Corsica - an island rising majestically out of the Mediterranean - is invaded every year by European tourists looking for a varied holiday experience, from relaxing on the beach or admiring spectacular scenery, to exploring olive groves and cork forests.
Holiday-makers flock to the island's east coast for its long stretches of enchanting sandy beaches, and the quaint fishing villages dotted along its sun-kissed shores. On the other side of the island, cliffs and rocky inlets offer awe-inspiring views, while the mountainous interior remains largely wild in between cultivated groves of olives and pine plantations.
Although a French island, Corsica is predominantly Italian in flavour. Its close geographical neighbour has over many centuries had a strong influence on the language, cuisine and architecture of the island. The local language, for example, derives much from Tuscan. Before being sold to France in 1768, Corsica was controlled in turn by the Greeks, Romans, Vandals, Byzantines, Moors and Lombards, and each conquering nation left its mark on the island, its influence added to the Corsican melting pot. Today, Corsica tolerates French rule, mainly because of France's heavy subsidies and generous tax concessions.