Getting to know the best places to stay in Corsica is key if you are going to visit the island, it is a big island with a diversity of options that are worth knowing, in this article we present you some of the most known places that you will surely like.
Corsica, known by the French as L’Île de Beauté (the Island of Beauty) is a destination of Mediterranean nature.Its warm and transparent waters, its white and golden sandy beaches, its majestic mountains and even the fields scented by its maquis.
Corsica is also a close European destination for those who love to discover original, peculiar cultural keys; for those who enjoy gastronomic excellences that are on another level.
Corsica is going at a different pace, with the friendliness of its people, with which it marks the clock of its nature, no matter when you choose to visit it. The traveller will always find a moment for each of the Corsican times.
The best places to stay in Corsica
The Corsican coast is full of dream destinations, especially to enjoy in summer, but some locations have an extra attraction by combining historical sites, good services, perfect hotels to sleep in Corsica and, best of all, unique experiences.
Selected sites, and to stay in Corsica, a short list should include Porto-Vecchio, Ajaccio, Bonifacio, Calvi, Corte, Bastia, Propriano and St. Florent.Porto Vecchio
Porto-Vecchio, Puerto Viejo, in Spanish, is a town in Corsica that is located in the southeast of the island and about 25 kilometers northeast of Bonifacio.
The place is popular because of its beaches, but also because of the closeness of many villages and mountain enclaves that represent an opportunity to know the rural Corsica of the south (L’Ospedale, Zonza or Col de Bavella).
Porto-Vecchio is located at the bottom of a bay and on marshes that have produced salt for local consumption for centuries and which have slowed down the development of the area until they were finally drained in the 20th century.
Today, Porto-Vecchio is an important tourist enclave in the south, with two distinct areas, the Citadel and the old town.The old town is what remains of the town originally founded by the Genoese.
There is a marked route on the public highway under a series of numbers that facilitates self-guided tours to discover the most outstanding monuments.In the old town, in any case, you should not miss the Place de la République, with its defensive walls, and the Bel Ombra, a historic tree, planted in 1901, with a trunk ten meters in diameter.
On the Place Ettori, on Cours Napoléon, you can see the old hospital of the Genoese troops. In the area of the marina, it is possible to find numerous cafes and restaurants which are perfect to spend good summer evenings.
In Porto-Vecchio, you have to be there for the salt collection in the area of Porto Gènoise, in September.
More The most recommended beaches of Porto-Vecchio are those in the south of the town, Santa Giulia or Tamaricciu, with its turquoise waters.To get to and from the beaches, bicycle rentals are also a good option.
Porto-Vecchio is perfect for staying in Corsica if you want to enjoy the good summer weather and the beaches, especially in apartments and small hotels on the coast and in the old town.
ACCOMMODATION IN PORTO VECCHIO
Ajaccio is the capital of Corsica and is situated on the west coast of the island.It has the advantage of an international airport very close by (5 km), numerous interesting places to discover and a great variety in the always important chapter of accommodation in Corsica
Beaches in the area?
Ajaccio was the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte and the family home is now a French national museum (rue Saint-Charles).There, you should take some time to see in detail the Cathedral of Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption. Also noteworthy are the Fesch Museum, of fine arts; the Imperial Chapel and the Citadel, built from 1492.In the terraces of the old town, there are traditional shops where you have to stop to order some Corsican delicacies.
Among them, those of charcutería, which is said to be the best in France.</Among them are the prisuttu, a ham; the salami, sausage; the lonzu, a very dry fillet; the coppa, a type of loin, or the panzetta, obviously pork belly.
The best known cheese is the brocciu, made from sheep’s milk, which is one of the products of the traditional pastry (fritelle, u fiadone, e falculelle or i siacci).
To get around, outside the capital we recommend renting a bus, car or motorbike and, if you have time, you can take advantage of the local tourist train (El Trinighellu) to connect with Bastia, Calvi and Ponte-Leccia.
Choosing Ajaccio to stay in Corsica has the advantage of having the good services of a capital city combined with local options to enjoy the nearby beaches and nightlife of the city.Bonifacio
Bonifacio is the oldest city in Corsica and is located at the southern tip of the island. It was founded in 830 and its location on a limestone promontory is remarkable.
