Corsica remains one of the hidden gems of the Mediterranean. The island remains surprisingly untouched despite its central location and its beauty. One of Corsica's greatest asset is the diversity of its landscape over a very limited space: Corsica’s greatest length is 183km and width 83km. However, a day-trip across the island could enable you to take a swim in coastal turquoise waters and sun-tan on a white-sand beach on the south-east coast, then drive 200 km across lush oak and pine forests and climb snow-capped mountains, dominated by the Monte Cinto (2706m).

However, visiting Corsica is all about taking time rather than rushing through a one-day speed dating. However, if you are limited in time and would like to make the best of it, where should you go? The variety one can find on the island has created regions with their own distinctive character.

Seven regions can be roughly defined:

  • the “Cap Corse” with the capital city of Bastia in the far north

  • the Balagne and city of Calvi in the north west

  • Central corsica and the inland city of Corte

  • the West Coast

  • the East Coast

  • Ajaccio, the Taravo and Prunelli valleys

  • the Great South with world-renowned Bonifacio

From there, it's what you're expecting from your holidays that will determine where you should go.

Are you a true sun-worshipper and party lover? Then the Great South is for you, with some of the most beautiful beaches north of Porto-Vecchio and also the best clubs, bars, and jet-set crowd in summer, in Porto-Vecchio. Not to forget the scenic cliffs of Bonifacio, which will make for a nice day out if you get sun-burnt.

Are you all of the above but would still like to discover a little more of the inland life and some scenic hikes? Then the Balagne and Calvi are probably right for you. The scenic and deserted beaches of the “Desert des Agriates”, trendy Calvi and the scenic mountains of Balagne should fulfill your expectations.

Are you looking for rugged coast and isolated beaches? Then try the West coast: the clear waters and boat-only reachable coast of the Scandola natural reserve, one of Unesco's protected sites, as well as the red rocks of the Calanques of Piana will both leave you speechless and exctatic.

Ajaccio and the Taravo combine the beauty of very scenic trails in the corsican mountains, long stretch of beautiful wild beaches, such as Capo di Feno ,and a rich cultural scene, with Ajaccio's “Musee Fesch” (probably the most interesting museum on the island), the Napoleaon history or the prehistoric site of Filitosa.

The Cap Corse will be the set for great seafood in the most scenic fishermen villages of the island (Centuri among others) and a fabulous and unusual landscape that combines mountain and coast on a narrow stretch of land, making for dramatic views.

Central Corsica and Corte are extremely popular with hikers and people keener to discover the inland: from the beautiful water springs of the Restonica valley to the stunning lakes and snow-capped mountains of the Niolu, there are hundreds of hikes, each offering something new to discover. The famous GR20 trail notably goes right across this region and boasts some of its most popular hikes here.

Finally, the East Coast of Corsica is often left aside in travel guides while it has a lot to offer. It is often a more affordable place than the rest of the island if you are on a tight budget while its long stretch of beaches, such as the stunning Mare e Stagnu, are often left uncrowded. Furthermore, some of the richest mountain areas, such as the Castagniccia, are within very close reach.

Finally, the description above aims at making things a bit simpler for a short stay but could certainly lead to heated debates. in any case, the best way to fully discover Corsica is to come back!

For more detailes on each region, you can visit: regions of Corsica