The Iles de Lavezzi are a group of small, barren uninhabited granite islands, 10 km southeast off the coast of Bonifacio, with beautiful shell sand beaches and azure-coloured sea.
Lavezzi Islands Corsica Guide
Several boat companies in Bonifacio marina run day trips to this designated nature reserve. The islets are a paradise for swimmers, snorkellers and divers.
DivingDivers get to experience Lavezzi's friendly colony of large grouper fish, as well as moray eels, rays, dentex, red scorpion fish, barracudas and gorgonian coral. The groupers are mostly Dusky groupers (around two feet in length, although they can reach six), with some rarer White groupers. Given the islands' protected status since 1982, the grouper colonies have thrived and have no fear of humans, enabling divers to swim close.
Ile de Lavezzi is the island from which the whole archipelago gets its name. There are no hotels, cafes or facilities on Lavezzi, nor any shade, so it is essential you come prepared with water, a picnic, sunscreen and adequate shade from the sun.
Arriving by BoatNumerous tour operators run trips to Lavezzi from Bonifacio (and Porto-Vecchio), with a shuttle service providing a choice of when to return. En route to Lavezzi these excursions pass by the private Island of Cavallo (home to the very wealthy), Pointe de Sperone and several calanches (rocky inlets). The trip costs around 25 Euros per person.
Beaches and WalksIt is a ten/fifteen-minute walk to the most popular beaches from the boat drop-off point (by the cemetery Achiarino). A network of clearly marked footpaths span the island, which you are free to wander around provided you keep to the paths. The island is scattered with sculpted granite boulders, and is home to rare species of wild flower including the yellow-horned poppy. There is a marked three-hour circuit walk across the island with some spectacular panoramic views (this walk is not suitable for young children). There is a lighthouse located on the southern point of the island.
The Cimetiere Achiarino is a cemetery for the victims of the worst ever shipwreck in Mediterranean history, the Semillante shipwreck of 1855 in which 773 crew and soldiers bound for the Crimean War perished.