Bonifacio also has two different areas.One, at the top, the Medieval Historic Centre, and the other, at the bottom, the coastal area of the port and beaches.
The old area is arranged around a fortress started in the 9th century (Etendard Bastion). The narrow streets snake along the irregular orography of the place.
In this part of Bonfacio, you must stop to admire the 12th century church of Sainte-Marie-Majeure, the oldest in the town, and the church of Saint-Dominique, built a century later.From the Bonifacio cemetery, it is said to be one of the most beautiful in France.
The port is commercial, fishing and is the maritime connection of the south with nearby Sardinia.
An experience very much portrayed by travellers is to climb the stairs of the King of Aragon, which have 187 steps carved in the stone and connect the coastal area with the old town, watching the vertigo when descending and the irregularity of the steps of the stairs.
In the old town, there is a wide range of accommodation to stay in Corsica: B&B, apartments (for families or large groups) and small charming hotels.
FIND ACCOMMODATION IN BONIFACIO
If you are finding this article on the best areas to stay in Corsica useful, you may also be interested to know more about: Where to stay in Paris, where to stay in Cannes, where to stay in Nice
The town of Calvi is located on the northwest coast of Corsica, in a gulf with the same name.The construction was erected by the Genoese to defend their interests in western Corsica in the 13th century.The commander of the English squadron, Admiral Nelson, had the misfortune to lose an eye to a cannon shot from the Calvi defences.
In the old town, you should not miss seeing L’Oratoire Saint-Antoine, from the beginning of the 16th century, and the church of Notre-Dame de la Serra, which is located at the highest point of the town and is home to the town’s patron saint.
The Oratory contains three frescos from the beginning of the 16th century, a crucifix from the end of the 17th century and a seated statue of Saint Anthony the Abbot from the 15th century.
In the villages around Calvi (Balangne area), good wines, excellent cheeses, charcuterie with wild boar meat and high quality olive oil are produced.
The Calvi marina is a very common stopover for pleasure boats based in Cannes or Nice, in the south of France.The excursion to the Scandola Nature Reserve (to the south), which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is highly recommended.
The Trinighellu tourist train brings Bastia and Ajaccio (at its own pace, slowly) to Calvi. A local tram, the Balagne, joins the beach area of Calvi with those of Ille Rousse. The journey takes about 45 or 50 minutes.One piece of information that may be of interest: Calvi has an airport, the international airport of Calvi-Sainte-Catherine, which is 7 kilometres from the town.It is possible to stay in Corsica in this part of the island in good two or three star hotels and in rural houses outside the town.
ACCOMMODATION IN CALVI
Corte is a small town in Upper Corsica, located in the north-central part of the French island. The town, whose old houses are built around a mountain ridge, is 85 km from the capital Ajaccio and 70 km from Bastia.The old town is made up of the districts of Panate, to the north; Scarafaglie and Porette.
At Corte, it is worth visiting the headquarters of the University of Corsica (1765), an important educational centre in the time of the Enlightenment; la Citadelle, the old town; the Museum of Corsica; the Church of the Annunciation (festival in May); the Palazzu Naziunale; the commune’s Town Hall complex and the Statue of Pasquale Paoli.
Paoli was a hero of the Corsican resistance at the end of the 18th century who had his independent government in Corte.Corte is connected by rail, precisely from the Bastia-Ajaccio line.
To move around in the area, the best thing to do is to use the rental car.As far as excursions are concerned, trekking lovers prefer the routes in the Tavignano Natural Reserve and the routes in the Monte Rotondo area.
In Corte, there is a good offer to stay in Corsica in a mountain environment. It is possible to stay in Corsica, in this part of the island, in apartments and cottages very cozy.
ACCOMMODATION IN CORTE
Bastia is a Corsican town in the north-east of the island, a town by the sea with a great commercial tradition thanks to its port.
In order, everything can start by taking into account the atmosphere, especially in the summer days, of the area of the Old Port, with its nautical facilities under the Church of Saint John the Baptist.
In the area, there are bars, restaurants and cafes with terraces that are very pleasant at dusk and beyond.
