Corsica is probably the most impressive island of Europe, where the summer come many yachts travelling in the Mediterranean sea.
This unique piece of land with a length of about 100 miles high, drop abruptly to the sea mountain range belongs to France. Convenient harbour await you at the end of each day, when the sea breezes die, and the pink light of the setting sun warms the old stone embankments.
Having sailed on the boat from Cannes or nice, you can see mountain peaks at a distance of 60 miles. Gradually the harsh peaks around Monte Cinto (the highest mountain of Corsica) become clearer and coming closer, you feel a distinctive whiff of air, saturated with an exotic blend of fragrant shrubs, herbs and fragrant pines.
Summer on the island of the blessed a long lull, but vigilance will not prevent: to follow any hint of a strong wind, especially the Western Mistral, which can blow out suddenly against the clear sky. Relaxing on some nice anchor, always be ready to escape if necessary, to the nearest Marina. Where there is no difficulty, where an abundance of restaurants and you can pay tribute to a good Corsican wine and cuisine from a bright sun-kissed grapes.
I chose 20 compelling reasons to visit this magical island on your own or chartered yacht, or simply spending your holiday in a comfortable hotel. Once you’ve experienced Corsica, you will love her with all my heart.
Calvi is often the first port of call on the way from the Riviera. You approach the imposing citadel of the XIII century with steep walls, and Marina looks like a gorgeous Cove with a lush coastal plain and the Crescent-shaped beach curving under the sun-dried hills. The Esplanade is filled with restaurants and shaded grounds at the water’s edge. Tall buildings with serrated roofs in the narrow streets, often with steps, cast a saving shade. It is nice to wander around under the summer sun, and, climbing higher, to look around the harbour, where yachts of all sizes anchored in the bright blue water, disturbed bearing a light cool breeze.
- Calvi is surrounded by nauticalia over the fortress mountains
In the second half of June is jazz festival is held over five days the ancient city immersed in the atmosphere of jazz, Blues, funk, swing, Latin rhythms and polyphonic singing, listed by UNESCO as intangible heritage of humanity.
On the route South from Calvi, you will pass the beaches and resort villages, before the coast becomes more severe closer to Punta Palazzo. Around the Scandola nature reserve on a lonely Peninsula tower glowing red rocks, eroded into fantastic sculptures. Passing cap Rosso, you turn to the fabulous Bay and follow along the granite walls of the mountain promontory, crowned with a Genoese Fort. Behind him, in a remote village Girolata, there are several restaurants and beach cafes. Here come the tourist ferries from Porto, and fishing boats bring fresh fish. Beautiful anchorage in the turquoise shallow Bay with crystal clear water and pretty well protected, and in this relaxed charm you can stay the night (the Bay included in the list of world heritage of UNESCO).
- Every morning on the backside of the Harbor Girolata boats deliver fresh fish
- Located at an altitude of 550 m above sea level, the village of Tola on a hot day is a cool oasis
3Порто. GRAND GULF
Three miles South of Girolata offers stunning Gulf of Porto, if placed in Opera scenery. In binoculars you can see the harbour and the houses huddled in its depths, at the foot of the mountains. From the powerful landscapes of breath. Their greatness they overshadow even the most luxurious yacht.
The old town Drunk sits high on the South Bank; there is a quite difficult road, stretching past the jagged granite peaks, rising above the sea. The tiny harbour of Porto grew up in the mouth of the river, near perched a few Villa holidays. Now it is a lively base for hikers who reach Girolata and Scandola. Docked at the canal harbour complex to be travelling on the boat, but you can cast anchor in the outer Harbor.
From cap Rosso — steep southern Cape of the Gulf of Porto — only a dozen miles from the sparkling Gulf Sagan, pleasant low-key resort, fringed with magnificent white beaches and a scattering of villas. After a rocky backwater Scandola and Girolata I love Salon for its friendly, festive atmosphere. As a rule, in the Gulf a lot of boats. In East and North-West steady winds Sagan — a great place for Parking, and swimming from the boat here is just amazing.
