Monday, October 10, 2011


Casinca - La Canonica

It has been a long time, but we have finally got round to spending a day in the Casinca. This ancient region, just south of the road connecting Ponte Leccia to Bastia (but nearer the Bastia end) has been on our must-visit list for years – and finally we got round to it.

We did it the wrong way round. We ended where we should have started, at La Canonica just south of Bastia’s Poretta Airport where the early Pisan bishops had their see. It seems that Christians were here from the very earliest years of the Christian era.

When the first Cathedral was built here in what we English would call The Saxon period (though there certainly weren’t any Saxons round here) it would have been the most impressive building in Corsica. Information on the site tells us that the first bishops here were in all likelihood from North Africa after they had been chased out of there by the vandals in the 2nd and 3rd Centuries AD. The ruins of the sixth century basilica (see my photo of some of the remains, above) are still very easily recognisable on the site though the later Cathedral, still standing but annoyingly locked when we visited, is the first feature to take the eye.

This site is yet another reminder that there’s so much more to Corsica than the restaurants and the beaches.

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