An island southeast of France, Corsica is thoroughly French with an Italian flair. Although it’s best known as Napoleon’s birthplace, the island is worth visiting for its stunning protected nature areas. Gaze at the rocky cliffs and outcroppings, bright bluish-green waters, and more than 100 species of aquatic birds. The Gulf of Porto, with its connected series of islets and caves, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and painstakingly maintained. —L.M.