Attractions Nearby Corsica, Day Trips and Excursions
The small size of Corsica makes day trips and excursions to the island's diverse attractions practical and easy to arrange. A hire car is useful, as it allows the freedom to explore al fresco without having a planned itinerary.
The freedom of driving can uncover unexpected delights, especially on Corsica. Ferries from the island's major ports can take you to the attractions of Sardinia
or Livorno, for an extended excursion if you have the time.
Nearer to Corsica, a short boat trip from Bonifacio brings you to the marine preserve of Lavezzi, where you can dive and snorkel to your heart's content. There are approximately 30 dive centres based here, as well as deserted beaches and remote lagoons.
Porto Vecchio and Bonifacio, both southern Corsican ports, are the starting points for sea trips to the appealing nearby islands of Lavezzi. This small archipelago lies in the Strait of Bonifacio, part-way between Corsica and Sardinia. Now ranking as an official Marine Reserve and boasting some exceptional snorkelling and scuba diving conditions, the Lavezzi Islands are completely uninhabited and are just 4 km / 2.5 miles away, forming the most southerly point in the whole of France. If you land on the island, you must stay on the designated pathways, which will lead you to blue lagoons, white sandy beaches and numerous rocky outcrops.
Address: Central Mountains, Corsica, France, FR
The drive up to Levie takes you through the Alta Rocca's stunning scenery on narrow mountain roads, past ancient gnarled forests, prehistoric sites, ruined castles and towers. Also along the way you will encounter a series of tiny, picturesque villages, such as Carbini and Sainte Lucie de Tallano. The views across the craggy mountains are superb.
Address: Alta Rocca, Central Corsica, France, FR
Perched high in the Alta Rocca foothills, on the southern side of Corsica, is Sartene, an atmospheric hillside town with a turbulent and often violent history. Sartene is a little out of the way for most tourists and those who do venture here will discover spooky, narrow passageways lined with tall fortified houses, and views across the region that are nothing short of breathtaking. The Museum of Corsican Prehistory (Musée de la Prehistoire Corse) on the Rue Croce is worth searching out. Nearby is the Domaine Fiumicicoli vineyard, a good place to sample the island's famous wines.
Address: 20 km / 12 miles from Porto Vecchio, Corsica, France, FR
A half an hour's drive away from Porto Vecchio lies the lovely l'Ospedale Forest, ranging along the Ospedale Massif. Clearly marked trails set amongst the giant granite boulders and pines lead to the vast Barrage de l'Ospedale lake and waterfall, making this a walker's paradise complete with panoramic views.
Aiguilles de Bavella
Address: Col de Bavella, Alta Rocca, Corsica, France, FR
Col de Bavella is a great base if you are planning hiking or climbing in the Alta Rocca, and is close to the magnificent jagged granite Bavella Needles. Nearby, Zonza is yet another quaint mountain village and worth a look if you are passing through this part of the island.
Italian Sardinia's bustling coastal town of Santa Teresa di Gallura is just a short boat trip away and comes with many tempting attractions for Corsican holiday makers. Particularly notable on Sardinia is the capital of Cagliari, as well as the charming towns of Alghero, Olbia, Nuoro and Porto Cervo. The Sardinian beaches serve as a major tourist magnet, being at their most lovely along the north-easterly Costa Smeralda. If you are looking for culture, then it is Cagliari where you should head, since this town is home to several quality museums, such as the National Archaeological Museum (Museo Archeologico Nazionale).