New! Corsica: Hiking the Island of Beauty | Mountain Travel Sobek

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New! Corsica: Hiking the Island of Beauty

Trip Length 9 days

From $4,895

  • Get the inside track on one of Europe's best hiking destinations as you journey along Corsica's beautiful forest, mountain, and beach trails
  • Tackle an easier section of Europe's most difficult trek—the famous GR20—and be rewarded with spectacular views
  • See the incredible red rock formations of Calanches de Piana, a UNESCO World Heritage Site dramatically located on the coast
  • Explore the authentic village of Corte, lost in the hills, surrounded by lush valleys and mountain lakes

Join us for an unforgettable journey to the Mediterranean island of Corsica, one of the world’s top hiking destinations. Essentially a mountain range rising up from the sea, Corsica is all about the views. It’s hard to say what’s more stunning: the cliffs and peaks soaring above white-sand beaches, or the views of the Mediterranean from atop those same peaks. Punctuating the landscape are the red-granite formations of the Calanches de Piana, as well as lush canyons, chestnut forests, and mountain lakes. From the aptly named port town of Porto we’ll start on the jagged coastline paths etched into the spectacular red rock of the west coast. They lead through perfumed maquis vegetation of aromatic herbs and brush to the tiny village of Girolata—only accessible by foot. We’ll experience the chestnut forests, often caught in a haunting fog, and cross paths with pigs, goats, and cows, all roaming among the trees. On the high ridges we’ll follow the famous GR20 hiking trail for a day, which will lead us to a storybook mountain lake among grassy pastures—a stunning picnic spot! And with the mountain scenery fresh in our minds we'll head down to the coast one last time, and laze on the sandy beaches. As we explore this hikers’ paradise, you’ll enjoy authentic Corsican cuisine and stay in comfortable accommodations the whole way.

Day 1: Arrive in Ajaccio, Corsica (France)

We'll start our adventure in Ajaccio, the island’s capital, and the birthplace of Napoleon. There are daily flights from many cities in France including Paris, Marseille, Lyon. We'll transfer from the Ajaccio airport to our hotel, secluded along the untamed coastline, complete with its own beach. Tonight we'll have a welcome briefing at 6pm, followed by a festive welcome dinner.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:Cala di Sole

Day 2: Hike in the Calanches de Piana – Porto

After meeting in the morning with our guides, we'll transfer to the Calanches de Piana (about 90 minutes by car) for our first hike. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, these blood red pinnacles soar out of the jagged coastline, highlighted by the Mediterranean sun, some 1,300-feet high, creating improbable inlets and shapes. Weathered by time, we’ll see natural arches and heart-shaped holes, with jaw-dropping viewpoints over the sea. Our hiking trail meanders through the red rock, rising high above the plunging cliffs. From here, we’ll also see our home for the next three nights, the tiny port village of Porto nestled below the granite cliffs. A cluster of just a few dozen buildings set around the narrow port, Porto offers some great restaurants serving local Corsican fare, and a rocky beach. Our hotel is located right on the port. Facing west towards the sea, from the comfort of our private balconies, we can watch the sun ending its fiery course into the waters. We'll enjoy dinner together before our first night in Porto.
Walking time: approx. 4.5 hours walking, 6 miles, +/- 1,640' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 3: Hike from Evisa to Ota – The Spelunca Gorge

After breakfast, a short drive takes us into the hills, where we'll enter the authentic village of Evisa. Hidden in the hills, the village is framed by a stunning setting, high above the sea, and is set around vast forests of chestnut and pine. We’ll likely encounter some of the wild pigs that are made into the island’s famed  charcuterie. Evisa and Porto are linked by the deeply encased Spelunca Gorge, and we’ll follow it on a centuries-old mule track, which still has remnants of its cobbled path and stone walls. Midday, we'll enjoy a picnic lunch by the river with opportunities to swim in the refreshing waters. Continuing down the lush path, we'll encounter Genoese bridges, 200 year-old marvels of stone architecture. We'll end in the equally charming village of Ota before returning to Porto for a second night. Dinner is on your own this evening to enjoy any of the several good restaurants choices on the port.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 5 miles, +492'/-1,968' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 4: Hike along the Mare e Monti and Sentier du Facteur Trails to Girolata

