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Holiday Overview

Highlights

  • Fully guided walking in Corsica AND all meals included
  • Classic hiking and scrambling on the beautiful French island of Corsica
  • Vehicle support and access to bags wherever possible
  • Complete Europe`s most challenging long distance trekking trail, the GR20

On this absolutely classic walking holiday you can walk the complete GR20 Haute Route, on the beautiful Mediterranean Island of Corsica, one of the finest and hardest mountain walking routes in the whole of Europe; what a superb adventure. Rising abruptly from the Mediterranean Sea, with granite peaks soaring to over 2500m, Corsica is known as 'the Scented Isle'. Famous for its dramatic coastline and pretty, perched mountain villages, the island reveals its most spectacular scenery only to those who are prepared to explore it on foot. Over the course of a truly spectacular 2 weeks we will cover a total of 180km of mountainous terrain, with approx 12,000m altitude ascent and descent, as we trek the entire GR20 route, from the pretty village of Calenzana near the northern coast, all the way down to Conca, in the south east. As we follow Corsica's granite backbone down through the heart of the island, we will encounter a variety of terrain, which means that everyday is a different challenge; whether it be hiking forested slopes, high pasture and alpine valleys or scrambling airy ridges and rocky outcrops. This unique European trekking holiday offers the perfect combination of Mediterranean sunshine, inspiring scenery and a challenging walking adventure; you'll be returning home with a real sense of achievement.

 

Cirque de Solitude

Following a rockfall on 10 June 2015 the standard section of the GR20 route, via the Cirque de Solitude, was closed by the Corsican park authorities and it will not be reopened until it has been assessed by geologists to be safe. It is unlikely to reopen for the 2016 season. The GR20 now follows an alternative route been established between Haut Asco and the Bergerie de Vallone, which avoids the Cirque de Solitude, but follows equally spectacular mountain terrain.

Is this holiday for you?

The Corsica GR20 is a trekking route for walkers who are in good shape, have good stamina and the ability to move confidently and safely over rocky rugged mountainous terrain. Though well-established and well-marked, the paths on the Corsican GR20 are often very rocky with numerous steep ascents and descents that are rough under foot, and can be exposed. The itinerary is sustained, with scrambling sections and high ridge walks on the majority of days. The average distance covered each day is between 10 and 15 km with 800-1000m ascent/descent (equating to 6 to 8 hours of walking, not including stops, with one day of 9hrs). The longest day is 28km. The days are very full, typically we set out at first light and arrive at our nightspot at 5pm in the evening. Because this route cannot be fully vehicle-supported, group members will carry their sleeping bags, rain gear and the days food, along with essential overnight items on most of the walking days. Two trekking poles are highly recommended and you should be adept at using them before you come. Camelbak style hydration system are also highly recommended. The reputation of this GR comes from the nature of the terrain. It is very technical, you need to be sure footed, have agility and plenty of relevant mountain experience.

 

