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Trip Report: Paris - Corsica - Nice (Part 2)

Continued from Part 1

Itinerary & recommendations:

4 nights in Paris at Les Jardins Eiffel in room 309 with a great view of the tower. Paris hotels are expensive! I really wanted to stay in the 7th near Rue Cler though. We took a wonderful Montmartre walking tour ( that was very affordable and took us to places we wouldn't have otherwise discovered, highly recommend.

Flew to Bastia and stayed 1 night. If I had it to do over, I would have skipped Bastia completely. We should have just picked up the car and proceeded up Cap Corse. There's really nothing here and it's a very gritty, shabby city.

From Bastia we did the Cap Corse drive, the northern peninsula of the island and a beautiful drive past tiny villages and stunning beaches. I highly recommend doing this drive in season because off-season practically everything was closed. We drove from Bastia to Macinaggio stopping in villages along the way. We stayed 2 nights at Hotel Marina d'Oro which was wonderful. Big room with a terrace overlooking the port and included AC and a fridge. Highly recommend restaurant Vela d'Oro for fresh local seafood. We hiked part of the Sentier des Douaniers (customs officer trail) from here. It's fairly easy, just rocky and some ups and downs. It hugs the coast line and goes past ancient Genoese watch towers, on a clear day you can see Elba and other Tuscan islands. In season you can hike from Macinaggio to Barcaggio, have lunch, and take a boat back. But that service stopped October 1 so we only hiked halfway then looped back.

From Macinaggio we drove the rest of Cap Corse to Saint Florent. We stayed here 3 nights. Stand out restaurants: Auberge du Pecheur and Restaurant l'Olivier. We did a wine tour of the Patrimonio region from here with Dominique from Corsica Wine Tours which was wonderful and I highly recommend.

From Saint Florent we drove Bonifacio, stopping in Porto Vecchio for lunch along the way. Recommend Alta Rocca in Porto Vecchio, great regional tasting plancha and tucked down a charming tiny street. In Bonifacio I highly recommend Hotel Santa Teresa, get a room with a terrace overlooking the strait for the best view in Bonifacio. Plus big free on-site parking lot and easy to walk into the old town. We loved U Castille here for simple, more affordable food that was also very good. We stayed here 3 nights but could have done with 2 as once you've seen the city there's not much else to do. Make sure to do the cliff walk for a wonderful view of old town on the cliff.

We then drove from Bonifacio to Ajaccio, stopping at Filitosa en route. Filitosa is one of the few historic spots on the island, bronze age ruins dating to about 6000 BC. We stayed in Ajaccio for 3 nights, which was plenty. The major sights here are all Napoleon related as this is the town of his birth. There is a daily market which is even bigger on Saturdays, the TI has a Saturday market and food tasting tour with a local chef which was wonderful but is entirely in French (he doesn't speak English) so I only understood maybe 1/3 of it. The place to eat here is Le Bilboq aka "Chez Jean Jean" which is renowned for their lobster pasta. However that season ended on October 1 and they were closed for the season when we visited, again something I would have known with a good guidebook. We stayed at Hotel Le Dauphin which is a 2 star hotel. The rooms are the typical small French hotel rooms, there is AC but no fridge, bed was comfortable. We had a room with a terrace overlooking the port plus paid for parking at the adjacent lot and total was €268 euro. Can't beat that!

Continued in part 3 because again I'm too wordy! :)

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I am really enjoying your posts about this trip! It’s on my list of places to visit in the future. Thanks for taking the time to share the details, especially since there isn’t a lot of up-to-date Corsica information in the guidebooks.