Just north of Porto we'll begin following the Mare e Monti path, one of the famed paths that link the sea to the mountain in Corsica. With stunning sea views into the gulf of Porto, our path leads through the maquis vegetation of aromatic herbs, heather, boxwood, and Corsican pine. We'll descend to a small and secluded beach: the perfect place for a dip and our picnic lunch. Our hike continues along the Sentier du Facteur–literally “the mailman’s path”–the one path the mailman took for 30 years to deliver the mail to our destination. After a short but steep climb a bay is unveiled, cradling the village of Girolata: just a handful of golden-stone homes huddled on a promontory above the bay, and protected by a 16th century Genoese tower. Only 15 souls live here year-round, and a cow or two. The village is only accessible by foot or by water. Though most of Corsica’s villages have  resisted the type of modernization prone to other Mediterranean destinations, Girolata is simply lost in time. After exploring the village we’re in for a treat: a return to Porto by boat, where we can admire the coastline from the waters, and look up at the imposing mountains. We'll enjoy dinner together before a third night in Porto.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 6 miles, +1,968'/-2,952' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 5: Hike on the GR20 to Lac de Nino – Corte

Today we'll get an early start to our day and transfer to the Col de Vergio pass (90 minutes by minibus). In a short time we'll have traded coastal scenery for a ski area, and the point at which we meet the famous GR20 hiking path, the toughest and arguably most spectacular in all of Europe. The GR20 is at the very top of most hikers’ bucket lists. Spanning 108 miles from north-west to south-east Corsica, the GR20 runs along the spine of the island, on jagged and mountainous terrain, with no end of eye-candy, leading from refuge to refuge. It takes normal mortals two weeks to complete the journey, with some 47,000-feet of altitude gain along the way. That’s about sea-level to Mount Everest, twice. We'll be covering one of the most spectacular sections of the GR20 path today, but with no technical terrain along the way. We'll begin in a lush and shaded beech forest on a comfortable path. After the easiest 3 miles that the GR20 has to offer, our path then climbs in switchbacks up to a grassy crest-line, where views open to the sea far below, and where cows come to graze. We'll continue to follow the crest, with stunning views along the way, until we reach a grassy pass. This is where the Lac de Nino and its fairy-tale setting is first unveiled. The lake is surrounded by deep-green grassy bogs (the sort of green you thought only Photoshop could generate), carved into intricate shapes by water-filled ruts, creating a labyrinth of peacefully-slow moving waters. Wild horses can be found in this area all summer. In the backdrop are the dark, serrated summits of the island, capped with snow until late June. It’s the best  of any Alpine vista, with the difference of being able to turn around to admire the Mediterranean Sea… and we can take all the time we want to admire all these views before retracing our steps (yes, the dreaded out-and-back, but never more worth it). From the Col de Vergio pass we'll continue by vehicle through canyon roads to reach the town of Corte, where we'll find what may be the best accommodation on the island, by the banks of the soothing green waters of the Restonica Gorge. Here we'll settle in for a three-night stay.
Walking time: approx. 5.5 to 6 hours walking, 12 miles, +/- 2,624' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 6: Follow the Manganello river to a remote shepherd's hut

Today we begin our hike in the lost village of Canaglia. From there we'll take the leisurely Mare a Mare route that crosses the center of the island, following alongside the Manganello river. As the path continues upstream, crystal-clear pools of water are framed by majestic boulders, making for plenty of swimming opportunities along the way. We cross the GR20 hiking route, and follow it just ten minutes to reach an isolated shepherd's hut in a clearing, with views of the high summits in the background. Here we're treated to a lunch made by the shepherd himself, just for us, including his own cheeses and local charcuterie. We return to our starting point before returning to Corte by minivan.

