walk up to the castle and church is steep and rough – not at all suitable for wheelchairs or those with little energy, or for that matter those wearing flip flops!
The climb, however, was very much worthwhile. We loved what is still the home of the St Aubyn family, its history, its gardens, its church and especially the spectacular views across the bay towards Penzance and out to sea.
The menu in the cafe looked good, as it usually is in National Trust properties, but unfortunately we were on a tight time schedule that day and could only stay for coffee. The shop was very much up to National Trust standards with excellent local produce and souvenirs. We walked back to dry land across a not-so-dry causeway, and decided we’d much prefer to make a repeat visit here, rather than join the massed ranks of tourists on the other side of the Channel.