A tower among towers...
One of the few square Genoese towers on the island, the Tower of Porto, originally Porto de Sia, is nonetheless the most famous.
It is located in the municipality of Ota and stands on a rocky spur at a height of 45 metres in the Gulf of Porto.
Built in the middle of the 16th century, it houses an exhibition on Corsican shores.
At its summit, an exceptional panorama of the Gulf of Porto awaits you.
A little history...
In the middle of the 16th century, two sites were chosen to fortify the Gulf of Porto: the mouth of the Sia (the old name of the river Porto) and the cove of Girolata.
Work on the tower of Porto, originally called "Porto di Sia", which guards the access to the bottom of the gulf, began in 1551.
Whether round or square, the purpose of the towers is identical and their structure comparable.
The tower was designed for a small garrison with modest artillery. In the 18th century, it was known that the garrison was limited to a capo and two soldiers.
The damage caused in the 18th century by the explosion of the powder magazine, a munitions depot, had weakened it considerably.
Erosion and time have taken their toll on the tower
. However, in 1954, the tower was restored by Mr. Gelpi Armand, foreman of the Société Française des Roches Cristallines, and in 1993, a second restoration was carried out to make it accessible to the public.
It has been completely restored and from its upper terrace offers an exceptional view of the whole site and the Gulf of Porto.
It is reached by a path cut into the rock at the end of the pedestrianised lane leading to the port.
An outside staircase and then a ramp inside lead to the platform and at the top, a magnificent viewpoint overlooking the gulf and the village can be seen.
A permanent exhibition dedicated to the fortification of the shores of Corsica can be discovered inside.
At the foot of the tower, the small heather museum traces the history of this unusual shrub, which has played an important role in the region, particularly in the manufacture of handicrafts...