The town of Corte is nestled at the base of several valleys, and is the historic capital of the island, (when it gained independence from Genoa, though it’s now French). Proudly “Corsican”, Corte harbors the only university on the island, and has always been at the heart of the movement trying to maintain the Corsican language and culture. The town is filled with unassuming cafés and authentic restaurants, with locals huddled together with a local beer in hand. Many buildings are dilapidated, modest, and in various states of disrepair, but there’s a strong sense of welcoming to travelers willing to leave the comforts of the coastline. Crowning the whole lot is the town’s citadel, sitting protected and defiant above the rest. We’ll take the time to meander through the town streets before having dinner together in the center. 

Walking time: approx. 3 hours walking,  6 miles, +/-  300m elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 7: Hike to Lac Mélo

Today we'll wake-up before the sun rises, enjoy a quick coffee and pastry, and then climb into our minibus for the 30-minute ascent up the Restonica Valley. Beginning at the shepherd’s hut of La Grotelle, we'll hike up a rocky path to one of Corsica’s most emblematic glacial lakes. At 5,576-feet in attitude, Lac Mélo is frozen six months out of the year, surrounded by imposing cliffs. Those unafraid of some easy scrambling (with chains and ladders to assist) can opt to continue up to Lac di Capitello, some 650-feet higher. At the base of a rocky cirque, with dark pinnacles soaring above, the perfectly still and clear surface is a perfect mirror of the peaks. The setting is peaceful and inspiring, with the Capitello Breach just above. At 7,540' it’s the highest and one of the trickiest portions of the GR20, but we’ll admire the scene from below. We’ll then make our leisurely descent as the rest of the day's hikers begin their climb, and enjoy a well-earned picnic lunch before returning to our hotel along the banks of the Restonica Gorge. The afternoon is free to lounge by the pool, or in one of the spectacular swimming holes in the Restonica Gorge, or perhaps to wander around the town of Corte. Later, we'll enjoy dinner together in town.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 5 miles, +/-  1,804' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 8: Scenic Train Ride on The Micheline to Calvi

No trip to Corsica would be complete without an excursion on its train, affectionately known as 'The Micheline.' The ride is an event in itself: not anywhere as modern or as slick (or as smooth) as the trains in mainland France, The Micheline looks and feels past its prime. At first glance you’d guess it was a giant toy train, but don’t let looks deceive you. It is built for the vertiginous and difficult slopes of Corsica, and gives its passengers access to vistas and landscapes in the very heart of the preserved parkland, in the most jagged of terrain. The train snakes its way through the mountains before reaching the sandy beaches of the northern coast, then follows the coastline to its terminus at Calvi. Our guides will be waiting for us in Calvi, and will lead us on a short walk to a secluded beach, with no access for cars. On the beach, we'll find a surprising little restaurant where we’ll enjoy a feast of local grilled fish while staring at the vast, open, Mediterranean Sea. In the afternoon we’ll enjoy a short walk along the maquis scrub, following a coastal path to the end of a protected peninsula, with wide-open sea views. By the end of the afternoon we’ll be lazing on the beaches of Calvi, within steps of our hotel, floating in the salty waters and staring up at the 6,500-foot peaks. From sea, to mountains, and now back to sea...we'll enjoy a celebratory dinner in Calvi together before a night at our hotel by the beach.
Walking time: approx. 2 hours walking, 3 miles, +/- 330' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:L'Hostellerie de l'Abbaye

Day 9: Depart from Calvi

Your trip ends after breakfast. Calvi is a strategic departure point back to France. An airport 3 miles from the hotel has daily flights to mainland France, while a speedboat connects Calvi and Nice in under 4 hours. We have one transfer from the hotel to the airport in Calvi, or to Calvi port. Or perhaps you’d like to stay another day...or longer!