On the North-Western shore there is a small quay where you can moor. Here is charming restaurant Petra Marina is one of my favorite in Corsica, with great food and reasonable prices.
5Еда and wine
Corsican sausages (charcuterie) has no equal in France. Pork and wild boar (sanglier) is made spicy salami, and the local pies are just amazing. Creamy sheep’s cheese, such as Fleur du Maquis and Tomme de Brebis Corse, ideal for juicy ripe tomatoes from the market, sliced and seasoned with olive oil.
The island has several famous vineyards. In the North-East, where calcareous soils and Sunny slopes around Patrimonio (commune), Nielluccio grapes are grown for red and rosé wines and Malvoise for whites. Muscat du Cap Corse is a luscious dessert wine, served chilled, pleased with its taste. Near Ajaccio, the main town of Corsica, Domaine Clos Capitoro produces a dry, fruity Clos Capitoro rosé. While in Corsica, we always prefer.
Heading towards the South of Sagona, you find yourself in the majestic Bay of Ajaccio, with high mountains in the background. The capital of Corsica stands on the banks of the homonymous Bay at the confluence of the river Gravona. On the way there you will pass the Golden walls of the citadel of the XVI century. In addition, an unmistakable landmark, you will see a lively old port with colorful fishing boats, riverside cafes and the old city directly behind them.
Marina Port d’ornano is located in the curve of the Bay is the ideal location with panoramic views. Ships coming and going in the Bay, the planes circling the airport… On the southern shore there are several sandy coves where you can stop for lunch and swim.
The city itself with buildings of impressive Imperial architecture and is within walking distance from the Marina. It was here that Napoleon, his name is associated with the names of streets and squares, and you can often stumble upon a monument or a bust of the Emperor. 15 Aug here in a big way, celebrating the birthday of Napoleon. And in June in Ajaccio is the increasingly popular jazz festival which attracts performers of world level. All in Ajaccio in the summer and autumn there are numerous festivals: music, art, theatre, devoted to the art of comics and Italian cinema.
Some time ago I drove a 13-metre flybridge boat from Sardinia through Corsica to Cannes. The transition from Bonifaccio to Ajaccio started in calm weather, but when we entered the Gulf of Ajaccio, there is a fresh North-West wind. Suddenly the starboard engine started acting up, and I turned neutral. Then stalled a second engine… turns out we ran into a bloody fishing net. The boat rocked, I tried the hook to release the screws, and then there was a fishing boat and took us in tow. Soon we were in Ajaccio, where we helped the locals. An hour later the diver free freed our screws, and we all together began to drink wine. I will never forget their warm kindness!
33 km East of Ajaccio lies a lake Tola — long scenic reservoir created by the dam across the river Prunelli. To get there, arriving by boat in Port-d’ornano, you can rent a car in Ajaccio. Above the lake stands the village of Tola, offering beautiful views of the valley and water. At an altitude of 550 m above sea level in the mountain cleft is much cooler than on the coast. Deep lake is rich with fish, and here you can rent a boat and spinning. And if you take a bike and cycle the winding road along the shores of the lake under the overhanging walnut tree walk will result in great pleasure. In the village you can dine at the restaurant à L Epica, but it is better to do this afternoon.
A short walk South from Ajaccio around the Cape Muro and here it is, the friendly town of Propriano, on the shores of the Gulf of Valinco, surrounded by white sandy beaches. Green hills plunge steeply to the North shore and the lower slopes in Propriano on the way look friendly. Propriano is a very pleasant resort, where the background of the busy tourist hotels and souvenir shops there flows a normal life. The harbour looks very cozy. Fishing boats RUB rails with yachts and motor boats of all sizes. Court larger, as a rule, use larger outer quay walls. Great place for lunch or dinner — the hotel Le Lido in the Western part of the Bay, first opened in 1932 as a simple beach bar.
