Erbalunga was once the most important harbour on the Cap Corse, a fact supported by the magnificent houses that still stud the peninsula to this day.
An intimate network of squares and narrow streets lead down to the harbour, providing a sanctuary to those seeking a taste of authentic village life. The ruins of the Genoese tower here are a popular subject choice for artists and photographers and the village is also a lively venue for music and arts festivals.
There is a good range of facilities including shops, a cash dispenser machine, post office, bars and restaurants and a dive school at Sisco Marina, slightly further north.
Miomo is situated on the east coast and is the gateway to the spectacular scenery and fishing ports of the Cap Corse. It is a vibrant little village with plenty going on in summer and the large town of Bastia is a short drive away. There is a pebble beach here, overlooked by a Genoese watchtower - the perfect spot to relax after exploring the region.
Things to See & Do
- The fishing port of Erbalunga on the eastern coast clings to a little jagged promontory, opal waves slapping against gaudy fishing boats. The pedestrianised village has many cafés and restaurants and a Genoese tower on the headland and is the home of a Jazz festival in August. It is a popular stopping off point for those touring Cap Corse. There is also a horse riding centre for those with some experience, offering treks into the mountains and on to the sandy beaches further up the coast, from 1 hour to a day in duration.
- Many of the beaches in this area are shingle and snorkelling from the rocky promontories is popular with the locals and tourists alike. However, the sandy beach at Pietracorbara 9km north of Erbalunga offers clear waters, a café and a water sports centre with canoeing, windsurfing and sailing all available for both adults and children.
- Often called an island within an island, the Cap Corse is a maquis covered peninsula whose history sets it apart from the rest of the island. Tiny ports divide the east side as the western villages are sited on rugged cliffs. On the west of Cap Corse, narrow roads wind above a dramatically serrated coastline, dotted with little coves, whilst the sea washes on the rocks below and woods and maquis outline the peaks above.
- A complete circuit of the Cap Corse will take you about four hours (without stops) and we recommend that you always drive in a clockwise direction so that you are always in the inside lane (the road can be narrow and winding and the drops are precipitous and rather scary!).
- Centuri Port makes a great lunch spot as its many restaurants are based around the old fishing port and their Menus are reliant on the catch of the day.
- At the northerly point of Cap Corse at Rogliano stands the Moulin Mattei restored by the Mattei family (of apéritif fame) in the 20th Century, a short walk will afford you magnificent if not windy views out over either side of the Cap and if you are lucky you will see the Tuscan islands and the coast of Italy beyond.
- From Macinaggio one can walk the sentiers des douaniers (customs officers route) to Barcaggio, many follow just a small part of the route for a day's walking - the famous Genoese towers along the way are an impressive sight against the coastal backdrop. The path goes through the Capandula nature reserve which also boasts excellent, uncrowded beaches. Alternatively, there is an hour-long boat trip to the beach at Barcaggio operating in summer, but it is worth checking operating dates locally.
- Bastia, capital of Haute-Corse is a busy town with a population of 50000, making it the second largest town on the island. The Place St Nicolas is a pleasant spot to soak up Bastia’s Mediterranean atmosphere and with its shady trees and cafés is the social hub of the town. The Boulevard Paoli and Rue César Campinchi are the main shopping streets running parallel to the square. The old town lies south of Place St Nicolas and surrounds the old port which should not be missed. It is overlooked by the high honey-coloured Genoese Citadel (quite a climb) and bustles with harbourside bars and restaurants. Wander through the old streets behind the old port to find the Place du Marché where there is a local farmers market each morning and the church of St Jean Baptiste, Corsica's largest church is well worth a visit.