The scenery on the way from Calvi to Ajaccio was spectacular from heavily forested areas to high craggy mountains with amazing rock formations in the “Calanche de Piana” and stunning blue and turquoise waters in the picturesque bays all along the west coast.

Once it got warmer we could smell the fig trees which were grown all over the island as well as the scent of the many eucalypts along the roads. The spring flowers in all colours were delightful and the bouganvillea with their many shades were spectacular. Being a Sunday there was a steady stream of traffic along the narrow mountain roads and down to the city of Ajaccio where the streets were deserted in the middle of the day apart from a couple of tour groups. We walked around the city past Napoleon’s birthplace and up to the Place de Gaulle, a large square with an imposing monument to Bonaparte with four of his brother done up to look like Roman emperors. From there we overlooked a promenade which followed the coastline. We found a campsite past the airport on the way out of town for the night.

In the south of the island there were many cork trees however they didn’t appear to be in such great numbers as in Portugal.
There were many artisanal shops selling fruit and vegetables and “charcuterie” but most were tourist orientated or at least the prices were. Many apricots are grown on the island and the scent of them as well as the peaches and nectarines was very enticing in the shops so we stocked up on the fruit.

The main roads were very good but some nearing Ajaccio along the rocky outcrops were fairly narrow.
The towns of Calvi and Corte were very touristy with a myriad of souvenir shops but their citadels and bays were beautiful. Calvi and the seaside town of Aleria seemed to attract the package tourists. There were many cruise ships dotted around each harbour disgorging their passengers for the day. Ajaccio and Bastia on the other hand were larger cities with various monuments, interesting architecture and large squares.

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