Tucked into the narrowest part of the Golfe de Valinco, the small port of Propriano, 57km southeast of Ajaccio, centres on a fine natural harbour that was exploited by the ancient Greeks, Carthaginians and Romans, but became a prime target for Saracen pirate raids in the sixteenth century, when it was largely destroyed. Redeveloped in the 1900s, it now boasts a thriving marina, and handles ferries to Toulon, Marseille and Sardinia.
During the summer, tourists come here in droves for the area’s beaches. The nearest of these, plage de Lido, lies 1km west, just beyond the Port de Commerce, but it’s nowhere near as pretty as the coves strung along the northern shore of the gulf around Olmeto plage. You can reach Olmeto on the three daily buses from Propriano to Porto.