This is a very challenging trek, which is reflected in the grading. In Corsica we work with qualified IML mountain guides who work to strict safety standards and you should note that if they feel that your physical condition or performance is detrimental to the safety, welfare and wellbeing of the group as a whole, or if they feel that your general wellbeing is put at risk by continuing, you will be asked to leave the tour. You will only be asked to leave at points where there is close road access to return to Calvi or Bastia and you will be reunited with your baggage at the earliest opportunity. From the point of your evacuation you will be expected to cover all of your expenses, although our local agent will offer assistance with making alternative travel and accommodation arrangements either to remain in Corsica or travel home early. You may be able to claim for any additional expenses incurred due to your evacuation through your travel insurance.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Calvi. A single timed transfer from Bastia Airport is provided.
  • Transfer to Calenzana, the start of the GR20. Trek to Ortu di u Piobbio refuge.
  • Trek uphill into the Cirque de Bonifatu and on to the Refuge de Carrozu.
  • Ascend to the ridge above Lac de Muvrell and down to Haut Asco.
  • Haut Asco to Bergerie De Vallone.
  • Trek via Ciottolu di Mori (2000m) to Castel di Vergio.
  • Trek through beech woods and grassy meadows via Lac de Nino to Manganu.
  • Ascend to the Breche de Capitellu (2225m) and cross the Col de la Haute Route.
  • Trek the ridge to the Muratell Pass and descend into the l’Agnone Valley.
  • A long day over the pass Bocca Palmente to Col de Verde (1640m).
  • Trek across the Col de Rapari and the Col de Laparo (1538m) and drop down into the village of Cozzano.
  • Trek across the Bocca de l’Agnone, the highest plateau on the GR20.
  • Trek over the col Bocca di Chiralba (1743m) and the pinnacles of Bavella.
  • Trek to Conca, the end of the GR20. Transfer to Bastia.
  • Departure day.
2016
Sun 17 Jul - Sun 31 Jul Code COR /03/16/ Adult$2,580 Status Departed
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /03/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 17 Jul and departs on Sun 31 Jul
  • This trip has already departed
Sun 31 Jul - Sun 14 Aug Code COR /05/16/ Adult$2,380 Status Limited (Only 2 places left) Call Us
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /05/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 31 Jul and departs on Sun 14 Aug
  • This departure is available and departs within 7 days. Secure your place today with full payment by contacting the KE office
Sun 21 Aug - Sun 04 Sep Code COR /08/16/ Adult$2,380 Status Limited Availability Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /08/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 21 Aug and departs on Sun 04 Sep
  • This departure has limited availability and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
Sun 04 Sep - Sun 18 Sep Code COR /09/16/ Adult$2,380 Status Limited (Only 2 places left) Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /09/16/
  • This tour begins on Sun 04 Sep and departs on Sun 18 Sep
  • This departure has limited availability and departs within weeks. Secure your place today with full payment
2017
Sun 18 Jun - Sun 02 Jul Code COR /01/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Guaranteed Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /01/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 18 Jun and departs on Sun 02 Jul
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 02 Jul - Sun 16 Jul Code COR /02/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /02/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 02 Jul and departs on Sun 16 Jul
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 16 Jul - Sun 30 Jul Code COR /03/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /03/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 16 Jul and departs on Sun 30 Jul
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 23 Jul - Sun 06 Aug Code COR /04/17/ Adult$2,675 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /04/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 23 Jul and departs on Sun 06 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 30 Jul - Sun 13 Aug Code COR /05/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /05/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 30 Jul and departs on Sun 13 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 06 Aug - Sun 20 Aug Code COR /06/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /06/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 06 Aug and departs on Sun 20 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 13 Aug - Sun 27 Aug Code COR /07/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /07/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 13 Aug and departs on Sun 27 Aug
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 20 Aug - Sun 03 Sep Code COR /08/17/ Adult$2,675 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /08/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 20 Aug and departs on Sun 03 Sep
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
Sun 03 Sep - Sun 17 Sep Code COR /09/17/ Adult$2,675 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
More information
  • Corsica Haute Route - The Complete GR20
  • The departure reference for this tour is COR /09/17/
  • This tour begins on Sun 03 Sep and departs on Sun 17 Sep
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
The dates above are for the LAND ONLY itinerary, joining Bastia. The nearest airport is Bastia Airport. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements & transfers' and 'Flights' sections in the trip dossier for further details. Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK Easyjet will be the best low cost airline offering flights to Bastia. Easyjet who have flights from London Gatwick & Manchester. Other airports may be available. Click on the 'Flight information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.


BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

The price of our holidays can change depending on a variety of factors but unlike some other tour operators, KE have undertaken to guarantee the Land Only price of your holiday will not change after you have booked. The price when you book is the price you will pay, whether you are booking for this year or the next. Book early to avoid any tour price increases, get the best flight prices and take advantage of our 'No Surcharge Guarantee'.

KE Adventure Travel is a fully ATOL licensed and bonded tour operator with ABTA and AITO.

