I have been many times on Corse Island or Corsica, the name the inhabitants call their homeland with. It’s a very beautiful and wild place where you can have some relax and visit an unexplored area of Europe. If you like the sea, you must absolutely visit here! Some years ago I have been in the southern part: Bonifacio, Portovecchio, Ghisonaccia and last year I visited places around Corte, a little town located in the center of Corse. Corsicans are very attached to the culture of their island and it is normal to find some road signs shot by guns. Corsicans do not really like staying under French government so it often happens that the french names of the localities are deleted from the signs. Well..let’s talk about the trip: we visited a beautiful lake near Corte, it seemed to be in the Alps up there and not on an island lost in the middle of the Mediterranean sea.
After this break near the lake, we reached the top of a mount where there was a madonna’s statue, it is called Notre-Dame de la Neige (Our Lady of the Snow). People who visit this place leave some prayers at the feet of the Madonna and hope them to be fulfilled before or after, it is a tradition. I read some of them and some were really moving… The most part of prayers were for relatives that were much ill and the people who wrote them hoped that they could get better soon. There were also many animals like cows and sheeps.
Then we arrived at Gorges de la Restonica (Restonica’s Valley) situated a thousand meters above the sea and gives the name to the Restonica river which traverses the valley. My father, a friend of my father and I went into the river, to go through it, we had to jump from a rock to another, it was funny but also dangerous! I risked falling down several times.
Instead, this year I visited the island’s northern part that is as beautiful, if not more, as the other part. I was housed in a little town called Algajola. It is nice and peaceful but if you like to have fun, this is not your place since here in the evening there is nothing to do. This is the perfect place for those who just want to stay away from the stress and noisy places. In spite of everything, you can always visit around and enjoy this little and peaceful village. This is the little port of Algajola, the water was really clean and I was much impressed by that, in my city the water is not that clean.
This is what I saw from where I was housed…
….and this is Algajola
In the evening my family and I used to go to Calvi, a beautiful town located directly on the sea and near where we was housed. It was the only place that was a bit lively in the evening, especially during the week-ends when all the young people gather in the town in order to have fun and enjoy the night life. There are many beautiful restaurants near the port but the prices are a bit expensive perhaps because of the nice location. This town reminded me of Genoa, they are a bit similiar because Corse was under Genoa‘s government some centuries ago and kept some Genoases characteristics. On the outskirts of Calvi there is a monument, overlooking the sea, dedicated to the people died during the war.
During the week I visited many beaches with my family and took some photos, here some of them. It is a pity that I cannot remember the beaches’ names, they were in Corsican ahaha I can recall that in front of a beach there was a kind of military base and soldiers were training that day.
The water was really clean and beautiful but cold!! When I tried to bathe in the sea, I always shouted due to the cold. There is not very much to walk because almost every beaches have a parking, so don’t be afraid, you must not get tired too much to reach a beach.
I visited also a town called Ile Rousse or Isula Rossa in Corsican which is very cute and where you can find many nice souvenir shops. I bought all my presents and souvenirs in Ile Rousse but unfortunately I did not take any photos of this town 🙁 The last day my family decided to visit Porto that is quite far away from where we were and in order to reach it we had to take an incredible road overhanging the sea! It’s beautiful and suggestive thanks to the landscapes you can see from it but maybe a bit dangerous. I always had a feeling that we could fall down, in the sea….
The trip to Porto took, more or less, 2.30 hours but I liked it very much. When we arrived in Porto we were amazed by the landscape, it seemed to be in the mountains but in reality we were on the sea. We chose a restaurant and had lunch there, afterwards we went around Porto, which is a really tiny town, there is almost nothing there, only some souvenir shops and restaurants but it is very peaceful.
The day after we had to take the ferry in Bastia to return in Italy. Bastia is the main port and commercial centre of Corse where many ferries arrive and depart. It has been founded by the Genoases governor Leonello Lomellini in 1378 to defend the area from the count Arrigo della Rocca’s attacks. Place Saint-Nicolas or Piazza San Nicolau in Corsican, is the heart of the city and owes its name to a chapel which was destroyed while building this square. In Place Saint-Nicolas there is the Napolean’s statue made by the Italian Lorenzo Bartolini. We could not spend much time here but it’s a beautiful city where you can find many souvenir shops and beaches NEAR the port! I was impressed because the water is really clean also there.
The thing that impressed me was that in the malls there were written in Corsican. Corsican cannot be considered as a language, only a dialect… Despite that the road signs are bilingual: Corsican and French! That is really cool because it shows that Corsicans really love their heritage and their beautiful island.