Bonifacio boasts a massive citadel, as do all the major seaports on the island, especially Ajaccio, Calvi, and Bastia. While Bonifacio travel no longer requires the fortresses that once protected the harbors from invaders, they are full of history and some of the most recognizable attractions in Corsica. The cliff-top Bonifacio Citadel is the center of Haute Ville, meaning “Upper Town.” This is the old part of the city, and its most picturesque.
Anyone on a vacation to Bonifacio will be thrilled at the sight of what is, in essence, a complete town within the ancient walls. Here is a maze of narrow medieval lanes and alleys perched dramatically on white limestone cliffs 230 feet above the harbor. Bonifacio is set at the end a long and narrow fjord-like sound. The north side of the citadel overlooks the sound, and the south side provides views of the island of Sardinia Italy only ten miles away. A number of Bonifacio hotels can be found here. Many are lovely boutique properties housed in historic buildings like the Hotel Colomba, which is in a fourteenth-century mansion. It has only ten charming rooms, and a restaurant set in an ancient cellar.
Bonifacio is the only major seaport on the southern coast of Corsica. Bouches de Bonifacio (meaning, “mouths of Bonifacio”) refers to the strait that separates the two large islands. This is an international marine park and a joint venture between France and Italy. It can be a treacherous body of water, and the pilots of the many ferries and fishing boats that navigate it are extremely skilled. It is an area of outstanding marine biodiversity, and many Bonifacio hotels can assist you with scenic cruises and day excursions. The sound is not as deep as the harbor at Ajaccio, which is where most of the large ocean liners on Mediterranean cruises generally anchor. One of the most luxurious and exclusive of all Bonifacio hotels is almost not really on “land” at all. In fact, it almost isn’t in France or Corsica. It lies in the straits of Bonifacio between Corsica and Sardinia on the Island of Cavallo. This is a private island, and the exclusive Hotel and Spa des Pecheurs offers deluxe rooms and suites with sea views, a fine restaurant, and a luxurious full-service spa. The only way to reach this unique property is by boat from Sardinia or Corsica. There is a private beach as well as a marina, in case you arrive in your own yacht.
It is highly suggested that your vacation to Bonifacio include visiting one of its two landmark Genoese towers. The tower at Campomoro is perched on a hill overlooking sparkling pristine beaches, and is particularly well-preserved. This is the largest of the several Genoese towers on the island, and it is well worth the walk up for the view and fascinating guided tour.
If you’ve embarked on Bonifacio travel for the beaches, you won’t be disappointed. Campomoro Beach is very shallow quite far from the shore, making it perfect for a vacation to Bonifacio with children and for novice swimmers. If you are sailing or diving, you may find yourself about fifteen miles northeast of Bonifacio in the beautiful protected bay of Rondinara (about halfway between Bonifacio and Port Vecchio). The little bay is a natural harbor, almost completely encircled by land, and the sandy beach lays along the full crescent. Usually, the bay is dotted with sailing ships, and the beach has a bar and restaurant. Generally, there are too many boats for good snorkeling, and most of the scuba diving occurs outside the bay along the coast.
Bonifacio travel is possible by air, land, and sea. One of the two minor airports of the island is located near here, but it is some distance from Bonifacio and there is no public transportation. Your best bet if you fly in is to rent a car. Many people who visit here have landed at one of the two major airports in Bastia or Ajaccio, and then drive across the island. You can also arrive on one of the many regularly scheduled ferries from France, the mainland of Italy, and the island of Sardinia.