An epic two week trek from the north to the south of Corsica, following the complete GR20 hiking trail from the ancient mountain town of Calenza to the southerly village of Conca,

Luggage transport
Vehicle supported trek for greater comfort.
Complete GR20
Hike the whole GR20 from Calenzana to Conca
Professionally guided
Led by a qualified and experienced professional leader.

CORSICA CLASSIC GR20 HIKING ROUTE

Challenging 180 km of hiking, ridge walking and scrambling on the wild land of Corsica.

From 2,790.00€

Price per person.

View Dates
   

Advanced tech level

 

Groups of 6 - 10 hikers

 

Fitness level 5 out of 5

 

13 days of trekking

 

Corsica

 

4 nights hotel

 

6 nights Camping

 

4 nights Hostel

 

All meals included

 

Altitude up to 2600m

Starting in the north-west town of Calenzana, you will get a real sense of the history of the island in this small mountain town that has been inhabited since Roman times and has seen its fair share of turbulent battles throughout the centuries - these days it is better known for its wine, cheese and beautiful scenery.

The route winds south down through the granite peaks, rocky trails, scented forests, lush valleys and ancient villages that personify the unique character of Corsica.

The route is demanding but extremely rewarding, with incredible views and unforgettable experiences around every turn. Exposed ridges look out over sweeping scenery, steep climbs top out at amazing viewpoints, and scrambling over rocky terrain is rewarded with the cool waters of a beautiful clear lake.

Dates

Corsica Classic GR20 Hiking Route dates - 2020

Start date Spaces
Price from
 
June 21, 2020
L
2,790.00€
July 12, 2020
2,790.00€
July 26, 2020
2
2,790.00€
August 16, 2020
2,790.00€
August 30, 2020
G
2,790.00€
September 06, 2020
F
2,790.00€
L
   Limited Availability
F
Fully Booked
G
Guaranteed
2
Two More to Guarantee

Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrival Day

We start our trip with a transfer from Bastia airport to our hotel in Calvi, where we can relax and enjoy the harbour or the sandy beach. You will get to know your hiking companions over dinner in a local restaurant.

Day 14 - Bavella to Conca

Our last day on the GR20! Stunning mountain views and fragrant pine forests make the final day one to savour. The picturesque stone cottage of Paliri is the ultimate refuge on our trek; from here it is a gradual descent emerging from the mountains to reach the typical Corsican village of Conca, where we can enjoy a much deserved beer in the sunshine before a transfer takes us to Bastia. We can then relax in a nice hotel and celebrate with a final meal together in the restaurant.

Distance: 20km

Ascent: 690m

Descent: 1680m

Hiking Time: 8 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/559191219

Day 13 - Col Bocca di Chiralba to Col de Bavella

An exciting day of ridge walks and scrambling starts with a climb up to the Col Bocca di Chiralba at 2029m, with the dominating peak of Monte Incudine looming overhead. The trail then drops down past the Refuge d'Asinau to the valley floor, alongside a river and through a forest before we start climbing upwards again to reach the jagged granite pinnacles of Bavella. To reach our accommodation for the night we must first scramble across big slabs of rock, hauling ourselves over the steepest sections on fixed chains. We spend the night in a gite where we have access to our luggage.

Distance: 16km

Ascent: 1000m

Descent: 1325m

Hiking Time: 9 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/701660301

Day 12 - Arete a Monda to Crocce

A relatively flat day today with a bit of scrambling to reach the Arete a Monda, then a long traverse along this spectacular rocky ridge. A gentle descent brings us down from the ridge through a beech forest to a prairie with a freshwater spring that serves as an excellent picnic stop. We spend the night at Croce, one of the lovely gites that are dotted around the Bocca di l'Agnone. This flat area sits at 1570m and is not only the highest but also the largest plateau in Corsica with an abundance of flora and fauna. 

Distance: 15km

Ascent: 450m

Descent: 650m

Hiking Time: 7 hours

Route Map:https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/3021620537

Day 11 - Col de Rapari to Refuge d'Usciolu

We set off from the refuge at Col de Verde and hike up through the forest to reach a ridge, which we follow south to the Refuge de Prati and on past Punta del la Cappella to reach Col de Rapari and then Bocca di Laparo, where we can fill our water bottles from the natural spring. We continue along a ridge from where we have a close encounter with the summit of Monte Formicula before we reach our destination of Refuge d'Uscioulu at 1750m. We will camp beside the refuge tonight.

