Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve, France

  • Vanda Claudino-Sales
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 28)


This nature reserve on the west coast of Corsica, Mediterranean Sea, is centered on the gulfs of Porto and Girolata between the craggy Scandola Peninsula to the north and the turrets of the Calanche (a type of “fjord” of the Mediterranean Sea) of Piana to the south. The reserve is part of the Regional Natural Park of Corsica and is made by an impressive porphyritic rock mass. The coastline is known for its orange-red cliffs and rugged headlands up to 900 m high, sheltered sand beaches, and the coves and serrated red ochre pinnacles of the Calanche of the Piana coast – the livid, sheer, and jagged cliffs of the coast contain many grottos and are flanked by numerous stacks, islets, and coves. The vegetation is also outstanding and gives examples of Mediterranean maquis, a densely growing evergreen shrub. In addition, the clear waters, their islets, and inaccessible caves harbor a rich marine life.


  1. Aymonin GG (1975) La nature Corse: menaces et espoirs. Bulletin de la Societe Botanique de France 121:5–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Danišík M, Kuhlemann J, Dunkl I, Evans NJ, Székely B, Frisch W (2012) Survival of ancient landforms in a collisional setting as revealled by combined fission track and (U-Th)/He thermochronometry: a case study for Corsica. J Geol 120(2):87–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Desjeux C, Desjeux B (1984) Les Parcs Naturels Régionaux de France. Ed. Créer, NonetteGoogle Scholar
  4. Durand-Delga M (1978) Corse, Guides Geologiques Regionaux. Masson, ParisGoogle Scholar
  5. Fédération des Parcs Naturels de France (1982) Les Parcs Naturels de Régioneaux et la Protection de la Nature. Ministère de l’Environnement, Report, Paris, FranceGoogle Scholar
  6. Gamisans J, Marzocchi J (1996) La Flore Endémique de la Corse. EDISUD, Aix-en-Provence, FranceGoogle Scholar
  7. Gibbons W (1985) Corsican geology: an excursion guide based on G.A. Trip to Corsica June 25th – July 2n 1983. Proc Geol Assoc 96:171–182CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. International Union for Conservation of Nature (1983) World Heritage Nomination IUCN Technical Review Capes Girolata and Porto and Scandola Nature Reserve. Report, Gland, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
  9. IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) (2014) IUCN World Heritage Outlook 2014. Rappord, Gland, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
  10. IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) (2017) Gulf of Porto, Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Conservation Outlook. Accessed 28 Dec 2017
  11. Llobera M, Wilkinson KN, Weiss MC, Flaming RJ, Marini NAF, Mazet S (2010) Into the Maquis Methodological and Interpretational Challenges in Surveying La Balagne, Northwest Corsica. J Mediterr Archeol 23:169–197Google Scholar
  12. Maggi M, Rossetti F, Corfu F, Theye T, Torgeir BA, Faccenn C (2012) Clinopyroxene−rutile phyllonites from the East Tenda Shear Zone (Alpine Corsica, France): pressure −temperature−time constraints to the Alpine reworking of Variscan Corsic. J Geol Soc 169:723–732CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Malasoma A, Marroni M (2007) HP/LT metamorphism in the Volparone Breccia (Northern Corsica, France): evidence for involvement of the Europe/Corsica continental margin in the alpine subduction zone. J Metamorph Geol 25:529–545CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mattauer M, Faure M, Malavielle J (1981) Transverse lineation and large-scale structures related to Alpine obduction in Corsica. J Struct Geol 3:401–409CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Osipova E, Shadie P, Zwahlen C, Osti M, Shi Y, Kormos C, Bertzky B, Murai M, Van Merm R, Badman T (2017) IUCN world heritage outlook 2: a conservation assessment of all natural world heritage sites. IUCN, GlandCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Platt JP (2007) From orogenic hinterlands to Mediterranean-style back-arc basins: a comparative analysis. J Geol Soc 164:297–311CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Regions de France (2017) Corsica weather and climate. Accessed 29 Aug 2017
  18. Rehault JP, Boillot G, Maufret A (1984) The western Mediterranean Basin geological evolution. Mar Geol 55:447–477CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Rossi PH, Durand-Delga M, Lahondere JC, Lahandore D (2003) Carte géologique de la France à 1/50.000, feuille Santo Pietro di Tenda. BRGM, OrleansGoogle Scholar
  20. UNEP/WMCM (United Nations Environmental Programme/World Conservation Monitoring Centre) (2012) Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, gulf of Girolata, Scandola reserve, France. Report, Cambridge, EnglandGoogle Scholar
  21. UNESCO WHC (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Centre) (2017) Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve. Accessed 4 Sept 2017
  22. UNESCO WHC (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Center) (2015) Golfe de Porto: calanche de Piana, golfe de Girolata, réserve de Scandola (France) Sommaire de l’État de conservation 2015 – Décision 37 COM 7B.19. Report, Paris, FranceGoogle Scholar
  23. UNESCO WHC (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Centre) (2018) Gulfo of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve. Accessed 17 Jan 2018
  24. Weather and Climate (2017) Climate in Corsica. Accessed 29 Aug 2017
  25. Zarki-Jakni B, van der Beek P, Poupeau G, Sosson M, Labrin E, Rossi P, Ferrandini J (2004) Cenozoic denudation of Corsica in response to Ligurian and Thyrrhenian extension: results from apatite fission track thermochronology. Tectonics 23:123–135CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vanda Claudino-Sales
    • 1
  1. 1.Federal University of Ceará StateFortalezaBrazil

Personalised recommendations