The Weekend Australian - Travel - - DESTINATION AFLOAT -

Flights de­part London Gatwick for Cor­sica Ajac­cio from April to Oc­to­ber; Air France has year-round con­nec­tions to four Cor­si­can air­ports via French air­ports in­clud­ing Paris-Orly, Nice and Mar­seille. The Cor­sica Clas­sic 8th Edi­tion takes place this year from Au­gust 27 to Septem­ber 10. Rec­om­mended ac­com­mo­da­tion at Ho­tel Casadel­mar, built in tiers be­side the Gulf of Por­toVec­chio; it’s a five-star re­treat with 31 guest rooms set amid tran­quil gar­dens with a pool and beauty spa. A com­pli­men­tary shut­tle boat fer­ries guests to the small beach of the Casadel­mar’s 15-room sis­ter ho­tel, La Plage Casadel­mar. More: casadel­; • cor­sica-clas­ • visit-cor­ the waves with about 20 sim­i­lar yachts, our brightly coloured spin­nakers strain­ing in the wind.

Af­ter four ex­hil­a­rat­ing hours on the ocean, Sa­van­nah re­turns to the tiny har­bour in Boni­fa­cio, which must be one of the most ex­tra­or­di­nary an­chor­ages in the Mediter­ranean, tucked away in­land at the end of a fjord-like chan­nel of lime­stone cliffs. Men­tioned in Homer’s Odyssey, the dis­tinctly Ital­ianate Boni­fa­cio, with its ninth-cen­tury citadel, has been home to Greeks, Ro­mans, Pisans, Ge­noese, Turks and, more re­cently, the French For­eign Le­gion. Now it is in­vaded by our 220-strong boat show fes­tooned with flags and hand­some of­fi­cials sport­ing chic polo shirts and deck shoes. While the el­e­gant quay has plenty of smart restau­rants and bars, we all pic­nic on deck. Later it is an­nounced we’ve won, and in a record time, and the Mor­ri­son chil­dren pick up the tro­phy.

But prizes aren’t the point of the Cor­sica Clas­sic; they’re only a way to close a week of mess­ing about in boats (al­beit a fleet of su­perla­tive clas­sic yachts) with an af­fa­ble bunch of yachties, round af­ter round of par­ties, ir­re­press­ible Mediter­ranean sun­shine and the stun­ning coast­line of an is­land that still feels barely dis­cov­ered.


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