Exploring the prettiest part of Corsica: A travel guide
Corsica, the Mediterranean island located southeast of France, is known for its rugged mountains, pristine beaches, and charming old towns. It’s a destination that offers something for everyone, from outdoor enthusiasts to history buffs, foodies, and beach lovers. However, one question that often comes up among travelers is, “What is the prettiest part of Corsica?”
After exploring the island in-depth, there’s no straightforward answer to this question. Corsica’s beauty is diverse and spread throughout the island. However, there are a few areas that stand out as particularly picturesque and unique. In this article, we’ll explore the prettiest parts of Corsica and provide you with insider tips on how to make the most of your trip.
The North: The rugged beauty of Cap Corse
If you’re a lover of rocky landscapes with dramatic cliffs, roads that hug the coastline, and charming fishing villages – Cap Corse is the place for you. Located on the northern tip of Corsica, Cap Corse is one of the island’s most scenic areas. The terrain of Cap Corse is undeniably wild and rugged, with views that stretch as far as the eye can see.
The charming port town of Bastia is the gateway to Cap Corse, and from there, you can explore the rugged terrain of the cape by car or foot. Some of the highlights of Cap Corse include the stunning views from the village of Nonza, the Genoese tower of Mortella, the medieval citadel of Erbalunga, and the little seaside village of Barcaggio.
If you enjoy hiking, Cap Corse has a range of trails that snake through the dramatic landscape. One of the most popular hikes is the Sentier des Douaniers, which runs along the western coast of the cape, offering breathtaking views of the Mediterranean.
The South: The scenic delights of Bonifacio
Bonifacio is a gem of a town located on the southern tip of Corsica. It’s a town that exudes French charm with its colorful buildings, narrow streets, and a bustling marina. However, what sets Bonifacio apart from other towns in Corsica is its stunning limestone cliffs, which tower over the sea.
Visitors can appreciate the beauty of Bonifacio from the sea, by taking a boat tour of the coastline. The boat tour takes you through the calanques, natural limestone inlets with crystal blue water, to the iconic Bonifacio citadel that sits on top of the cliffs.
If you’re a history buff, Bonifacio has plenty to offer as well. Walking through the ancient citadel, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time, surrounded by medieval architecture and breathtaking views of the sea. You can also visit the famous Grotte de Sdragonato, a natural cave system with fascinating rock formations, right beneath the fortress.
The Center: The peaceful valleys of Restonica
The central mountain range of Corsica is where you’ll find Restonica, a valley that is often regarded as the jewel of Corsica’s mountain landscape. The valley is home to a magical forest of Laricio pines, a crystal-clear river with natural swimming pools, and some of the island’s most challenging hiking trails.
The valley of Restonica is a place of contrasts, with forests, granite cliffs, and waterfalls that coexist in harmony. It’s a peaceful and tranquil area that offers visitors a chance to escape from the hustle and bustle of the tourist hotspots.
The hiking trails in Restonica are some of the most challenging on the island, with trails ranging from leisurely strolls to demanding, multi-day treks. One of the most popular hikes is the Lac de Melo and Lac de Capitello trail, which takes hikers past alpine lakes, waterfalls, and stunning mountain vistas.
Q. When is the best time to visit Corsica?
A. The best time to visit Corsica is between May and October when the weather is warm and sunny, and the island’s beaches are at their best. However, if you’re looking to explore the mountains, spring and autumn can be ideal when the weather is milder.
Q. How do I get around Corsica?
A. The best way to explore Corsica is by car. There are several car rental companies available at the airport, and you can also book a car online in advance to ensure availability.
Q. What should I pack for my trip to Corsica?
A. In the summer, when the weather is warm, pack lightweight clothing, comfortable shoes, and a swimsuit. Sunscreen and a hat are also essential. If you’re planning to explore the mountains, pack hiking boots and layers for colder weather.
Q. Is Corsica expensive?
A. Corsica can be expensive, especially during the high season (July and August). However, there are plenty of budget-friendly options, such as camping and self-catering apartments.
In conclusion, the prettiest part of Corsica is a matter of personal preference. The island is full of natural beauty, unique history, and charming towns that make it a worthwhile destination for all types of travelers. Exploring the wilderness of Cap Corse, the limestone cliffs of Bonifacio, and the peaceful valleys of Restonica will give you a chance to experience the diverse beauty of Corsica truly.