Top things to do

Top Choice Abbey in Mont St-Michel

Abbaye du Mont St-Michel

The Mont’s star attraction is the stunning ensemble crowning its top: the abbey. Most areas can be visited without a guide, but it’s worth taking the 1¼-hour tour included in the ticket; English tours (usually) begi…
Top Choice Aquarium in Cherbourg

Cité de la Mer

Cherbourg’s art-deco Gare Maritime Transatlantique (Transatlantic Ferry Terminal), built from 1928 to 1933, was designed so travellers could walk from their train directly to their ocean liner. These days it is stil…
Top Choice Gastronomy in Cherbourg

Le Pily

Young chef Pierre Marion is at the helm of the town's best restaurant, which has been serving Cherbourg gastronomes for over a decade. Expect a lively menu of seafood and meat dishes, with great care taken in the ba…
Wine Bar in Cherbourg

Le Ballon Rouge

Equal parts gallery, wine bar and taxidermy shop, this bohemian outpost near the waterfront embodies Cherbourg's most creative side. Stop in for a look at the changing artwork for sale, chat with the quirky owner, a…
Historic Site in Mont St-Michel

La Merveille

The buildings on the northern side of the Mont are known as ‘The Marvel’. The famous cloître (cloister) is surrounded by a double row of delicately carved arches resting on granite pillars. The early-13th-century, b…
Cathedral in Coutances

Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Coutances

The interior of the splendid twin-towered Gothic Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Coutances includes several 13th-century windows, a 14th-century fresco of St Michael skewering the dragon, and an organ and high altar from t…
French in Mont St-Michel

Les Terrasses Poulard

Amid cast-iron chandeliers and copper pots hung from the walls and part of the hotel of the same name, this bright and buzzing, always packed eatery serves up the usual assortment of bistro classics, as well as gale…
Church in Mont St-Michel

Église Abbatiale

Built on the rocky tip of the mountain cone, the transept rests on solid rock, while the nave, choir and transept arms are supported by the rooms below. This church is famous for its mix of architectural styles: the…
French in Cherbourg

Au Tire-Bouchon

At this convivial bistro and wine bar, specialities include oysters, tartines (open sandwiches; €11 to €12) and the salade tire-bouchon (a salad with ham, foie gras and salmon). There's a menu for youngsters at €7.2…
Brasserie in Cherbourg

Le Commerce

When you (or your wallet) need a break from gourmet dining, head to this brash and boisterous brasserie, where pan-fried salmon, steak, chicken fajitas and other filling dishes are served in ample portions. It's a l…