Southern Corsica

Bonifacio - © Orsetti-CG2A Bonifacio - © Orsetti-CG2A

Established in 1975 when the island was split into two separate departments, Southern Corsica is one of the so-called "smaller departments". It extends over a total area of 4,014 square kilometres, with a population of around 140,000 according to the latest census and has 124 municipalities. So there is a great contrast in Southern Corsica between the coastal areas, home to most of the population and its economic activities, and the isolated mountainous areas inland. Nevertheless it benefits from the dynamic regional capital, Ajaccio, located on the west coast, and the equally dynamic south, highlighted by Porto-Vecchio and Bonifacio. Attracting a great many tourists, Southern Corsica has a very sunny climate and boasts a great variety of landscapes, including the gulfs of Girolata and Porto, and the Scandola Nature Reserve, which are listed UNESCO World Heritage sites. The main tourist attraction is the coast, with marinas and beaches (Ajaccio, Propriano, Bonifacio and Porto-Vecchio). Tourism is not yet as well developed inland, despite the creation of the Corsica Regional Nature Reserve and a few cross-country skiing resorts. Once again, Southern Corsica will provide a remarkable setting for major events.


The Regional Authority of Corsica

The gardens of the Regional Authority of Corsica - © M.H. Dijvas The gardens of the Regional Authority of Corsica - © M.H. Dijvas

In 2014, the Critérium International will begin in Porto-Vecchio once again. Corsica is delighted to play host to this particularly meaningful and exceptional event: 2013 will mark the hundredth anniversary of the Tour de France, and the Grand Départ (Official Race Start) will set off from Porto-Vecchio on 29th June. This will allow the Isle of Beauty to be discovered in a new light. The jewel in the Mediterranean has been an international crossroads for major events throughout history. It was in Corsica that the first constitution of a modern state was drafted in 1735, by Pascal Paoli. Corsica's economy remains highly focused on agriculture: animals, olives, wine and chestnuts, etc. A major tourist destination, Corsica's landscape is incredibly varied, with summits rising to 2,706 metres and more than 1,000km of coastline. Corsica’s environment is extremely protected. It is home to remarkable nature reserves including the Scandola Nature Reserve, a listed UNESCO World Heritage site, the International Marine Park, situated in the Strait of Bonifacio between Corsica and Sardinia, and the Corsica National Regional Park, a site which has a wealth of biodiversity. Come and experience the rich beauty of our island for yourself.


Jersey wearers after the stage 3

Classifications after the stage 3


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