visit Mont Saint Michel train bus paris

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Every time I’ve been to Mont Saint Michel, it’s been by car. So when I had to organise a visit for someone who didn’t drive, I realised that information on how to get there by train or bus wasn’t easy to find.

But these solutions do exist! It’ s possible to get to Mont Saint Michel by bus or train, and it’s even possible to make the journey in a day from Paris, on your own or with an excursion. It’s sporty, but it can be done.

So I’m going to tell you all about it, the train lines, the bus options and how to organise your time. In short, absolutely everything you need to know to get to Mont Saint Michel without a car.

Here we go!

Where is Mont Saint Michel

No, I don’t want to reopen the Brittany/Normandy debate, even though we all know Mont Saint Michel in Brittany. But rather to tell you that Mont Saint Michel is located near the small (and pleasant) town of Pontorson, which is lucky enough to have a railway station.

So that means the trains come here! Which is super convenient. Pontorson is 10km from Mont Saint Michel. And there’s a shuttle bus that makes the journey even more convenient.

By the way, to get to Mont Saint Michel, you usually stop at the car park before the private zone (an area containing a few hotels and restaurants where only pedestrians and shuttles are allowed). This area, which offers lovely views of the Mont, is quiet and leads to the long footbridge (1.5km) that leads to the Mont itself! Fortunately, there are shuttle buses running back and forth between the pedestrian zone and Mont Saint Michel. It’s a very easy journey, but once you’ve done all the little climbs in the Mont, I don’t think you’ve got the strength to walk any more 😀

So when you say “Mont Saint Michel”, you have to be careful whether it’s Pontorson, the pedestrian zone, the footbridge or the Mont itself, which is further away.

Also, we’re not too far from the pretty town of Saint Malo! The region is superb, there’s a lot to see on both sides, Normandy (Granville for example) or Brittany

Mont Saint Michel visit information

Getting to Mont Saint Michel by train from Paris

The NOMAD train from Paris Montparnasse

That’s really good.

From 2 June to 25 September, there are direct trains from Paris to Pontorson.
So, from Paris Montparnasse station, you can get to Mont Saint Michel in just a few minutes!

Then from Pontorson SNCF station, there are shuttle buses that go directly to the Mont. And that’s a good thing, because it’s only 10km away.

Let’s have a look!


  • from 2 June to 25 September
  • single fare of €29 per adult (€58 return)
  • the journey takes 3 hours 45 minutes
  • the shuttle ticket is included in the price!
  • Paris –> Pontorson :
    • Departure at 7.32am, arrival at 11.21am (one trip per day)
  • Pontorson –> Paris :
    • Departure 6.14pm, arrival 10.10pm
    • There are several journeys a day, but only ONE costs €29. Others can save almost 1 hour, but cost between €60 and €100

You can find all the routes on the SNCF website

Shuttle bus between Pontorson and Mont Saint Michel

  • Shuttles leave from Pontorson train station and go directly to the foot of Mont Saint Michel (there are several stops, before or after the footbridge, at Beauvoir)
  • the shuttles are coordinated with train departures
  • the cost of the shuttle is €3.1 per journey
  • but it is included in the €29 train ticket
  • If you take it individually, you can pay by card or in cash

Please note that there are fewer buses outside the tourist season! I’ve put the timetables below, but you can find them on this site.

So, if you want to take the train from Pontorson to Paris, which leaves at 6.14pm, you’ll have to take the shuttle which leaves Le Mont at 5.34pm

bus shuttle pontorson mont saint michel timetable schedule
bus shuttle pontorson mont saint michel timetable schedule

Getting to Mont Saint Michel by bus from Paris

I thought it wasn’t possible, but it is! You can link Mont Saint Michel and Paris by bus, and easily too.

With Flixbus, well, it’s really easy. Flixbus is a private bus company that works quite well and has the merit of linking tourist attractions.

Here are the main facts about this bus service:

  • runs only in the high tourist season, between June and 3 September
  • prices start at €22.90 for a single ticket
  • the journey takes 4hrs 35mins (sometimes 4hrs 50mins but I’m not sure why)
  • There are between 1 and 2 journeys per day (we’ll see about that)

From Paris to Mont Saint Michel:

  • Departure at 7am –> arrival at 11.35am (every day)
  • Departure at 8.15am –> arrival at 12.50pm (very often)
  • departure is from Pont de Levallois (most of the time), sometimes from La Défense
  • arrival is at the Mont Saint Michel car park, which is the closest (you will then have to cross the private area and the footbridge, either on foot or by free shuttle bus)

From Mont Saint Michel to Paris

  • Departure at 2.55pm –> arrival at 7.50pm (every day)
  • Departure at 5pm –> arrival at 9.45pm (almost every day)
  • departure from the Mont Saint Michel car park, just after the footbridge and the shops (possibility of taking the free shuttle bus from the Mont)
  • arrival at Pont de Levallois

⭐️ Discover the FLIXBUS offer to go to Mont Saint Michel!

Flixbus Paris

Visit Mont Saint Michel in ONE day from Paris

It’s perfectly possible! As we have seen, the timetables allow you to make the return trip in a day. But only during the high tourist season (from June to the end of September)

  • By bus with Flixbus if you take the 7am outward journey, you arrive at 11.35am. The return bus leaves at 5pm. This gives us 5.5 hours to visit Mont Saint Michel and the abbey. The return journey costs around €60.
  • By train with SNCF Nomad we leave at 7.30am and arrive in Pontorson at 11.20am, after which we take the shuttle bus. You also have 5.5 hours to visit the Mont, as the return train leaves at 6.14pm (you have to take the shuttle beforehand). The return journey costs €58.

