Le Mont Saint Michel In France
This is a brass coloured plate shaped metal fridge magnet souvenir of Le Mont Saint Michel in France. Mont Saint-Michel is a rocky tidal island in Normandy, France. It is located approximately one kilometre (just over half a mile) off the country's northwestern coast, at the mouth of the Couesnon River near Avranches. The island's highest point is 92 metres (301 feet) above sea level. The population of the island is 44, as of 2009. The island has held strategic fortifications since ancient times, and since the eighth century AD been the seat of the monastery from which it draws its name. One of France's most recognisable landmarks, Mont Saint-Michel and its bay are part of the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites and more than 3 million people visit it each year. Occasional flooding created salt marsh meadows that were found to be ideally suited to grazing sheep. The meat that results from the diet of the sheep in the salt meadow makes salt meadow lamb, a local specialty that may be found on the menus of restaurants that depend on income from the many visitors to the area.
A Tidal Causeway
Mont Saint-Michel was previously connected to the mainland via a tidal causeway, a trackway covered at high tide and revealed at low tide. This connection has been altered over the centuries. The distance between the shore and the south coast of Mont Saint-Michel has decreased due to farming, and the Couesnon River has been canalised, reducing the dispersion of the flow of water, and thereby encouraging a silting-up of the bay. In 1879, the tidal causeway was converted into a raised or dry causeway. This prevented the tide from scouring the silt around the mount. On 16 June 2006, the French prime minister and regional authorities announced a EUR164 million project (Projet Mont-Saint-Michel) to build a hydraulic dam using the waters of the river Couesnon and of tides to help remove the accumulated silt deposited by the rising tides, and to make Mont Saint-Michel an island again. The tides can vary greatly, at roughly 14 metres (46 ft) between high and low water marks. Popularly nicknamed "St. Michael in peril of the sea" by medieval pilgrims making their way across the flats, the mount can still pose dangers for visitors who avoid the causeway and attempt the hazardous walk across the sands from the neighbouring coast.