Once known as the Bastia, the Citadel was built in 1380 by Genoese governors Leonelli Lomellini.
Built on a rocky promontory, it rises above Terra-Vecchia. There are two ways to get there: by taking the shady paths of the Romieu gardens, the real green lung of the city; or by taking the flight of steps of the Romieu gardens which will take you a few metres from the monumental Louis XVI gate through which you enter this tourist mecca of the city.
Similar to a village in its atmosphere and serenity, the Citadel opens a timeless parenthesis: here no cars, narrow streets lined with colorful buildings bathe in an atmosphere conducive to relaxation. During your stroll you will appreciate all the charm of this place full of history.
In the heart of the Citadel, stands proudly on the Place du Donjon, the Palais des Gouverneurs, headquarters of the Musée d’histoire de la ville, whose permanent collections and temporary exhibitions invite visitors on a journey back in time, an immersion in the city’s past. A veritable haven of peace, the palace’s hanging gardens offer a pleasant break and a superb view from Terra-Vecchia to the islands of the Tuscan archipelago.
Do not miss to visit also, the Cathedral Sainte-Marie whose interior reveals multiple masterpieces as well as the oratory of the brotherhood Saint Roch, true jewel of style rococo.
Since 2015, the Citadelle has hosted the only 4-star establishment in the city, and the area has a number of restaurants and cafés where it is very pleasant to linger on the terrace.
The village really developed in the 15th century and it was from its navy, Porto-Cardo, that Bastia was born. On February 4, 1839, the city of Bastia proposed to reattach the village to its municipal territory. Cardo then became a district of the city by order of King Louis – Philippe on April 13, 1844. Take advantage of your visit to cool off at the fountain in the square. In the last century, Cardo’s water was sold by street vendors to the inhabitants of Bastia. Many walks are available around the village. The signposted hiking trail will allow you to discover the city’s ancient “glaciers” ( E Nivere), dating from the 16th and 18th centuries, as well as splendid panoramas of Bastia.
Things to see and do
Cours Favale, 20200 Bastia