Boataround Blog

Sailing tip – Corsica

With more than 200 beautiful beaches and an astounding rugged coastline, the island of Corsica boasts some of the most inspiring landscapes in Europe. Yet, this small island is still relatively unknown on the region’s tourist map, which helps to maintain its original heavenly beauty and intriguing culture. You’re going to love it here! Keep reading and check out our sailing itinerary for this week.

Sailing itinerary for Corsica

Day 1: Ajaccio – Sailing route Ajaccio-Golfe de Porto:  +/- 41,9 nm
Day 2: Golfe de Porto – Sailing route Golfe de Porto-Calvi: +/- 32,4nm
Day 3: Calvi – Sailing route Calvi-Bastia/Cap Corse: +/- 46,4nm
Day 4: Bastia/Cap Corse – Sailing route Bastia/Cap Corse-Porto Vecchio: +/- 103.2nm
Day 5: Porto Vecchio  – Sailing route Porto Vecchio-Bonifacio: +/- 27,5nm
Day 6: Bonifacio  – Sailing route Bonifacio-Ajaccio: +/- 52,3nm

Total distance: +/- 303,7 nautical miles


Day One: Ajaccio

Ajaccio, Corsica, France coastal skyline.
  • Most desired beaches 
    The best white sandy beaches in Ajaccio are Marinella and Capo di Feno. Marinella is closer to the town of Ajaccio, offering beautiful sand stretch and crystal clear waters. Having said that, Capo di Feno is listed on the locals’ top beaches thanks to its scenic surroundings and relatively secluded location, which results in a calmer, less touristy atmosphere. The elegant, half-moon shaped beach of Isollela is also a nice little paradise, known for its soft white sand stretch and waters in different shades of blue.
  • What not to miss: 
    One of the must-see sights in Ajaccio is the magnificent 16th-century Cathédrale Ajaccio, where Napoleon Bonaparte was baptized in 1771. The cathedral is also known for having the famous painting La Vierge au Sacré Côur by Eugène Delacroix. If you’re interested in arts, pay a visit to Fesch museum, the largest collection of Italian arts outside of Lourve, where you can find some of the most important collections in France. The museum features around 16,000 masterpieces, some of which are the work of Bellini, Botticelli, Perugino, Titian, and many famous Italian painters. For history lovers, the old town of Ajaccio is also worth exploring, with its maze of narrow cobbled streets and historic buildings. Place Foch is considered the heart of Ajaccio, where visitors can find lovely cafes and bars overseen by pastel-colored historical buildings.
  • Berthing:  
    There are two berthing options in Ajaccio.
  1. Port Tino Rossi offers 250 berths, out of which 120 are for visiting vessels. The marina is fully-equipped with necessary services and facilities and can be entered in almost every weather condition.
  2. Port Charles Ornano offers 850 berths, out of which 160 are for visiting vessels. The marina is also fully-equipped with all necessary services and facilities, though the location makes it a better shelter than Port Tino Rossi. Boats can enter the marina in all weather conditions.

Day Two: Golfe de Porto

The stunning scenery of D81 road through the Calanques de Piana on the west coast of Corsica, France
  • Most desired beaches
    There’s one small sandy beach in the village of Porto Ota, called Ficcajola. If you’d like to find a bigger swimming area, we recommend heading south to Arone Beach, where you can find yourself surrounded by pink rocks and scenic mountain sights, swim in blue clear water, and lie down for some sunbathing on its very fine sand. In the opposite direction, Gradelle Beach is great for those who enjoy the beauty of pebble beaches. Gradelle also offers a great view of the whole southern side of Golfe de Porto.
  • What not to miss
    The 250-year-old Scandola Nature Reserve is definitely a must-visit place around Golfe de Porto. It is one of the most unique naturally sculpted structure in the Mediterranean Sea. Calanques de Piana is also another important treasure of Golfe de Porto. The coves are made of 400-meter high pink granite rock and host an amazingly rich marine life, which makes it the perfect location for scuba diving and snorkeling. The lovely village of Piana is listed as one of the most beautiful villages in France, where you can enjoy Corsican cuisine while admiring the magnificent views of the surrounding mountains and the Calanques.

Day Three: Calvi

Aerial view of Calvi City, Corsica, France
  • Most beautiful beaches 
    Located on Plage de Calvi is a long sandy beach, fully-equipped with a wide range of services, which makes it perfect for a stress-free holiday, especially for families with young children. However, if you’d prefer to have a calmer atmosphere, the beach of Arinella will definitely bring you joy. Located near Lumio town, Arinella is a stretch of beautiful soft white sand with calm, turquoise water and a very long coastline. Or, a bit more up north and you’ll find Algajola, one of the most beautiful beaches in Corsica. This golden sand beach is not only gorgeous but also a famous destination for surfing enthusiasts.
  • What not to miss 
    The Genoese Citadel is probably the most important historical monument in Calvi. Standing high above from Calvi port, this 15th-century citadel was once a military outpost that helps to protect the city against outsiders. Some interesting places to visit within the citadel includes the restored place of Genovese governor where locals believe is Christopher Columbus’ birthplace, Cathédrale St. Jean Baptiste, and Notre Dame de la Serra where you can get a stunning panoramic view of the whole region. The Museum of Corsican Ethnography is ideal for those who are interested in learning about the history and culture of Corsica. Also, don’t miss out Quai Landry, where the most social activity of the town happens.
  • Berthing  
    Port de Plaisance offers 350 berths for boats and yachts, out of which 180 berths are opened for visitors. The marina varies from 1.5 to 4 meters in depth and offers good shelter for vessels in almost every weather condition, except when strong NE wind blows, which often happens during winter. You can book a berth online through their website Port Calvi or call +33495651060.

