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The Corsica region of France

Corsica lies in the western Mediterranean to the west of Tuscany and immediately above Sardinia. Corsica, or Corse as it's known in French, is a land of incredible landscapes. It has a thousand kilometre coastline containing more than one hundred sandy beaches with numerous hidden coves. Largely mountainous, Corsicaís main attraction for many of its visitors is its wild environment. A collection of national parks and nature reserves cover a third of the island.

It isnít the easiest place to get to, not being on any of the major air routes. But there are several local airports that can be reached from the mainland - Nice being the closest. Alternatively, itís possible to complete your journey by ferry from Nice, Marseille or Toulon. As rail and bus travel is limited, if you want to explore the island fully, hiring a car can provide the best answer. Cycling is popular- itís easy to hire cycles - and most towns are small enough to walk around if you find yourself reliant on taxis.

Most people visit Corsica in July and August. The weather is good and thereís plenty going on. However, May, June or September are perfect for walking. The GR20
walking track in particular is famous, following a diagonal route from northwest to southeast for a hundred and twenty four miles, divided into fifteen shorter stages

In addition to walking, diving is popular with about thirty dive centres catering for enthusiasts. Porto Vecchio offers some of the best diving, and also some of the best beaches in Corsica. Plage de Palombaggia is the most famous in the area. There are also opportunities for horse riding, climbing, canyoning and canoeing. The beach towns offer opportunities for hiring windsurfers or dinghies. For a change in pace you may want to take a look at Corsica's architectural treasures comprising many churches built over the centuries, fortresses and watchtowers.

Corsica isnít expensive, but the interior of the island is far cheaper for those on a budget. Corsican food tends to be spicy. Near the coast you'll find lots of seafood and everywhere thereís Italian food like pizza and pasta on offer. Corsican portions can be small, but theyíll be numerous courses. Distinctive to Corsican gastronomy are the regional charcuterie (pork meats), chestnut and wild boar products and broccio - fresh sheep or goat cheese.

If you fancy something a little livelier than spending your evenings in a restaurant, thereíre a number of lively bars, clubs and cafes, particularly in the larger towns. You can take in a smart cocktail bar, dance the night away or splash out on an evening at the casino in Ajaccio.