Vacation recommendations for Corsica
July 19, 2016 8:08 AM   Subscribe

We're going to Corsica for two weeks at the end of September/beginning of October. Recommendations?

Currently, we're planning on staying at least one week at a rental in the Porto Vecchio area to explore the beaches and surroundings. If there's another area that is a must-see, we'd be open to relocate somewhere else for the remainder, as the travelling times between the different parts of the island seem to be quite substantial.

We'll fly in and out of Bastia and will have a rental car. Interested in any of your recommendations and experiences.
posted by ltl to Travel & Transportation around France (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Will you have a car or will you be reliant on public transportation or taxis? I spent ten days hitchhiking around Corsica in my wild and crazy youth, and every spot is more beautiful than the last. The Isles Sanguinaires in Ajaccio are a beautiful sight, as are the white cliffs of Bonifaccio. And the interior town of Corte is totally unlike the coastal towns. I don't recall it taking *that* long to drive around, but then the journey was the destination, in my case.

If you are driving and a nervous driver, drive clockwise around the island. Counterclockwise puts you on the outer lane and there are some impressively steep cliffs with very little shoulder. Be forewarned.
posted by Liesl at 10:01 AM on July 19, 2016 [1 favorite]

I spent two weeks in Corsica a decade ago, with a car. Arrived in Île Rousse (Isula Rossa), drove down to Calvi (beautiful), Porto (gorgeous!), and Ajaccio. Then diagonally went back up to Corte, where we stayed a few days to explore the regional park there. It's my favorite memory of the trip, alongside the red rocks jutting into the crystal blue Mediterranean on the drive to Porto and Ajaccio. Ajaccio was probably my least favorite town; we stayed there only one night when we thought we might spend more time. Ended up simply loving the area around Corte and Calenzana.

Then we drove up to Saint-Florent, visited the black sand beaches there, and drove the Cap Corse all the way to Bastia, where we took the boat back home. The Cap Corse is stunning as well.

The whole country is just wonderful. Delicious food and wine, people who are very reserved at first, but if you're a sincere sort, they open up and are quite warm. If I may dare a generalization that my Corsican friends agree with (there are a LOT of Corsicans in Nice): Corsicans do not like hypocrisy. They can smell it a mile away. If you speak French you'll see it when you're there – they absolutely call people out on it in public. I saw people get kicked out of restaurants and B&Bs. For real.

Driving in Corsica – hoo yeah. Think curvy little backcountry roads that locals know their way around with a blindfold, but you won't. The care and patience of a saint are necessary. Plan to stop for breathers, and use it as a way to visit for side trips too.
posted by fraula at 12:45 PM on July 19, 2016 [1 favorite]

Since you will have a car, the costal drive from Calvi to Porto is amazing. I honestly think Corsica is one of the most beautiful islands in the Med. Bonifacio on the southern tip is unique and not to be missed.
posted by Rapunzel1111 at 11:29 AM on July 20, 2016

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