Some 2 kms. off the Normandy coast of France lies this 100-hectare island that is both a fortress and a monastery with a cathedral at the top. It has been a strategic location since ancient times because it was easy to defend, helped by the high tide that could isolate it or drown invaders trying to scale the high walls. The topography exemplifies the feudal social structure of that time with God and the Church at the top with the clergy’s living quarters below and the houses for the small population of fishermen and farmers at the base. It used to be isolated from the mainland during high tide but a new causeway bridge built a couple of years ago permanently makes access easy for visitors who can walk across it or take the shuttle bus that goes back and forth from the mainland every 15 mins. or so. It was low tide when I came for a visit so there was no sea around it which made the pictures I took less dramatic. The whole island with its medieval structures and cobblestone streets is impressive nevertheless.