The island of Corsica is the jewel in the crown of southern France. This Mediterranean island, sitting between mainland France, Spain and Italy, may be known to most of us as Napoleon’s birthplace, but it is also a popular destination in its own right, with grand cities, beautiful, green countryside and its own fascinating regional culture. Come with us as we discover this special corner of France this week.
What is the property market like in Corsica?
Corsica has the reputation of being decidedly pricey, and that is true in many areas. The average price of a 100m2 home across the island is €319,000. But that’s only half the story, because average prices are very much weighted by the glamorous coastal resorts – as you’ll see in oru area guide.
Not only that, but, interestingly, there is very little price difference between houses and apartments. This is likely due to apartments renting out well as holiday lets, pushing up the demand for them. Indeed, in some parts of the island, houses are actually cheaper – take Alata, where the average 100m2 house costs €2,000 less than a similarly sized apartment.
What is life like on Corsica?
Corsica is part of France, so you benefit from the same legal, health and education systems as in the rest of France – possibly the strongest in the Mediterranean region. However, it comes with its own, perhaps more laid-back culture and way of life. There’s a local language, called Corsican, which sounds a bit more like Italian.
Historically, before tourism came along, the island was quite poor, and the local cuisine is consequently hearty and rustic. Its charcuterie is considered some of the best in the world, including the famous liver sausage, figatellu. Since 2004, the island’s olive oil has enjoyed EU protection, as is its delicious wine. You can truly enjoy the finer things in life here on Corsica!
Where are the best places to live on Corsica?
Generally speaking, the south is a bit more ‘glitz and glam’, and is consequently more expensive. It’s a fantastic area for those looking for a bustling social calendar and lots to do year-round. The north is a bit more seasonal, tranquil and affordable. It can feel a little quiet in the winter season, however, if you’re looking for a bit of hustle and bustle. Here are our top places to buy.
Glamorous Porto-Vecchio, surrounded by green hills and fronting onto the blue Mediterranean, is one of the hotspots for visitors to the region. Its vibrant marina and many beaches make it ideal for the beach bunny or watersport lover! The labyrinthine alleyways open onto piazzas lined with cafés and locals and visitors enjoying the sun.
Average 100m2 property price: €445,800
Ajaccio is the capital of the region and an excellent area to move to if you’re looking for employment, with many opportunities based here. It enjoys a daily mean temperature of 16ºC around the year, with generally warm and dry weather (although thunderstorms are common). The Place Foch is one of the places to be seen, a pleasant square with a central fountain, palm trees and lots of cafés. A demographic growth in the 20th century means much of the city is new – a massive 85% of homes were constructed after WWII.
Average 100m2 property price: €361,000
Propriano is the perfect town for those who enjoy the odd spot of yachting! Its pleasure port has numerous yachts, although there are also working berths for the local fishing fleet. This makes the town a great combination of the ‘top of the range’ lifestyle and an authentic, living community – not just for tourists. Nearby, Campomoro is a must-visit for its beautiful beaches, and the hills behind the town are popular for quad-biking and mountain-biking.
Average 100m2 property price: €341,000
Our top pick from central Corsica, Corte sits in the midst of a gorgeous national park. It has narrow streets with tall, period properties, emanating out from a central square, Place Gaffori, where you’ll find a local museum. Some of the town can show some signs of wear and tear, but it only adds to the charm. The Rampe Sainte-Croix, a stepped street, takes you up to most of the town’s restaurants and bars. The presence of the University of Corsica makes it a more lively town.
Average 100m2 property price: €256,300.
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