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Le Mont Saint Michel

Mont Saint-Michel (in Norman language Mont Saint Miché, in Breton language Menez Mikael ar Mor) is a tidal islet situated on the northern coast of France, where the river Couesnon flows into, on which a sanctuary was built in honour of Saint Michael the Archangel, whose original name was Mons Sancti Michaeli in periculo mari (in Latin) or Mont Saint-Michel au péril de la mer (in French).

It is currently the natural centre of the municipality of Le Mont-Saint-Michel (department of the English Channel, administrative region of Normandy); a dash makes it possible to differentiate between the municipality and the islet: according to the official INSEE nomenclature, the administrative unit is called (Le) Mont-Saint-Michel, while the islet is called Mont Saint-Michel.

The lower sediments are made up of the detritus of the rivers Sée, Sélune and Couesnon, which flow into the bay; the surface sediments are located between land and sea; this area is rich in layers of peat alternating with calcareous sand (crushed shells).

The remarkable architecture of the sanctuary and the bay in which the islet rises with its tides make it the most popular tourist site in Normandy and one of the first in the whole of France, with about 3,200,000 visitors every year; many of the buildings that rise there are individually classified as historical monuments and the whole site has been classified as such since 1862. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979.

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