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Holidays

Self-Guided Walking Corsica’s Coast and Mountains

France, Corsica
Available Departures: Apr, May, Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov

8 days from

US$980

without flights
Walk & Trek
Self-Guided
LEISURELY LEISURELY

Experience the contrasts of north Corsica’s idyllic coast and soaring mountains with a perfect blend of walks and time at leisure on this one week self-guided holiday

Trip Code: SGBC
Holiday Grades

Our Holiday Grades Explained

To show the relative difficulty of our holidays, each trip is graded on a scale of 1 to 12, with 12 being the most challenging. Although we have tried to make our grading system as clear as possible, it cannot take into account your personal interests, abilities or experience. If you have any questions about the nature of a particular trip or its suitability for you, please read the 'Is this holiday for you?' section or contact us.

 1 - 3 LEISURELY
1 - 3 LEISURELY

Suitable for most people in good health, holidays at this grade include only limited amounts of activity.

View leisurely holidays
4 - 6 MODERATE
4 - 6 MODERATE

Suitable for reasonably fit individuals, such as weekend walkers and cyclists. There can be the occasional more difficult day.

View moderate holidays
7 - 9 CHALLENGING
7 - 9 CHALLENGING

Physically challenging holidays, where you need to be prepared before you go.

View challenging holidays
10 - 12 TOUGH
10 - 12 TOUGH

Our toughest holidays, involving many long days, often in isolated areas. A high level of fitness and previous wilderness and mountain experience is essential.

View Tough holidays

Self-Guided Walking Corsica’s Coast and Mountains

Highlights
  • Explore the Revellata Peninsula, discover its lighthouse and swim in secluded coves

  • Ride the historic “Micheline” train through incredible Corsican landscapes

  • Enjoy hand-picked hotels in the historic towns of Corte, Calvi and Bastia

  • Cool off in crystal clear mountain streams and pools


At a Glance
  • Self-Guided
  • 4 days walking
  • Daily departures available
  • Join In Bastia / End in Corte

Accommodation & Meals
  • 7 Breakfasts
  • 7 nights Hotel
Overview

Discover France, but not as you know it, on this one week self-guided Corsican adventure. Often described as a mountain in the sea, this is an island of contrasts where you can swim in the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean from beautiful bays, and hike in breathtaking mountain scapes surrounded by jagged peaks, rich forests of chestnut and pine, and dramatic gorges. On this self-guided walking holiday, we have hand-picked a selection of the most beautiful coastal and mountain walks to give you a delightful flavour of this sumptuous island in just one week.


You will spend the first half of your week on the sparkling coast with one night in Bastia and three nights in Calvi, followed by three nights in the mountainous interior of the island in historic Corte, staying at welcoming 3* hotels on a B&B basis throughout. Making the journey between these three bases by train, you will be able to drink in the vistas and landscapes in the very heart of the island and immerse yourself into the beguiling character of Corsica at a leisurely pace. Combined with delicious Corsican food and wine and a blissful Mediterranean climate, what better escape could you ask for?

Is this holiday for you?

This holiday is perfect for those looking to enjoy a slower pace of travel, while still embarking on satisfying walks in spectacular settings. The walks are moderate, typically around 3-5 hours a day with an average ascent/descent of around 300m. You also have the option to extend some of your walks if you are looking for more of a challenge. The terrain on Corsica can be rugged, with steep and ro …

This holiday is perfect for those looking to enjoy a slower pace of travel, while still embarking on satisfying walks in spectacular settings. The walks are moderate, typically around 3-5 hours a day with an average ascent/descent of around 300m. You also have the option to extend some of your walks if you are looking for more of a challenge. The terrain on Corsica can be rugged, with steep and rocky terrain that can require the use of hands and feet. Staying 3 nights each in the towns of Calvi and Corte, you can relax and settle in to a leisurely holiday, or even rest your feet with a sightseeing day if you feel like it. You will make use of the train to travel between the towns with your own luggage; tickets are not included but full instructions on how to make these transfers will be provided. There are often opportunities for a cooling dip, whether in the sea or in a natural mountain pool, so don’t forget to pack your swimsuit and towel.

Why KE?

We have chosen to start this holiday with a night in Bastia to allow time to explore this vibrant city. Utilising train travel to get around the island, we aim to minimise our impact and give you an unforgettable rail experience at the same time. With three nights each in Calvi and Corte, we have carefully balanced this relaxed holiday with delightful walks and time at leisure.

