Cruise Port Atlas | Ajaccio (Corsica), France Day Trips | Attractions

Ajaccio (Corsica), France Day Trips | Attractions

With limited time in port, planning is the best way to make the most of your time. Should you strike out on your own? Should you hire a local guide? Or should you book a shore excursion offered by the cruise line or an international tour company? Below we have listed the attractions and activities that many other cruisers have enjoyed. This information should help you plan.

The advantage to cruise line tours is that they are timed for your visit and give you flexibility to change your mind after your trip begins. The advantage of using a large international firm is that tours are often less expensive than cruise sponsored tours. The advantage to using a local tour company or guide is that prices can be significantly lower or you may be able to get a customized trip just to see the attractions that interest you most.

Cruise lines sailing to Ajaccio (Corsica): Voyages of Discovery, Azamara Club Cruises, Crystal, Regent Seven Seas, Seabourn, Silversea, Celebrity, Cunard, Costa, MSC Cruises, Royal Caribbean

Key Attractions: Ajaccio Cathedral, Bonaparte House, Musee Fesch, Genoese Towers, Plages St. Francois, Ricanto, Plage d'Agosta, Iles Sanguinaires (Blood Islands), Calanque at Piana, Corte and Restonica Gorge, Prunelli Gorges

Ajaccio City Attractions

Port to City Center - Most attractions are within easy walking distance
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Ajaccio is a very walkable, appealing city.  The center is compact and most attractions are in the immediate vicinity of the port.  The most popular are the market, with local crafts and food items, the Bonaparte House and Musee Fesch with it's excellent collection of Italian masterpieces.  The Ajaccio Cathedral, built in the 16th century, is where Napoleon was baptized.  The city also features 2 Genoese towers from the period when Corsica was ruled by Genoa.

 

           

    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo by Jean-Pol Grandmont

Batumi Botanical Garden View

Local Beaches

The beaches of the Gulf of Ajaccio are numerous and varied.  Without leaving town you can experience Plage St. Francois at the foot of the Citadel and with a view of the Blood Islands.  Another popular beach is Ricanto 5 kilometers from the city.  Plage d'Agosta (19 KM) offers watersports and a lively atmosphere.  For more remote quieter beaches good choices would be Portigliolo (32 KM), Isolella (20 KM) and Ruppione (24 KM).

           

    No Wheelchair Accessibility

Iles Sanguinaires

Port to Iles Sanguinaires - 18 KM, 45 minutes (by boat)
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The Blood islands, so named because they glow red at sunset, are a four island archipelago that offer guests a true getaway.  The pyramidal islands offer secluded swimming spots, vigorous walks and unique birds and plants.  Visits to the islands are limited so it is best to book an excursion in advance, if Iles Sanguinaires is what you want.  This attraction is not recommended for those who have challenges walking distances.

                 

Strenuous Walking    Not Wheelchair Accessible

Photo by Patricia Ripnel

Piana Calanches

Calanque at Piana

Port to Piana - 68 KM, 70 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

A calanque is a geological formation similar to a fjord, that results from the wearing-away of limestone rock formations by wind and sea. Seeing the UNESCO site that is centered on the Gulf of Porto can be challenging. In fact, the most dramatic views are from the sea, so a boat tour out of the central towns of Porto or Galeria is your best option. However, boats are limited to protect the fragile ecosystem. For those who manage to arrange a tour by boat, the rewards are some of France's most dramatic scenery. The shoreline includes red cliffs and rocky outcropping with inaccessible caves and tiny islands inhabited mostly by seabirds. In the Piana area some hiking trails are available.

        

Strenuous Walking    Not Wheelchair Accessible

Photo by Jean-Pol Grandmont

Prunelli Gorge

Prunelli Gorges

Ajaccio Port to Bastelica - 39 KM, 40 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

To the west of Ajaccio in the interior of Corsica is the Prunelli River valley and it's series of dramatic gorges featuring the dramatic flora and fauna of the island. This is one of the most popular of all tours outside the port. Many tour companies offer viewing tours that do not require you to leave the coach. There are a few that include hikes so you can get closer to nature. Photo opportunities in the Gorges are not only for grand views, but also for the beautiful plant and animal life.

              

   

Photo by Jerome Rattat

Corte and Restonica Gorge

Ajaccio Port to Bastelica - 80 KM, 1 hour 20 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

The fortress at Corte on its forbidding hill is the historic capital of the island and is now a University town with great views and an authentic Corse culture. Just to the southwest of the town in the Restonica Gorge with rugged rocky landscapes.

              

   

Photo of Restonica Gorge by Markus Schweiss

Interests Key:

Art Architecture Beach Children Wild Animals Local Cuisine Flora Gardens-Parks Geology

Diving UNESCO Views Wine Dance Music Shopping History Hiking

Walking & Wheelchair Accessibility:

No Walking Easy Walking Normal Walking Difficult Walking Accessible Limited Not Accessible