Written by Missy Johnston
French Riviera Coast
Join your yacht in Nice and enjoy lunch on the aft deck as you settle in, under the warm Mediterranean sun. Cruise to Villefranche to anchor for a lovely lunch on board. Relax in the sun with swimming and enjoy the water toys on board. A trip to Eze with dinner at the Chevre d’Or can always be arranged or simply enjoy being on board with dinner on the top deck under the stars. Overnight cruise to the northern coast of Corsica.
Awake in a lovely anchorage with beautiful beaches. Enjoy a refreshing swim, and perhaps a beach picnic on the wide expanses of beaches on this northern coastline. After lunch, head to the fishing village of Calvi. There are those that say that Christopher Columbus came from Calvi, which was part of the Genoese Empire at the time. It was during the Siege of Calvi in the French Revolution that Lord Nelson sustained the injury that cost him his eye. The harbor of Calvi is shadowed by the citadel, a first sight when coming in by sea. After docking, spend time exploring the old town of Calvi. The area around is well known for superb wine, cheese and olive oil. Overnight
Cruise to the port of Ajaccio. This town first established by the city state of Genoa in the 1400’s is the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte. A busy little town with the old citadel right next to the main harbor, the old city buildings, with an Italianate feel, ring the main quay. Visit ashore, and explore the little streets and shops. At night this town comes alive with nightlife. Stay in the port or head out for a quiet anchorage in the Bay of Ajaccio. Overnight.
10 nm south of Ajaccio are les Iles Sanguinaires, a tiny archipelago, uninhabited, the name of which means literally “Bloody Islands”, due to the number of ships with crews lost that sank against the rocks of these islands. Watch for the lone Genovese Tower built in 1609 standing on one of the islands. Cruise a few more miles to Anse de Cacalu, a lovely little bay to anchor for lunch and a swim. In the afternoon cruise to Propriano, at the bottom of the Valinco bay to overnight. Situated on an incline of hills with a grandstand view over Propriano, perhaps hike up to Olmeto, a beautiful little village, a reflection of old Corsica with tiled gabled roofs and old cobblestoned streets. Or cruise to Campomoro and enjoy the hiking trail around the Campomoro Tower. This is a great location for hiking. Overnight.
In the am cruise to “Scoglio Bianco” where to anchor in the middle of a tiny inland creek feeding out into the bay creating beautiful turquoise water surrounded by white granite rocks worn into very interesting shapes. This is a great spot to anchor for lunch and a swim, or head to anchor in front of the nice sand beach of Plage d’argent, if the weather allows. After lunch cruise to the sleepy uninhabited Lavezzi Islands for a lovely anchorage to overnight. This dreamy archipelago only has one lighthouse and two cemeteries where the 750 crew of the Semillante are buried, a boat which sank in 1855. The island’s coves are a favorite with boat-lovers and its fine sandy beaches offer a taste of paradise.
Alghero Fortification Walls at Night
Leave early in the am for a long cruise to Sardinia to the old village of Alghero with a strong flavor of the Spanish Catalans to which the town once belonged to overnight
A flourishing fishing port, Alghero, consists of a picturesque and well-preserved old town enclosed in a stout girdle of walls, outside of which the new town sports a grid of parallel streets filled with hotels and restaurants. The town is very Spanish in flavor having been invaded by Pedro IV of Aragon in 1354. The narrow cobbled streets of the old town are lined with flamboyant churches, boutiques and cafes, as well as the workshops of craftsmen working the famed coral of Alghero. Look up all around to see the wrought-iron balconies. ,Around the town the coast offers many secluded bays, and small inlets bordered by pine forests and high, jagged cliffs washed by the emerald green seas which are filled with caves and grottos. Inland luxuriant vineyards produce some of the most aromatic wines on the island of Sardinia. Explore this area which is so unlike the Costa Smeralda of Sardinia and enjoy the many beaches and little bays. Overnight.
Bonifacio Old Town
Leave early to cruise to Santa Teresa, right across from Bonifacio and Corsica, well known for lovely long sandy beaches and have lunch anchored off of a sandy beach. After lunch cruise into Bonifacio harbor. Be sure to note Bonifacio Old Town clinging to the top of the white chalk cliffs to the right side of the harbor opening. Before or after dinner walk up to explore the old walled Medieval town of Bonifacio.
Bonifacio is a town of approximately 4,000 people near the southern tip of the island of Corsica, in the département of Corse-du-Sud, France. A picturesque port with trade in olive oil, wine, and fish, Bonifacio faces Sardinia across the Strait of Bonifacio. The oldest town of Corsica, it was founded (c.828) on the site of a citadel built by Boniface I, count of Tuscany. It later passed to Pisa and to Genoa. There is a Pisan-style church (12th–13th cent.) and the town, surrounded by a rampart, is medieval in character.
Bonifacio is split into two sections. The vielle ville (old town), or la Haute Ville (the Upper city), on the site of a 9th century citadel, is located on a peninsula overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. Most of the inhabitants reside in the Haute ville, including the town’s most famous inhabitant, Marie-José Nat. The harbor, la Marine, is at the end of a fjord-like inlet that provides a natural harbor, and is a port for a large number of fishing and tourist boats.
Disembark in the am.