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Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • trek
  • transfer

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Calvi. A single timed transfer from Bastia Airport is provided.

    Rendezvous at Bastia Airport, KE Land Only package services begin with a 2hr timed transfer by minibus to Calvi. We have some free time to enjoy the buzz of this attractive Mediterranean harbour town. You can saunter through the harbour or relax at the sandy crescent shaped bay, to be fresh and rested ready for tomorrow’s walk. Evening meal in a local restaurant.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Transfer to Calenzana, the start of the GR20. Trek to Ortu di u Piobbio refuge.

    We make a very early start today with a transfer to the village of Calenzana, heading out as soon as there is enough light. There are several nights on the trip, where we do not have access to our kitbags and this is the first of them. Today, group members will have to carry a minimum of personal belongings, including a sleeping bag. From the signpost that marks the start of the trail we take a sandy path that heads up hill passing through chestnut trees up into the Mediterranean maquis shrublands. The trail loops up to a high airy col, from where the views of the coastline and Calvi are stunning. There is a lot of ascent today. We continue through the pine woods to our first refuge, Ortu di u Pobbio. Tonight we will stay in the refuge, or camp outside. No access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 1500m

    • Distance 12km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 230m

    • Time 6 - 7 hours walking

  • Trek uphill into the Cirque de Bonifatu and on to the Refuge de Carrozu.

    Today’s terrain is challenging, we trek uphill and make the rocky ascent into the cirque of Bonifatu. We stay at the top of the cirque, contouring around to the other side, enjoying spectacular views as we go. When we finish the traverse, we can enjoy a good downhill section to the national park refuge of Carrozzu. Surrounding the refuge are high pinnacles of granite forming tall spires. One of them is home to a rare family of Lammergeyer vultures. From the terrace of Carrozzu we can enjoy watching the sun setting into the sea at the end of the day. Overnight Carrozzu Refuge or camping. No access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 795m

    • Distance 10km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1070m

    • Time 8 hours walking

  • Ascend to the ridge above Lac de Muvrell and down to Haut Asco.

    Today is a strenuous day. We cross the river on an exciting suspension bridge and then ascend the steep valley gorge on a rocky path, with fixed chains to a small lake, the Lac de Muvrella and then we continue up to the ridge above. From here, we have views of the western coastline, as well as the peaks that mark the entrance to the Cirque de Solitude. We enjoy this high traverse to a second col where the rocky descent starts to Haut Asco. We stay at the Hotel Le Chalet in this old ski station, which has been wonderfully refurbished. The hot showers and comfortable beds are well appreciated after the previous 2 nights in refuges! There is a bar and restaurant at the hotel. Tonight we have access to our main baggage.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 690m

    • Distance 8km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 850m

    • Time 6 hours walking

  • Haut Asco to Bergerie De Vallone.

    From Haute Asco we take the marked trail that heads towards Corsica's highest peak, Monte Cinto (2706m) and we cross a ridge at around 2600m to descend to Lac du Cinto. This lies in a beautiful remote valley surrounded by rugged high peaks. From Lac du Cinto we ascend westwards to another high pass, the Bocca Crucetta 2450m, and from here descend to the Refuge Tighiettu and on to our overnight stop at the Bergerie de Vallone. We set up our camp nearby and dine in the cabin restaurant. There are some beautiful natural swimming pools near to the campsite. No access to main baggage.

    (Following a rockfall on 10th June 2015 the standard section of the GR20 route, via the Cirque de Solitude, was closed by the Corsican park authorities and it will not be reopened until it has been assessed by geologists to be safe. It is unlikely to reopen for the 2016 season. The GR20 now follows an alternative route been established between Haut Asco and the Bergerie de Vallone, which avoids the Cirque de Solitude, but follows equally spectacular mountain terrain)

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Ascent 1600m

    • Distance 13km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1600m

    • Time 9 - 10 hours walking

  • Trek via Ciottolu di Mori (2000m) to Castel di Vergio.