The advantage of Flixbus is that it takes you directly to the Mont Saint Michel car park. The train takes you to Pontorson, so you have to take the shuttle. On the other hand, the train is more comfortable and faster.
But in the end, the two are really worth it, both in terms of time and price.

Discover Mont Saint Michel with an excursion from Paris

And if you really don’t want to bother with timetables and bookings, you can opt for an excursion with an agency.

All you have to do is get to the meeting point in Paris and off you go! Off to the Mont! You’ll have an audioguide, a tour of the Abbey included, and the whole afternoon on site.

It’s more expensive than organising your own visit (€145 per person, all included), but it’s a hell of a lot easier, I must admit.

Mont Saint Michel visit what to do

Trains and buses in off-peak periods

Well, when it’s not the summer period (June to September), it’s more complicated. For one thing, there are no more direct buses. Flixbus discontinues its services at the beginning of September and the rare Blablacar bus journeys (which are more expensive and take longer) are also discontinued outside the summer holidays.

There are train options, but they are more expensive.
There is no longer a direct Paris-Pontorson-Paris service. You’ll have to go via Rennes. Paris-Rennes by Ouigo or TGV, then Rennes-Pontorson by TER. Then take the shuttle. It takes between 3? and 4 hours, with one journey in the morning and one in the afternoon.
The journey costs €64 each way, and the timetables are 8am and 2pm for both the outward and return journeys, which makes it impossible to make the journey during the day by train

What to see at Mont Saint Michel

It’s an exceptional place, not very big but you can stay there for quite a while.

The jewel in the crown is the Abbey. Majestic, you have to climb to get there! It’s what you see most of all on the Mont. You have to pay to get in, but there are time slots (especially during the holiday season), and it costs €11.

But that’s not all: you can also visit the Mont via its ramparts (dating from the 13th century) and its cute little streets. It’s all stone, cobblestones and magnificent medieval, Romanesque and Gothic architecture. The streets of Mont Saint Miche are narrow and winding, following the natural contours of the mountain. The main street is the Grande Rue, which winds its way from the base of the mountain to the abbey. It is lined with historic houses, simply magnificent, shops and restaurants. Most of these houses were inhabited by fishermen and farmers in the Middle Ages and during the Renaissance.

The buildings along the Grande Rue and other streets on the Mont are generally two or three storeys high, with stone walls and slate roofs. Many of these buildings date from the 15th to 17th centuries, although there are also some more recent constructions. The facades of the houses are often decorated with beautiful architectural details, such as carved doors and windows

mont saint michel abbey visit
mont saint michel abbey visit

Practical information about Mont Saint Michel

  • how long to stay
    • you can do the tour in 5 hours, the train and bus timetables are well adapted. But if you can get there very early and have the mountain to yourself, that’s much better! And it’s easy to spend a day here, wandering through the narrow streets
  • mont Saint Michel opening times
    • mont Saint Michel is open all year round, 24 hours a day. You won’t have a shuttle bus, but you can get there late or early, as the streets are accessible all the time. The Abbey is open from 9am to 6pm
  • what’s the best time of year?
    • you can go during the high tides to see the Mont completely cut off from the land. But otherwise, spring is really nice, and so is September. Well, all year round! But be careful because it’s very touristy, especially during the school holidays. Last time, I went there early november, great weather and not crowded at all, just perfect.
  • can you eat at Mont Saint Michel?
    • yes, there are plenty of restaurants, but many are tourist traps: expensive, not very good quality. A few overpriced sandwich shops. There are restaurants with amazing views, but often you’re only paying for the view. So it’s hard to recommend, but there’s La Sirène Lochet, Le Tripot and Le Pelerin, for example
  • Where to stay in Mont Saint Michel
  • Take a guided tour of Mont Blanc
    • There are several local guides who offer guided tours of Mont Saint Michel. Find out more here !
mont saint michel visit from Paris
mont saint michel abbey visit

In conclusion

That’s it! I think I’ve told you everything you need to know about how to get to Mont Saint Michel without a car, with train and bus options and even with an agency.

As you can see, it’s not difficult, especially during the summer months with the train and bus services, which operate directly from Paris (in particular) and which also allow you to make the return journey in a day!

Outside the summer period, we could see that it was more complicated, and I’d say impossible in just one day, but that it was still manageable.

So really, for this magnificent place, I encourage you to go, whatever your means of transport, it really deserves it 🙂

4 recommended accommodations in Mont Saint Michel

Hotel Vert Beauvoir Mont Saint Michel Pas cher


  • 2 steps from the Mont St Michel footbridge
  • A very good pric
  • From €71!
Hotel Best Western Montgomery Pontorson


  • In Pontorson, a few minutes by shuttle from the Mont
  • Best Western quality
  • From €77 !
Hotel Mercure Mont Saint Michel


  • Excellent services
  • Right next to the footbridge to Mont St Michel!
  • From €118!
Terrasses poulard hotel dans mont saint michel


  • In the heart of Mont St Michel! View over the bay
  • Impossible to be better placed
  • From €159!

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