Being a South-African, living in Corsica, I can’t help but realise how many similarities there are between my home region and Corsica. Firstly there is the “fynbos” the fauna and flora in the Western Cape that looks so much like the “maquis” in Corsica. Both can only be found in their specific region. I am a big lover of nature and the outdoors so I would also say that both places have the same wild, breathtaking landscapes. There is still something untouched and untamed about the nature here and in the Cape, which I absolutely love.
With Corsica being a mountain in the sea and Cape Town having some beautiful mountain ranges itself, hiking is most popular. In Corsica you have the GR20, for the die hard hikers that like a huge challenge, which takes up to 15 days to complete. Yet you have thousands of other hiking and walking trails that could last an hour to a day depending what you are up for; a gentle walk along the coast or a more challenging hike up the mountain.
Cape Town; the majestic Table Mountain that protects the Mother City and many other mountain ranges that fall into the sea is a magnificent hiking trail. One can hike up Table Mountain in the morning and see the whole city and its bays right around at a 360° angle, one of the most beautiful views in the world! Not far from here there are multiple breathtaking hiking trails in all of the mountain ranges around Cape Town.
Now, there is also something very unique about the similarity of the brightness of the natural light of Corsica and Cape Town. It is not without reason that photographers and advertising companies share their time between Corsica and Cape Town to shoot campaigns and adverts. As the seasons are inverted, photographers have the best conditions all year round in regards to the natural lighting and the diversity of different landscapes.
South-Africans and Corsicans both have a very special relationship to their land, with a desire to take care of it, as in both cases they fought hard to keep it and to preserve it. This proximity to the earth still remains in the hearts of both populations. Both countries have a big historical agricultural and farming community which creates a calm and settled nature as it often does amongst people that work the earth.
South-Africans love to travel and you can find them almost in any corner of the world exploring, working and gaining experience or just enjoying different cultures and countries. All South-Africans, with no exception, always remain expats at heart of South Africa as home and consider it the most beautiful place in the world! The only other population that I have ever heard talking about their region in such a passionate way are the Corsicans. “We can leave, yet in our minds we will go back home again at some point, someday….”
It is of essence to me, as a South-African living in Corsica, to compare the uncanny similarities between my birth country, South Africa and Corsica. The only thing most people know about Corsica is that it is the birthplace of Napoleon and not much else, as to Corsicans that Nelson Mandela is synonymous to Cape Town, South Africa, and not much else. I am adamant to promote Corsica and Cape Town through our upcoming retreats and other projects we have in mind.
Corsica is a gem, a jewel and possibly the the best kept secret of the Mediterranean. I am still trying to figure out why the Corsicans like to keep this magical country with its magnificent beauty and weather a secret…yet in a weird way I feel the same way. Contact us and visit Corsica to experience it for yourself!