If you’re looking for a place in France where you can spend a lot of time outside, Porto-Vecchio in Southern Corsica should be on your map. With canyons to explore, beaches to hang out at, cruises to relax on, and even some ancient ruins, you’re sure to find your own adventure with these best things to do in Porto-Vecchio, France.
1. Go to the beach
The beaches of Porto-Vecchio are endless, and the two most popular are Palombaggia and Santa Giulia. Palombaggia Beach is one of the top 10 beaches in Europe, and here you’ll find various bars and restaurants, water sports, sea excursions, and of course, spectacular landscape. If you drive here, there is a free parking lot. Santa Giulia, like Palombaggia, is surrounded by mountains and forest and offers its own unique spread of cafés and water sports. It seems like the only thing you’ll really have to decide is if you want golden sand or white sand.
Address: Access via the T10 highway, about a 15-minute drive. Google map directions: Take T10 and Rue Maréchal Juin/RT101 to Rue Danielle Casanova.
Website: Palombaggia Beach
2. Go adventuring in Bavella Canyon
Bavella Canyon is about an hour and a half drive away, in the Corsican mountains. It’s full of crystal waterfalls, with shimmering green pools, rocky cliffsides with caves, forests, and of course, canyons - specifically, the Pulischellu, Purcaraccia, and Vacca canyons. There are guides available, and hikes and canyoning tours, with varying levels of difficulty. Check out their site for some gorgeous videos, or email [email protected] for more information.
Address: D268, 20122 Quenza
3. Explore some megalithic castle ruins
The Castellu d'Araggio is one of two prehistoric megalithic sites of castle/fortress ruins. Ancient stone walls and passages are surrounded by Corsica’s mountains, forests, and sea, and it is well preserved. There’s a short hike up to the site (about 25 minutes), and you can leave your car in a car park, south of the village.
Address: D759, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
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4. Enjoy water sports
As mentioned, there are many beaches in Porto-Vecchio, and so there are plenty of opportunities to get out on the water. Jet skiing, waterskiing, boating and boat tours, swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing - you name it. If you’re not sure where to begin, fear not - there are plenty of places for gear rentals and tour companies available, for all these activities.
Address: Port of Plaisance, 20137 Porto-Vecchio, Corsica, France
Website: Jet Concept 2A
5. Don't forget other outdoor recreation
24 juin 2O1O - Balade baignade Palombaggia avec le poney club A Staffa.Posted by Francesca Tramoni on Saturday, 12 March 2011
Don’t think water sports are the only recreational activities here. There’s also canyoning, rock climbing, horseback riding, hiking, biking tours, and ATV/buggy rentals. Tour the town on a bike, ATV through the mountains and the forests, ride a horse on the beaches - or do it all - it’s up to you! As with the water sports, there are plenty of rental and tour companies to choose from - Xtrem Sud even has an obstacle course.
Address: Chemin de la Moneliere, Pardini, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
Website: Destination Adrenaline
Rock Climbing and Canyoning
Address: Route Ospedale, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
Website: Xtrem Sud (in French)
Address: Route de Palombaggia 20137, Porto Vecchio
Website: A Staffa Poney Club(in French)
6. Tour Porto-Vecchio via a day cruise
A great way to see the sights is on a ship, out on the ocean. You can book a day cruise with Porto-Vecchio Croisières and take in the sights of Porto-Vecchio’s beaches from the decks of the Maria Serena while enjoying coffee, refreshments, or lunch. This tour also stops over at the nature reserve on the Lavezzi Islands. The cruise departs at 8:30 am and returns to the dock at around 6:00 pm.
Address: Marina - 20137 - Porto-Vecchio
Website: Porto-Vecchio Croisières
7. Hang out at a French bar or club
Why not sample French cuisine while you’re there? One of the most popular spots is Le Patio, a gorgeous open-air stone courtyard bar, where guests can listen to music and hang out. It’s in the heart of the city and surrounded by old stone architecture, so needless to say, the ambience is amazing.
Another hot spot is Via Notte, which could be your all-in-one night out destination - it’s a club, restaurant and bar, which serves Italian food, and it has a VIP room. Either place is perfect for a night on the town.
Address: 6 Impasse Ettori, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
Website: Le Patio
Address: Route of Porra, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
Website: Via Notte (in French)
8. Visit the Parish of Saint Jean Baptiste
Porto-Vecchio, Extrême Sud (Corse) - Eglise Saint-Jean-Baptiste depuis la Place Sainte-Croix dans la CitéPosted by Pierre Bona on Saturday, 3 March 2012
Saint Jean Baptiste (St. John the Baptist) is the patron saint of Porto-Vecchio. This church was built in the 19th century, so the stonework is reminiscent of that era. It’s best feature is its gorgeous bell tower on the round side of the church, complete with a bell, cross, and clock. Even if you don’t go inside, it’s still a marvel from the outside.
Parish of Saint John the Baptist
Address: Rue Saint Vincent, 20137 Porto-Vecchio
9. Art gallery, anyone?
Art is big in France, so it’s not surprising to find an art gallery in Porto-Vecchio. Galerie du Levant is full of weird art - but weird in that it’s unexpected and really cool. Unique sculptures, paintings, sketches, photographs, works focused on superheroes, collages, experimental pieces, and concepts; it’s all there. Even if you’re not big into art, you might find this gallery interesting; if not, you could enjoy a few Ferris Beuller moments.
Galerie du Levant
Address: 17 Rue du Gal de Gaulle, 20137 Porto Vecchio
Website: Galerie du Levant (in French)
Port of adventure
In a nutshell, Porto-Vecchio is a destination not to be missed - add it to your list of places to go! Enjoy the water, history, beaches and culture, as well as the nightlife and nature. This town in the south of Corsica has a lot to offer.
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