Distance: 16km

Ascent: 1290m

Descent: 830m

Hiking Time: 9-10 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/3021619747

Day 10 - Bocca Palmente to Col de Verde

A long but relatively easy day awaits us as we set off to the panoramic mountain pass of Bocca Palmente, which looks out over sweeping views of sea lagoons and coastal moorland. A long gentle descent to Capanelle takes us past old shepherds huts, overlooked by the massif of Monte Renoso. The trail opens out through meadows and past gurgling streams before we enter a forest to reach Col de Verde. We stay the night here in an authentic wooden lodge, nestled amongst the trees. We will sleep either in the dormitory or in cabins, and we will have access to our luggage.

Distance: 28km

Ascent: 1090m

Descent: 970m

Hiking Time: 9-10 hours

Route Map: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/575466443

Day 9 - Muratello Pass to Agnone Valley

From L'Onda we set off towards a high ridge that brings us to the Muratello Pass, enjoying incredible panoramic views along the way. The magnificent massif of Monte d'Oro towers above as we descend into the glacial valley of l'Agnone and on into the dense forest of Vizzavona. This marks the midway point of the GR20 route - we can celebrate having made it halfway! We should finish fairly early today, allowing us to relax at our lodgings in the cosy Gite Monte d'Oro, where we will have access to our luggage.

Distance: 11km

Ascent: 670m

Descent: 1180m

Hiking Time: 6-7 hours

Day 8 - Breche de Capitellu to Col de la Haute Route

We leave the refuge bright and early this morning to climb a steep rocky path up to Breche de Capitellu at 2225m, a stunning high mountain pass with sweeping views of the deep blue lakes below. Picking our way across the rocks above and around the lakes, we make our way across to the Col de la Haute Route via Lac de Rinoso. The little triangular refuge of Petra Piana greets us for a quick refreshment stop before we continue past beautiful rock pools, passing through the Manganello valley to cross the river on the Tolla bridge. It is a short walk from here up through the forest to the shepherd's hot of L'Onda, where we rest our heads for the night. Although we cannot access our baggage, we can take hot showers and stock up on essentials at the little shop in this working goat and sheep farm.

Distance: 20km

Ascent: 1400m

Descent: 1600m

Hiking Time: 10 hours

Day 7 - Golu to Manganu

Another leisurely start eases us into the day, as we set out on the horseshoe-shaped trail that gradually climbs uphill through the forest to the statue at Col St Pierre (1452m). Beech woods and a lofty ridge bring us to the verdant meadows that surround the glacial waters of Lac de Nino, where horses and cattle are often found grazing on the lush grass. After a breather to enjoy the tranquil view we carry on to Vaccaja, an old shepherd's hut and goat farm that produces fantastic fresh cheese. The trail continues for a couple more kilometres across the Camputile plateau to reach Refuge de Manganu, where we either sleep in the stone hut or camp outside.

Distance: 17km

Ascent: 750m

Descent: 565m

Hiking Time: 7-8 hours

Route Map: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/575466427

Day 6 - Ciottolu di Mori to Castel di Vergio

Yesterday's effort is rewarded with a more leisurely day today and a gentle start through fragrant pinewoods. A short sharp climb brings us up to the col and then we have about 2 hours of ascent to reach the Refuge Ciottulo di Mori at 2000m - the highest refuge on the trek. From here the trail follows a beautiful ridge south then descends into the Golu valley, which we hike along until we find the Castel di Vergio. This is our stop for the night; another small ski station that provides comfortable lodgings during summer. We have access to our luggage and there is a small shop for replenishing snacks and supplies.

Distance: 15km

Ascent: 910m

Descent: 950m

Hiking Time: 7-8 hours

Day 5 - Haut Asco to Bergerie de Ballone

A long and rewarding day starts with following the trail up to Monte Cinto, Corsica's highest peak at 2706m. Stunning view surround us as we traverse a beautiful ridge and then drop down to Lac du Cinto, a remote lake nestled in a valley surrounded by majestic peaks. Heading west, we climb up to Bocca Crucetta at 2450m before descending to our campsite for the night at the Bergerie de Ballone - a rustic wooden cabin where we can cool off with a dip in one of the nearby rock pools.

