Corsica: Shopping Holiday
A little slice of heaven (out of peak season)
Shopping in Corsica tends to revolve more around food than clothes so if you want to do some retail I wouldn’t set your sights too high. Corsicans enjoy the simple life and high fashion is not a priority. So if you want a shopping holiday for traditional and local food and drink you will find great quality goods. But as far as fashion goes Corsica has few shops to keep you occupied. However, craft markets and local produce markets are brilliant in Corsica. Local specialities are available in the épiceries, boulangeries and charcuteries in Corsica and for the opportunity to find out more about the products visit the centres of production such as the alpine bergeries and vineyards. Corsica offers a great variety of gastronomic delights including maquis, which is flavoured honey, as well as a wide range of chestnut-based products, charcuterie and cheeses. The best place to sample and purchase local produce is at the lively colourful markets in the main towns. L’Ile Rousse has a local market every morning in the covered market place until 12pm. The stalls sell fresh fish and seafood, local charcuterie, cheeses, wines, honey and locally grown fruit and vegetables. In Propriano there is a daily indoor market every morning on Rue Pandolfi where you can buy locally grown fruit and vegetables. Ajaccio, the capital, is worth visiting for its daily market on Place César-Caminchi. This is one of the largest fresh produce markets on the island and although not cheap, the quality is undeniably great. You can get fresh cut flowers, fruit and vegetables and delicacies such as fig jam, honey, wild boar sauces and ewe's milk cheeses. In the market in Bastia you will come across stalls that sell vegetables, fish, Corsican specialities and even clothes. There are souvenir shops in the main resorts but if you are looking for something traditionally Corsican then head to the handicraft shops or craftsmen's workshops where efforts to revive the ancient arts of knife-making, pottery, stoneware, basket-weaving and glass-blowing are becoming more and more popular. The shops in the old towns haven’t changed much over the last hundred years as Corsicans love to keep their traditions and want to maintain their traditional way of life.