  • Breakfast

May 22 - 30, 2018 Back to Back with Provence Hiking

Jun 23, 2018 - Jul 01, 2018

Sep 01 - 09, 2018

Sep 29, 2018 - Oct 07, 2018

pricing

2017 Prices
$4,895 (3-16 members)
$600 single supplement


2018 Prices
$4,995 (4-16 members)
$700 single supplement

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Cala di Sole — Ajaccio

Get stunning views of the Gulf of Ajaccio from this waterfront hotel that faces the sea. Cala di Sole has its own private beach, lined with chairs and umbrellas, where you can enjoy the white sand and crystal clear waters. There's also a swimming pool, tennis courts, bowling green, and gym to help you stay active. A smaller, family-owned property with only 31 rooms, Cala di Sole has a friendly, welcoming staff. Rooms are simply furnished, but offer five-star views of the gulf.

Dominique Colonna — Corte

The Dominique Colonna in Corte sits right on the banks of the Restonica River, and guests can enjoy the sound of water rushing over the rocks below from the beautiful, sunny terrace. This upscale property is decorated with wooden headboards, stone floors, and an earth-tone color palette that reflects the natural beauty that surrounds it. The soundproofed guestrooms come equipped with air conditioning, a private terrace, and flat-screen TV. Free Wi-Fi access is available throughout. The Dominique Colonna is owned by (and named after) Dominique "Dumé" Colonna, one of France's greatest soccer players. 

L'Hostellerie de l'Abbaye — Calvi

Les Flots Bleus — Porto

Les Flots Bleus is a comfortable hotel ideally located on the waterfront, with unobstructed views of the Gulf of Corto and a Genoese tower atop a rocky outcropping. Each room takes advantage of the fabulous setting with a balcony from which you can take in panoramic views of the sunset. Guestrooms come equipped with air conditioning, flat screen televisions, bathrooms with bathtubs, safes, and free Wi-Fi. The hotel has a comfortable lounge as well as mini-golf, and is located in an area popular for snorkeling.

"Breathtaking hikes expose the island's cultural traditions and hidden treasures. An incredible way to reconnect with nature and experience a different side of France." Regina Penn

"Corsica is Europe's best-kept secret. It has it all in one space: beaches like Greece, hills like Scotland, rocks like New Zealand. A true gem!" David Sherer

  • Get the inside track on one of Europe's best hiking destinations as you journey along Corsica's beautiful forest, mountain, and beach trails
  • Tackle an easier section of Europe's most difficult trek—the famous GR20—and be rewarded with spectacular views
  • See the incredible red rock formations of Calanches de Piana, a UNESCO World Heritage Site dramatically located on the coast
  • Explore the authentic village of Corte, lost in the hills, surrounded by lush valleys and mountain lakes

Join us for an unforgettable journey to the Mediterranean island of Corsica, one of the world’s top hiking destinations. Essentially a mountain range rising up from the sea, Corsica is all about the views. It’s hard to say what’s more stunning: the cliffs and peaks soaring above white-sand beaches, or the views of the Mediterranean from atop those same peaks. Punctuating the landscape are the red-granite formations of the Calanches de Piana, as well as lush canyons, chestnut forests, and mountain lakes. From the aptly named port town of Porto we’ll start on the jagged coastline paths etched into the spectacular red rock of the west coast. They lead through perfumed maquis vegetation of aromatic herbs and brush to the tiny village of Girolata—only accessible by foot. We’ll experience the chestnut forests, often caught in a haunting fog, and cross paths with pigs, goats, and cows, all roaming among the trees. On the high ridges we’ll follow the famous GR20 hiking trail for a day, which will lead us to a storybook mountain lake among grassy pastures—a stunning picnic spot! And with the mountain scenery fresh in our minds we'll head down to the coast one last time, and laze on the sandy beaches. As we explore this hikers’ paradise, you’ll enjoy authentic Corsican cuisine and stay in comfortable accommodations the whole way.

reviews

"Breathtaking hikes expose the island's cultural traditions and hidden treasures. An incredible way to reconnect with nature and experience a different side of France." Regina Penn

"Corsica is Europe's best-kept secret. It has it all in one space: beaches like Greece, hills like Scotland, rocks like New Zealand. A true gem!" David Sherer

DAILY itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Ajaccio, Corsica (France)

