Even though Corsica is famous for its beautiful beaches with turquoise water, you should not miss the river experience. Corsica is the most mountainous island in the Mediterranean, so it has plenty of rivers and lakes. For those who don’t like the summer heat, it can be very refreshing to drive up a mountain and find a beautiful natural swimming pool carved in rocks, under the shade of pine trees or chestnut trees. Take a picnic and spend the hot afternoon cooling off in one of those places.
The river Asco comes down from the highest mountains of the island, in the north. From the main road going from Ponte-Leccia to Ile Rousse and Calvi, take the road going to the villages of Moltifao and Asco. The higher up you go the best river pools you will find. The canyon is gorgeous. One of the best natural swimming pools is located just under an ancient Genoese bridge from which you can dive right into the clear, fresh water.
The Tavignano river
A short walk from the town of Corte, the Tavignano offers several very good spots for swimming.
The Restonica river
A short drive from Corte, after the bridge (it’s well indicated), the beautiful Restonica canyon is covered in a magnificent pine tree forest. The river itself is a beloved spot for swimming. At the end of the road, you find the departure to a famous hike towards the lakes of Melu and Capitellu.
The Cavu river
The Cavu river is in the south east: if you are staying near Porto-Vecchio, this is your option. From Sainte-Lucie de Porto-Vecchio, drive to the village of Taglio Rosso (Taddu Rossu) and take the forest path leading to the waterfall and to three very clear natural swimming pools carved in the rocks. There is even a place to buy some snacks there.
The forest of Aitone
The forest of Aitone near Evisa is famous for its natural swimming pool. Park your car at the entrance of the forest on the D84 road and follow the signs to the pool.
The Bavella mountains in the south are an ideal area to take a river swim. La Purcaraccia is a small river near the village of Quenza. From the pass of Bavella, take the D268 road to Solenzara. Park your car after the pass of Larone and walk about 40 min on a forest path to the bed of the river. Cross the river and you’ll find a giant rock and reach the first spot. There are other spots higher up, as well as some natural slides on the rocks. It’s well worth the hike!
A small village close to Solenzara on the eastern coast, it has good river spots with natural beaches just next to the village.
Barchetta, in the north east, is a wonderful place to go kayaking on a river Golo, the longest one of the island. If you are staying around Bastia, this is a good idea. The village of Barchetta is located on the main road going from Bastia to Corte. You can either swim in the river, which is pleasant enough at this place, or be a bit more adventurous and rent a kayak.