- In Propriano harbour fishing boats are peacefully side by side
For Propriano on the hills, surrounded by a wall, is the tiny town of Sartene, founded in the XVI century. It offers a magnificent prospect of mountains, visible in the distance. Though Sartene is popular among tourists and in Freedom square is full of cafes, hidden corners of this historic site quiet and peaceful. You can get to from Sartène Propriano by bus or taxi. The winding road approaching the ancient, almost magical perspective high old houses with red tile roofs. Wandering along the labyrinth of shaded streets and passages of this “most Corsican of all Corsican” of the town, you feel independent spirit of the old Corsica, flavoured with the traditions of the vendetta. He is also known for a procession of “sinners”, zamanivaya Easter your sins.
The so-called city, municipality and deepest fjord on the southern tip of the island, with attractive Marina in the depth where the falls, bypassing the steep white cliffs of striped limestone. Rising over this amazing natural Harbor, the citadel of the XI century is the oldest in Corsica. Behind its walls you’ll find some ruined city with an Italian flavor. Wandering through the cobbled streets, you will constantly hear human speech, as reflected echo from the walls and closed Windows.
- Gnezditskii in the rocks, built in the IX century, the fortress towers over Bonifacio Strait
The port of Bonifacio is a historical district of the city, living their merry lives until late in the evening thanks to the hotels, bars and restaurants. In fact, these are three different ports: merchant, passenger and fully equipped yacht, located the farthest on the roads. From Bonifacio it is worth going on a boat to see the caves and coves to the West of the harbour entrance. Boats come right into large caves, visit the limestone lagoons and turquoise pools.
12Кавалло and LAVEZZI
The Strait of Bonifacio between Corsica and Sardinia, is surrounded by reefs and small Islands. Wanting to explore the area, get out of Bonifacio early in the morning, to quietly drop the anchor and catch the best navigation conditions before brings thermal winds.
Cavallo is a private island with Villa and one of the most expensive hotels in the Mediterranean. The island has no supermarkets, cars and hospitals; residents Cavallo Bonifacio reached by helicopter or private yacht. Around the Islands a lot of magnificent places for anchorage, and Cavallo has a small Marina. The South coast LAVEZZI, covered with low vegetation, hidden protected a low stone ridge anchorage Cala Lazarina is an idyllic place, if there are no other boats! And in the waters of the great diversity of underwater fauna — a Paradise for lovers of snorkeling.
Porto-Vecchio is a town and port on the Eastern coast of the Tyrrhenian sea, at the depth of the long, with buoys of the Bay on the South-Eastern “corner” of Corsica. Wooded hills rise gradually from the shore, gradually moving into harsh cliffs, behind which are seen the dim outline of the mountains. The Western part of the island is soft, reminiscent of Cote d’azur climate. The walled old town is situated right above the Marina, and its Eastern bastions look at the harbour and the majestic okoem Bay. Built by the Genoese as a refuge from pirates, it is located around the Republic square and the Church of the XII century, full of sidewalk cafes where you can linger to drink a Cup of coffee.
14Мидии Eastern shore
To the North of Porto Vecchio stretches the coastal plain, is covered with hills and forests; the landscape here is softer than in the mountainous West. In the town of Solenzara has a nice Marina on the river, near the small but lively town. Between Solenzara and Bastia on a low flat shore there are salt lakes. In the calm lagoon from the hotel and biguglia in the special corfs grow delicious mussels, oysters and other shellfish. Big and juicy is a chic treat! They are best eaten raw, flavored with lemon juice. Walking around these ponds, you will see boats-barges operating on mussel culture plantations.
15Подъем in Cervione
The port Tavern is a very useful stop on the East coast, although the local approaches are shallow. Facing the sea, the village of Cervione — the rows of tall, austere houses and Cathedral with bell tower — is located six kilometers outside the Marina, high on the hills above the valley of Campoloro. Go there early, before the sun is low and not too hot. In these vast chestnut forests full of villages, some almost empty. Chestnuts still put on the market, and many local recipes using chestnut flour. By the way, local smoked and cured pork is especially delicious, probably due to the chestnuts in the menu of domestic and wild pigs freely roam and peaceful here!
