Thursday, April 27, 2006


August and the travel industry

More stuff in the UK press this morning about how parents of young children and teachers are victimised by the travel industry. As we all know here, the price of holidays and airfares go up in school holidays and at half term. It's not fair, and I wish something could be done to even them up.

In Corsica, there is an analogous but related problem. The island gets densely packed in August, the month when the majority of French people make their annual getaway, and it gets difficult finding somewhere to stay. By far the largest group of Corsica's tourists is that from mainland France, so the impact on the island is huge.

The corollary of course is that the island's economy could do with a few more tourists in the other months. The tourist offices and airlines do their best to spread the season, to be fair. Calvi's "Festival du Vent", in the autumn, is a fun time to go and there is a bit of a carnival atmosphere, and as we saw earlier (April 22nd), Air France has been doing its best to get Brits to visit the island in December. Meanwhile, global warming has been doing its best to sabotage Corsica's intriguing but vanishingly short skiing season.

I much prefer to visit Corsica in the spring and autumn, and my very favourite time is the period from April to May. I'll take in an Easter procession if I'm there on the appropriate dates, but the things I love then are the snow covered peaks, the fantastic flowers, and the sense of everything waking up for the summer ahead.

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