Corsica is a fabulous family-friendly holiday destination, with plenty of things to do for children of all ages. Here’s our guide to just some of the highlights.
Corsicans love children, they’ll be welcomed in restaurants even late in the evening, and with plenty to see and do and being a relatively short flight from the UK, it’s the perfect choice for a family holiday.
1. Horse and donkey rides
With stables all over the island, it’s easy to find a trek along the beach or through the fabulous countryside and is an activity that’s suitable for most ages. For younger children, look out for donkey rides. In Sant’ Antonio in la Balagne, you can ride a donkey to the top of the village where the views are superb.
2. Train rides
The train between Calvi and L’Ile Rousse is fun for all the family, as it rattles along its coastal route passing beautiful beaches and mountain scenery along the way. From L’Ile Rousse, the train heads inland to Corte, which is perhaps more suited to older children. The route takes you through tunnels and over bridges through some of Europe’s most impressive countryside, but the best views of all are arguably between Corte and Ajaccio.
3.Turtle and tortoise sanctuary
With 130 species and over 2,000 animals, this is a fabulous park to visit with younger children, but many older children will also enjoy it. The sanctuary is about 14 miles north-west of Ajaccio on the west coast. It’s devoted to breeding, studying and protecting both land tortoises and sea turtles and includes a number of rare species. It’s open seven days a week from April to November. For up-to-date information please visit their website acupulatta.com.
4. A day on the beach
There’s a plethora of lovely, sandy, gently shelving beaches in Corsica ideal for building sandcastles, as well as more rocky coastline suitable for snorkelling or investigating rockpools. For younger children be sure to take a bucket and spade. Check out our guide to Corsican beaches to find the best beaches near you.
5. Water sports
Sailing, windsurfing, kayaking and diving are just some of the water sports available for older children. Most major beaches will have operators where you can hire everything you need and most offer lessons.
6. Boat trips
Older children will enjoy taking a boat ride around the island – remember to look out for dolphins, seals and seabirds as you go. In the south, visit the Lavezzi Islands, in the north from St Florent, the secluded beaches of Loto and Saleccia. In la Balagne, don’t miss the UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Scandola Nature Reserve, where 900-metre high red cliffs plunge dramatically into the sea.
Corsica is host to hundreds of festivals each year with a wide variety of religious, musical, cultural and food and drinks events – some include activities specifically for children. Visit our website, corsica.co.uk, for more information.
8. Treetop adventures
With monkey bridges, rope swings and cables through the trees, there are a number of zip lines and aerial adventure parks in Corsica which, while not for everyone, are a thrilling adventure for those who dare!
9. Archaeological sites
Corsica has a fascinating past full of invasions, pirates and sieges. Mysterious standing stones with carved faces at Filitosa near Olmeto, bear witness to the first inhabitants of the island dating back to around 3,000BC. While along the coastline, you’ll find crumbling towers and castle-like citadels that were built to defend against invaders. In Ajaccio, you can visit the birthplace of Napoleon, which has now been converted into a museum.
10. Hiking and river swimming
Older children who appreciate nature will love hiking through Corsica’s wild countryside, and there are many places safe for wild swimming (this is what swimming in rivers or lakes is often called). Restonica Gorge near Corte is one of our favourites, where you can have a picnic by the river and take a refreshing dip in the cool waters. For more suggestions visit the wildswimming.co.uk.
Ready to book your family holiday to Corsica? Check out our range of hand-picked villas with pools, apartments and hotels today.
Featured image credit: MaszaS | Shutterstock
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