The village is also famous for St Julia, patron saint of Corsica, who was martyred here in the fifth century. The story goes that she had been sold into slavery at Carthage and was being taken by ship to Gaul when the slavers docked here. A pagan festival was in progress, and when Julia refused to participate she was crucified; the gruesome legend relates that her breasts were then cut off and thrown onto a stone, from which sprang two springs, now enshrined in a chapel by the beach. To get there, follow the sign on the right-hand side of the road before you enter the square, which points to La Fontaine de Ste-Julia, down by the rocks. Reached by a flight of six hundred steps, Nonza's long grey beach is discoloured as a result of pollution from the now disused asbestos mine up the coast. This may not inspire confidence, but the locals insist it's safe (they take their own kids there in summer), and from the bottom you do get the best view of the tower, which looks as if it's about to topple into the sea.
The only accommodation in the village is the Auberge Patrizi (tel 04.95.37.82.16; €5570), attached to the big restaurant below the church. Its rooms occupy an attractively converted stone house, five minutes' walk down a steep flight of steps towards the beach.
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