    From Vallone we have a steady leisurely start to the day as the path contours round through the pine woods. The gradient soon changes as the path pulls very steeply up to the col above. It will take us a good two hours of steady climbing to get to the refuge, Ciottolu di Mori. Situated at 2000m it is the highest refuge on the trek. After a break to fill up with water and enjoy views from the terrace, we continue along a fantastic ridge that heads south before dropping into the Golu valley. We carry on down the valley all the way to our stop for the night at Castel di Vergio, one of the island’s small ski stations. Castel di Vergio hotel has been refurbished in the last few years and is very comfortable, with a little shop that stocks a multitude of useful items and food snacks! Access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 910m

    • Distance 15km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 950m

    • Time 5 - 6 hours walking

  • Trek through beech woods and grassy meadows via Lac de Nino to Manganu.

    We start the day with easy walking on a horseshoe-shaped trail. After a level start the path climbs uphill through the woods to the Col St Pierre (1452m) where there is a small statue. We walk through beech woods then enjoy an airy ridge walk to the famous pozzine (grassy meadows) area that surround the Lac de Nino where we can enjoy the lush green turf of the lakeshore. At 1743m, this glacial lake is in a lovely, sheltered location, surrounded by a spongy peat, making it an ideal summer grazing ground for horses and cattle. From the lake, the path heads to the shepherd’s cabin of Vaccaja (1621m), a fantastic spot, which is a working goat farm, producing some of Corsica’s famous goat’s cheese. The GR20 continues on for another 20mins across a spongy plateau called the Camputile to arrive at Manganu refuge where we will stay the night in the refuge, or camping nearby. No access to main luggage.

    • Accommodation Mountain Hut / Refuge

    • Ascent 750m

    • Distance 17km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 565m

    • Time 7 hours walking

  • Ascend to the Breche de Capitellu (2225m) and cross the Col de la Haute Route.

    We set off for another magnificent mountain day. A steep rocky ascent leads from the refuge up to the high breche of Capitellu (2225m). We have splendid views from here of the lakes below and the imposing summits surrounding us. The glacial lake of Capitellu (1930m) is the deepest on the island (40m) with sheer sheets of granite plunging into its depths. Further below is the large apple shaped lake of Melo surrounded by spongy grass. We make a rocky traverse around and above the lakes and continue on to the Col de la Haute Route passing above yet another lake, the Rinoso. Shortly after this we reach the Petra Piana refuge (1840m) that nestles on the lower flanks of the Monte Rotondo, Corsica's second highest mountain. No access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Camping

    • Ascent 960m

    • Distance 10km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 700m

    • Time 7 - 8 hours walking

  • Trek the ridge to the Muratell Pass and descend into the l’Agnone Valley.

    We have 2 options today with GR20 variants, and the route we will take will depend on the group and the weather. The high level route is steep and exposed along the Pinzi Corbini ridge. Alternatively we take a low level route which is longer and offers some great swimming spots! Both routes converge at the L’Onda bergerie. From here we pull up onto the ridge, where there are some truly fantastic panoramic views, and we follow the ridge to the Muratello pass where we cross over and access the neighboring valley. The Monte d’Oro massif dominates, as we make our way down its flanks into the l’Agnone glacier valley below. We continue on to Vizzavona, where there is a vast forest and small railway station that marks the midway point of the GR20. Small dormitory rooms tonight with a cosy dining room in the Monte d’Oro Gite. Access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1070m

    • Distance 17km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1760m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • A long day over the pass Bocca Palmente to Col de Verde (1640m).

    Another early start for a big day of 28km of beautiful trails. The trail today is long but relatively straightforward. We walk up to the Bocca Palmente, a pass which offers great views on a clear day to the flat coastal plains and sea lagoons. We drop down the other side and start a long easy section past shepherd’s cabins and on to pass near to Capanelle (1640m), which is a small ski station in winter. We are essentially traversing the flanks of the dominating mountain massif, Monte Renoso. We traverse open slopes with wonderful views, cross numerous chutes and runnels of water before our last approach in and out of the forest, to our overnight stop at the Col de Verde (1289m). Col de Verde is a private gite and restaurant in a forest setting. We overnight in either the gite dormitory on in one of the smaller cabins. Access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1090m

    • Distance 28km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 970m

    • Time 9 - 10 hours walking

  • Trek across the Col de Rapari and the Col de Laparo (1538m) and drop down into the village of Cozzano.

