Saleccia Beach is one of the most paradisiacal of Corsica.
Fine sand, dunes, turquoise waters and mountain views.
It is not accessible by car, but the way is already a wonder.
Here is our guide to help you plan your visit: map, how to get there, access, sand, conditions…
Why visit Saleccia Beach in Corsica
Is the beach of Saleccia worth it?
The white sandy beach extends for more than 1km. It is a mixture of colors and hypnotizing forms:
- White sand dunes
- Rocky heads of the desert
- Turquoise water
- Mountains of Cap Corse
We could have stayed all day watching the turquoise waves crashing on the sand…
And anyway the way to get there and back is just as mesmerizing!
Virtual visit – video
Here is a short video with the whole thing by boat to Lotu and the hike to the beach of Saleccia.
Why choose this beach?
There are many reasons to choose this beach:
- it is far from any construction
- it has a very fine and pleasant sand
- it is open to the sea with beautiful movements of the water
- there is a pine forest behind when you need some shade.
- In 1943, the submarine Casabianca delivered weapons to the resistance on this beach.
- And a funny fact: in 1961, some scenes of the Normandy landing were shot for the movie “The Longest Day”!!! That’s because there are no concrete buildings here.
More pictures after the practical advice.
Access and Map – Saleccia beach, Agriates Desert
Where is the beach of Saleccia?
- North Corsica
- In the Agriates Desert
- Just south of Cap Corse and Saint-Florent
- Departure of the boats from Saint-Florent
- Calvi to Saint-Florent = 1h30
- Bastia to Saint-Florent = 40min
- Ajaccio to Saint-Florent = 3h (by inland road)
- Here is a map to help you find your way
- and see all our tips for planning a dream trip to Corsica here
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How to get to Saleccia beach
It is possible to get there by foot, by boat or by 4WD, or a combination of these means. Here are the 7 options:
- Option 1 – our favorite
Drive to St-Florent + comfortable boat to Lotu beach + hike to Saleccia (1h to 1h15 walk)
- Option 2
Drive to St-Florent + fast boat to Saleccia
- Option 3
Drive to St-Florent + more 4WD track from Casta (with your own 4WD or an organized tour) – 12km of bumpy track.
- Option 4
Long hike from Saint-Florent to Saleccia: 18km one way (or even longer from Ostroconi)
- Option 5 – from Calvi
Day trip from Calvi with 4WD – see program and availability
- Option 6 – from Bastia
Day trip from Bastia with 4WD – see program and availability
See more details on boats and tours in the following sections.
If you take the boat to Saint-Florent, no problem. There are large parking lots near the port.
They are charged from May to October.
If you go to the beach of Saleccia in the middle of summer, book your boats and tours in advance, because they fill up!
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On the sand and in the water… practical advice
Best time to visit
This beach is pleasant all year round.
In winter, even if the water is too cold, you can enjoy the beautiful scenery. The sand is also white, the mountains are still there…
The beach is oriented more to the south.
As there are no roads, the beach is not completely crowded in summer (but still popular). It is better to visit early.
And avoid weekends, because that’s when the locals will go.
The beach of Saleccia has one of the most beautiful sands of Corsica.
It is white and thin. It’s a joy to walk on. But don’t steal any, protect this natural space.
You have 1km of fine sand to rest or to walk to the sound of the waves.
Be careful, when there are not too many people on the beach, cows also come to enjoy it: on the paths or on the beaches. Don’t come any closer. This is their territory!
Also note that at any period, some beaches in Corsica can be covered with algae.
This can happen at any beach but not at the same time. It’s random.
Conditions for swimming
- This beach is more open to the sea so you can have bigger waves than on other Corsican beaches – be careful!
- The beach is not supervised
- The slope of entry in the water is correct but not the softest of Corsica
- Beware of boats – in summer, this beach is still very popular and those who have a boat come to land there. They don’t always pay much attention.
- Be careful, there is no shade on the beach, you have to pass the dunes to go under the pine trees.
It is not the best beach for water activities.
For snorkeling, there are some fish, but few rocks to have an interesting biodiversity.
You find rocks and more activities at each end
And with the amount of boats coming in for the day, it’s not ideal for kayaking or paddleboarding either.
Conditions with children
Due to the difficulty of access and the conditions, we don’t think this is the best beach to go to with children.
But it depends on your usual activities. If they like to hike, then yes. The path is not very difficult.
One of us likes coffee…
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The beach is completely bordered by sand dunes with vegetation.
Be respectful, use the paths already marked to access the sea and do not climb on the dune in other places. These are fragile environments that must be preserved.
The beach of Saleccia was chosen to realize scenes of the Normandy landing for the American film The Longest Day (1961)
That’s because it doesn’t have any buildings around it, like all the beaches in Normandy now.
But it’s fun, because visually the beaches are very different. The sand, the colors… Learn more about the Normandy landing beaches.
Restaurants – Saleccia beach
Saleccia has 2 small restaurants but they are only open in summer.
There is one at each end of the beach
None are directly on the sand.
