Motorcycle travel in Corsica: the top 10 must-sees

Corsica, the pearl of the Mediterranean, reveals its beauty to the traveler who knows how to ride its hills, and what better way to discover it than on a motorcycle. From the imperial city of Ajaccio to the fascinating cliffs of Bonifacio, this island offers an incomparable diversity of landscapes and cultural riches. Follow our detailed roadbook for an in-depth exploration, and let us guide you through the must-see stages, dotted with mountains and secluded coves with turquoise waters, passing through picturesque fishing villages or mountain villages.

Motorcycle trips in Corsica: the top 10 must-sees

1. Ajaccio the Imperial City

Start your journey in Napoleon’s birthplace, Ajaccio. Immerse yourself in history with a visit to Maison Bonaparte, where the imperial imprint can be felt around every corner. Enjoy the Place du Diamant, savor a coffee on one of the many terraces, and soak up the Mediterranean atmosphere before hitting the road. The Îles Sanguinaires, located west of Ajaccio in Corsica, are a group of four rocky islets renowned for their rugged beauty. Their mysterious name has its origins in local legends, evoking bloody battles and shipwrecks, or the contrast with glowing sunsets. These islands are home to the Tour de la Parata, a 16th-century Genoese tower offering exceptional panoramic views. The region is characterized by a rich biodiversity, both underwater and on land, with seabirds and endemic plants. The Sanguinaires lighthouse, built in the 19th century, adds a picturesque touch to the landscape. Visitors to the Natura 2000 park can enjoy a walk along the coastal path to discover the history and geology of the area. One of the most memorable moments is the sunset, creating a magical atmosphere. Easy access from Ajaccio makes exploring these natural jewels of the Mediterranean a truly unforgettable experience.

2. Corte and the Restonica gorges

Corte, located in the heart of Corsica, is a historic city marked by its perched citadel and renowned university. Surrounded by majestic mountains, it offers spectacular panoramic views. Corte’s old quarter boasts cobbled streets, lively squares and buildings steeped in history. The citadel, a landmark of Corsican resistance, offers a breathtaking view over the Tavignano valley. The Museum of Corsica, housed in the National Palace, tells the story of the island’s history and culture. The town, steeped in authenticity, reflects the soul of Corsica, with its age-old traditions and grandiose mountain landscapes. Corte is also the ideal starting point for exploring the Restonica Gorges, offering picturesque hiking trails. The Gorges de la Restonica, one of Corsica’s natural treasures, offer an impressive landscape of sheer rocks, natural pools and a lush forest of larcicio pines, a species endemic to Corsica. The crystal-clear waters of the Tavignano meander through granite rocks, creating idyllic pools where you can cool off during a well-deserved stopover. A little further up the valley, the Melu and Capitellu lakes are two hidden gems in the heart of this unspoilt natural site. Central Corsica is a region of profound authenticity, offering a typical mountain getaway.

3. The calanques of Piana

The Calanques de Piana, on Corsica’s west coast, reveal a coastal landscape of exceptional beauty. These reddish rock formations, sculpted by erosion, create a natural spectacle unique in the world. The sheer cliffs plunging into the turquoise sea offer an impressive panorama. You can explore this geological wonder by taking the scenic road that winds between the rocks. The Calanques de Piana are a UNESCO World Heritage site, testifying to their ecological and aesthetic importance in the region.

4. Porto and the Scandola reserve

From Piana, head north to Porto, a small coastal port offering a picturesque atmosphere between sea and mountains. Its inky-blue waters are the ideal starting point for a boat trip to the Scandola Nature Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The reserve reveals jagged cliffs that literally fall into the sea, sea caves and exceptional marine biodiversity. The best option is to embark on a boat trip from Porto to explore these spectacular landscapes and admire the wealth of marine life. Perhaps you’ll be lucky enough to see a very rare species of bird of prey, the osprey. You can also stop off in the small village of Girolata, accessible only by sea or from a hiking trail. The Réserve de Scandola is an unspoilt natural treasure trove, where nature reveals all its splendour.

5. Calvi, a citadel and beaches

Calvi, a bastion of Corsica’s north-western coastline, seduces with its medieval citadel overlooking the bay and its sandy beaches. The old town, with its cobbled streets and colorful houses, offers an authentic atmosphere. Calvi is also home to the birthplace of Christopher Columbus, a historic house that bears witness to its maritime past. The lively port invites you to stroll around, with its cafés and restaurants offering magnificent sea views. Calvi is a destination that combines Mediterranean charm, captivating history and seaside relaxation – a perfect combo.