    From Col de Verde a forest trail ascends steeply up through the woods and onto the high ridge above. We continue along the ridge in a southerly direction to reach the Refuge de Prati. We skirt around the Punta Del la Cappella and two further summits along the ridge before crossing the col de Rapari. At the second col (1538m), Col de Laparo we leave the GR20 and pick up the Mare a Mare Centre footpath and descend for 6km to Cozzano for a sample of village life. Our stop tonight is the gite at Cozzano. Access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 920m

    • Distance 20km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1470m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • Trek across the Bocca de l’Agnone, the highest plateau on the GR20.

    We start by ascending through the maquis (shrubland) and chestnut trees through the village outskirts to hit a forest track. We eventually gain the ridge above and pick up the GR20 again. From here follow this superb ridge and progress slowly down through a dwarf beech tree woods to a flat picnic area and spring stop. Once at the Bocca de l’Agnone, there are several trails that lead to the different accommodations dotted around this unique plateau. It is the highest and biggest plateau on the island, the vegetation and lovely clear waters make it a haven of wild beauty. We have selected a friendly private gite for our overnight stop, at Crocce. We either stay in the gite or camp. Access to main baggage.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1150m

    • Distance 15km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 400m

    • Time 8 hours walking

  • Trek over the col Bocca di Chiralba (1743m) and the pinnacles of Bavella.

    From our gite, we head in a south easterly direction to the col Bocca di Chiralba (1743m). We then ascend to the ridge above to meet it at 2029m. Here we are in the shadows of the Monte Incudine summit. We follow the trail downhill via the refuge of Asinau to the river in the base of the valley. An easy section through the woods brings us to the alpine path that leads up and over the famous granite pinnacles of Bavella. We need to have plenty of stamina for today’s walk as the tricky sections are towards the end of the day. There is a short chain to assist one particularly steep rock slab. Overnight gite at Col de Bavella. Access to main baggage

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1000m

    • Distance 16km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1325m

    • Time 8 - 9 hours walking

  • Trek to Conca, the end of the GR20. Transfer to Bastia.

    The granite spires and pine tree forests make for a memorable last days walk. By mid morning we will arrive at the last of the refuges, Paliri. As we come down out of the mountains there is a real sense of achievement. On arriving in the village of Conca we have a well-earned drink before transferring to Bastia (approx 3hrs). We go out into town for a celebratory final meal in a restaurant in the old port of Bastia.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 690m

    • Distance 20km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1680m

    • Time 8 hours walking

  • Departure day.

    KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Airport transfers on this day are not included.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced professional leader
  • A single timed group transfer from Bastia Airport to Calvi on Day 1
  • All road transfers detailed in the itinerary
  • All meals included
  • All accommodation as described in the dossier
  • During the trek a full service - including food and all camping equipment (excluding personal equipment)
  • Vehicle support and baggage transfer
  • Travel insurance
  • Airport transfers (other than the single group transfer to Calvi on Day 1)
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks etc.
Breakfasts will be continental style and usually consist of a hot drink and bread and jam. If you are used to a large breakfast, it may be a good idea to bring some supplements such as cereal bars. Dinner will be a simple meal of home cooked food. At most of the places we stay this will consist of a starter of soup or cold meats followed by a wholesome and carbohydrate-rich main course such as pasta. Cheese and bread is also a large portion of the diet here. In most cases this is a set meal though it is normally possible to ask the hut guardian for more. Lunch is usually a pre cooked pasta/rice/lentil salad, with extra bread, cheese, meat and fruit. For this you will need a plastic Tupperware box (about 0.6 litre), and a fork or spoon. A penknife is a very useful piece of kit for lunches as well. In some places your lunch box will be filled for you overnight and in others you will be given a sandwich type lunch. A trail snack is also provided each day and you can purchase these at some of the huts and gites, but you may wish to supplement this with additional snacks brought from home.

