Corsica mountains

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The mountain chains of the inland hide the beating heart of Corsica cultural and historic identity. Like Corte, symbol of the independent movements of the island (especially against the Genoese). In the XVIII century it was capital of the independent state founded by the national hero Pasquale Paoli.

Corte is dominated by a small and severe fortified citadel dating back to the XV, century, raised above thick walls to guard the city and the valley. The town hosts the only university on the island, and the Regional museum of anthropology, which is situated inside the Caserme Sérurier: the most interesting part is probably the one dedicated to Corsica manufactures and craftsmanship traditions, with some temporary exhibitions on Corsican artists.

In Corte there are a few restaurants with a good balance of quality and price, which offer fresh traditional dishes, while the rest of the restaurants and bars are much less attractive and offer fast and not so fresh food. So if you choose with calm the place where to eat, you will find the best option. In Corte there are also numerous drug stores where to refill your rucksacks before excursions and picnics.

The lucky position at the confluence of the valleys of river Tavignano and Restonica, two of the most beautiful gorges of the island, make Corte a favorite destination for mountain and hiking lovers: the same local people often prefer to run away from the overcrowded resorts of the east and west coast, to find in this place peace and revitalizing coolness from summer heat.

The Restonica valley is entirely accessible by car, something which makes it quite crowded in July and August. To limit the impact of people and cars, some legislations regulate the access to the valley: for instance car parking is permitted only in restricted areas (the car park of Grotelle at the bottom of the valley is on payment), lighting fires is strictly forbidden, as well as free camping, and throwing of things in the river. Given this, the place is at your full disposal, and you can enjoy one of the wonderful bends of the river, bathe in its turquoise waters, swim and relax on the rocks under the warm sun.

For the most trained hikers we recommend an excursion to the gorgeous lakes Melu and Capitellu, starting from the car park Grotelle, which takes you to both lakes in a couple of hours. The trail is not long, but in some parts it can be a bit steep.

The Tavigano Valley can be accessed only on foot, and this is what makes it more fascinating respect to Restonica Valley. The path takes in a couple of days to the beautiful lake Nino, in the middle of a green basin, and there is the possibility to stay overnight in a mountain hut. Your efforts will be highly rewarded by the wonderful landscapes and the wild nature.

For any information regarding trails and weather conditions in the area, you can turn to the office of the Regional Natural Park, which is situated in proximity of the entrance of Corte, or to the Information Office of the Restonica valley, opposite the Tuani camping, halfway between Corte and the Grotelle car parking.