Corsica: The GR20

15 days
from
$3,565 USD
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Traveller ratings
4.5 / 5 from 23 reviews >
Trip code: 
TWS
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group Adventure Holidays, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Point-to-point Walking
Min age:
18
Group size:
6–16

Walk Europe's most challenging long distance trek

Notoriously a difficult route due to lack of water and cramped accommodation en route, the GR20 is arguably Europe’s finest and toughest trek. This itinerary takes away some of the route’s usual hardships as we stay in private refuges, only carry daypacks and take a rest day in the beautiful citadel of Corte, allowing us to enjoy the fabulous walking. The landscape and terrain are still a challenge and vary enormously from precipitous and dramatic cliff-top paths to lush green meadows, but this incredible, legendary hike has finally been made more comfortable.

Highlights

  • Europe's most challenging long distance trek
  • Cross the incredible island of Corsica
  • Luggage transportation throughout

Key information

  • 10 nights in dormitories, 1 night in tent, 3 nights hotels
  • 11 days point-to-point walking; 1 rest day in Corte; 1 optional walk day
  • Group normally 6 to 16 plus leaders (1 for small groups, 2 for 8 or more)
  • Altitude maximum 2400m (optional ascent of 2706m), average 2000m
  • High level of fitness required
  • Single supplement not available

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 11 lunches, 12 dinners
  • All accommodation (see accommodation section)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leaders throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

 

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (not available)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call us on
+82-(0)02-6320-4111
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

11

Pace:

Challenging: 5-6km/3-4miles an hour

Terrain:

Low altitude; including steep, rocky terrain

Day by day breakdown
Day 211.0km/6.0miles
Day 312.0km/7.0miles
Day 58.0km/4.0miles
Day 613.0km/8.0miles
Day 723.0km/14.0miles
Day 813.0km/8.0miles
Day 1016.0km/9.0miles
Day 1114.0km/8.0miles
Day 1220.0km/12.0miles
Day 1315.0km/9.0miles
Day 1420.0km/12.0miles

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Calvi
to
Bastia Airport
  • Day 1

    Start Calvi.

    Start in Calvi, where we have time to explore this beautiful town independently.

    Accommodation: Hotel

  • Day 2

    Transfer to Calenzana and walk to Bonifatu.

    Transfer to Calenzana, south east of Calvi, a quiet little village surrounded by the olive trees that are native to the area. This is our start point for the walk up to Bonifatu. Our route takes in several river crossings and offers some great views over the characterful towns of Balagne. This offers an excellent warm up for the GR20 and gives us our first glimpse of the Corsican coast.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx 4h00

    Altitude gain: +800m / Altitude Loss: -540

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    A long but rewarding walk from Bonifatu to Haut Asco.

    After breakfast we leave Bonifatu and tackle one of the longest sections of the GR20. River crossings are again a feature, before we reach the famous Spasimata footbridge. The setting here is quite dramatic, as the bridge is 30 metres in length and suspended above a waterfall, offering a fantastic photo opportunity. Using fixed cables we head over the Spasimata slabs and arrive in the Muvrella (Mouflon) Valley, where the passes provide some excellent viewpoints of a region home to a large population of Mouflons which we may spot during the week. Our destination is the foot of Monte Cinto, the highest summit in Corsica, where we spend the night.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 8h00

    Altitude gain: +1300m / Altitude loss: -598m.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Walk to Lac d'Argentu.

    Today you can choose either to rest and relax, or to walk to Lac d'Argentu (2400m), a beautiful glacial lake at the foot of the north face of Monte Cinto with great views of the mountain itself, and return to Haut Asco for the night.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx 6h

    Altitude gain: +980m Altitude loss: -980

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Walk the Monte Cinto route to the sheepfolds of Vallone via the Pointe des Eboulis.

