Walking and active holidays in Corsica

Corsican Island Mystery

Self Guided Walking 8 days / 7 nights

Level 1 2 3 4

Point to Point - 6 days walking
Comfortable Mountain lodge & 3* Hotels
Starting from 950 €
  • Varied and beautiful Corsican landscapes
  • The best Corsican walking 
  • Hotels of character and charm
  • Corte, Piana and the Golfe de Porto

This is a really great walking holiday and a firm favourite with our guests, it offers a superb contrast from Corte, the island’s historic capital, through the rugged interior and past high summits to the vibrant village of Piana, perched high above the sea on the Golfe de Porto, the perfect setting to end your Corsican holiday. This walking holiday offers many of the best walks in Corsica, including Tavignano Gorge or Lac de Melo, the Scala di Santa Regina, Radule Bergeries or Lac de Nino on the GR20, Aitone forest to Evisa, Spelunca Gorge, and finally the Calanche de Piana and the Capo Rossu on the most stunning part of the west coast. Comfortable hotels, hearty local cuisine and wonderful walking with both mountain and coastal scenery, this holiday packs a lot in and offers some wonderful contrasts.

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Day 1 - Corte

Today you start with a train journey to Corte (payable locally). This single line track took 16 years to build from 1878 to 1888. Gustave Eiffel was responsible for one of the high bridges. The track winds back and forth through numerous tunnels, before arriving in the island’s historic capital, Corte. The rocky citadel dominates the town, and after dropping your bags at the hotel, you can take a walk around the old town, to discover the sights of this atmospheric place. Stay in 3* Hotel du Nord, Corté on a B&B basis. 4* Hotel Dominique Colonna, at a supplement. For late arrivals onto the island, nights in Ajaccio, Calvi or Bastia also available, please ask for details.

6km, 2h00,+140m, -140m.

Day 2 - Tavignano or Restonica Gorge

Corte is situated on two magical gorges - Tavignano and Restonica. The Tavignano offers a walk along an old mule path into the beautiful gorge, where steep cliffs rise up above the pounding torrent and numerous rock pools. For centuries, this was the route into the isolated Niolu region and it makes for stunning walking. For the second option (June to September only), we include a taxi transfer up the Restonica Gorge to take a well trodden but challenging path that leads up to lac de Melo, a glacier lake surrounded by spongy grass. Press on higher to the contrasting lac de Capitellu. Stay at 3* Hotel du Nord, in Corte on a B&B basis, 4* Hotel Dominique Colonna, at a supplement.

12km/6km, 4h30, +340m/+500m, -310m/-500m.

Day 3 - Scala di Santa Regina to Calacuccia

After a short transfer from Corte, you walk the Scala di Santa Regina, a trail of great historical importance used by shepherds leading their herds in and out of the Niolu valley. A superb balcony path climbs through steep granite cliffs in a truly rugged landscape, you cross Genoese bridges, the views soon opening up onto a very different panorama of the Niolu, with the lake and the village of Calacuccia. Your night stop is 3* Hotel Acquaviva, in Calacuccia, and you can expect some hearty local cuisine at a nearby restaurant.

13km, 5h30, +700m, -340m.

Day 4 - Calacuccia to Vergio

Walking from Calacuccia, you cross the village of Albertacce. Taking the Mare a Mare North path, you pass an old chestnut mill and cross another Genoese bridge, following a trail that winds its way up through a wonderful forest.   Walking below the Monte Cinto and the Paglia Orba, this is wild Corsica, remote and wonderfully mountainous. A forest path leads uphill towards the Col de Vergio and the mountain lodge Castel di Vergio, where you stay on Half Board basis for the next two nights.

17km, 7h00, +700m, -340m.

Day 5 - Radule Waterfall or Lac de Nino

Today you are taking parts of the GR20. Either  discover the Golu valley, passing the Radule bergeries there are many natural swim spots below the towering Paglia Orba towards Ciottollu di Mori refuge. In the opposite direction follow the GR20 to the stunning lac de Nino. With wide views across the high massifs, you drop down to the lake situated at 1743m, a lovely, sheltered bucolic spot, surrounded by a spongy peat, with runnels of water and wells. Stay at mountain lodge Castel di Vergio on Half Board basis.

