“C” is for Citadels, Columbus & Calvi

You can be forgiven for thinking that Calvi isn’t exactly the most welcoming place upon first sight. The imposing stone fortress has fended off many an invader since the 1400s, and the massive snow-peaked mountains in the background only add to the drama of the scene. But as they often are, looks are deceiving, and the reception you can expect one you reach dry land is decidedly warm.

Start your stay by conquering the citadel—in a friendly way, of course. The climb is challenging, but half way up the hill, there are several restaurants that offer tasty provisions. So you can continue your final push to the top, no excuses, because the views of the harbor and surrounding city are worth every step.

Calvi is also the birthplace of Christopher Columbus. Unfortunately all that remains of his family home is a pile of ruins, as it was destroyed by the infamous Admiral Nelson, who ended up losing an eye in the process, during the French Revolution. (Perhaps that’s where the saying “it’s all fun and games until somebody loses an eye” came from?)

So instead, channel Columbus’ spirit of exploration by navigating Calvi’s winding streets in search of treasures like dried meats, local honey, and spices from the maquis bush from your newly discovered world.

Download An Explorer Guide +

Calvi Beach

Learn More +
Calvi Beach

Calvi Beach

The calm, shallow water and clean white sand make this one of the most beautiful beaches in Corsica. With many lifeguards on duty and plenty of watersports, this beach is perfect for relaxing or adventure.

Birthplace Of Christopher Columbus

Learn More +
Birthplace Of Christopher Columbus

Birthplace Of Christopher Columbus

Though official record states Columbus was born in Genoa in 1451, many of the residents of Calvi feel this was not true. Explore the walls of the Calvi Citadel and make your own assumptions.



One of the most popular sites in Calvi, the citadel was originally built in the mid 1200s. At the entrance, an inscription reads “Civitas Calvis Semper Fidelis”, a 15th century testament of loyalty to the republic of Genoa. The walled part of the city features incredible views from the ramparts.

Calvi, Corsica, France At a glance

Current Weather:
16°C / 60 °F
Partly Cloudy (Day)
Partly Cloudy (Day)
Fair (Day)
Current Time:
11:20:00 pm2018/11/12 23:20:00 pm
Monday, November 12
UTC/GMT +01:00
Exchange Rates:
  • 0.87
  • 1.16
  • 1.50
  • 1.52
  • 75.18
  • 3.81
  • 22.28
  • 1.69
Local Details:
GPS: 42°34'3.54"N 8°45'26"E
Size: 31.20 KM2 (12.05 MI2)
Population: 5,409
Density: 173 Pop/KM2 (67 Pop/MI2)
Country Code: +33

Choose Azamara®

For Your Next Voyage

Talk to an expert

0844 493 4016