    The new GR20 route, following the closure of the Cirque de la Solitude in 2015, takes us just below Monte Cinto (about 45minutes below the summit) and onto the sheepfolds of Vallone. The route involves a little bit of scrambling; it is not too technical but it is a long day with considerable amount of altitude gain and loss. Due to the length of the day, the actual ascent to the summit of Monte Cinto (2706m) is only possible for very strong groups if the weather conditions are good enough (the decision to summit is left to the discretion of the leader).

    Accommodation: Tent

    Luggage: no access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 11h

    Altitude gain: +1250m / Altitude loss: -1230m.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Climb to the Refuge Ciotulu I Mori; descend by the Golo River.

    After waking up to views of the surrounding mountains, the day begins with a gentle walk through a forest of giant Laricio pines before a long rocky climb up the Bocca di Fuciale. The climb is soon rewarded as we head up and over the saddle towards the Ciotulu I Mori Refuge, beneath the distinctive Paglia Orba peak. From here there are great views down towards the Golo Valley. At this point the path becomes much easier as we wind our way down the valley, past the many rock pools on the Golo River, which are perfect for a quick dip. The final stretch takes us back through the woods and up to Castel di Verghio.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 6h 15

    Altitude gain: +971m / Altitude loss: -1017m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Continue through the woods to Lac Nino.

    Our route today is relatively long, but is a real treat. Leaving Verghio the route gradually climbs out of the shadows of the lush forest. The morning's effort is rewarded by the descent to one of the best known lakes in Corsica, Lac de Nino, complete with its little ponds (pozzines). The setting is superb, with views of the mountains often complemented by the grazing horses, cows and pigs that often visit the lake. The path continues to follow the river and bathing pools, leading us to one of the most attractive refuges on the island.

    Accommodation: Refuge

    Luggage: no access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 7h 20 hours

    Altitude gain: +869m / Altitude loss: -1040m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Swim in a natural pool; walk alongside the Tavignano River to Corte.

    After tearing ourselves away from the natural pools near the refuge, we make our way down the Tavignano gorge, to Corte. This stage offers more opportunities en route for bathing in the crystal clear waters of the Tavignano river. We have dinner in a traditional restaurant in Corte and spend the night in a hotel.

    Accommodation: Hotel

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 4 hours

    Altitude gain: +720m / Altitude loss: -1400m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Free day to relax and explore Corte.

    A well-earned day of rest marks the transition from the GR North to the GR South. We have the chance to spend much of the day soaking up the lively atmosphere of Corte, the ancient capital of Corsica. Take your time to discover the citadel, perched high upon a rocky crag, a defiant spectacle of Corsican patriotism. Visit the Museu dia Corsica, which charts the fascinating and turbulent history of the island, and spend time wandering around the many shops, cafés and restaurants. Overnight in Corte.

    Accommodation: Hotel

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    Transfer to Vizzavona. Col de Vizzavona and on to Bocca Palmente; continue on to Capanelle.

    A private transfer will take us to Vizzavona where we begin the trek with the Pass of Vizzavona and the stiff but steady climb to Bocca Palmente, which offers splendid views along the eastern plains and back to Monte D'Oro. Next, after passing the crest, we catch a glimpse of Monte Renoso, tomorrow's objective, before finally arriving at the sheepfolds of Capanelle.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 5 hours

    Altitude gain: +1155m / Altitude loss: -715m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Walk to the Plateau of Gialgone; optional ascent of Mt Renoso and to Col de Verde.

    From Capanelle, we make our way to the picturesque sheepfolds of Traghjete before trekking on towards the Plateau of Ghialgone. We cross the footbridge of I Spiazzi (another bathing point). Our final descent of the day lies under the shadow of the rarest and most majestic Corsican fir trees, before reaching the Col de Verde.

    Those feeling adventurous may have the opportunity to climb Monte Renoso, the highest point of southern Corsica at 2352m. We pass Lac Bastani before reaching the summit where we are rewarded with views back to Monte Cinto, Paglia Orba and Monte Incudine.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 5 hours

    Altitude gain: +600m / Altitude loss: -900m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Morning ridge walk, followed by a descent to the town of Cozzano.

