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Trip List by theguestfamily

Corsica , Kids and Backpacking

4 Aug 2010  An amazing holiday
4.5 of 5 bubbles based on 3 votes

We have just spent 2 weeks making our way around Corsica by campsite bus and train and so I thought we would share some of our highs and lows and lessons learnt to help anyone else thonking of undertaking a similar trip

  • 1. Moriani
    Santa Lucia di Moriani, Haute-Corse

    We arrived at Poretta Bastia airport on time with a bus to Moriani Plage leving Crucetta at 12.10pm and we had just over an hour to get there
    It was nearly the beginning of the end as we struggled in 35 degree heat and 3 tired kids to walk the 2 miles to the bus
    At this point as all the people you arrived with drive past in thier air conditioned hire cars you wonder .......
    But we got there and the bus duly arrived - well it was avery smart coach actually
    it was 5.50 euros each and some 30 minutes later we were at Moriani Palge where we planned to stay for a night before travelling on South
    We couldnt pre book anything so I had printed off details of all the nearest campsites I could find
    A quick visit to the Tourist Office - a godsend as we were to discover - and we made the 15 minute walk to Camping Merendella which was an excellent site with nice shady pitches a pool and right on the beach with a lovely beach restaurant and bar
    Cost for us was 2 tents , 2 adults and 2 kids - it was about 38 euros a night
    We stayed here for 2 nights as we were very tired and needed a day chilling
    Theres not a lot to see in Moriani but as a stop off it was fine
    Remember we were without transport so anything we did was based on our ability to get there by foot or local transport

  • 2. Porto-Vecchio
    Porto-Vecchio, Corse-du-Sud

    On the third day we caught the 9.00 am coach to Porto Vecchio - a 2 hour journey South
    Cost was 15 euro each - kids rarely get discounts on many things including campsites buses etc
    On most sites we were charged adult rates for all and the same with the buses
    Trains are better with the kids getting 50 per cent off - under 12
    We had a smooth trip to Porto and then realised that the sites we had pre selected were too far away from the town to make them viable
    So off to the Tourist Office who recommended the municipal site Camping La Matonara
    It was about 500m from the town and close to a supermarket so it fitted
    Whilst a fairly basic site everything was clean it had a great pool overlooking a roundabout lovely help yourself pitches and loads of hikers and backpackers
    We loved the site and stayed for 2 nights - cost was 36 euro a night
    Porto itself was ok - the citadel was busy and there was enough to see and do for a day or so but no longer
    We loved the big supermarket as the AC was great and we could cool off
    Only moan was we had to buy a drink to use the pool although a Lipton Iced tea between 5 wasnt bad lol
    We had a pizza at the on site restuarant which was good but the waitresses semmed more interested in themselves than the customer

  • 3. Bonifacio
    Bonifacio, Corse-du-Sud

    Day 5 and the 30 minute trip to Bonifacio
    Cost was 9 euros each
    Again our pre selected sites we knew would be top far out so guess what - a trip to the Tourist office and another municipal site - Camping L'Araguina - just 200m from the harbour
    It was again fairly basic and we had a low pitch by the car park but the higher terraced pitches looked great
    The shower block was clean and the owners friendly
    Again lots of hikers and backpackers
    Bonifacio is truly stunning - do not miss this place
    The citadel is amazing the atmosphere at night great boat trip was also very good and we found a small beach whcih looked across to Bonifacio and was only a 15 minute walk from the site
    We all really enjoyed our 2 days here

  • 4. Vizzavona
    Vizzavona, Haute-Corse

    We had originally planned to make our transfer to the mountains over 2 days stopping at propriano but we knew the limits of geting about so decided to make the transfer over one day
    We caught the 9 am bus to Ajaccio - cost was 20 euros each - our most expensive transfer- and the longest at 3 and a half hours
    It was quite a trip but the kids felt very ill
    We arrived in Ajaccio and walked the 400m to the train station
    We had a few hours to kill and had a quick walk round
    Its much more a town than the other places we had been to
    Then it was the train to Vizzavona where we had booked a refuge for a night to have a break from the tent
    It was 8.80 euro for us and 4.40 for the kids and what a trip
    Fantastic scenery and a true engineering feat
    We arrived a Vizzavona at 6pm to stay at the Hotel Monte D Oro refuge at 11 euros each
    The owmers came in a minibus to pick us up and we had a brilliant time there not only to sleep in abed but to enjoy a great evening at the Relais of food and drink and a great host
    The next day was spent walking the forests in cool air - a welcome escape from the heat and visit the Cascade des Anglais
    We left on the 6pm train to Corte again dropped off courtesy of the owner

  • 5. Corte
    Corte, Haute-Corse

    Another fantastic train journey and about 7 / 3.5 euro
    We arrrived in Corte at 7pm and here we knew most of the sites were in the town
    We chose Le Restonica on the banks of the river by the old bridge
    A brilliant plot on a high terrace with a table and chairs!!
    We all loved it here both the site and the town and the amazing scenery
    We stayed 3 nights at 40 euro per night but I would have stayed longer
    We loved the town and walked everyhere
    We took the trip up the Restonica Valley and walked to Lac de Melu , visted the Corsica Museum , played in the river , gorge de tavignano - it goes on
    We also enjoyed a great meal at Le Gaffory in the old town square - all trad Corsican food and our kids had a ball - trying out thier French on the obliging waitress

  • 6. Calvi
    Calvi, Haute-Corse

    After 3 great nights we made the train transfer to Calvi for 3 days of beach and rest before coming home
    Train left at 11 and was approx 15 / 7.5 for the 2.5 hour trip
    Again the journey was great - you must do something in these trains
    We arrived in Calvi getting off at Balagne where most of the camp sites are
    As with Corte there are lots of campsites about a 20 minute walk from the town
    This was very busy and for the first time we struggled to find a pitch but we ended up at Camping Paduella
    After the relative peace of the previous sites this was a vary large busy site
    I called it Quechaland as that seemed the only tent here with matching clothes rucksacks shoes aaaaaaggghh
    once we had recovered from the shock we had a lovely 3 days
    the beaches were lovely and the campsite was very clean and the facilities were excellent
    Because it was so busy it wasnt so quiet at night cost was 40 euro a night
    Our kids loved it and had we had more energy left we would have probably explored the coast and visted Ile Rousse

  • 7. Bastia
    Bastia, Haute-Corse

    Last transfer and it was the 8 30 train to Bastia caught by holding out your hand to stop the train - my youngest loved it

    A 3 hour trip to Bastia - 19 /9.50 euro so we had managed to travel all of the network
    We decide to have a room for the last night and guess where we ended up - the tourist office where we found a good value hotel very close to the airport bus and to the old town
    Bastia was a lovely surprise and we really enjoyed our day here explroing the old port the citadel and the large open squares
    We then caught the airport bus 9 euro and our great adventuire was over !!!

  • 8. Chemin de Fers de Corse and Buses

    We did manage to make it work but it is very basic and if you want to do any exploring you do need a car and certainly when we return we will be in our Camper Van
    We had a great adventure and we will always remember the trip
    We found lots to do despite the restriction we placed on ourselves and never felt we needed to do more
    The island is fantastic but to do it our way you will be restricted to the main routes and main towns but for us it worked very well

  • 9. Costs

    Well there is no denying this is an expensive place to go but by camping and coooking for ourselves we made it affordable
    Campsites for the 5 of us were on average 40 euro a night
    Travelling the way we did was expensive but we didnt pay for fuel or for the car on the campsites
    Our total travel cost was around 450 euro for the 2 weeks but again we were paying for 5