June 6, 2014
Bonifacio’s impressive setting, perched on a peninsula of white limestone cliffs on the most southern point of Corsica, is worth at least a short visit.The Haute Ville at the site of the citadel is at the northern end of the peninsula with very little at the southern tip – a few ruins, the old ramparts, the Marine Cemetery and the Saint Teresa Hotel with loads of parking.
The quaint streets of the old town include the usual mix of shops and restaurants and fill with cruise passengers from nearby Porto Vecchio during the day.
The marina, a favorite of the Mediterranean yachting set sits below the Haute Ville.
Before dinner, a late afternoon walk along the ramparts and through the Marine Cemetery at the far end of the peninsula.
June 7, 2014
On our first morning I checked the weather forecast – clear sunny days with temps in the mid -70s as far out as the forecast projects. A lovely thought that was not to last.
After breakfast we started the morning with the recommended stroll along the limestone cliffs to the Pertusato Lighthouse.
Fabulous views looking back towards the Haute Ville perched on the cliffs. The best are from the first half of the walk. As you approach the lighthouse on a clear day you can see the Lavezzi Islands on the other side of the point. On this day, however, a low haze had settled over the sea obscuring the views of Sardinia and the islands.
Boat Tour to the Lavezzi Islands
Although the Lavezzi Islands are generally recommended for sun bathers and swimmers we decided to take the boat tour out just to take a quick look around. With absolutely no possibility of shade it is not the best place for those, like me, who don’t tolerate the sun.
However, whether you swim or not it’s a magical combination of huge granite boulders seemingly molded into enchanting shapes and the blue Mediterranean Sea stained with lighter turquoise pools. A walk around the islands can take at least an hour.
Boats work on a shuttle basis and run hourly during the summer season.
On the way back to the marina in Bonifacio the boat does a tour starting with Cavallo Island, a private resort island of millionaire summer residences.
At this hour, 5:00-5:30PM, in June the limestone cliffs are a brilliant white while the Haute Ville is starting to fall into shadow.
You can still catch a few lingering rays on the town as the boat heads south of the cliffs.
Near the end of the tour is the Grotte du Sdragonato – a cave with an opening in the ceiling that illuminates the crystal clear water with a white sandy floor strewn with dark boulders and fish swimming about.