    We start the day with a climb towards the refuge of Prati, which is perfectly positioned for beautiful views across to the Renosu massif. The view is at its best when we reach the crest. From here the view stretches out across the Ligurian sea and the Italian island of Elba (weather permitting). After easy scrambling through a landscape of rocky slabs with some exposure for approx. 2 hours, we make our descent through the forest before reaching Cozzano, a village in the heart of Corsica.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 8 hours

    Altitude gain: +750m / Altitude loss: -1300m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 13

    Long climb to Bocca di L'Usciolu; to Basseta.

    Our morning is devoted to the climb towards Bocca De Surraghedu. After 1000m on uneven terrain, we embark on the Arete a Mondi, a beautiful rocky crest with fantastic views. After easy scrambling with some exposure for approx. 2 hours we start our descent through a forest of centennial trees. The path finally descends and the vegetation becomes dense. After the crossing of a stream, we arrive at the sheepfolds of Bassetta.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking: approx. 6h30

    Altitude gain: +910m / Altitude loss: -505m

    In case of bad weather we may take another path:

    Walking: approx. 6 hours.

    Altitude gain: + 680m Altitude loss: -80m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 14

    Over the Plateau Coscione to the Asinau Valley and on to Bavella.

    This is the longest and hardest day of the trip, but the end of this superb trek is in sight. Continuing on the GR20 from Bassetta, we cross the Plateau Coscione where streams wind their way through small valleys and climb steadily towards the col below Monte Incudine. On a clear day we see Monte Cinto and Paglia Orba behind us, and Sardinia in the distance in front. From here we descend to Asinau to reach our final destination, Bavella and its famous Aiguilles (French for needles), which dominate the landscape of the Alta Rocca. There couldn’t be a more fantastic place to finish this memorable walk.

    Accommodation: Gîte

    Luggage: access to main luggage

    Walking (via the GR20): approx. 9 hours

    Altitude gain: +982m / Altitude loss: -1100m

    Walking (via the alpine variant): approx. 9 hours

    Altitude gain: +1470m / Altitude loss: -1570m

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 15

    Transfer to Bastia airport; end.

    Transfer to Bastia airport, 10 km south of Bastia town, where the trip ends.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

France

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

France

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 11 lunches and 12 dinners are included.

Breakfasts include tea or coffee, bread and jam. Packed lunches vary between accommodations, but usually include bread, cheese, ham and a pasta salad. Dinners normally include a hot simple three course meal. Please note that it can be difficult (but not impossible) to cater for vegetarians on the GR20. The gites are in isolated places and depend upon local produce. You should be able to get cheese sandwiches for lunch and often omelettes or basic pasta dishes are available for the evening dinners. Please bring a good supply of protein (nuts and seeds) to keep up your energy levels if this concerns you, as this may be lacking. No other dietary requirements will be able to be catered for.

Weather

The weather during the summer months can be fantastic for the GR20 with clear skies offering views across the mountains, out to the crystal blue sea and sometimes with a view towards the islands of Elba, Monte Cristo or even the coast of Italy. Although freak weather in the mountains is always a possibility, so be prepared for all kinds of weather at any time of year. June and early July departures may have to cross snow patches, and should have temperatures in the mid to high 20s. Mid July to August will experience some especially high temperatures at lower altitudes, and those who suffer from the heat may prefer to avoid that time. However this is when rainfall is at its lowest. September departures will be cooler again, but with a higher chance of rain or storms. Corsica can also experience summer thunder and lightening storms at short notice which we will always avoid for safety reasons. Your guide will keep an eye on the weather and decide on the best course of action each morning. In the evenings and early mornings expect temperatures to be in single figures, but rarely below freezing in the summer months.