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Itinerary

Arrive at your hotel in the heart of the old town of Bastia, on the north eastern coast of Corsica. This dynamic city offers a wonderful welcome to this island with its own proud identity and heritage. Its history dates back to the 14th century, when it was founded by the Genoese who made it the capital of the island, with its name taken from the "bastille" (fortress) overlooking the city. Pay a visit to this relic standing proudly at the old port and enjoy a stroll around the impressive promenade edging the sea. Wandering the cobbled streets on foot is an ideal way to soak in the city's Mediterranean character and rich history. As you explore the old town, you will discover houses with colourful facades and shutters, as well as cathedrals, churches and palaces harking back to centuries past. The city's picturesque market squares are a popular meeting place for residents and visitors alike; lined with cafes and restaurants these are great spots to enjoy a relaxed drink. The Place du Marche, neighbouring the distinctive twin-towered St-Jean Baptiste church, hosts lively traditional markets every Saturday and Sunday and offers a plethora of regional products and specialties, including charcuteries and cheeses as well as artisanal crafts.

Enjoy your first evening on Corsica and settle into the rhythms of this charming city, perhaps with a glass of Corsican wine, and dinner at a restaurant of your choice.

Accommodation

Hotel

With a relaxed day ahead of you, take your breakfast at your leisure and enjoy some further exploration of vibrant Bastia, a City of Art and History. In the afternoon, you will have your first teaser of the rugged green interior of the island on the scenic train journey from Bastia to Calvi, travelling first inland to Ponte Leccia where you will change for the line to L'Ile Rousse and Calvi on the north western coast. The famous train of Corsica is known affectionately as the "Micheline", and rides on a narrow gauge network especially built for the island's vertiginous slopes. Sit back and enjoy the changing views as the train meanders through majestic landscapes - this is slow travel at its best.

Reaching the coastal town of Calvi, famed for its welcoming beaches and impressive medieval Citadel, you can settle in to your hotel base here for the next three nights. Calvi is a unique place where the rugged mountainous interior meets the glamour of the coast; you can't help but find yourself mesmerised by the cobbled streets and daydreaming at the many expensive yachts in the bay from a marina-side cafe.

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Today's scenic walk takes you along the coastal path from the centre of Calvi to the Revellata Peninsula; don't forget to pack your swimsuit as you will have the opportunity to enjoy a swim at the secluded beaches along the way, accessible only by foot.

The rocky coast and sea cliffs of the Revellata make it a hotspot for seabirds and is home to rare, endemic and protected plant species. Your path follows the jagged, rocky coastline and through patches of maquis vegetation to reach the Revellata lighthouse, perched at the end of the headland. From the lighthouse looking to the left, you might be able to make out in the distance the red rocks of the Scandola Reserve, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site to preserve its natural beauty, rich biodiversity and the endemic maquis shrubland. As you start making your way back, you will pass the pretty bays of Osceluccia and Alga, perfect spots to cool off from your walk in the crystal clear waters before returning to Calvi for your second night.

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Ascent

220 M

Descent

220 M

Time

4-5 hours

Distance

15 KM

Today your walk will take you inland, ascending to the beautiful hilltop chapel of Notre Dame de Serra from where you can gain magnificent vistas over the bay of Calvi. You also have the option for a challenging extension today, continuing your climb from the chapel to reach the Capu di a Veta (703m), the highest point above Calvi.

Setting off from the centre of Calvi, you will navigate through the town and soon make your way steadily up the well-trodden, occasionally rocky path and through the now-familiar maquis. Almost before you know it, you will reach the impressive site of the Notre Dame de la Serra. The original chapel here was destroyed during a siege in 1740, but a new chapel was built in the first half of the 19th century. An old local legend says that if you bring the love of your life here, you will spend many happy years together. Here you can have a rest and a breather while you admire the simple architectural design features of the chapel, its Baroque bell tower, and the statue representing the Virgin Mary atop a large rock; not to mention the views to Calvi bay, the Revellata peninsula and the Reginu valley. You can descend from here back to Calvi, or if you wish you can continue on the extension to Capu di a Veta.