Distance: 13km

Ascent: 1600m

Descent: 1600

Hiking Time: 10 hours

Day 4 - Lac de la Muvrella to Haut Asco

We get to relive the adventures of Indiana Jones today, as we cross a suspension bridge across a river and use fixed chains to scramble up a rocky gorge! We pass the beautiful blue waters of Lac de la Muvrella to reach the ridge above, from where we can see the west coast of Corsica and the rugged peaks of the Cirque de la Solitude. This high traverse brings us to a second col and then down a rocky descent to the former ski resort of Haut Asco, where we stay in a wonderfully atmospheric old hotel. Take a look at the black and white photos of early mountaineers exploring the region long before we discovered the area. Not only are we reunited with our luggage tonight but we also have hot showers, comfortable beds and a bar to look forward to!

Distance: 8km

Ascent: 690m

Descent: 850m

Hiking Time: 7-8 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/559183421

Day 3 - Cirque de Bonifatu to Refuge de Carrozzu

A challenging climb up rocky terrain brings us to the Cirque de Bonifatu, a high circuit with stunning panoramic views from the top. We traverse the cirque before making a nice descent to the Carrozzu national park refuge, where we will stay for the night. Again we will be carrying our overnight equipment and will be either sleeping inside the refuge or camping outside. The refuge is surrounded by towering granite spires where rare Lammergeyer vultures are known to nest - it is a wonderful spot to enjoy the beauty of nature whilst watching the sun set over the sea.

Distance: 10km

Ascent: 795m

Descent: 1070m

Hiking Time: 8-9 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/559181923

Day 2 - Calenzana to Ortu di u Piobbio

Our first day on the trek starts bright and early with a transfer to Calenzana, a small rural village with a rich history dating back to Roman times. We leave the village on foot, following a sandy footpath through chestnut trees up towards a high mountain pass with magnificent coastal views. We continue up through pine forests to reach our resting point at Refuge Ortu di u Pobbio, a rustic wooden chalet where we will either sleep inside or camp outside. We will not be have access to our luggage tonight, so it will be necessary to carry sleeping bags and overnight items.

Distance: 12km

Ascent: 1500m

Descent: 230m

Hiking Time: 6-7 hours

Route Map: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/559177861

Day 15 - Departure Day

The trip ends after breakfast, when you will have chance to say goodbye and swap contact details with your hiking pals. Airport transfers and further travel arrangements are not included after this point.

Level Requirements

This trip does not require any prior alpine experience other than mountain hiking and good physical fitness. This is a challenging but non-technical alpine trek involving 4-9 hours of walking per day, on average, for 10 days. The route is by no means flat and you should be able to manage ascents/descents of up to 2000m in a day, often over exposed and rocky terrain. Your luggage will be transported but you will carry a daypack with your personal equipment (a well packed rucksack should not exceed 8kg). On some days you will be required to carry your sleeping bag and overnight essentials.

Equipment

Clothing

Fleece or woollen layers

Fleece or woollen layers

Windproof and waterproof jacket

Windproof and waterproof jacket

Windproof and waterproof trousers

Windproof and waterproof trousers

Sun hat

Sun hat

Hiking boots

Hiking boots

Hiking trousers

Hiking trousers

T-shirts

T-shirts

Thin gloves

Thin gloves

Shorts

Shorts

Long sleeve shirt

Long sleeve shirt

Causal shirt or t-shirt

Causal shirt or t-shirt

Technical gear

Trekking poles

Trekking poles

Other essentials

Washbag and toiletries

Washbag and toiletries

Towel

Towel

Sleeping bag comfort rating 0°C

Sleeping bag comfort rating 0°C

Water purification tablets

Water purification tablets

Antibacterial handwash

Antibacterial handwash

Tupperware lunch box (0.6 litre)

Tupperware lunch box (0.6 litre)

Fork & spoon

Fork & spoon

Pen knife

Pen knife

Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

Insect repellant

Insect repellant

Basic first aid kit

Basic first aid kit

Earplugs

Earplugs

Sunglasses

Sunglasses

Water bottle - Ideally two 1L bottles

Water bottle - Ideally two 1L bottles

Sun cream high protection (for lips and face)

Sun cream high protection (for lips and face)

Headlamp with fresh batteries

Headlamp with fresh batteries

Sleeping bag liner - lightweight

Sleeping bag liner - lightweight

Included or not

Included

IML Mountain Leader fees

Guidance by a fully qualified IML Mountain Leader

Accommodation

All accommodation, as described in the itinerary.