Please note that it can be difficult (but not impossible) to cater for vegetarians on the GR20. The refuges are isolated and depend upon local produce so if you are a vegetarian you should be prepared for a more restricted choice and a repetitive menu. Your lunch choices will be limited and often only omelettes or basic pasta dishes will be available in the evening. We recommend that you bring your own supply of protein (eg nuts and seeds) to ensure you can keep up your energy levels, as this may not be provided in the quantities you require otherwise. It may also be able to purchase nuts etc... en route at some of the accommodations.

Unfortunately it will not be possible to cater for any other dietary requirements.
All meals are included from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 15.
A single timed group transfer from the airport at Bastia to the group's accommodation at Calvi on Day 1 is included. This transfer is timed usually for mid morning. Clients should aim to meet up with the group at the airport in Bastia on Day 1 of the itinerary and must check the timing of this transfer with the KE office within 14 days prior to departure. The local guide or a representative of our local agent will assist with this transfer. It is also possible to reach Bastia or Calvi by high speed ferry from Nice or Toulon.

It is also possible to meet the group at the first nights hotel in Calvi on Day 1. There are a number of charter flights that fly into Calvi on Sunday, and then it is a short taxi ride from Calvi airport to the group hotel. Note that at the end of the trip the group returns to Bastia and we recommend the flights in and out of Bastia.

Airport transfers are not provided on the last day of the trip from Bastia to the airport. The airport is approx 17km south of Bastia town. Taxis are easy to arrange and cost around €80 for a taxi of 1-4 people. You should discuss with your fellow travellers to share taxi's if you are on the same flights.

All clients MUST inform the KE office of their travel details. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.
During this trip the group will have 4 hotel nights. The other nights during the trek we will camp or make use of park refuges, or small privately owned gites. These arrangements have to be flexible according to availability in the gites and refuges. Camping is often a better option to staying in the busy dormitories. Most of the gites or refuges have non-segregated (mixed female/male) dormitory-style sleeping arrangements. Some of the washing facilities at these places are simple and the water can be cold. Where we are camping or staying in a refuge, we will eat in the basic dining area provided. On camping days group members will put up their own tents which are held in storage at each of these places. Single rooms and tents are not available. In the hotels the rooming is generally on a twin share basis, though at very busy times it is occasionally necessary to use triple or quad rooms. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired with another single traveller of the same sex. Additional hotels nights in Bastia are available, please contact the KE office for prices.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Most days will begin with an early start and we set off walking immediately after breakfast. We walk for between 6 and 10 hours each day and stopping off at a suitable spot to eat our packed lunch. On most days we will have the opportunity to buy a hot or cold drink and snacks at a mountain hut. In the evening we will enjoy a home-cooked and filling evening meal of soup, bread and pasta. We usually go to bed early!

The group will be led by an experienced professional leader. Local mountain community and accommodation proprietors assist with logistics and provision of meals.

Approximately €300 should be sufficient to cover your personal expenses including snacks, drinks, some tips and the final airport transfer. Bottled water, soft drinks, beer and wine are available at many of the refuges on the route, but can sometimes be expensive. If you are intending to buy expensive souvenirs, you should budget accordingly. You should bring this money with you in cash Euros as there will be no opportunity to change money once the trek starts.

Tipping is the accepted way of saying thank you for good service. It is important to remember that tipping is voluntary and should be dependent on good service. How much to tip your guide and local staff is entirely up to you, but we do recommend that you give any tips together as a group.

