PLACES TO VISIT IN CORSICA
With incredible beaches and breath-taking mountain scenery, Corsica never ceases to amaze.
This beautiful town dates back to the 14th century and is definitely worth visiting during your stay at Villa Luna. The fortified hilltop old town has many narrow cobbled streets with eclectic luxury boutiques, excellent restaurants and numerous bars. There is also a marina, with many beautiful boats to admire. We reccomend you choose one of the lovely wine bars or restaurants to sit at and watch the yachts, and world, go by.
You can also hire boats to take you out to see the ‘Bouches de Bonifacio’; stunning cliffs and caves with views of the old town, best viewed from the sea. Your skipper will personalise the adventure; stop and have a swim, head off to a deserted island for a picnic lunch and enjoy sunset drinks looking back at the island. Followed your day at sea with dinner in town. You can also hire canoes, surf boards and wind-surfers, or try kite-surfing down on the beach. Allow 40 minutes driving time from the villa.
Things to see and do in Bonifacio
There are a variety of historic buildings to visit in the ‘Haute Ville’ of the town. Bastion de l’Etendard is a remnant of the fortifications built in the aftermath of the town’s siege in 1553. The 14th century Eglise Ste-Marie Majeure is worth a visit, as is the gothic church Eglise St Dominique. There is a legendary 187 step staircase running down from the citadel to the sea: The Escalier du Roi d’Aragon.
There are many lovely restaurants in Bonifacio, all offering a variety of seafood and local cuisine. Most have menus that are around 25 Euros, or mains are between 12-18 Euros. The restaurants get very busy, so if possible, it is worth trying to book a table. We recommend heading into Bonifacio about 4.30pm to explore and book a table in your restaurant of choice then, so you will not have to worry about it later.
Pinarello is a picturesque, beach side town with lovely restaurants, trendy boutiques and a variety of water sports. It even boasts an open air cinema. The beach is a stretch of wide sand and crystal blue waters; the perfect place to visit for a day trip. You can hire jet skis, catamarans and have kite-surfing lessons. There are boat trips from the harbour to see the surrounding area and the historic Genoese tower. Finally, enjoy a relaxed cycle ride alongside the Cavu River, with bikes available to hire in the town centre. About 45 minutes drive from the villa.
We can help you arrange any activities, but in the height of summer, they will need to be booked ahead.
On Pinarello beach itself, Sportsica (06 24 26 51 83) offer guided kayaking excursions around Ile de Pinarello. A half-day tour costs 30€ per person (there are tri yaks for 3 people available). The company also offers relaxed cycle rides alongside the Cavu river.
A good restaurant on the Pinarello beach is Le Rouf, which offers a wide range of different dishes, from shell fish to pizza. There is a whole row of places to eat, overlooking the bay.
Escape into the hills to the charming little town of L’Ospedale, surrounded by beautiful forest lakes and waterfalls. The journey takes a good 40 minutes from the Villa, but it is well worth the drive, with stunning views of Porto Vecchio along the way.
The town of Ospidale itself is small and charming; located at 900m and surrounded by beautiful mountains. The Foret de L’Ospedale is well worth exploring; there are a variety of short walks through the forest and with plenty of places to park along the road, you can choose your starting point. Adventurous hikers can head out for half or full day treks, accessing beautiful waterfalls and lakes. While thrill seekers can get their adrenalin rush bungy jumping, quad biking or canyoning. Families looking for adventure can exlpore the forest rope course.
Xtrem Sud (04 95 72 12 31) have set up an adventure parc in the middle of the forest, just before the large lake, Barrage de L’Ospedale. It costs 22€ for adults and 18€ for children to enter the park full of high rope courses, zip wires, canyoning, tree-walking and hiking, with 3 different levels of difficulty. There’s also a baby park for children over the age of 3.
Barrage de L’Ospedale
A few kilometers further along from the town, is the vast lake of the Barrage de L’Ospedale (Dam of Ospedale), a man-made reservoir supplying Porto-Vecchio with water. Encircled by dramatic mountains and pines, this is a beautiful location and well-worth a stop. There are parking areas all along the lake, although the best views are from parking at the far end of the reservoir.
The coastal town of Propriano has a beautiful marina with a wide promenade, lined with bars and restaurants. To get there takes at least an hour, but you can stop over at the historic and traditional Corsican town of Sartene along the way. The views of the coastline are spectacular and well worth the drive. The 2 town beaches are perfect for swimming, while the Plage de Portigliolo, 7km down the road, is truly beautiful, with 4km of unspoilt beautiful sand. Be aware there's little shade at this beach, so take water and a parasol with you. The coastline is beautiful to explore from the water there are several companies offering boat excursions from the marina:
Promenade en Mar Valinco (06 12 54 99 28)
This company offers a 'pique-nique convival', a 3.5 hour excursion on a catamaran for up to 12 people (38€ for adults, 19€ for children). Take a picnic with you and your swimming costumes, as there is a swimming stop.
Decouvertes Naturelles (06 03 77 42 56)
Their day trip explores all of the coves and inlets down to Tizzano. It includes a 3 hour swimming stop, with the option of a guided walk up to the Senetosa lighthouse. It costs €45 per person.
This secluded beach lies at the end of a long and winding road in a beautiful little cove. Tizzano is a hub for kayaking and boating, owing to the large number of beaches and coves that can only be accessed by water. Stintu Marinu, in the harbour, rents out both kayaks (35€ for half a day) and small motor boats (60€ for half a day); you do not need a licence for these.
SAINTE LUCIE DE TALLANO & ZOZA ROCKPOOLS
A popular sleepy little village in the heart of Corsica, with grand old granite houses grouped around a picturesque square – La Place du Monument aux Morts – looking over the valley of the Rizzanese River. From here it’s only a short distance to the fabulous rockpools at Zoza. The sides of the river have flat rocks which are excellent for sunbathing, and the rock pools along the length of this stretch of the river provide tranquil and crystal-clear (if sometimes a little chilly) water in which to bathe. About a 90 minute drive through absolutely stunning Corsican mountain scenery.