Is this trip for you?

Grade: 6 (Challenging/ Tough)

The GR20 is a long and tough trek which requires a high level of fitness, lots of mountain walking experience and sure-footedness for the rocky landscape and mountain ridges. You also need a head for heights - this trek is not suitable for vertigo sufferers. You will need complete confidence in your physical ability to attempt this trek as, if the weather turns during the walk, you will have no other option but to increase your walking speed.

Experience of point-to-point treks of more than one week is essential: one of the biggest difficulties of the trek is the fact that you need to sustain 2 weeks of walking at a challenging/tough grade. Some people find it hard to recuperate from one day to the other, so it is important not to overestimate your fitness and capabilities.

Although the GR20 is not technically challenging, it involves plenty of steep ascents and descents, scrambling and the occasional use of fixed chains and a ladder (via ferrata). The descents can be an issue for those with knee problems. Each day we can expect to walk for an average of 6 to 9 hours (not including stops) with considerable daily ascents and descents that can be rough underfoot (averaging +800m and -800m per day, not including optional summit ascents/descents).

Our leaders will assess the group's fitness and ability over the first couple of days and, as per our booking conditions, they may ask people who are not fit enough for the trek to complete certain sections by public transport or taxi (at your own cost). This is to ensure the safety and enjoyment of every participant.

Please note that to ensure passenger safety, in the occasion of adverse (wet/ windy) weather we will not be able to complete some sections of the walk - this is at your leader's discretion.

The main luggage is driven from base to base for us on most days, so we only have to carry our gear for the day and perhaps a packed lunch. However, on 2 occasions our accommodation is inaccessible by road; therefore we will need to carry our sleeping bag and overnight belongings for 4 days of the trek.

The paths are well marked with red and white painted signs on rocks, trees and other convenient objects. However, our itinerary deviates from the classic trail at times to take you to see more fantastic scenery, as well as taking you to less crowded and more comfortable gites for the night. Remember that the idea of the GR20, more than following a set route, is to cross Corsica through the mountains; a challenge that is rewarded by incredible views.

Call us on
+82-(0)02-6320-4111
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Dormitories, Tent & Hotels

3 nights in 2* hotel in twin or double room with en suite facilities. 10 nights in gîtes with dormitories (4 to 16 beds), hot showers and toilets. 1 night at shepherd’s huts in tents of 2 (simple toilet and shower available).


The official GR20 huts are run by the National Park (PNRC). They were built in the 70’s and are small, cramped, often dirty and usually overcrowded and overbooked. Sleeping accommodation is usually in one dormitory on long communal bunks. Hot water is limited and there are often outside toilets. We do not use these on any of the nights. Instead our itinerary makes use of privately owned Trekkers Gites on the route, or accessible with a deviation.


Trekkers Gites offer dormitory accommodation in bunks beds, usually sleeping 6 or 8 persons per room. We will be allocated enough beds for each person in usually 2 or 3 rooms depending on the group size. Normally this will mean mixed sex sharing, and may sometimes mean that other guests not in our group will also share the dormitory.
All Gites have hot showers, basins and sit-down toilets, but these may be basic and are usually shared by more than one dormitory room. Charging points are available at all gites, but access to these may well be limited and shared between many guests.
Each Gite provides an evening meal, breakfast and our packed lunch. Meals are taken in a dining room and a bar serves wine beer, teas, coffees and soft drinks.
Overall the Gite accommodation is basic, no-frills trekkers accommodation, but it remains superior to the official PNRC huts and more practical than camping, which are the only other options available on the route.

