As another contrast to the tragic Coronavirus pandemic news that is continuously swamping our consciousness at present. I thought I would revisit and share another of our travelling experiences.
Three years ago, Margaret and I were on a cruise visiting Corsica in the Adriatic sea. The ship arrived at Ajaccio, a busy port in Corsica, where we were berthed in a harbour conspicuous by the absence of large cranes and the usual piles of freight containers. Later we were to learn that there is little industry on the island of Corsica, hence the crystal clear waters of the surrounding blue sea. The island relies heavily on the tourism industry for its main source of income. Everything here is expensive as it has to be imported.
We were booked to go on a panoramic tour of the island.
We left the port and the town of Ajaccio, and made our way through verdant green fields, with many nice houses with pretty gardens, and smallholdings with some farm animals.
We finally reached the rocky coastline, with pretty sandy coves and beaches. The seawater was an amazing greeny-blue colour, crystal clear and beautifully clean. Our tour guide warned us that when the sea is rough, the invisible currents can be deadly, and extremely dangerous. There were people enjoying the beaches, although the high season here hadn’t started.
There are an incredible number of Olive trees here, both growing wild and many cultivated to make Olive oil. Eucalyptus trees have been introduced, apparently to soak up the excessive water in the atmosphere and in the soil.
Cultivated Grapevines are in evidence everywhere to produce the wonderful Corsican wine.
We passed many goats and pigs foraging along the side of the roads. Our guide informed us there were wild boar roaming freely on the island that sometimes bred with the domesticated pigs. There is a short season when it is permitted to hunt these wild boar for meat.
We slowly climbed the mountains where we viewed some spectacular pink and orange granite cliffs with some dramatic red rocks, known locally as Piana Calanche. Breathtakingly beautiful, these wonderful rock formations made for a dramatic background to the green pine trees. Everywhere one turned there was a wonderful view of pine forest or rocky escarpment.
We watched Red Kite birds of prey circling in the skies above, as we climbed the mountain. Our guide informed us that these are a protected species here as is the Fish Eagle.
The roads through the mountains are extremely narrow and our coach driver had great difficulty manoeuvring, whenever another vehicle approached us.
We stopped at another point along the way where we were able to take photographs of some more of the large local Pigs and some Cattle. The guide explained these animals were owned by people who left food for them at the same spot every day. He also warned against trying to stroke or to touch these animals as there were Sows there with Piglets.
We then began to descend from the mountain and finally we reached the beaches again, with their blue crystal clear waters.
We reached the dockside where we boarded our ship, carrying a head full of memories and many photographs to savour later.
Sadly, at present it seems it will be a long time before we are able to go on our travels again. Love ♥️ and Peace ☮️ from John and Margaret