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Ajaccio is a commune on the island of Corsica in France. It is the capital city as well as the largest city in Corsica, with a land area of around 82 square kilometers and a population in excess of 65,000 people. Ajaccio is found on the west coast of Corsica ? 210 nautical miles south east of Marseille. Its position is well sheltered by the wooded hills on the north shore of the Gulf of Ajaccio. It encompasses a harbor and takes up almost all the land space around the Gulf of Ajaccio with the suburbs of Ajaccio extending for a number of miles up the Gravona River Valley. This river is used for the city?s water supply and in fact, almost its entire flow is consumed for this purpose.
Ajaccio is one of the more popular tourist destinations in the Corsica region and many tourists visit the city each year to experience its rich cultural heritage. This heritage is personified by the Ajaccio Citadel which overlooks the old area of the town. While not often described as any beautiful form of architecture, the Ajaccio Citadel performed a large role in the defense of the ports in the city which were the most important in Corsica. The citadel, however, is not usually open to the public as it is still in use today by the navy but it has a very well told and retold story that local tour guides will embellish at the chance to tell to you.
Casa Bonaparte is preserved to pay homage to possibly the city?s most famous resident, Napoleon Bonaparte. The house is where he was born in 1769. Napoleon Bonaparte?s association with the town is evident everywhere you travel in the town ? there are statues of his home and roads named after him scattered around the city.
The Ajaccio Cathedral was constructed between 1577 and 1593 and is a Roman Catholic Cathedral as well as the seat of the Bishop of Ajaccio. The church is where Napoleon Bonaparte was baptized in 1771.