14km, 7h00, +600m, -600m.

Day 6 - Aitone forest & Spelunca Gorge

The views from Col de Vergio are majestic towards the coast and Corsica’s  peaks are high and loom above in a very Granite landscape. The walking trail drops downhill through the Aïtone forest, crossing streams, with swim spots, offering some superbly contrasting views before walking through the Chestnut woods to the outskirts of Evisa. From Evisa, the path zig-zags through the Spelunca gorge, leading quickly down into the depths. Crossing a high arched Genoese bridge, you walk high above the torrent, towards Ota, a mountain village with a Mediterranean feel. Transfer from here to Piana. Stay 3* Hotel Scandola in Piana, on a Half Board basis.

15km, 6h00, +230m, -1300m.

Day 7 - Capu Rossu & Tour de Turghia

After a short but dramatic transfer by taxi, we drop you on the Capu Rossu headland for the most spectacular west coast walk to the Genoese “Tour de Turghia”, perched high on the red sea cliffs, high above the Golfe de Porto. The views are wonderous, over the sea and a lost landscape of farmsteads, threshing circles and olive groves recently restored showing the amazing pastoral history of this area. The path loops down to the coast above remote creeks. Stay in 3* Hotel Scandola on Half Board basis.

5km / 5km back, 3h00 one way, +450m, -450m.

Day 8 - Piana

End of holiday in Piana, extra nights and transfers to Ajaccio available, please ask for details.

This itinerary is correct at time of publication. Should situations arise that are beyond our control, such as severe weather conditions, or other such factors that could put your safety at risk, the itinerary may be modified.

Departure on request every day from April to mid October. 2 persons minimum.

 

Please select your departure date in the calender below to see the price and click on the button to the right to make a reservation.

Prices : €950pp (May, June, September & October) €970pp (July & August)    

Supplements/Discounts

Single Supplements : €320pp (May, June, September & October) €355pp (July & August)
4* Hotels (Dominique Colonna, Corté & Capu Rossu, Piana): from €305pp (May, June, September & October) & €340pp (July & August)
Private transfer Piana to Ajaccio (1 to 3 persons) : from €165
Private transfer Piana to Calvi (1 to 3 persons) : from €235
Scandola Tour by boat (taxi transfer Ota to Porto) : €50pp - sea conditions permitting

Price includes

Accommodation on half board (days 3, 4, 5, 6 & 7) B&B (days 1 & 2), local internal transfers, luggage transfers, travel dossier with A4 copies of IGN maps and walking notes.

Price does not include

Reservation fee of €5pp, travel insurance, drinks, picnics, site visits and transfers to your hotel in Corte and from Piana, travel to Corsica.

Starts

At your first hotel in Corte.

Ends

At your hotel in Piana after breakfast.

Access

Ajaccio Airport or Port. If you arrive into Calvi or Bastia, please ask for details. Trains and taxis available to Corte. Air tickets and boat reservations available, please ask for a quotation.

Accommodation
  • Hotels 3* and mountain hotel in a twin/double room, please request at time of reservation.
  • Continental breakfast (tea, coffee, milk, bread, butter, jam).
  • Evening meals nights 3, 4, 5, 6 & 7 (based on local specialties, including a starter, a main course and a dessert).

Should you have any food allergies, dietary requirements or special requests, please advise at time of booking.

Number of participants

Reservations for minimum of 2 participants. NB. For safety reasons we do not accept solo hiker reservations on Self-Guided treks.

Level

Moderate. Involves longer walks, generally from 4-6 hours a day. The nature of the terrain presents little technical difficulty but some previous hill walking experience is useful. The ascents will vary from 400m to 800m altitude gain per day. See our level ratings.