Call us on
+82-(0)02-6320-4111
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call us on
+82-(0)02-6320-4111
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed September 2017
    Katie Miller

    GR20 June to July

    My fantastic trip mates and guides (Alejandro and Leia) made the trip exceptional. It wasn't quite as aerobically demanding as I'd expected (I guess I was expecting more "alpine" type hiking, even though, yes, I realize it's definitely not the Alps), but the physical demands were tough - especially the downhills, which were brutal on my knees. Long days for 10+ days and lots and lots of downhill to match the uphill, since you're literally going up and over the mountain range from north to south. So be prepared for some throbbing feet and sore knees! But it was truly beautiful, the mountains and vistas were amazing. Overall, I'm VERY happy I did it, but probably wouldn't do it again (unlike the Tour Du Mont Blanc, which I would do over and over).

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Taking pictures of the sunset over the mountains on the very last day...after we'd completed the journey.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    FANTASTIC group leader. Alejandro knew something about EVERYTHING. He was incredible. And Leia was amazing as well, she supported all of us exactly when we needed it most. We couldn't have asked for better guides, seriously, totally exceptional!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Others have posted this as well, but the breakfasts are bland (bread, jam and cafe au last) and don't have any protein. I brought (and finished!) an entire jar of peanut butter. I also brought oatmeal, but got tired of it after a few days. Make sure you bring protein bars and snacks to keep you going. It wasn't a terrible thing (I'm actually really thankful!), but I ended up losing 10 lbs on the trip, since there's no real opportunity to snack (or even buy snacks) and you're definitely burning thousands of calories a day. Also, it's HOT in the summer. I only had a cold weather sleeping bag and regretted it because I hardly slept inside the bag at all. And that meant that I was dinner for all sorts of mosquitos and bedbugs (yes, what you've read is true, there are bed bugs everywhere...I was paranoid and still couldn't avoid getting eaten alive and virtually burning most of my gear before I brought it into my home after the trip). If I were to do it again, I'd follow our guides' lead and just sleep outside the cabins, since then you'll be able to avoid the heat (since even if it was nice outside - 10 people packed into a cabin creates a LOT of heat), bugs and snoring :)

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Yes, I was SEVERELY disappointed to find out that, again, I'd paid the highest price for the trip, even though I wasn't able to take advantage of the flight inclusion. One European on our trip had a discount because they didn't use the flight. I was offered no such discount and I definitely asked about it when I booked!! This is the second trip with Exodus where I found out that I was (even though I signed up well in advance) not given what I believe is a fair deal at all. I will not be using Exodus again for this reason and will be encouraging my American peers in the future to find a company with better pricing that doesn't penalize you for coming across the Atlantic. Also, it was disappointing to stay in a lodge on the last day. We had actually assumed there would be a hotel room. It was also at this last lodge where I got most eaten alive by the bed bugs. Imagine sleeping in those conditions, then waking up at 5am to drive 2 hours, followed by flying for 12 hours. I scratched and itched the entire way. It was awful and uncomfortable and honestly, it would have been nice to have proper accommodations for the last stop (I understand "basic" while on the trip, but at least for the final day, to get a real bed would've been nice).
  • Reviewed October 2016
    Sara Wu

    An unforgettable journey

    It is truly the toughest long distance hike I have ever had!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Standing at the col looking at the incredible path I have taken and appreciating the stunning landscape and scenery

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jo and Simon are excellent, most caring, organised and amicable

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    One must be very fit without problems with the knee, rock climbing and the height.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bed bugs can be a problem in the gites.
  • Reviewed September 2016
    Gordon Patterson