During the trek your KE trek bag will remain in the support vehicle and you will have access to this on 9 nights. You will not have access to your main trek bags on 5 nights. Effectively, this means that on 8 days you will be carrying your sleeping bag and any overnight essentials. We ask you to restrict your baggage to one trek bag and one 45 litre rucksack.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

The altitudes on this holiday are not extreme and the maximum altitude attained is no more than the equivalent of a pressurised cabin on an international flight. You may ‘feel’ the altitude the first time you trek above 2000 metres but all that is required is a slower pace to compensate. You should pay particular attention to your hydration levels while trekking above 2000 metres.

The following check list should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots

  • Socks

  • Trekking trousers

  • Waterproof overtrousers

  • Shorts

  • Underwear

  • Baselayer shirts (1 short sleeve, 1 long sleeve)

  • T-shirts and/or casual shirts

  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper

  • Windproof/waterproof jacket

  • Sunhat

  • Warm hat

  • Sunglasses

  • Lightweight thermal gloves

  • Sleeping bag (comfort rating 0°C)

  • Daypack c. 45 litres

  • Headtorch and spare batteries

  • Sun protection (including for lips)

  • Water bottles x 2 (1 Litre) or 2 litre Camelbak/Platypus style drinking system. We highly recommend camelback/platypus system for this trek.

  • Washbag and toiletries

  • Small towel

  • Toilet paper

  • Antibacterial handwash

  • Tupperware lunch box (0.6 litre)

  • Fork & spoon

  • Penknife

  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

  • Insect repellant

  • Basic first aid kit including: Antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Immodium) painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, antihistamine cream/tablets (in case you get bitten!) and re-hydration salts (Dioralite). Glucose tablets and multi-vitamin tablets are a good idea.

The following items are optional:

  • Sleeping bag liner

  • Thermarest (note that closed cell foam mats are provided)

  • 2 trekking poles – highly recommended

  • Waterproof daypack cover - recommended

  • Gaiters

  • Trainers or sandals

  • Spare laces

  • Earplugs (particularly if you are not the one snoring!)

  • Swimwear

  • Travel clothes

  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)

  • Camera

Notes

You will not have access to your main trek bags on 5 nights. Effectively, this means that on 8 days you will be carrying your sleeping bag and any overnight essentials.

 

In recent years some of the national park refuges have suffered from outbreaks of bed bugs. We minimise this risk by only staying at national park refuges on 4 nights of the trip and using tents if possible when staying at the refuges. However to be extra safe we would recommend taking a bed bug proof under sheet and spraying your sleeping bag and liner with an insect repellent such as Lifesystems EX4 spray. (be careful using DEET based insect repellents as they can melt plastics)

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport for each country that you visit.

Visa Europe

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations. UK residents should obtain a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment, but is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is still vital when travelling overseas.

The unit of currency in Europe is the Euro.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

http://www.worldstandards.eu/electricity/plugs-and-sockets/

It is essential that you spend time getting relevant exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. You should be getting out and doing a challenging cardiovascular fitness regime leading right up to your trip. You need to develop considerable stamina and endurance. You should be used to your hiking gear, which means that you are comfortable with your rucksack and used to carrying a certain weight. You need to have walking shoes/boots with excellent grip soles that you are used to, two poles that you know how to walk with and a camel bag (both of which we strongly recommend).

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The temperatures that we can expect to encounter can be far ranging anything from freezing to 30°C. The micro climates in Corsica make the weather very unpredictable and fast changing. Be ready for hot sunshine, storms, harsh wind, rain, hail and snow cannot be ruled out in the summer months either. You can experience a whole range of conditions in the same day from minus temperatures through to severe heat and sun.

  • GR 20 Corsica. Paddy Dillon (Cicerone Press).

  • Corsica Walking Guide. Bergverlag Rother GMBH.

  • Corsica. Insight Guide.

GR20 2 map set 1:60,000 Libris

2 large scale maps showing the entire GR20, a useful guide Derived from IGNs with contour interval of 50m. and relief shading and spot heights. GR and other trails are shown. Though not at the detailed scale of the IGN, these are probably the better option for following the route without having to bring lots of maps.

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