Food & Drink

All meals are included on this trip, including packed lunches. You are advised to bring extra trail snacks and carry plenty to drink each day.

Airport transfer

One time minibus departure from the airport at pre-set time on day 1 of the trip. 

Transport

All necessary transport as in the itinerary.

Camping equipment and food

Group camping equipment (excluding personal equipment - see the equipment list)

Camping mat

A closed cell foam camping mat

Luggage Transport

Vehicle support and baggage transfer

Not Included

Insurance

Search and rescue insurance is obligatory on these trips. We also highly recommend to have a valid travel insurance policy to cover the cost of medical treatment and to protect the value of your holiday in the event of cancellation.  When taking out insurance please ensure the policy you choose covers you for the activities and altitude included in your itinerary.Please check that your insurance will cover your chosen activity. 

Early departure

Any costs incurred should you depart the trip early

Airport transfers

 Other than the single group transfer to Calvi on Day 1

Miscellaneous expenses

Expenses such as drinks, snacks, etc. 

Practical Information

Accommodation

The first night of this trip will be one of the four nights spent in hotels. There will be another four nights in small gites/hostels, and the remaining six nights will be camping. The camping grounds are all near to refuges where we will have access to toilets and washing facilities (albeit some with cold water only). Dinner will be prepared at the refuge and eaten in the communal dining area. Tents are stored at the refuges and we each put up our own on arrival. Accommodation is usually on a twin room (or shared tent) basis, but you may occasionally find yourself sharing a triple or quadruple room. Solo travellers will always be accommodated with room/tent mates of the same gender.

Food

All meals are included for the duration of the trip. Breakfast is usually the continental style of bread, jam and tea/coffee. A daily packed lunch is usually a sandwich or pasta/rice/lentil salad with additional bread, cheese, meat and fruit. For this you will need to bring a lunchbox (approx 0,6 litre capacity) and cutlery - a penknife is a useful item to have. Dinner is a simple but filling homecooked meal; usually a starter of soup or cold cuts of meat, followed by a hearty hot dish such as pasta, and often accompanied by cheese and bread. A daily trail snack is also included but it is a good idea to carry extra energy-rich foods such as nuts and dried fruits to keep your energy levels consistent.

Dietary Requirements

The nature of this trip means that much of our accommodation is in remote places with limited resources. A vegetarian diet can be catered for by prior arrangement but it will be basic and omelette or pasta dishes will be the staple evening meal - you may wish to supplement by bringing nuts and seeds to ensure that you are getting sufficient protein. Unfortunately other dietary requirements cannot be catered for.

Water

The tap water is generally clean and safe to drink, but check with your trip leader before filling your bottles. There may be days when you will need to refill from rivers or streams, so a filter bottle or purification tablets are a good idea. Please invest in a reusable bottle that you can carry for the entire trip, rather than single-use disposable bottles.

Spending Money

You should make an allowance for additional snacks, drinks, purchases, and the final airport transfer. Wine, beer and soft drinks can be bought at most of the refuges but they can sometimes be expensive. Approximately 300€ should be sufficient but ensure that if you need to exchange currency you do so at the start of the trip, as there will be no opportunity to do so once the trek has begun.

Baggage Allowance

You will need a backpack of around 45 litres as well as one piece of luggage. The size of your luggage will depend on the baggage allowance of your airline. Your luggage is transported for the duration of the trip and you must carry your own backpack each day. You will have access to your luggage on 8 nights, for the remaining 6 nights you will need to carry your sleeping bag and any other overnight items in your backpack throughout the day.

Early Departure Cost

The challenging nature of this trek means that the IML mountain guides reserve the right to remove anyone from the trip who is compromising the safety, welfare and wellbeing of the group or who is putting themself at risk. In this instance, you will only be asked to leave the group where there is closed road access to return either to Calvi or Bastia and your luggage will follow you as soon as possible. From this point onwards, you will be responsible for your expenses although assistance will be offered in making travel and accommodation arrangements. Depending on the circumstances, any extra costs may be covered by your travel insurance.

Insurance

You will require adequate travel insurance to cover you for possible medical treatment and to protect the value of your holiday in the event of cancellation; it should also be valid for the activities and altitude involved in this type of trip.