We'll start our adventure in Ajaccio, the island’s capital, and the birthplace of Napoleon. There are daily flights from many cities in France including Paris, Marseille, Lyon. We'll transfer from the Ajaccio airport to our hotel, secluded along the untamed coastline, complete with its own beach. Tonight we'll have a welcome briefing at 6pm, followed by a festive welcome dinner.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:Cala di Sole

Day 2: Hike in the Calanches de Piana – Porto

After meeting in the morning with our guides, we'll transfer to the Calanches de Piana (about 90 minutes by car) for our first hike. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, these blood red pinnacles soar out of the jagged coastline, highlighted by the Mediterranean sun, some 1,300-feet high, creating improbable inlets and shapes. Weathered by time, we’ll see natural arches and heart-shaped holes, with jaw-dropping viewpoints over the sea. Our hiking trail meanders through the red rock, rising high above the plunging cliffs. From here, we’ll also see our home for the next three nights, the tiny port village of Porto nestled below the granite cliffs. A cluster of just a few dozen buildings set around the narrow port, Porto offers some great restaurants serving local Corsican fare, and a rocky beach. Our hotel is located right on the port. Facing west towards the sea, from the comfort of our private balconies, we can watch the sun ending its fiery course into the waters. We'll enjoy dinner together before our first night in Porto.
Walking time: approx. 4.5 hours walking, 6 miles, +/- 1,640' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 3: Hike from Evisa to Ota – The Spelunca Gorge

After breakfast, a short drive takes us into the hills, where we'll enter the authentic village of Evisa. Hidden in the hills, the village is framed by a stunning setting, high above the sea, and is set around vast forests of chestnut and pine. We’ll likely encounter some of the wild pigs that are made into the island’s famed  charcuterie. Evisa and Porto are linked by the deeply encased Spelunca Gorge, and we’ll follow it on a centuries-old mule track, which still has remnants of its cobbled path and stone walls. Midday, we'll enjoy a picnic lunch by the river with opportunities to swim in the refreshing waters. Continuing down the lush path, we'll encounter Genoese bridges, 200 year-old marvels of stone architecture. We'll end in the equally charming village of Ota before returning to Porto for a second night. Dinner is on your own this evening to enjoy any of the several good restaurants choices on the port.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 5 miles, +492'/-1,968' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 4: Hike along the Mare e Monti and Sentier du Facteur Trails to Girolata

Just north of Porto we'll begin following the Mare e Monti path, one of the famed paths that link the sea to the mountain in Corsica. With stunning sea views into the gulf of Porto, our path leads through the maquis vegetation of aromatic herbs, heather, boxwood, and Corsican pine. We'll descend to a small and secluded beach: the perfect place for a dip and our picnic lunch. Our hike continues along the Sentier du Facteur–literally “the mailman’s path”–the one path the mailman took for 30 years to deliver the mail to our destination. After a short but steep climb a bay is unveiled, cradling the village of Girolata: just a handful of golden-stone homes huddled on a promontory above the bay, and protected by a 16th century Genoese tower. Only 15 souls live here year-round, and a cow or two. The village is only accessible by foot or by water. Though most of Corsica’s villages have  resisted the type of modernization prone to other Mediterranean destinations, Girolata is simply lost in time. After exploring the village we’re in for a treat: a return to Porto by boat, where we can admire the coastline from the waters, and look up at the imposing mountains. We'll enjoy dinner together before a third night in Porto.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 6 miles, +1,968'/-2,952' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Les Flots Bleus

