Corsica is currently the home of the start of the 100th Tour de France. This gorgeous, yet wildly rugged island is certain to provide eye candy for the riders. With tall mountains meeting still waters, this island is one that can easily leave an impression on its visitors.
We visited this impressive little island because we were in desperate need of seeing the sun after what felt like an endlessly, wet spring in Basel. We longed to splash in the water and play in the sand, so we spontaneously booked a trip to Corsica this May. Corsica was a location we had never been and hoped with our fingers tightly crossed, that the weather would be kind to us.
We were most grateful upon arriving after our short 1 hour and 10 minute flight (Basel to Ajaccio via easyJet) to be greeted by none other than the warmth of the sun. That sunshine did wonders for our spirits and we were immediately grateful for our last-minute get-a-way. It is amazing what a little sun and sand can do to the psyche!
We elected to stay in the sleepy little port town of Porto Vecchio. We knew the drive would be roughly 3.5 hours from Ajaccio, but what we didn’t realize that with the lack of a major interstate, the roads we would travel would be small, weathered and quite winding. At first we embraced the drive, making frequent stops to frolic at beaches along the way, but when we decided it was time to press on to our final destination, our children who are not accustom to car travel, made us grateful we paid for the full insurance.
Our poor daughter was so car sick that we ended up having to give her a stomach aid to make the remainder of the journey. Pulled over at a shooting range, with ant piles and child vomit smelling up the warm car, we did our best to tidy up our daughter, clean out the car, pray the stomach aid would kick in and press on. Be warned, if your little ones are like our children and not used to being in a car and get antsy after an hour or so, it might be in your best interest to stay closer to Ajaccio, or fly into another airport on the island. Enough said.
Once we finally arrived at our hotel, despite a bit weary, with a slight stink wafting off of us, we were pleased with our choice. The hotel was situated on a small, but scenic bay with a tiny beach that made our children very happy. Shells to collect, stones to throw, boats to watch and sunsets to swoon over. The hotel was extremely accommodating, offered a wonderful buffet breakfast, the room was spacious enough to house our family of four and the staff was extremely friendly.
The town of Porto Vecchio itself was nothing too special, but it was the gateway to some of the most gorgeous beaches we have ever seen. The first day we awoke to splendid weather, which meant we quickly packed our bags and made way to Santa Giulia where our children safely played in shallow, crystal clear water.
The next day was a bit windy, so we decided to spend our time exploring different beaches in the area. The terrain in Corsica is rather wild with mountains full of lush vegetation great for trekking, and incredibly captivating beaches. The beaches are vast in their offerings – some with a great deal of shade, others ideal for surf and wind, some calm and tranquil. Essentially, you name it and the island will offer.
We can highly recommend a trip to Corsica, which for us was the ideal family get-a-way. We were happy that we elected to make the journey in May when the temperatures were not painfully oppressive and the crowds were not in their prime.
Certainly pack the sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, sand toys and enjoy all this island has to offer.
Time of Year: Late May
Transportation: Flew from Basel to Ajaccio and then rented a car for the long 3.5 – 4 hour drive to Porto Vecchio
Where We Stayed: Hotel Le Goeland in Porto Vecchio – Highly recommended
Tamaricciu (Hard to find and a bit tricky to access – access is on a main road, with several flights of stairs down to the beach, however, the trek is worth it. This beach is gorgeous!)
Santa Giulia – the perfect beach for access, slow shelving water, excellent for play and relaxing, however, there is little shade to be had.
San Ciprianu – Again, another beauty. This beach has a bit of shade and what looks like a new restaurant. Great for little children.