Ajaccio Cruises, Corsica
- Get back to nature in the countryside that surrounds the city. Taking a coach and train trip, you can explore the maquis, the rich green hillside that’s unique to Corsica, and the Prunelli Gorge, a deep ravine that was carved by a small river.
- For something a bit different head for Cupulatta Park, Europe’s only tortoise protection centre. From babies measuring just a few centimetres to wizened old grandfathers decades old, you’ll find them all here.
SHORE EXCURSIONS View all excursions
Go off the beaten track and discover all Corsica’s best bits. The island’s scenery is nothing short of sensational. Think herby-green maquis, vineyards and sheer granite cliff faces - it’s about as far as you can get from the cosmopolitan buzz of the beach resorts. Your tour takes you on a drive through the mountains to Cricheto Pass. Here you’ll board a little wheel train to get to grips with Corsica’s back country and learn all about herbs like sage, juniper and myrtle that make up the maquis. After your little train ride, make a beeline for the Prunelli Gorge, a sinuous ravine carved through the mountain by a small river. And nearby you'll find the gorgeous Lake Tolla, well worth a picture before you head back to the ship. After your photostop you’ll be treated to a small local snack.
This trip is about as laid-back as it gets, with the focus falling very much on tradition. You’ll head through the outskirts of town, delving deep into the fragrant Corsican countryside. The first place you’ll come to is a winery where you’ll get chance to try the fruity local tipples. You can purchase a bottle or two of your favourites, then head off to a factory specialising in essential oils. If you thought the countryside smelled sweet, wait until you get to this place. The air is thick with the scent of natural oils and remedies, which you’ll see being made from local herbs and flowers. Moving on, you’ll stop off at a family-run nougat factory. Indulge your sweet tooth with a few chunks of this French fancy. You’ll get to see a step-by-step demonstration of how it’s made, too. Plus, if you’ve developed a taste for it, there’s time to buy the ones you like best before heading back to the ship.
When beauty was handed out, it appears Corsica was at the front of the queue. For centuries, the island has drawn people based on its looks alone – and on this trip you’ll get to witness it for yourself. Leaving the port behind, you’ll venture into the spectacular Corsican countryside. The first thing you’ll probably notice is that a lot of the island’s covered in maquis. It’s a thick carpet of sweet-smelling flowers that’s earned Corsica the title ‘the scented isle’. Your first stop is Prunelli’s River Gorge, where red granite cliffs plunge dramatically into the river. Then you’ll carry on to the view point above the artificial lake of Tolla - the views will have you reaching for your camera. There’s time to take photos before you head back to the ship, passing through traditional hill villages on the way.