    Corsica GR20

    A very good trek, with a fine set of people, fantastic scenery and very varied and often challenging walks which gave a good range of the forest, mountain, gorge and high pasture scenery along the route. There were some disappointments relating to accommodation in places, and the weather which prevented us from ascending the ridge on the last 3 days of the trek.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Probably the ascent of Monte Renoso and the high ridge and plateau walk that followed it, By that time we were fitter and better able to appreciate the scenery in all its glory. But the gorge walk down to Corte was also marvellous with the cliffs, torrs and huge trees and changing forest vegetation as we dropped down. Some of the evening meals were really tasty as were picnic swimming lunches enlivened by local cheeses and sausage and fruit.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good and enthusiastic, with great local knowledge of places, nature and people. He was very helpful in trying to resolve difficulties with accommodation, and with other practical matters, The group was a maximum size of 16 and this made it a challenge to keep everyone together sometimes.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Good earplugs, insect- bite cream, anti-histamine pills, spare food supplies, inflatable travel pillow will all be very useful. Do not skimp on waterproof gear as the mountains showed that they can be cold and wet even in summer. Breakfasts are a bit monotonous so bring oat and dried fruit snacks and chocolate to liven them up and fuel your walking.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The accommodation was generally basic and sometimes not as good as that. We encountered several cases of no electricity, no hot water, overcrowded or damp dorms, flooded showers etc. Whilst this is to an extent the nature of the beast on the GR20 and we are told that other gites are worse, there were occasions when Exodus prices seemed poor value for money compared to the cost to people making their own way who were staying at the same places.
  • Reviewed August 2016
    Ray Robinson

    GR20 (too short)

    The trip was very good, We were lucky in that we had great weather, fine every day, too hot when at sea level, but the temperature was great at 2000 meters. The trip was demanding, but the group was fit and coped well. We were lucky to have a great leader.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Taking the high route over Monte Cinto and Monte Renosu was excellent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group leader was very good, kept the group together, made time to have rests and swims, knew the route well, and paced us accordingly. We left early on some days, to ensure that there was good visibility on each peak, to avoid the afternoon clouds rolling in obscuring the view, and the possibility of a storm and possible lightning strikes.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take some musleii or something for breakfast. The stale bread and jam and coffee for breakfast in the mountain huts was not very appealing or satisfying. The lunches were good, as were the evening meals.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I have several problems with the organisation and planning. The Exodus route avoided the first and last days walking, and missed some high walking in 2 sections in the middle. I wanted to do it all. 1/. On the first day it was very hot, but we started late. It would have been a tough climb, but the route took the low route, so we missed the first high hut. 2/. The rest day at Auberge de Vallone was not really necessary, and there were few facilities there anyway. 3/. In the middle of the walk, we turned off the route, after Bergeries de Vaccaghja, and descended to Corte. This used roughly 2 half days and a rest day in Corte. It would have been better to stop at the next refuge (Refuge de Manganu) spend the night, and continue the next day, to Refuge Petra Piana. Then the high route to Refuge de L'Onda, then the high route to Vizzavona, the half way point, and have the rest day there. 4/. Leaving the ridge at Bocca di Laparo, and the long descent to Cozzano, was real let down. We could have stayed on the ridge and continued on to Refuge de'Usciolu, and then continued to Asinau, then to Bavella. 5/. On the last day, it would have been just a forest walk, but I wanted to do it anyway.

    Reply from Exodus

    Reply from Exodus

    We would like to thank Mr Robinson for his review of the trip. We were disappointed to read about his negative experience of the breakfasts and will pass the feedback directly to the huts and gites to ensure improvements are made. With regards to the itinerary we follow, as stated in the trip notes, we have decided not to follow the classic route all the way in order to use different gites. The huts and gites on the “official” GR20 are notoriously overcrowded and dirty, and we have therefore chosen to deviate slightly at times in order to stay in huts and gites providing a better standard of accommodation. The GR20 is really about crossing Corsica and we feel our chosen itinerary does still offer this, whilst avoiding some of the poorer huts.