The way to Capu di a Veta follows a breath-taking rocky trail and while more challenging, offers the reward of unimpeded, panoramic views. Some sections are steep on this rugged terrain, including one short section with a chain to help negotiate a couple of tricky steps. Reaching the Austrian cross marking this high point, you can catch your breath and marvel at the expansive views before commencing your descent, following the way markers guiding your way through the shrubland, to eventually reach paved roads and return to Calvi for a well-earned refreshing drink.
16km / 720 ascent / 720m descent / 5-6 hours walking

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Ascent

250 M

Descent

250 M

Time

3 hours

Distance

9 KM

Indulge in a relaxed breakfast in your hotel and enjoy a day exploring the town of Calvi. This picture postcard seaside town is distinctly Mediterranean and you will love the quayside and its vibrant cafe life crowned by the Genoese Citadel. It is great to just sit in one of the cafes opposite the harbour and soak up the atmosphere. Whatever you do don't forget to climb through the atmospheric streets of the citadel and see the cathedral St Jean Baptiste or simply just relax on the 5km of pine backed beach.

In the afternoon you will make your way on the "Micheline" train to the geographical centre of Corsica; to the town of Corte which will be your base for the next three nights. This mountain stronghold was once the capital of the island under the rule of Pasquale Paoli from 1755-1769. Surrounded by jagged peaks and crowned with a hilltop citadel you cannot help but fall in love with Corte. Located at the confluence of the Tavignano and Restonica Gorges the town is usually abuzz with hikers, cyclists and climbers who seek to find their adventure in this natural playground.

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Leaving Corte on foot, today's walk will take you to discover the spectacular Tavignano Gorge, hiking a section of the "Mare a Mare Nord" path bisecting the island between east and west coasts. For centuries the gorge was a pathway to Niolu, the most remote region of Corsica, where residents have long been self-sufficient, living off their agriculture and livestock. Today there are many traces which testify the importance of the route as you will discover on your walk, with many archaeological sites scattering the region. As you make your way through the gorge you will pass locals and visitors alike cooling off in the many natural pools at the foot of the granite cliffs which have been beautifully carved by time and shaded by the tall laricio pines; a little slice of paradise. Your journey today takes an out-and-back route, depending on your energy levels you may wish to continue your walk further into the gorge following the Mare a Mare path, and turn back to retrace your steps for your return journey to Corte.

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Ascent

350 M

Descent

350 M

Time

4-5 hours

Distance

13 KM

After a relaxed breakfast, this morning you will walk south from Corte to ascend Punta di u Corbu, gaining a wonderful view over the town, the Restonica valley and the backdrop of magnificent jagged peaks that characterize central Corsica. This walk is dedicated to Saint Teofalu (Theophilus), born in Corte, who was the only canonized priest from Corsica. It is said that he loved silence and solitude; indeed the path through the tranquil woods invites you to enjoy a mindful day walking, breathing in the fresh mountain air scented with pine. Enjoy the peace of this quiet path before you descend into the Restonica valley and follow the route of the glacial river to return to Corte.

Accommodation

Hotel

Meals

B

Ascent

550 M

Descent

550 M

Time

3-4 hours

Distance

10 KM

Say goodbye to the majestic mountains today and enjoy a final scenic journey on the train back to Bastia; for Bastia Airport you should disembark at Lucciana. It is also possible to extend your stay on the island with extra nights in either Bastia or Corte, just speak with our sales team for more information.

Meals

B
Download Trip Notes
The Route
Airport Airport
Point Point
Train
Trek
Transfer

Essential Information

We've compiled some of our Frequently Asked Questions to help you learn more about this amazing trip.

  • All accommodation as described

  • Meals as described in the Meal Plan

  • Self-guided information pack containing your map and route notes

  • Travel to Bastia
  • Travel from Corte
  • Cost of local transfers by public transport
  • Visas (if applicable)
  • Tourist Taxes may apply and are usually under 5 Euros per person per night
  • Some meals as described in the Meal Plan
  • Personal equipment
  • Luggage transfers
  • Any additional activities/excursions indicated as optional

Each self-guided holiday comes with comprehensive route notes and a map or pocket guidebook of the area you are exploring. The route notes contain information about the places you will visit, about the local transport you might need, along with the detailed route notes for your daily walks or cycle rides. We even include some tips for the best places to stop for lunch.

You can expect to receive your Self-Guided Pack containing your route notes, a map or guidebook and all your relevant documents no later than 3 weeks before your holiday start date. We will send your documents using a signed for courier so that you can track your package and know that they are safely on their way to you. For bookings of more than 4 people we will send an additional Self-Guided Pack. If you do not need this additional pack please inform our sales team. Your pack will be sent to the lead booker so please remind them to pack it before you set off.

Should your self-guided trip be part of a longer adventure requiring you to leave home more than three weeks before your holiday start date, please do inform our sales team so that we can make alternative delivery arrangements.