Guiding

Self-Guided Walking. We provide you with a Travel Dossier complete with A4 copies of the IGN maps and a walking guide created by our team. During your hike our 24-hour assistance service will also be able to answer all your questions and, if necessary, assist you with the smooth running of your stay.

Luggage transfers

During this walk you will carry only a small day sack with a water bottle, camera, picnic, trailfood, sun and wet weather gear. Luggage is transported by vehicle, point to point.

Our customers' reviews

John, UK
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A great trip, tailored to suit us, we loved it. We thought the people were friendly, views great, and all nicely fixed up by you. No problem finding the way and it was about what we expected in terms of walking. We had great weather and the end couple of days in Scandola were great, hired e bikes and went to Arone for a swim and a posh lunch. What's not to like?

Patricia, USA
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The walks were more challenging than I had expected. Great value for money though. We had a wonderful time- loved Corsica-- the places, the people, and the accommodations. We really enjoyed this trip. All four of us agree it was really a special experience---even though our actual trip went way off track from what was planned. I thank you for having flexibility to allow us to forge a different, but wonderful, experience. Corsica was even better than expected. The rugged beauty of the rock, the Calanques, the vistas, the history, it was all incredible. I am telling everyone I know that they must plan to go to Corsica.

Anna, UK
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Given the locations and scarcity of accommodation, the accommodation was good. We particularly liked Le Scandola in Piana, the location with sea -view was superb, room was comfortable and breakfast was excellent. The staff were welcoming and helpful. We found the walking terrain to be challenging and took far longer than the estimated time to complete the walk. I think the estimated times are for very fit walkers. Day 2 was particularly long although very interesting . The scenery was stunning and the experience of walking in the mountains,forests and by the coast was amazing. Overall a very enjoyable experience which was well organised with comfortable and characterful accommodation.

David, Australia
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One was excellent, two very good and one average hotel. Transport on time and friendly. Generally meals were very good to excellent except the breakfasts at Castel di Vergio which were quite meagre in comparaison. We very much enjoyed Corsica and (most of) the walking; our knees suffer on downhills !

Julia, UK
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We unreservedly recommend this company, in particular Nicola, who ensured the enormous success of our trip.Accomodation was excellent, and we enjoyed the variety. We thought the walks were wonderful and route details worked well. From our very first enquiry we were impressed with your response, and Nicola was immediately able to adjust the normal time schedule of the Island Mystery trip to enable us to spend extra time in places, and made really good suggestions about where. She always responded very quickly to our emails and sorted out queries rapidly and well. We feel that it is because she is so good at her job that our holiday worked out so well. We loved Corsica and the people we met there, it is a very beautiful island, and thank you very much for your service. Our rating of the company is 5*!

Geoffrey, UK
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This was a brilliant holiday. All the hotels and taxi drivers were super friendly. The walks were stunningly beautiful and the notes that accompanied them really useful. We didn’t get lost once! Thanks !

Ken, New Zealand
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Many thanks Nicola. Your organization and help has been superb! Do you have an English version of the questionnaire so I can leave a glowing review?

Chris, UK
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We are now back from our holiday and had a lovely time. Corsica was beautiful, the weather was great and the arrangements that you made worked without a hitch.

Nora, Canada
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Overall, a wonderful and varied hiking experience in Corsica. The trip was very well organized with all the arrangements re pick ups, hotels, baggage transfers, walking notes, etc.

Catherine, UK
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Five beautiful days in the Corsican hills! What made this trip particularly enjoyable was the landscape, the rock pools and meeting real Corsicans who are very friendly and helpful people. The hotels were not fancy but they are all clean and run by very friendly Corsicans. The food is Corsican which means that it consists of saussisson, goat cheeses, boar stews and potatoes and the soupe Corse which can be anything! Do not go to Corsica for the food, go there for the wonderful landscapes and the people. Excellent trip.

Paul, UK
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This is sadly the last day of our holiday and we return to London tomorrow morning. I would like to thank you for helping to create such a memorable holiday for us. The hiking trip was fantastic and the routes, hotels and transfers were are all excellent. In respect of the hotels, we loved the first and last night in Corte and Piana respectively. We have been on many hiking holidays with a number of different companies. Corsica Aventure is one of the best we have experienced and I would happily recommend you to my friends and colleagues.