6. The Agriates desert and its dream beaches

The Agriates Desert, located between Calvi and Saint-Florent, is an unspoilt natural setting, famous for its wild, arid landscapes. Its rugged hills, dotted with fragrant maquis, contrast with the heavenly beaches of Saleccia and Loto. Accessible mainly by dirt roads, the desert offers a unique getaway for nature lovers and hikers. The desert’s pristine beaches, bordered by crystal-clear waters, are a haven of peace, ideal for a relaxing day away from the hustle and bustle. The Agriates Desert embodies the raw beauty of Corsican nature. Its beaches can be reached by 4×4 excursion or by boat from Saint-Florent.

7. Saint Florent typical Mediterranean charm

En route to Saint Florent, a small fishing port with Mediterranean charm on Corsica’s northern coast. Stroll through the narrow streets, visit the citadel and feel the authenticity of this picturesque area, still unspoilt by mass tourism. Surrounded by vineyards and mountains, the village offers an idyllic view of the entire Gulf of Saint-Florent. Its old town is packed with cobbled streets, lively squares and artisanal stores. In summer, the port welcomes immaculate yachts and offers a variety of restaurants serving Corsican seafood specialties. Saint-Florent is also a starting point for exploring the Désert des Agriates and the Loto and Saleccia beaches via the shuttle boat excursions from the port, adding a wild dimension to the micro region.

8. Cap Corse, a landmark between sea and mountains

The Cap Corse is an incredible experience between sea and mountains. The roads wind through authentic villages such as Nonza and Centuri, offering breathtaking views of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Panoramic curves reveal wild landscapes, terraced vineyards and secluded beaches. The motorcycle trip allows you to explore hidden coves, such as Barcaggio, and admire the Seneca Tower, emblematic of the region. Every 2-wheeled trip to Cap Corse is an adventure to discover a Corsica with a strong character.

9. Bastia the bustling port

Your itinerary then takes you to Bastia, the main city and prefecture of Haute Corse, its charms enchanting visitors with its unique blend of historical fascination and maritime ambience. The old town, with its narrow streets and architectural buildings, is home to lively little squares and inviting cafés. The Old Port, lined with traditional fishing boats, offers a picturesque atmosphere. Bastia’s Citadelle dominates the town, offering a breathtaking view of the sea stretching all the way to Italy. Bastia, a dynamic port and gateway to the island, reveals a rich history, vibrant culture and warm welcome.

10. Porto Vecchio and its idyllic beaches

Your route takes you south along the east coast to Porto Vecchio, the nugget of southern Corsica, famous for its heavenly beaches, including Palombaggia, Santa Giulia and Rondinara.

1. Palombaggia :

Palombaggia is often considered one of Corsica’s most beautiful beaches. A little Seychelles air reigns here. Its crystal-clear waters and fine sand are surrounded by umbrella pines, creating an idyllic atmosphere. The beach offers breathtaking views of the offshore Cerbicales islands.

2. Santa Giulia :

Santa Giulia seduces with its turquoise lagoon and white sand. Any resemblance to French Polynesia is purely coincidental! This crescent-shaped beach is surrounded by green hills. You can enjoy a wide range of activities, including water sports.

3. Rondinara :

Rondinara, with its calm waters and infinitely fine sand, its bay is shaped like a shell. The beach is bordered by wooded hills, offering peaceful privacy. Swimming in its clear waters is an unforgettable experience. A true lagoon of unparalleled beauty.


The town itself, nestled between the mountains and the sea, boasts a lively old town, cobbled streets and a citadel. The cafés on the port offer picturesque views, and the Place de la République is the lively heart of the town.
Porto-Vecchio, with its world-renowned beaches, embodies the perfect blend of Mediterranean elegance, unspoilt nature and authentic Corsican charm. It attracts a large number of tourists every year, and has all the assets of a high-end tourist destination.