Day 5: Hike on the GR20 to Lac de Nino – Corte

Today we'll get an early start to our day and transfer to the Col de Vergio pass (90 minutes by minibus). In a short time we'll have traded coastal scenery for a ski area, and the point at which we meet the famous GR20 hiking path, the toughest and arguably most spectacular in all of Europe. The GR20 is at the very top of most hikers’ bucket lists. Spanning 108 miles from north-west to south-east Corsica, the GR20 runs along the spine of the island, on jagged and mountainous terrain, with no end of eye-candy, leading from refuge to refuge. It takes normal mortals two weeks to complete the journey, with some 47,000-feet of altitude gain along the way. That’s about sea-level to Mount Everest, twice. We'll be covering one of the most spectacular sections of the GR20 path today, but with no technical terrain along the way. We'll begin in a lush and shaded beech forest on a comfortable path. After the easiest 3 miles that the GR20 has to offer, our path then climbs in switchbacks up to a grassy crest-line, where views open to the sea far below, and where cows come to graze. We'll continue to follow the crest, with stunning views along the way, until we reach a grassy pass. This is where the Lac de Nino and its fairy-tale setting is first unveiled. The lake is surrounded by deep-green grassy bogs (the sort of green you thought only Photoshop could generate), carved into intricate shapes by water-filled ruts, creating a labyrinth of peacefully-slow moving waters. Wild horses can be found in this area all summer. In the backdrop are the dark, serrated summits of the island, capped with snow until late June. It’s the best  of any Alpine vista, with the difference of being able to turn around to admire the Mediterranean Sea… and we can take all the time we want to admire all these views before retracing our steps (yes, the dreaded out-and-back, but never more worth it). From the Col de Vergio pass we'll continue by vehicle through canyon roads to reach the town of Corte, where we'll find what may be the best accommodation on the island, by the banks of the soothing green waters of the Restonica Gorge. Here we'll settle in for a three-night stay.
Walking time: approx. 5.5 to 6 hours walking, 12 miles, +/- 2,624' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 6: Follow the Manganello river to a remote shepherd's hut

Today we begin our hike in the lost village of Canaglia. From there we'll take the leisurely Mare a Mare route that crosses the center of the island, following alongside the Manganello river. As the path continues upstream, crystal-clear pools of water are framed by majestic boulders, making for plenty of swimming opportunities along the way. We cross the GR20 hiking route, and follow it just ten minutes to reach an isolated shepherd's hut in a clearing, with views of the high summits in the background. Here we're treated to a lunch made by the shepherd himself, just for us, including his own cheeses and local charcuterie. We return to our starting point before returning to Corte by minivan.

The town of Corte is nestled at the base of several valleys, and is the historic capital of the island, (when it gained independence from Genoa, though it’s now French). Proudly “Corsican”, Corte harbors the only university on the island, and has always been at the heart of the movement trying to maintain the Corsican language and culture. The town is filled with unassuming cafés and authentic restaurants, with locals huddled together with a local beer in hand. Many buildings are dilapidated, modest, and in various states of disrepair, but there’s a strong sense of welcoming to travelers willing to leave the comforts of the coastline. Crowning the whole lot is the town’s citadel, sitting protected and defiant above the rest. We’ll take the time to meander through the town streets before having dinner together in the center. 

Walking time: approx. 3 hours walking,  6 miles, +/-  300m elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 7: Hike to Lac Mélo

Today we'll wake-up before the sun rises, enjoy a quick coffee and pastry, and then climb into our minibus for the 30-minute ascent up the Restonica Valley. Beginning at the shepherd’s hut of La Grotelle, we'll hike up a rocky path to one of Corsica’s most emblematic glacial lakes. At 5,576-feet in attitude, Lac Mélo is frozen six months out of the year, surrounded by imposing cliffs. Those unafraid of some easy scrambling (with chains and ladders to assist) can opt to continue up to Lac di Capitello, some 650-feet higher. At the base of a rocky cirque, with dark pinnacles soaring above, the perfectly still and clear surface is a perfect mirror of the peaks. The setting is peaceful and inspiring, with the Capitello Breach just above. At 7,540' it’s the highest and one of the trickiest portions of the GR20, but we’ll admire the scene from below. We’ll then make our leisurely descent as the rest of the day's hikers begin their climb, and enjoy a well-earned picnic lunch before returning to our hotel along the banks of the Restonica Gorge. The afternoon is free to lounge by the pool, or in one of the spectacular swimming holes in the Restonica Gorge, or perhaps to wander around the town of Corte. Later, we'll enjoy dinner together in town.
Walking time: approx. 4 hours walking, 5 miles, +/-  1,804' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Dominique Colonna