Jenny, Australia
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This is my third trip with Corsica Aventure and I am already hoping to come again soon. The Island Mystery Trip is stunning! As a non French speaker I appreciate the ease of booking through Corsica Aventure. In three trips I have not had a single problem with transport or accommodation.

Morris, USA
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Our contact person was a pleasure to work with. She was always available, gave good advice, and was flexible with our particular needs. We had a great time and will indicate to friends who may want to come to Corsica.

David, USA
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Many thanks for an (almost) flawless vacation! Everything went smoothly from a logistics point of view.....transfers, taxis, hotels, meals all excellent. Thanks for your planning.

Maureen, USA
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I and my husband considered ourselves in reasonably good shape until we took the first walk. I did not realize how rocky the terrain was in Corsica, and the paths took us much longer than expected. The hotels were all unique and comfortable with plenty of character and proprietors were warm, friendly. and accomodating. I especially loved Casa Balduina, Hotel Aitone, and Hotel les Roches Rouges. For the daily itinerary I would recommend listing the distance between major areas or points - the scenery was spectacular and piqued my interest in seeing more of Corsica

Daniela, Canada
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We were extremely happy with each hotel. The rooms and locations were all exceptional and the staff were always helpful and accommodating. Each hotel was different and unique in it's own way. All meals we received at the hotels were exceptionally good, and when we had our evening meals outside of the hotels we were happy with the recommendations we received from Corsica Aventure.

Elizabeth, UK
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We had a fabulous holiday and thank you very much for all your input in organising the holiday. We were a family group with ages from 10 to 70 and the weather was challenging at times. The snow for the children was a rare treat and to have the walk to Evisa in the snow on a day of beautiful sunny weather was great. All the hotels were great in different ways. Without exception all the staff and owners of the hotels were helpful and kind and breakfasts were all good. We enjoyed all the evening meals, where provided, especially in the Les Roches Rouges where the meals were exceptional and the setting is of course beautiful.

Lisa, UK
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The logistics and accommodation were very good. The walk was technically more difficult than expected, despite training hard over distance and ascent. Te South of England did not prepare me sufficiently!

Miia, UK
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The dinners at le Belvédère in Porto and The Hôtel Capo Rosso were excellent. It wasn't possible to pay online when I wanted to add some extra nights & upgrade the hotels. However, the response to my e-mails was very quick.

Dag, Norway
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A great walk through some fantastic landscape! Highly recommended!

Graham, Australia
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Just want to take the opportunity to thank you and your colleagues at Corsica Adventures for organising our walk. While challenging at times it was a great experience and the four of us enjoyed the adventure immensely. Your choice of hotels more than met our expectations. Hotel Capo Rosso at Piana was particularly good. Spectacular views. Hotel staff at each location were more than obliging when they knew that were associated with Corsica Adventures.The taxi "pick ups" were all on time and we found the drivers very helpful.We were all struck by the unique beauty of Corsica. One of the few countries that we have visited that has not been impacted upon by mass tourism. Thanks again for making our holiday go so well !

Annie, UK
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Our first Hotel in Corte was really superb and we had a delicious dinner in the restaurant next door. The one in Caluccia was fine, they were very nice and cooked us supper. Piana was fantastic in every way.

Kiyomi, UK
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We upgraded the first 2 nights hotel to 4 stars (Dominique Colonna) and it was amazing next to river. It was very nice room as well. All people in all hotels were so friendly and nice with great hospitality. Their warm welcome made our trip so remarkable. Hotel L Acqua Viva has a bath tab which was really nice and fire place at the lobby. Col de Vergio is a basic mountain hut hotel, but it has very efficient there and really great atmosphere there. Corsica Adventure provided one of the best services we've received. Everything was so perfect and well organised. Great walking tour and wonderful hotels and meals! Thank you and highly recommended!