Casey's Travels Part 1 - CorsicaPosted by Whole Earth | 05.10.2018
Casey is a Whole Earthling from Central Texas who has worked at Whole Earth for six years. She’s currently on a six month European adventure participating in a program called Workaway. She volunteers for two weeks, working with local families, and then travels and explores the area for two more weeks, giving her an in-depth experience of the place, not just as a tourist, but from a local’s point of view.
First Stop - Corsica
What a wonderful hidden gem! This little French island was unknown to me until doing a little research. It is most definitely worth the trip! By participating in a volunteer program, I was able to experience village life with the locals by living and working with a host family on the northeast side of the island for a few weeks. I assisted with daily chores such as feeding llamas, sheep, chickens, ducks and geese. Working in their garden preparing it for summer fruits and vegetables was also an important activity. Most rural Corsicans eat seasonal foods grown and prepared at home. They are proud of the tasty charcuterie and delicious cheese made locally. I will never forget the amazing poppy leaf salad, picked straight from the garden.
With time off I was able to explore the surrounding villages. These villages speckle the large rolling hills and gave me the impression of being transported back in time. To reach them you take small winding roads that curve around the steep hillsides. Sant’Andrea-di-Cotone is perched on the top of the hills so high that if the wind is right, clouds drift through the little streets.
Traveling east to west will take you through mountainous wilderness that any outdoor enthusiast will truly love. With adventure kayaking, rock climbing, hiking trails around every turn and ample camping sites for RV or tent camping, people who love to spend time outside will have lots of opportunities for fun and exploration here. Summer is, of course, the high season so coming in April meant we beat the crowds and had some of the camping areas all to ourselves. Camping du Tuani provided a peaceful camping experience. Nestled in the mountains outside of Corte, we were able to set up our roomy Talus 2 North Face tent with ease along side a rushing river fed from the melting snowcap mountains. We could gaze at the view from our tent.
From the mountains you can head to beach! Corsica is small enough to drive from coast to coast in a few hours, and from the beach the snowcapped mountains are still in view. Calvi is a beautiful port city with colorful homes and lots of activity, even during the slow season. We found an eight mile hiking trail steps from our Airbnb that took us by beach coves with aqua blue water, perfect for swimming in the hotter months. The entire west side of the island has a beautiful rocky coastline with a scattering of sandy beach coves.
Plant life is abundant! Vibrant wildflowers grow all over the countryside and tropical palms along the coast, giving every little village a healthy glow. Colorful marine plant life and minerals decorate the granite coastline between Porto and Cargèse. And by taking a fairly inexpensive boat ride, you can see, up close, the beautiful granite and unique caves that help make this island so enchanting.
Corsica is truly a vivacious and charismatic island with activities and pleasures galore!