Highlights of Corsica

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21 Jun 2019 - 26 Sep 2019
Duration: 10 days
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RELAX AND UNWIND ON THE LITTLE FRENCH ISLAND THAT BASKS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN SUN.

Known as ‘l’ile de beaute’, Corsica is home to some of the most picturesque railways in Europe. These little trains run on single tracks and pass breathtaking scenery as they travel across mountains and along the coastline - stopping at quaint villages along the way. From the mountainous heart of Corsica to the capital city of Ajaccio, we travel aboard the Little Trains and stay in popular towns en route, so you can be sure to enjoy the highlights of each corner of this beautiful island.

INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:

  • Return Eurostar from London to Lille
  • TGV from Lille to Nice and Marseille to Lille
  • Return daytime ferry crossings to Corsica
  • Seven nights’ half board accommodation on Corsica
  • One night’s bed and breakfast in Nice
  • One night’s bed and breakfast in Marseille
  • Services of our Tour Manager

Plus the following excursions:

  • An unforgettable rail journey from Bastia to Calvi
  • Take in the scenery by rail from Calvi to Corte
  • Breathtaking scenery by rail from Corte to Ajaccio
  • Do as you please with your free time in Bastia, Calvi, Corte and Ajaccio

Day 1: London – Nice

We journey aboard Eurostar from London to Lille, and continue by rail to Nice where we check in at our overnight hotel.

Day 2: Nice – Bastia

After breakfast we take a leisurely crossing to the Mediterranean island of Corsica. We arrive in the town of Bastia on the northern tip of the island, and travel onward to our hotel.

Day 3: Bastia

Enjoy a full day exploring Bastia, filled with understated elegance. The old port is the perfect place to begin, where you can wander through the quaint streets and admire the Italianate architecture clustered around the harbour. Above the port lies the citadel, built in a Genoese style, a climb up here through the shaded gardens is well worth the rewarding panoramic views. The new town offers wider boulevards and impressive buildings from the 19th century. Place St Nicolas is the social hub of the town and a great place to soak up the atmosphere with views across the sea and a statue of Napoléon.

Day 4: Bastia – Calvi

After breakfast we board the train, enticed by its panoramic views, it’s an experience not to be missed. Following the coast, we are greeted with spectacular sights of gold red mountains plunging into the deep blue sea whilst passing through beautiful Ile de Rousse and village of Ponte Leccia. On arrival in Calvi we are transferred to our hotel, our home for the next two nights.

Day 5: Calvi

The small town of Calvi is in an idyllic location with a large sheltered bay to the front and mountains behind. You will have plenty of time to enjoy the many attractions as we spend the day at leisure. A walk around the castle walls offers wonderful views across the bay, after which you can venture into the cobbled streets to see the Cathedral of St Jean Baptiste and the house which is said to be the birthplace of Christopher Columbus. Down towards the seafront the popular area of Quai Landry links the marina and the port, and is filled with bustling bars and cafés.

Day 6: Calvi – Corte

After breakfast we join the little train for the rail journey to Corte, the small and ancient capital tucked away in the mountainous heart of Corsica. It’s a great place to experience the traditional culture during our overnight stay.

Day 7: Corte – Ajaccio

Corte is surrounded by amazing mountain scenery, with the cragged beauty of the citadel rising high up from a rocky outcrop. The town is a delight to explore, thriving with a cosmopolitan air along with the bustle of pavement cafés and bars, and if you follow the narrow streets up to the citadel you can enjoy wonderful elevated views. You will also find the Museum of Corsica in the citadel, which takes you on a fascinating journey of the history of the island (entrance not included). Later in the day we board the train for Ajaccio for our two-night stay. This route is ranked as one of the most scenic railways in the world, crossing the Vecchio viaduct engineered by Gustav Eiffel, of tower fame, before passing through the Vizzavona Forest, a swathe of lofty laricio pines and chestnut trees.

Day 8: Ajaccio

Enjoy a full day in Ajaccio, the capital of Corsica. There are many statues and streets named after Napoléon Bonaparte, who was born here in 1769, along with the National Bonaparte Museum. You can stroll around the squares and promenades, admire the fabled cathedral, or relax in one of the many pavement cafés and watch the world go by.

Day 9: Ajaccio – Marseille

We leave Corsica behind and take the ferry to Toulon, where we continue by coach to our overnight hotel in Marseille.

Day 10: Marseille – Lille – London

We travel by TGV to Lille and join Eurostar for our return to London.

Please note: The trains on Corsica are used by local residents as well as visitors, giving a wonderfully authentic feel to each journey. You don’t have to worry about travelling with your luggage as our coach will transfer this for you - you can simply gaze out of the window and enjoy the view.

TRAIN TIMES

    Outward Journey

      Departs London 06.50
      Arrives Nice 18.05

    Return Journey

      Departs Marseille 09.14
      Arrives London 16.03

Hotel Kyriad Nice Gare, Nice

This 3 star hotel is an ideal stopover in the heart of Nice, just meters away from the train station, makes this hotel ideal. The en suite bedrooms have air conditioning, satellite TV, hairdryer and free WI-FI. In the morning you can enjoy a hearty breakfast.

Holiday Inn Express Marseille-Saint Charles, Marseille

This 3 star hotel is just steps away from the TGV train station and a short stroll from the old port which is lined with cafés and restaurants. The bedrooms are spacious and comfortable with en suite facilities. In the morning we enjoy a buffet breakfast with croissants and French cheeses.

Hotel Castellu Rossu, Bastia, Corsica

This 3 star hotel is in the perfect location for our two nights’ stay. The en suite bedrooms are air conditioned and each has a flat-screen TV and Wi-Fi. You can also take advantage of the restaurant, bar, outdoor swimming pool and tennis courts.

Hôtel Méditerranée, Calvi, Corsica

This newly refurbished hotel is located in the centre of Calvi and is within walking distance to the local attractions, Calvi harbour and beach. All bedrooms are en suite with access to Wi-Fi and there is lounge/bar area. A full buffet breakfast is taken in the hotel and evening meal will be at St Christophe Hotel across the road.

Hotel de la Paix, Corte, Corsica

This family-run hotel is the perfect place for experiencing traditional Corsica and is just a short walk from the heart of the ancient capital. There is a restaurant, TV area, and all of the bedrooms are en suite.

Hotel Suite Home, Porticcio, Ajaccio Bay, Corsica

Our final two nights on Corsica are spent in this modern 4 star hotel, which offers great views across. All the apartments are air-conditioned, TV, DVD player, hairdryer and a safe. There is outdoor swimming pool, a fitness centre and a sauna. Breakfast is served in the hotel and the evening meal will be served in a local restaurant.

Exact hotels will be confirmed to you with your final travel documents.