  • Reviewed June 2016
    Alice Stewart

    GR20 - Corsica

    A truly inspiring walk in stunning scenery. The walking is varied, the scrambling is a bit like that found on Skye and there are still opportunities to swim, relax and see a bit of Corsica.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The climb of Monte Renoso Cooling off in the rivers (swimsuits are a must!) The feeling of achievement on the last day as we reached Bavella

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pascal was the best guide I have ever walked with - organised, decisive, in-tune with the group, funny, professional. He and Damian made the trip special

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The trip needs proper hill fitness and walking skills or you will miss out on some of the best days - which are the longest with the most ascent and descent. Some of the accommodation is poorer than described in the trip notes, so don't expect hot showers (or showers at all) or more than one toilet for the whole refuge in some places

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would highly recommend the GR20 experience to anyone willing to go with the flow, that can put up with mixed, communal living and is willing to have a laugh and some great fun
  • Reviewed October 2015
    Kerrie Jordan

    GR20 September 2015

    A challenging but rewarding hike, leaving the daily stresses miles behind. Eleven days of walking is a lot of walking, but only 2 days are really tough. The leaders where friendly, encouraging and great company as were the rest of the group. Corisca is a lovely island with mountains in all directions.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    After a challenging climb to the top of a pass, finally arriving and feeling as though we were on top of the world looking down on creation. All the usual daily stresses a million miles away.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both leaders where encouraging and easy to converse with. There was no pressure on how fast we walked, the time taken for breaks, with all members of the group included in decisions and discussions on the days route.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There are a couple of tough days walking and scrambling over rocks, but with sufficient preparation the walk is very achievable. Whilst I was concerned about carrying my sleeping bag and extra clothes for the two overnight stays and the height and narrowness of some of the passes, these concerns did not materialise. If you enjoy walking through amazing mountains, then I would recommend this walk.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The clothes list should include thermals and waterproof pants and the need for a beach towel removed.
  • Reviewed July 2015
    Richard Jephcott

    Corsica GR20

    We enjoyed a combination of excellent weather, a beautiful island with stunning mountains, rivers, flora and fauna, an excellent group of 14 persons who all got on with each other, two experienced and empathetic leaders and good food. We needed all the plus points because the trek is hard and some of the accommodation is basic.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many highlights! But they include: The many opportunities to take a dip in a mountain stream following a day's hard walking A day off in Corte with all it has to offer

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very professional, very fit and empathetic.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Read the trip notes thoroughly, it is a trek not to be taken lightly
  • Reviewed October 2014
    Emma Dawson

    GR20 Corsica September 2014

    The GR20 is an amazing experience not to be missed. It is the toughest hike I've done but don't let that put you off. The scenery is incredible and the climbs are perfectly manageable if you have reasonable fitness and a head for heights. Staying in mountain huts adds to the authenticity of the experience and none of them are that basic - hot showers were available almost everywhere. Food can be a challenge if you don't like huge lumps of white bread but charcuterie and cheese are incredible. Don't expect to make friends with any Corsicans - they don't feel that way inclined!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Cirque de Solitude day is breathtaking in its almost vertical rock faces. The view backwards once you've done the climbs is simply one of the most satisfying experiences.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pascal our main group leader was a lovely guide. Very experienced and felt like a safe pair of hands but also just a nice guy to spend time with and worked really hard to make us welcome at the mountain huts by befriending the owners! Our second guide Marty was also great, full of fascinating stories about the Marines and ready for a laugh.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do train before, just so you're prepared for some long days. There are one or two places to clean clothes so you don't need to overpack. Snacks can be handy if you don't like rustic mountain hut food. There is a supermarket in the first stop to get foods to top up. I would definetely recommend peanut butter/nutella to boost the meagre breakfasts, good instant coffee or a camp stove to make your own - its a bit hit and miss. Definetely be prepared with camping/dormitory living essentials: torches, flip flops, travel towel, sleeping bag.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Don't be put off by all the Gr20 nonsense about it being too tough. Its not that bad and its one of the best walks you can do over a long distance. Maybe add on a few rest days at the end and don't go straight back to work like I did!
  • Reviewed September 2014
    Kevin Palmer

