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Corsica consists of vast areas of unspoilt scenery, from the pristine beaches around the northern coastline to the lakes and snowey mountains inland. The only real way to truly appreciate the north of the island is with your own transport, and there is plenty to see within a couple hours drive of the port. The easiest way to get around Bastia is by purchasing a hire car. We offer cheap deals on car hire in Bastia by comparing quotes from dozens of leading car rental companies, to ensure we find you the best deals.
To the south of Bastia lies the town of Santa Lucia di Moriani with its historic baths, basilica and churches. The 16-kilometre beach is great for swimming, and the woods flanking the beach provide welcome relief from the midday sun.
For some spectacular views and to see the massive hanging rock, take a trip up Cape Corse peninsula, north of the city. Afterwards, head inland towards the western coast, passing olive trees and vineyards on the way to little white towns in the countryside.
The best beaches can be found around Calvi, one of the busiest resorts on the island, located in the northwest of Corsica. The beautiful crystal blue waters of the Golfe de Calvi surround Bastia, and the coast of L’Ile-Rousse is to the north.
To get to Calvi from Bastia, follow the D81 highway and the N197 coastal road. Look out for the town citadel on the approach to Calvi port. Life is centred on the Basse Ville in the town, which is where you’ll find the resorts’ many hotels, restaurants and bars.
The lively town of Corte is located in the centre of Corsica and marks the natural boundary between northern and southern Corsica. The old town exhibits the Museum of Corsica, which is dedicated to Corsican history, culture and economics. Because of its central location, Corte is a good point from which to explore the nearby unspoilt snow-capped mountains, and hiking is very popular here.
Located approximately 16kms south of Bastia is is Bastia's International Airport, also referred to as Poretta Airport. Most air travellers will pass through a French connecting airport, and Nice is the closest. The airlines providing flights to and from Corsica include Air France and Corsair.
Shuttle buses and trains operate outside of the main terminal building. Taxis will charge around four times the amount for the same trip. Car rental companies at the airport are AdA, Avis, Citer, Europcar and Hertz. Book cheap car hire in Bastia online in advance with us for more options on cars and suppliers.
Approaching Corsica by sea is a great experience. From France, the Nice-Bastia route is the fastest and cheapest, taking just 3 hours on the high-speed ferry; alternatively, car ferries take 9 hours. Ferries also leave the mainland from Marseille and Toulon, and arrive in Bastia or Ajaccio. If you wish to experience some romance on the sea, reserve an overnight trip on an older ferry. Be sure to book ahead for all ferries in high season.
Ferries arrive at the Nouveau Port in Bastia, just a five-minute walk from the centre of town.
Bastia can be reached by bus from most towns on the island and it is also possible to get to and from the main towns, including Calvi, Ajaccio in the south, and Corte in the centre of the island, by rail.
Leaving by rail from Italy is cheapest, and only takes 2 hours, and the regular ferry takes 4 hours. From Piombino, the journey takes 3.5 hours; while the Genoa-Bastia route takes 6.5, far longer.