Our Self-Guided Holidays are perfect for your next family holiday and are suitable for children of all ages.

Our partner hotels and accommodations are able to provide cots for young children, and some offer family rooms. We can also arrange hire of children’s bikes and tag along bikes for most of our self-guided cycling trips and with trips such as Lake Constance and the Danube offering routes on designated cycle paths you can rest assured in keeping your family safe.

As a parent we trust that you know your own child’s capabilities, so please read the itinerary details to ensure the distances covered each day are suitable for your family. If this is a first time walking holiday for your family, a centre based trip is a fantastic option as it allows you to easily opt out of a days walking if a day of building sand castles, swimming in the pool or visiting museums is calling instead.

Please discuss this further with our sales team who will be happy to assist in picking the best trip for your family.

The trip starts in Bastia and ends at Corte. All of our self-guided holidays are sold on a Land Only basis allowing you the flexibility to choose the travel method which best suits you. The nearest airport for this trip is Bastia Airport with many departures from regional UK airports. It is also possible to reach Bastia by ferry from mainland France (Nice or Toulon) or from Livorno in Italy.

If you are arriving to Bastia Airport, you can get to the train station in Bastia town using the bus shuttle service between the airport and the city. You can also reach Bastia town by train (approx. 25-30 mins) from the station in Lucciana which is a short taxi ride from the airport. Taxis are also available from the airport to Bastia town and the journey should take around 20 minutes.

At the end of your holiday you can return by train from Corte to Lucciana, the journey takes around 1 hour 20 minutes. From Lucciana it is a short taxi ride to Bastia Airport.

Private transfers are available on request, please speak to one of our Sales team for further details.

This trip is on a bed and breakfast basis to allow you the most flexibility during your holiday.

Water is drinkable from the taps on this holiday. Please fill your personal bottles for your day in the morning. We do not encourage the purchasing of single use plastic bottles.

Steeped in tradition, full of flavour and locally grown, Corsican cuisine is a delicious fusion of French and Italian influences with its own unique character. The island’s geography has played a strong role in determining what is served; with over 600 miles of coastline it is not surprising that seafood is a regular feature on restaurant menus, but not as often as you might think. Surprisingly, it is in fact the islands meats which are the Corsican’s favoured protein source. The island’s mountainous interior is perfect for rearing sheep and wild boar, which roam free and feast on the abundance of chestnuts growing in the area. This flavoursome diet of chestnuts gives the meat a unique flavour which makes it ever so popular. These tasty meats are used in delights such the fantastic cured meats including Figatellu and Lonzu AOC, or hearty stews such as civet de sanglier (a rich stew of boar, vegetables, chestnuts, fennel and red wine). The Italian influence on the island’s food is evident in the love of cured meats and the many cheeses produced using sheep and goat’s milk.

The island also has a great vegetarian offering with Corsica’s Italian influences showing through in some fantastic vegetarian pasta dishes and typical juicy Mediterranean salads waiting to be enjoyed.

Chestnuts are not only a staple for Corsica’s wild boar with islanders enjoying dishes such as Pulenta (a fritter made using chestnut flour). This is a tradition which dates back to Genoese times when the trees were first planted as an alternative crop to cereals. As you walk on the island you will note the many chestnut trees. We recommend sampling the crepes with chestnut filling with your coffee. It is a great sweet treat after a walk.

On this holiday you will stay in carefully selected 3* hotels, chosen for their great locations and hospitality. You will spend one night in Bastia and three nights each in Calvi and Corte, giving you a great flavour of the contrasts of coast and mountains on this beautiful island. All hotels offer delicious continental breakfasts to fuel you on your way. You will be sure to be charmed by our hand-picked hotels, whether by their history and tradition, their unique character, or the magnificent vistas over the beautiful surroundings. Not to mention you will be sure to be made to feel like one of the family by their warm and personal welcome.

It is possible to arrange additional nights accommodation in Bastia or Corte if you would like to extend your time on Corsica. Please speak to one of our Sales team for further details.

For this holiday you should take one piece of luggage and a daypack. Luggage with wheels is useful for this holiday as you will travel with your luggage between hotels.

Europe

Your passport must meet 2 requirements. It must be:

  • less than 10 years old on the day you enter (check the ‘date of issue’)

  • valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check the ‘expiry date’)

For the latest details on visiting countries within the EU or the European Economic Area (EEA), please check the UK Government website

The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required, and you should have at least 2 blank pages for each country that you visit.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Please ensure that you check for the latest advice before travel. For the most up to date information on entry requirements, please visit the UK Government website.