In Bastia, you can take a narrow gauge train going through the mountain range to Ajaccio. A trip among the picturesque scenery will take 4 hours. The first section of the path runs South along the coast to Casamozza, where some of the rails lead deep into the mountains. In Ponte, Leccia branch turns in Calvi, while the main route leads up through the valleys and canyons, the picturesque old town Court, with its impressive citadel, nestled on a rocky outcrop. The railway runs on the old viaducts and Bocognano, at the foot of Monte d’oro, you will pass the waterfalls. Took to the roads earlier, you will arrive in Ajaccio by lunchtime to the evening to return to Bastia.
- Rails in Corsica are often laid through picturesque villages and towns; effectively located on a hillside Court is one of them
It is the second largest city of Corsica, the former capital of the island, which Napoleon deprived of the status of in favor of Ajaccio. The beautiful old city quarter looks and feels Italian and has some excellent trattorias.
- Bastia, which in former times was the capital of the island, felt very Italian
Bastia — Maritime “gateway” to Corsica for everyone who comes to the island from Italy. Cruise liners moored in the lively, historical old port, located just North of the Port of Toga — a comfortable Marina. Traditional house in the Genoese style rise to six storeys above the berths, clinging to each other and over a steep hill and the Windows are hung with linen. C the top of the lighthouse you can admire the magnificent panorama of the city. A short taxi ride from the Marina to the North the beautiful village of San-Martino-di-Lota seems to be hovering over the sea, looking at the Tuscan island of Elba and Pianosa 30 miles away.
In mid-October in Bastia music festival, which invited world-renowned musicians working in different genres, along with their performers and local Maestro.
18CORSICA”S BIG TOE
Cap Corse, or Corsica’s thumb, a Peninsula on Northern Corsica 40 km long, really reminiscent of the big toe. When on the boat to Bastia, there is certainly worth a visit, even if you are in your swimming is limited in time. Near the tip of the Peninsula in the town of Macinaggio is a magnificent, protected from the sea and the Marina, where the lush greenery of the hills running down to the Golden beach. To the South on the same Eastern side there are several charming villages and place Erbalunga — one of the nicest among them. His unpretentious home near the water, was once covered with networks and tiny harbour heralded crab traps. Festival euphoria Corsica touched on this, as it may seem, the boondocks: twice there was a series of concerts titled “Piano nights”.
Rounding cap Corse with its white lighthouse on the Western side of the thumb you will notice a strange stretch of coast, rocky and barren. It is called Le Désert des Agriates. The scenery here is not as picturesque, however on the coast there are several bays for anchoring.
From here you can head South to the Marina of Saint Florent, has a deep impressive Bay. The town is a bit like Saint-Tropez, with pleasant promenades and colourful houses facing the harbour. A dominant position above the town is an elegant rounded the citadel. Complete the landscape, adding a picture of splendor, the hills in the background and sparkling white beach around the Bay. Along the local coast on the hillsides nestled terraces of vineyards considered to be among the best in Corsica.
Once in Saint-Florent at the end of July, don’t miss the guitar festival Les Nuits de la Guitare in Patrimonio, — the name of this municipality. It attracts many well-known guitarists in the world, and dark summer evenings under the canopy of trees on the hills you can enjoy the guitar music of different styles: from classical and Blues to flamenco and Gypsy tunes. The festival has been held for 30 years, and it’s hard to imagine a more romantic and subtle stage performance.
The first place among the famous festivals of the island is the Festival of the wind. Wind is considered to be a wealth of Corsica, where the locals have learned to make money. Is this festival in the third week of October. In the celebration involved several thousand people, and forty thousand-fifty come here to just to see and enjoy the enchanting atmosphere of this unusual holiday.