In any of the bars in the Lower Bastia, you can order and try as a curiosity the Myrttei Blanche, an extraordinary liqueur made from wild and aromatic myrtle berries.A creation of Louise Napoleon Mattei, one of the great patricians of Bastia in the 19th century.
In the list of places to visit, one must of course also include the palace of the Genoese governors and the Pro Cathedral of St. Marie (16th-17th century).It was built in the 15th century and dominates the city in many ways, including the history museum
And what can be said about mobility in Bastia, since the Société des Buses Bastiais is responsible for the urban and periurban bus service in Bastia, 14 bus lines facilitate travel between districts, many of them, such as those of Cardo or Fango, retain their ancient charm.
More about transport in the area.The CFC railway company maintains a station in the city and regular daily train connections to Calvi and Ajaccio.For lovers of charming places, 20 minutes from Bastia, the charming fishing port of Erbalunga is situated on the coast of Cap Corse.
To sleep in Corsica, in the area of Bastia, there is a great variety of accommodation models: in apartments, in two and three star hotels, in rural houses and even in villas further inland.
Accommodation in Bastia
Propriano is a commercial and tourist town located on the southwest coast of Corsica.
In Propriano, you should take the time to discover the Church of Notre-Dame de la Miséricorde, which stands out in the town because of the height of its bell tower, and the beaches located in its natural bay.
A gulf that was a natural refuge for Greeks, Romans and later also for Genoese, proof of the passage of different cultures are the archaeological remains that can still be seen in the surroundings, such as those of the islet of Paroja or those located on the outskirts of the town.
Proof of the antiquity of the settlements is the discovery in relatively recent times of the remains of a sixth-century church which, because of its size (16 metres), may have constituted a religious foundation with the status of an episcopal see.
If the aim is to enjoy the sea and the beach, there is no shortage of sandy areas protected from the waves in the surrounding area, such as the beaches of Mancino, Arena Bianca, Puraja, Marinca, Lido and, a little further away, Capu Lauroso, outside the bay.
The most recommended sports and recreational activities in the area are diving near certain coves in the gulf, horseback riding, which takes advantage of the open trails in the lower areas of the bay, and even parachuting and paragliding, which takes advantage of the existence of a landing field, the Propriano airfield, which is 6 kilometres away.
To stay in Corsica on the Propriano side, there is never a problem, all accommodation formats are available, from a luxury resort to a rural house, from an apartment or an aparthotel to a simple urban bed and breakfast. St. Florent
St. Florent is a small coastal town in the north of the island of Corsica, located at the bottom of the bay of the same name, at the mouth of the Poggio River.
In Saint Florent it is worth seeing the Fortress of Genoa, a large circular bastion, built in 1440, which dominated the heights of the population for its defense, a fortification that passed through many hands, it was Genoese, Aragonese, French, Anglo-Saxon, Italian, Corsican and French.
Another military construction, the Torre Mortella, on the Agriates coast, barely holds up a part of its old structure by the water, ruins that nevertheless have an iconic charm.
Another monument that should be in the traveler’s guidebook is the Cathedral of Nebbio, also called the church of Santa Maria Assunta, a medieval temple that was built in the 12th century.
But there’s more to Saint Florent than that. What about the beaches?The most outstanding ones in this part of the Corsican coast are those of Roya, located on the outskirts of the town, the only one with sand nearby; the beach of Ospedale, which has the particularity of being made up of pink pebbles, and the beach of Lotus on the Agriates coast, within a protected natural area.
On festivals, celebrations and celebrations, it is worth mentioning that in August the popular festival Porto Latino is held, which offers Latin and Spanish music, as well as the Holy Week, with its village processions, and the day of Saint Erasmus, patron saint of sailors and fishermen, as happens in other parts of Corsica.
A hiking route, the one of the Camino de Aduanas, allows you to walk in a protected coastal enclave, taking advantage of the route of the old French customs officers along the Agriates coast.From the beach of Roya to Ostriconi, through the area of Saleccia.
The accommodation in Corsica in the area of St. Florent.is constituted by small hotels, one can say that economically affordable and beach apartments that are perfect to travel with family or friends in small groups.to have fun, well accompanied in Corsica.
ACCOMMODATION IN ST.
Corsica is diverse, varied, a destination to be discovered little by little.