Vaccinations

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations.

GHIC / Medical cover

UK residents should carry a free Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). This entitles you to state provided medical treatment when you're visiting an EU country or Switzerland. This is not a substitute for medical travel insurance which is vital when travelling overseas.

Severe Allergies

Please inform our KE Sales and support team of any severe allergies you may have before travel. We will always do our best to help but we are unable to guarantee an allergy free environment on our KE trips. We advise that you always carry your own treatment for the allergy with you such as 'adrenaline auto-injectors' if required.  We also recommend that you discuss this with your accommodation on arrival so that they can better assist you.

The currency for part or all of this holiday is the Euro.

The advantage of a self-guided walking holiday is that you decide the pace, however getting some additional exercise before coming on an active holiday makes a lot of sense. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable your walks will be. You should be comfortable with walking 4-5 hours on consecutive days with an average ascent of around 350m per day. We suggest that you try to fit in some extra walks in hilly terrain before your trip to help prepare for your walking holiday.

Corsica has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers and moderate, dry, clear winters. The climate varies with altitude of course. The temperatures can reach up to 30°C on the coast in the summer months and as low as freezing in the evenings in the mountains. The micro climates in Corsica make the weather unpredictable and fast changing in the hills. You will need to be prepared for all eventualities with your waterproofs and warm layers with you along with your swimming costume.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office's ‘Travel Aware campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas. The 'Travel Aware' website provides a single, authoritative source of advice for all kinds of travellers and we recommend that prior to travel, all KE clients visit the official UK Government website at travelaware.campaign.gov.uk and read the FCDO Travel Advice for their chosen destination. 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 FCDO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCDO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

KE do not encourage the use of single use plastic items. We are ensuring that our agents all over the world are working together to reduce the problem and educate those around them. We are leading by example in our KE office by reducing our plastic use.

DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Corsica

Landscapes of Corsica: a countryside guide – Sunflower Guides

Time is a Killer – Michel Bussi

It is an essential condition of joining a holiday with KE Adventure Travel that you 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.

For appropriate insurance cover we recommend Campbell Irvine Direct.  Please go to our Travel Insurance page for further information and to get a quote.

Please note that a paper copy of your travel insurance is required if you are travelling to Huaraz and the Huayhuash region.

  • Hiking boots with good grip soles

  • Functional base layer

  • T-shirts

  • Hat

  • Windproof jacket

  • Fleece / extra layer

  • Long/short hiking trousers

  • Hiking socks

  • Waterproof jacket

  • Waterproof trousers

  • Rucksack (approx. 20 l)

  • Small first aid kit inside your rucksack

  • Sunscreen

  • Water bottle or hydration pack

  • Camera (batteries/memory card)

  • Mobile Phone (ensure your data package covers your destination)

  • Power bank

  • Waterproof phone cover

  • Sun glasses

  • Personal wash kit

  • Reusable cloth bag for shopping to avoid the use of plastic bags

  • Tupperware for picnics

  • Walking poles

  • Headtorch & spare batteries

  • Your self-guided route notes

Cotswold Outdoor Red PantonMany of the Equipment items listed above are available from Cotswold Outdoor - our 'Official Recommended Outdoor Retailer'. When you book a holiday with KE you will receive 12.5% discount voucher from Cotswold Outdoor and other retailers.
>> Find out more

DATES & PRICES

2024

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2025

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Land Only Information

Please note our 'from price' listed is based on 4 persons in double or twin occupancy, however we can quote for any number of travellers, including solo travellers, contact our sales team for a quote.

All of our self-guided holidays are sold on a Land Only basis allowing you the flexibility to choose the travel method which best suits you. You may even wish to make this holiday part of a bigger adventure or pair it with one of our other holidays. We can arrange additional nights accommodation before or after your self-guided trip, ask our sales team to find out more about this.

Our sales team will be happy to provide you a quote for scheduled flights or alternatively you may wish to book your own flights with a low cost carrier from your nearest regional airport.

Please DO NOT book your flights before you have received your booking confirmation and your deposit has been taken.

ZEN_HOLIDAY_DATES_PRICES_LAND_ONLY_USD_NOTICE


Changes to flights

Please be aware that the flight industry is experiencing a high level of service fluctuation and changes to your flights may occur. This may also require amends to the transfers and joining arrangements. Thank you all for continuing your patience and understanding.

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 is a fully bonded tour operator. We hold an ATOL license (No: 2808) and are bonded with ABTA (Membership No: W4341)


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