Day 8: Scenic Train Ride on The Micheline to Calvi

No trip to Corsica would be complete without an excursion on its train, affectionately known as 'The Micheline.' The ride is an event in itself: not anywhere as modern or as slick (or as smooth) as the trains in mainland France, The Micheline looks and feels past its prime. At first glance you’d guess it was a giant toy train, but don’t let looks deceive you. It is built for the vertiginous and difficult slopes of Corsica, and gives its passengers access to vistas and landscapes in the very heart of the preserved parkland, in the most jagged of terrain. The train snakes its way through the mountains before reaching the sandy beaches of the northern coast, then follows the coastline to its terminus at Calvi. Our guides will be waiting for us in Calvi, and will lead us on a short walk to a secluded beach, with no access for cars. On the beach, we'll find a surprising little restaurant where we’ll enjoy a feast of local grilled fish while staring at the vast, open, Mediterranean Sea. In the afternoon we’ll enjoy a short walk along the maquis scrub, following a coastal path to the end of a protected peninsula, with wide-open sea views. By the end of the afternoon we’ll be lazing on the beaches of Calvi, within steps of our hotel, floating in the salty waters and staring up at the 6,500-foot peaks. From sea, to mountains, and now back to sea...we'll enjoy a celebratory dinner in Calvi together before a night at our hotel by the beach.
Walking time: approx. 2 hours walking, 3 miles, +/- 330' elevation gain.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:L'Hostellerie de l'Abbaye

Day 9: Depart from Calvi

Your trip ends after breakfast. Calvi is a strategic departure point back to France. An airport 3 miles from the hotel has daily flights to mainland France, while a speedboat connects Calvi and Nice in under 4 hours. We have one transfer from the hotel to the airport in Calvi, or to Calvi port. Or perhaps you’d like to stay another day...or longer!

  • Breakfast
lodgings

Cala di Sole — Ajaccio

Get stunning views of the Gulf of Ajaccio from this waterfront hotel that faces the sea. Cala di Sole has its own private beach, lined with chairs and umbrellas, where you can enjoy the white sand and crystal clear waters. There's also a swimming pool, tennis courts, bowling green, and gym to help you stay active. A smaller, family-owned property with only 31 rooms, Cala di Sole has a friendly, welcoming staff. Rooms are simply furnished, but offer five-star views of the gulf.

Dominique Colonna — Corte

The Dominique Colonna in Corte sits right on the banks of the Restonica River, and guests can enjoy the sound of water rushing over the rocks below from the beautiful, sunny terrace. This upscale property is decorated with wooden headboards, stone floors, and an earth-tone color palette that reflects the natural beauty that surrounds it. The soundproofed guestrooms come equipped with air conditioning, a private terrace, and flat-screen TV. Free Wi-Fi access is available throughout. The Dominique Colonna is owned by (and named after) Dominique "Dumé" Colonna, one of France's greatest soccer players. 

L'Hostellerie de l'Abbaye — Calvi

Les Flots Bleus — Porto

Les Flots Bleus is a comfortable hotel ideally located on the waterfront, with unobstructed views of the Gulf of Corto and a Genoese tower atop a rocky outcropping. Each room takes advantage of the fabulous setting with a balcony from which you can take in panoramic views of the sunset. Guestrooms come equipped with air conditioning, flat screen televisions, bathrooms with bathtubs, safes, and free Wi-Fi. The hotel has a comfortable lounge as well as mini-golf, and is located in an area popular for snorkeling.

Dates and Pricing

May 22 - 30, 2018 Back to Back with Provence Hiking

Jun 23, 2018 - Jul 01, 2018

Sep 01 - 09, 2018

Sep 29, 2018 - Oct 07, 2018

pricing

2017 Prices
$4,895 (3-16 members)
$600 single supplement


2018 Prices
$4,995 (4-16 members)
$700 single supplement

Interested in this adventure? Take the next step and book it!

Got questions?

Call us at 1-888-831-7526
or click here!

Award-winning journeys recognized by Travel +Leisure

Award-winning journeys recognized by Travel +Leisure