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Gastronomy & Crafts in Corsica

View Itinerary

Cap Corse and the hinterland of Saint Florent

Explore Corsica on an intimate culinary journey accompanied by your own personal chef. Revealed through its mystical past and craftsmanship, Corsica offers one of the most authentic travel experiences. From the permanent snow of Monte Cinto to the ruby-colored stone worn down by time and salt, the island’s diverse terrain is also a story of distinctive terroirs and rich gastronomy.

Itinerary

Day 1: Bastia and the coast

Pick-up at Bastia airport. Briefly explore the town with a private tour of the citadel and the central market tasting some flavorful, locally sourced produce. Head north along the coast.

Stroll through Erbalunga harbor before arriving at a remote Pisan chapel erected on a massive rock overlooking the valley. Enjoy drinks at the Pietracorbara Distillery followed by dinner on the rooftop terrace of a Genoese tower with views of the Tuscan archipelagos.

Overnight at a historic convent guesthouse in Brando.

Day 2: Off the beaten path in Cap Corse

Make your way to a remote village surrounded by wild olive trees (ogliastru) and ancient chestnut groves. Meet the local miller who operates a historic watermill dating back more than 500 years using the same techniques as his ancestors. See a private demonstration of the mill that operates solely on hydropower.  

Your chef will prepare a light meal made from milled flour and other locally sourced products. The dishes will be served in a picturesque outdoor setting next to the stream that runs by.Take a digestive stroll in an abandoned village formerly known for its milling industry. Stop for wine tasting at one of the best Muscat producers in the region.

In a quaint farmhouse by the ruins of a castle set among the mountains and the maquisvegetation, participate in a private cooking workshop. Learn to prepare a traditional Corsican meal and enjoy it in the company of your hosts.

Overnight at a charming guesthouse in Barrettali.

Day 3: Seafood and citron

Experience Cap Corse on a morning sightseeing and tasting tour. Walk around the mesmerizing Centuri port and taste delicious seafood, visit the Cannelle fountain, have drinks at Moulin Mattei and Scalo harbor, meet one of the last citron producers of Barrettali, and visit enchanting Nonza with its breathtaking views of the black sandy beach and of citrus groves.

Meet one of the island’s most talented fishermen. He is also one of the few in France topractice Ikejime – a humane technique of preparing fish while maintaining its quality,especially Mediterranean red tuna. Your chef will prepare a tasting with Corsican citrus.

Overnight at a guesthouse in Patrimonio.

Day 4: Saint Florent Bay

After your morning coffee in the historic fishing port of Saint Florent, take a boat trip to the secluded Lotu beach, a small piece of heaven with views of Saint Florent Bay and Cap Corse. Enjoy swimming and sunbathing while your chef prepares lunch served al fresco.

Visit a medieval metal workshop and meet the knife manufacturer who will instruct you on the art of the knife-making in Corsica and its connections to various skills of the region. Follow the wine route in Patrimonio. Pay a visit to the Arena family, who is well known on the island and beyond.

Dine at a farmhouse owned by Americans whose ancestors were Corsican immigrants. Being the only certified Slow Food establishment in Corsica, everything you’ll taste here is local: the beer, which has been awarded numerous gold medals in France, the fruits and vegetables, the flours, the animal products, the water. Your chef will prepare a dish that has a stellar reputation throughout France and is a highlight among Corsican specialties: pizza! Sit back and relax.

Overnight at a guesthouse in Patrimonio.

Day 5: Secrets of the hinterland

Sip your coffee at the foot of the historic San Michele church, a symbol of Pisan architecture with remarkable naive patterns that stand out for their originality.

Next, visit a charcuterie owned by one of the top deli specialists in France. He combines Corsican know-how and cutting-edge technologies to achieve a final product of rare finesse. Tour the cellar where the creative process happens and gain a fascinating insight into Corsican charcuterie, which often leads to fiery debates on the island in about authenticity and tradition.

Lunch at a farm restaurant in Compo di Monte, a hub for the island’s gastronomic agro-tourisms, then head to Nebbiu to meet the only wind instrument virtuoso mailman. He specializes in the pivana, a Corsican flute that was historically made by shepherds. The craft had been lost for four centuries, but thanks to your host’s perseverance, it is reemerging from the darkness. End your day of sightseeing with a tour of the Petricajola estate, where you’ll taste exceptional honey.

Dinner is served in a vegetable garden restaurant, an intimate venue with sheep roaming around, followed by cheese and wine as you enjoy the superb views of the ancient region of Nebbiu.

Overnight at a guesthouse in Rapale.

Day 6: Magnificent Nebbiu

Have breakfast in a terraced garden sipping on freshly squeezed citrus juice from theNebbiu, then stroll through the ruins of the Romanesque San Cesario church, erected in the 13th century, overlooking the village of Rapale. Marvel at the three menhir statues from Neolithic times found in different parts of Corsica, which now stand together in Pieve.

Visit a convent built in 1552 around a Romanesque-style 13th century church, that features aridged dome with ornate animal statues and a superb bell tower.  The cloister opens onto a courtyard planted with trees of rare beauty.

The olive grove surrounding the convent, where some of the trees are close to 3000 years old, produces the finest olive oils of the region. The caretakers also maintain a magnificentvegetable garden and permaculture orchard, using mulching local techniques based on wool.When the animals are sheared, some of the wool is used to absorb the dampness and to return it to the soil, providing a cheap solution to the drought problem. Cooking workshop in the convent ending with supper under a starry sky.

Overnight at a convent guesthouse in Santo-Pietro-di-Tenda.

Day 7: Back to the coast

Spend the morning near the convent walking among the millenary olive trees and enjoying the splendid view of the Nebbiu at the edge of the Agriates desert. Next, visit a producer of essential oils from the Maquis, before arriving at the Teghime pass, which leads to Bastia. The northern capital boasts colorful pedestrian streets, cafés, artisan shops, a lively market and a strong bonhomie.

Dinner is prepared and served in a unique location – a shepherd’s house. Your host will pick you up and you will enjoy some off-roading on the way. End the day with spectacular views of Bastia and the Tuscan archipelagos, and a strong desire to come back.

Overnight at a 4-star boutique hotel in Bastia.

Day 8: Return home

Private transfer to Bastia airport. Depart for home.

Book this itinerary for $4,700.00/person.

Pricing is based on double room occupancy. Other options (i.e. single supplement, family rates) are available on request. Rates valid for travel in 2021. Trip is customizable for an extra fee.

Package includes:

  • Unique accommodations with breakfast
  • Escorted tour by Astrance-trained personal chef
  • Meals prepared by the chef
  • Private customized day excursions
  • Private meetings with craftspeople
  • Private cooking workshops
  • Private charcuterie, cheese and wine tasting
  • Private transportation
  • Digital travel diary
  • 24/7 assistance and customer support

Package does not include:

  • International airfare
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended)
  • Wine purchases
  • Entrance fees to attractions not in the tour
  • Personal expenses
  • Extra meals and drinks
  • Gratuities

Payments

  • Deposit 35% of total – paid at booking
  • Trip balance – 60 days before travel date

Cancellation and Refund Policy

  • Cancellable and refundable up to 60 days before trip start date
  • Maximum refundable amount is 75% of total trip cost.