Visitez L’île de Beauté
Corsica is simply a stunningly scenic island, and so lovely it’s one of my favourite places, and I could happily live there! With spectacular mountains rising to almost 9,000 feet, deep forested valleys and gorges cut by clear water streams, plus pristine Mediterranean scrub known as Maquis and miles of dramatic unspoilt coastline, Corsica is well worth a visit for the landscape alone. No wonder they call it the ‘Isle of Beauty’. But then there are the birds, including Corsica’s very own Nuthatch and Citril Finch. So be sure to pack your walking boots and camera, as well as swimwear, as the second hotel is on a beach.
We begin with four nights at the highly acclaimed three star Hôtel Arena Le Refuge, amid the spectacular scenery of the Restonica Gorge, where we shall search for high altitude species including Lammergeier, Golden Eagle, Pallid and Alpine Swifts, Red-rumped Swallow, Crag Martin, Water Pipit, Dipper, Alpine Accentor, Black Redstart, Alpine Chough, Raven and Crossbill. As well as all these marvellous birds and magnificent scenery, we shall of course expect to see the endemic Corsican Nuthatch and Citril Finch. Birds of the countryside nearby include Red Kite, Turtle Dove, Scops Owl, Hoopoe, Woodlark, Tawny Pipit, Nightingale, Dartford, Sardinian and Subalpine Warblers, Firecrest, Woodchat and Red-backed Shrikes, Spotless Starling, Italian and Rock Sparrows, Serin and Cirl Bunting. Next we go northwest for three nights at the three star Isola Hôtel, set between a beach and the island’s largest freshwater body, L’Étang de Biguglia. This lagoon is the top site on Corsica for a range of wetland birds such as Purple and Night Herons, Little Bittern, Greater Flamingo, Red-crested Pochard, Black-winged Stilt, Little Stint, Audouin’s, Yellow-legged and Slender-billed Gulls, and Cetti’s, Fan-tailed, Moustached and Great Reed Warblers. Further north is Cap Corse, one of the top migration watchpoints in all France, where we can hope for exciting birds like Cory’s and Yelkouan Shearwaters, Honey Buzzard, Red-footed Falcon, Wryneck, Bee-eater, Blue Rock Thrush and Marmora’s Warbler.
During our two centre stay we shall visit all the sites needed to maximise our bird list, at a relaxed pace, allowing us plenty of time to soak up the atmosphere of this wonderfully wild island.
The hotels are very popular, so please be sure to book as soon as possible to secure your place(s).
What the price includes:
Return flights from Stansted to Corsica (Bastia) with Air Corsica, all transport in Corsica, seven nights’ half board en-suite accommodation, bird checklist and the services of your guide.
Single supplement: £185