    Corsica GR20

    Fantastic experience with great group of people and excellent leaders in rugged mountains. Accommodation and food better than expected from being in such a wonderful area.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many wonderful scenes and experiences to choose one. The Cirque de la Solitude has to be among them , plus ascending Monte Cinto (weather could have been better!), the ridge walks , the scrambling and the final walking day which had all previous days in one! Mountain scenery as good as anywhere.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The leaders Chris and "Tug" were excellent and were a great team together. Both professional and helpful / friendly at the same time. Good company too.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Read the trip notes well as they give a good indication of what to expect.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Great holiday if you enjoy great walking / scrambling in the mountains for extended periods. Fantastic experience in a region of outstanding beauty.
  • Reviewed September 2014
    Peter Edwards

    A magical trip

    Our GR20 trip was a very successful one. We had a group of 14 which was really a great number. Almost all of us finished the whole route. Sharing the trip with a bigger group was really uplifting and a larger group made it easier to adjust sleeping arrangements. The weather was perfect, we had no rain at all and it was sunshine every day. The group climbed all three of Corsica's highest mountains along the way, although it was a small group that climbed Cinto. Exodus organisation was like clockwork from start-to-finish. There is a strong inclusive ethos which helped the group bond as a team. Having said that everyone on the group was up to the trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    From seeing the mountains as we flew in, to an afternoon on the beach when we arrived to the first dinner on the first day the build-up to the trip is fabulous. The scenery is wonderful from day 1 and although it changes every day is really breathtaking in places. Having the Cirque so early on is a highlight and the last day, although long and hard is really a wonderful climax. The trip builds up nicely to the final crescendo, climbing up among the Aguille de Bavella, all aches go away. As we hit the col and saw the sea there was a rainbow in the valley. A wonderful sight.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our leaders were Tug and Chris. Together these two guides are a fabulous team. My memories of Tug are leading from the front telling jokes, helping and inspiring us all on when we were tired, and leading us all to a laundry on our rest day (bliss to have some clean clothes). Not to mention carrying melons as a treat for us. Chris was amazingly experienced and he always chose the right routes and had the right plan for every day. We all loved his understated briefings about the next day just before dinner. He made us all tea on his stove by a river on the way to Corte. Often Chris took the rear helping along the slower team members and patiently encouraging them, although he was equally as capable of pushing the pace at the front. Together Tug and Chris were fabulous, their leadership was crucial to us enjoying the experience so much despite the hard work. Thanks Chris for swapping packs on the last stretch down from the Cirque!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The Cirque is wonderful, but is not as scary as the internet suggests because the steep bits are broken up into small sections. Also the guides instill a lot of confidence. Being organised with the kit and getting mentally prepared for me was almost more important than absolute fitness. Carrying too much weight is a killer. I took 2 very heavy sleeping bags and regretted it. Get a light 2 season (I went in early September). I took lots of snacks and didn't need many. Maybe 1 bar or snack a day. What I really needed was High-5, re-hydration tablets. I took an old ruc-sac and regretted it. I upgraded to an Osprey in Corte-much more comfortable. Hydration is an issue. Half the group or more used Camelbak's and swore by them. Either way you could need to carry up to 2-3 litres of water each a day, some days less. A head torch was vital. Organising the bag is key as often there isn't much room in the huts and often not much time either before dinner. The turn around time in the morning is very limited too and often you are doing this by head torch. I found lots of medium and large Ziplock bags useful for this. Other people used lots of drysacks. Toilet roll, wipes and hand sanitiser are useful too.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I had plantar fasciatus before I went and worried that it would stop me. With worn-in boots, stretching and orthotic soles it was no problem. Other people suffered from swollen knees. Lots of ibuprofen tablets and cream were taken and it seemed to help. Walking poles seemed to help everyone. We did it when it was warm, however, there was one day when the weather looked as if it was about to turn and that reminded me that a warm hat and a thin pair of gloves even in the summer would be a good idea. Finally, a big thanks to Tug, Chris and Exodus for such a great trip.

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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Call us on +82-(0)02-6320-4111