One of the 2 is next to the campsite: Restaurant du désert. And the other is in the middle of the trees: A Piniccia di Saleccia.
No great cuisine, just simple pizzas and dishes.
Hotels and Camping
There are no hotels in the immediate vicinity of the beach.
But there is a campsite 300m from the beach, at the western end.
5min walk to reach the beach from the campsite.
If you are hiking the Agriates coastline, this is a good place to spend a night.
But you can also come just to enjoy the nature.
Be careful, it’s a very isolated campsite and the facilities are therefore basic: no electricity (except a little for the buildings with solar power), no drinking water and mosquitoes. Bring along everything you need!
If you don’t have your own tent, they have some unusual options.
See the campsite.
Boat to Lotu and hike to Saleccia
Here is some information if you choose to go boating or hiking.
We think this is one of the best options, to enjoy a bit of everything.
Crossing by boat
The boat ride to Lotu beach is short but very pleasant.
At the beginning you enjoy the views of Saint-Florent surrounded by mountains.
On the way, you will notice La Mortella. It is a Genoese tower with a long history. It was built between 1553 and 1555. It was essential for the protection of the region. If you are from England or Ireland, you may have seen similar tours. This is because Admiral Nelson decided to build similar ones in 1794.
The main boat for the beach of Lotu is with the Company Popeye – see.
Hiking in the Agriates desert
The trails are well maintained and well marked. It’s easy to get around.
As you can see below, you will find small posts indicating the directions.
You have 2 options to walk to the beach of Saleccia: the interior path or the coastal path.
Count 1h to 1h15 of walking. The coastal path is a little longer.
You can take one trail on the way out and another on the way back.
We have a preference for the path of the interior for its magnificent views on the beach of Lotu, the lagoon behind and the mountains of Cap Corseas on the picture below.
The path goes up and down, but it is an easy walk. There are no technical difficulties.
However, there is not much shade, so remember to bring plenty of water and protective clothing.
On the way you can enjoy breathtaking views of the desert and its rocky peaks.
You can even see the high mountains in the background (sometimes still covered with snow, at more than 2000m altitude).
Pine forest behind Saleccia
Towards the end of the walk, you will be surprised to enter a wooded area. It’s a pine forest!
Considering the heat it can be, it is very pleasant.
Note that if you arrive by 4WD, you still have to walk 5 minutes to get to the beach, you can not get closer by car.
And then the sea appears… And this is one of our favorite pictures taken in Corsica.
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- Where to sleep in Corsica – read
- The most beautiful beaches of Corsica – read
- The most beautiful villages of Corsica – read
- The most beautiful cities of Corsica – read
- The most beautiful destinations in Corsica – read
- Best things to do in Corsica – read
- Ajaccio or Bastia? – read
- Planning a road trip in Corsica –read
- Which ferry for Corsica – read
- How to get to Corsica – read
- itinerary: 3 days – 4 or 5 days
See all our tips for a successful trip to Corsica
Direct access to the beach of Saleccia by fast boat
Another option for those who do not wish to walk is to take a Taxi Boat to Saleccia or the Popeye’s interplage formula.
Several companies offer direct crossings to the beach from the port of Saint-Florent. The shuttles take 25min to make the trip.
Be careful, it can be shaky at the finish and there is no pontoon, you go down in the water.
And beware, if the weather or sea conditions are bad, they can’t get there!
Access to Saleccia by 4WD
The 4WD option is also very nice.
Be careful, do not take the tracks of the Agriate desert if you do not have a 4X4 vehicle. The parking lot is at the west end of the beach.
You are allowed to go down with your own vehicle, or you can join an excursion, for example with Saleccia off road.
4WD tour options are also available from here:
- Calvi – see program and availability
- Bastia – see program and availability
How to get to Corsica
Option 1: by ferry
Departure from France and Italy – see all options in our article
or directly compare schedules, prices and availability
Advantage: you can take your car
Option 2: by plane
Airports in Bastia, to visit the North, Figari to visit the South, or Ajaccio convenient for all Corsica.
Compare prices and availability ofairline tickets
And then rent a car: see our favorite comparator
If you are traveling in the summer, remember to book early to get the best prices and choices!
Need more help choosing?
See our advice on how to go to Corsica
Other beautiful beaches nearby
As an alternative to Saleccia, you can consider the following beaches:
Main entry point into the Agriates desert near Saint-Florent.
Instead of continuing to Saleccia, you can enjoy Lotu.
The beach itself is not the most beautiful but the surroundings are captivating. It faces the mountains of Cap Corse and has a large lagoon behind it.
Beach of Ostriconi
The beach of Ostriconi is located at the southern limit of the Agriates desert between L’Ile-Rousse and Saint-Florent.
At Ostriconi, the access road is higher than the beach, which allows for a breathtaking view of the white sand, the intense colors of the water and the rocks of the Agriates desert in the background.
There is a short walk downhill to the beach, but no facilities.
Because it is not very close to a big city, it is much less populated in summer.