Unforgettable motorcycle road trip under the sun of Haute-Corse
Corsica's landscapes are the stuff of dreams for many a traveller. The Mediterranean island is indeed a condensation of breathtaking natural environments, between its beaches with crystal clear waters and its mountains that call for endless hikes. North Corsica is a perfect territory to enjoy a motorcycle road trip under the blue sky. After renting a motorbike from the Yamaha Rent agency in Bastia, which offers comfortable motorbikes and scooters for touring the roads, you can discover all the treasures of Haute-Corse. Starting with the Cap Corse, a fascinating peninsula with its wilderness, Genoese towers and splendid villages. Then, from Île-Rousse on the seaside, you can head inland again to stop off in peaceful towns set in the heart of a green landscape. Direct contact with nature in all its forms, with the old stones, without forgetting the local gastronomy, a motorcycle road trip in Corsica leaves no one indifferent.
The adventure begins with a few days in Bastia, where the motorcycle is collected from the rental agency. The city invites you to go for a nice ride with its remarkable citadel, its old port where the masts of the boats face the coloured facades, and its Napoleon street always full of life and pleasant to stroll in the shops. On another day, you can admire the palm trees and bourgeois buildings on the Place Saint-Nicolas, before heading for the Romieu garden, a green setting with elegant curves. Vegetation, wrought iron railings, statues, fountains, the place is perfect to recharge your batteries. For the pleasure of walking in the sand, the Arinella beach is undoubtedly the place to go. This is a favourite place for the Bastians to enjoy the seaside, and it also offers a magnificent view of Bastia on the left. Note that for sleeping, the Hôtel Central Bastia is a highly recommended address. The rooms are comfortable, the corridors are filled with works of art and the welcome is impeccable. As far as gastronomy is concerned, it is at La Litorne on the heights of the city that you can enjoy a good traditional cuisine, fresh and based on local products.
We leave Bastia to ride into the Cap Corse, with a first stop at Erbalunga, an authentic village over which a Genoese tower watches over. The streets are superb, steep and paved. The city is bordered here and there by turquoise waters. When the bell rings at noon, it is time to go to the Pirate restaurant, one of the most beautiful addresses of Cap Corse. The cuisine offered oscillates between land and sea and a remarkable wine list allows to accompany the dishes. In the afternoon, we ride our motorbikes along the coast in a northerly direction, enjoying the hilly panoramas overlooking the sea. Then we cross the peninsula of Cap Corse to reach the west coast and arrive at Nonza, a village hanging on a rock. After settling in at the Casa Maria, a renovated guesthouse with an apartment, we'll wander through the narrow streets. On another day, we go down to the beach with its grey pebbles, then we climb to the Paoline tower, which offers a superb view of the village and its surroundings. In the evening, it is also on the heights of Nonza that we stop at La Sassa to drink a cocktail and taste fish on the wood fire. As a bonus, there is a terrace with a view of the beach on one side and a panorama of the mountains of the Agriates desert on the other. This area invites you to go on many hikes in the middle of an abundant fauna and flora
The motorbike road trip in Haute-Corse continues towards Ile-Rousse. Here too, you will discover a typical Corsican town, with its ochre facades and its superb marina. From the port, you can take the Marinella promenade to observe the gradation of blues in the sea, or head towards the town centre to do some shopping. Among the monuments not to be missed are the Church of the Immaculate Conception and the amazing building in the shape of a Greek temple, which is none other than the city's covered market. Here you can stock up on artisanal cold cuts, goat's cheese, honey and jams. At the end of the day, we go to the hotel L'Amiral which has a car park and offers discounts for motorcyclists. The rooms are decorated in a marine style and have balconies facing the sea. Once rested, we start a new day with a walk on the Napoleon beach, before joining a table of U Sputinu to taste the Corsican veal. It is also the occasion to go and see the gigantic Paoli square in the surroundings. In the afternoon, it is the island of Pietra which awaits the walkers. The place is sublime with a rocky and jagged coastline, and a lighthouse which reveals a remarkable 360° view.
We leave the coastline and Ile-Rousse to head for the Orezza Refuge in Piedicroce. We settle down in a pleasant room in a region of medium mountains whose high hills are covered with chestnut groves. At the top of the ridges, you can also see the roofs of the houses of small old villages. Staying in Catagniccia for a few days means having the opportunity to go through forests and green landscapes, but also to see the clear waters into which the Struccia waterfall and the Ucelluline waterfall flow. And then there are the villages with their stone houses and baroque churches. Among them, Morosaglia, surrounded by high mountains and which give the feeling of being lost in the middle of nowhere. You only want to enjoy the old buildings and turn your eyes towards the relief. It is also in this village that you can visit the Pascal Paoli museum, located in his birthplace. You can discover the life and work of this politician, philosopher and Corsican admiral proclaimed Father of the Fatherland. For meals, the Refuge Orezza offers a tasty traditional cuisine, such as its wild boar stew.
The last stop before bringing the bike back to the Bastia agency is in Biguglia. This is where we put our bags down at the Pineto hotel, located as close as possible to the beach, between the pond and the Thyrenean sea. The idea here is to be able to make the most of the natural reserve of the Biguglia lake, with its exceptional biodiversity. The place allows you to observe nearly 240 species of birds including the European kingfisher, the pink flamingo, the great cormorant and the marsh harrier. To discover the richness of the fauna and flora of the pond, it is also possible to visit the Fortin Ecomuseum, located on an islet. After a night and a day spent in the heart of an exceptional natural environment, it is time to go back to Bastia. But before leaving Corsica, we will have taken the time to enjoy a last meal at La Fabrica, a restaurant located opposite the courthouse. The fish is delicious and always accompanied by fresh vegetables. Motorcycle travelers can get valuable information on sightseeing and good deals in North Corsica by visiting the tourist offices of Bastia, Ile-Rousse Balagne and the Castagniccia - Piedicroce - Haute-Corse tourist information office. For more information on motorcycle rental in Bastia, visit the Yamaha Rent website.