French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was born here in the capital of the island of Corsica. Hike, swim and tour the historic sites.
Ajaccio is the largest city on Corsica and the capital of this French island. Palm tree-lined boulevards and waterside cafés provide commanding views of the bay. Enjoy the city’s art, architecture and history. Take long hikes in the countryside and visit uninhabited offshore islands.
Notice reminders of the city’s most famous son, Napoleon Bonaparte, everywhere. The first emperor of France was born in Ajaccio in 1769. Parks, squares and boulevards are dotted with statues of the military leader and streets are named after the Bonaparte family.
Visit the Place d'Austerlitz to see the Grotte Napoleon, a large bronze statue on a pyramid-shaped plinth. The monument is near a cave where Bonaparte played as a child. Visit Maison Bonaparte, the house where Napoleon was born. Today, it’s a museum covering his family’s history. Find more mementos of the Bonaparte family in the town hall building in Place du Maréchal Foch.
Walk through narrow lanes of the old quarter lined by pastel-colored houses, cafés, boutiques and bars. Step inside the 16th-century cathedral to see the marble font where Napoleon was baptized. Nearby is the Fesch Museum, a good place to see Italian Renaissance paintings and sculptures.
Sunbathe, swim and participate in watersports at the city’s beaches and coves. Take a diving trip or boat tour of the four uninhabited Sanguinaires Islands, just a few miles offshore.
Ajaccio is a magnet for walkers and hikers. Follow several trails passing through the Corsican countryside with views over the Gulf of Ajaccio. Hike the Path of the Ridges, which starts in the city center and runs along the coastline for almost 7 miles (11 kilometers).
Ajaccio is a ferry port and stopping point for Mediterranean cruises. The city’s airport has regular flights to several French cities and many other European destinations. Get around by bus, rental car, taxi or on foot.
With beaches, museums and historic sights, find plenty to do in Ajaccio. As many people do, enjoy daytrips into the countryside as well.