Day Four: Bastia/Cap Corse

View to Bastia old city center, lighthouse and harbor, Corsica, France
  • Most beautiful beaches 
    Just a short distance away from Bastia is one of the most distinctive beaches in Corsica, the black beach of Nonza. As its name suggested, the beach is known for its black pebbles. Surrounded by lush green hills, it is fair to say that Nonza’s most unique charm is the contrast in colors, between the intense turquoise water, dark shade pebbles, and fresh green hills. If you’re more in favor of fine sandy beaches, then the beach of Saleccia with its transparent water and soft white sand will be a good choice for you. Or set sail a bit up north and you’ll reach the gorgeous beach of Lodo. Located on the edge of Agriates desert, this secluded, uncontaminated beach is simply stunning with the intense contrast between the turquoise water, white sand and green surroundings.
  • What not to miss
    Vieux Port is the heart of old Bastia, where you can find most fishing activity in the town as well as Corsica’s largest church, the 17th century Saint-Jean Baptiste. The church is a former Roman Catholic cathedral and is considered as a national monument in France. From Vieux Port, you can walk up to the citadel Terra Nova, or “new town”, which was built in 1378. This is where you can find most historical monuments in Bastia, including Palais des Gouverneurs (the Governers’ palace), the monument to the dead, the statue of Napoleon by Lorenzo Bartolini, and the Casabianca kiosk. A bit up north from the citadel is Tour d’Erbalunga, a ruined Genoese tower that once served as part of the coastal defense of the Republic of Genoa. The tower was named one of the official historical monuments of France in 1927. Also, for nature lovers, don’t miss out the Nature Reserve of Biguglia pond, a 1790-hectare area that hosts over 200 species of aquatic birds.
  • Berthing
    There are two berthing options in Bastia:
  1. Vieux Port offers 350 berths, out of which 40 are open for visiting boats and yachts with a maximum 30 meters in length. The port is equipped with all necessary services, including toilet bock, fuel station, laundry, water and electricity, as well as a wide range of restaurants and bars. To book a berth in Vieux Port, call the office on channel 9.
  2. Port Toga offers 357 berths on concrete pontoons, out of which 60 berths are opened for visitors with a maximum length of 30 meters. Depth in the basin ranges from 2.2 meters to 3.9 meters. The marina is well-equipped, providing water and electricity at all berths, two toilet and shower blocks, laundry, and fuel station. To book a berth in Port Toga, call the office on channel 9.

Day Five: Porto Vecchio

Porto Vecchio, coastal cityscape, Corsica island, France
  • Most beautiful beaches
    Palombaggia is one of Corsica’s greatest beach, which also makes it the arguably most popular beach on the island. The beach is famous for its exquisite white sand, hugged by a huge range of red granite rocks and beautiful pine trees, which draws in a great number of visitors every year. A bit down to the South is Santa Giulia, another famous beach in the region. Located in a horseshoe bay with its shallow, crystal clear water and golden sand, Santa Giulia is often referred to as the most photogenic beach in southern Corsica. However, if you prefer to get away from the crowd, especially during high season, we suggest put a bit more effort and set sail to Porto Novo beach. Located in Gulf of Porto Novo, bordered by a pond, this 350-meter long beach is fully protected and often neglected by tourists, which makes it the perfect little paradise in the crowded route between Porto Vecchio and Bonifacio.
  • What not to miss
    Situated high above on the hills, the old town of Porto Vecchio charms visitors with a maze of stone streets, piazzas, trendy boutiques, restaurants, bars, as well as its colorful street market. For those who are interested in history, some important sights include the 16th-century citadel, the imposing St. Jean-Baptists church, Place de la République, and Bastion de France. Also, don’t miss out Porte Genoise gate, where you can get a splendid panoramic view of the harbor and its surroundings.
  • Berthing
    Port de plaisance La Marine offers 380 berths, out of which 150 are opened for visiting yachts and boats, with a max length of 24 meters and max draught of 4 meters. The marina is well-equipped with a wide range of services, including water and electricity, fuel station, waste collection, service station for vessels, laundry, bars and restaurants. To book a berth, call the office on VHF9.

Day Six : Bonifacio

Bonifaccio, Corsica, France

 

  • Most desired beaches 
    The crescent moon-shaped beach of Rondinara is splendidly beautiful with its fine sand stretch surrounded by pine trees on one side and a protected nature reserve on the other. Water is often very calm and sea bed slopes gently, which makes it a great location for swimming, especially suitable for family with small children. For windsurfers and water sports enthusiasts, the Piantarella beach with its stunning lagoon is definitely worth visiting. We also recommend sailing to the secluded and unfrequented coves in Gulf of Figari. During high season, this beautiful string of narrow sandy creeks will save you from the crowd.
  • What not to miss
    The medieval town of Bonifacio is the oldest town in Corsica. The town charms visitors with its lovely cobbled streets, running in a spectacular setting on top of a white limestone peninsula. Some important historical monuments include the 13th century Church of Saint-Dominique, and 12th century Church of Sainte Marie Majeure, the 16th-century Etendard Fort, and the Staircase of the King of Aragon. The staircase is cut into a stone cliff gives access to the sea from the old town and opens up a majestic view of the region.
  • Berthing
    Port de Bonifacio offers 250 berths for yachts and boats, with a maximum length of 75 meters and max draught of 12 meters. The marina is well-equipped with all necessary services, including water and electricity, wifi, fuel station, security, waste collection, service station for vessels, laundry, bars and restaurants. To book a berth, call the office on VHF9.

Click here and book your yacht in Corsica!

Ondrej Bero

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