11. Bonifacio, the fortified town on a cliff

End your journey in Bonifacio, perched on spectacular limestone cliffs, a medieval Corsican town that fascinates with its unique location. Its steep streets, stone houses and craft stores add to its picturesque charm. The old town offers breathtaking views of the sea and Sardinia, and the 9th-century citadel tells the story of the region’s turbulent history. The port of Bonifacio, bustling with boats from small colorful fishing boats to passing yachts, is an invitation to stroll, while the Roi d’Aragon steps offer an unforgettable panorama below the water. This pearl of southern Corsica is a destination where history, nature and culture meet in harmony.

12. The Aiguilles de Bavella, the last breath of nature

Before concluding your adventure, on your way back up to Ajaccio to complete the circle, stop off at the Aiguilles de Bavella in the Corsican mountains, a spectacular group of granite peaks that dominate the landscape. These slender, pointed rock formations rise majestically above the forest, creating a breathtaking panorama. Accessible via hiking trails, the Aiguilles offer panoramic views of the Rizzanese valley and the Mediterranean Sea in the distance. This emblematic location is also the starting point for several trekking itineraries, offering hikers total immersion in unspoilt Corsican nature. Other activities such as canyoning and climbing are also possible here. The Aiguilles de Bavella, with their rugged beauty, are a must-see for mountain and adventure lovers.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q: When is the best time to ride in Corsica?

A: The ideal time to visit is from April to October, when temperatures are pleasant and rainy days infrequent. It’s also true that Corsica is first and foremost prized for its heavenly beaches, so it’s in summer that bathing is most enjoyable. Nevertheless, the Isle of Beauty lends itself to motorcycle tours all year round, each season having its own charms and assets. Out of season, the roads are much less busy, so you can enjoy a smoother ride.

Q: Is it difficult to rent a motorcycle in Corsica?

A: On the contrary, many rental agencies offer a range of bikes to suit different levels of experience and local conditions. On the other hand, the advantages of hiring a professional motorcycle rental company directly on site in Corsica are numerous: 24/7 assistance, motorcycles in excellent working condition, models selected for the specific characteristics of the island’s roads and, above all, invaluable advice on itineraries, points of interest, must-sees and must-dos during your trip.

Q: Are Corsican roads suitable for all types of motorcycle?

A: All types of motorcycle can be used on the main coastal network for short trips. However, if you want to visit the island’s interior, the secondary network is sometimes in a state of disrepair due to severe weather conditions, which cause definite damage to the surface. On the other hand, the sinuosity of mountain roads and the steepness of the gradient call for a motorcycle with the power and handling to ride safely. Scooters and small-displacement bikes are ideal for urban and suburban touring. The main roads will take you from one side of the island to the other. Larger bikes, especially in the trail category, are the best option for exploring the interior of the region.

Q: Are there any specific routes recommended for motorcyclists?

A: Yes, our top 10 is a great classic for discovering the different facets of Corsica. However, there are countless possibilities, depending on the type of stay you’re looking for and your affinities. Corsica is full of little secret spots, which only a local professional can tell you about to make your trip an unforgettable adventure.

Q: How do I plan a motorcycle itinerary in Corsica?

A: Plan ahead, taking into account the sites you’d like to visit and the diversity of landscapes, to get the full experience of Corsica’s many riches. Be flexible to take advantage of spontaneous and unexpected discoveries along the way. Allow a minimum amount of time for your distances. In fact, in Corsica, we talk in terms of time rather than distance: on the one hand, the winding and mountainous configuration lengthens journey times, and on the other, it would be a shame to miss out on beautiful opportunities to stop and contemplate a landscape, take a swim in the sea or river, or take the time to meet the local population.

To conclude

Corsica on a motorcycle is an adventure in itself, a communion between the rider and the treasures of the Isle of Beauty. This journey, punctuated by the must-sees you’ll have the chance to explore, offers much more than a simple stroll. It’s a plunge into the heart of Corsica’s immense nature, an encounter with its history and a celebration of its unique culture.

So, whether you’re a seasoned biker looking for mileage challenges or a lover of leisurely rides, Corsica is sure to appeal to you. Take the time to explore every nook and cranny, to smell the intoxicating scent of the maquis, to appreciate the infinite variations of blue of the Mediterranean Sea. Corsica on a motorcycle is the assurance of unforgettable moments, an adventure that will remain engraved in your memory as the most beautiful of journeys. Set off, explore, and let the road take you to the infinite horizons of the Isle of Beauty.

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