Southern GR20 Guided Walk

Highlights

  • A great opportunity to walk the southern section of the famous GR20
  • Experiencing the stunning landscape and diverse flora and fauna
  • Meet with shepherds or other hikers enroute
  • Enjoy the freedom of travelling light with all of your logistics taken care of in the company of like minded travellers
  • Delighting in the warm hospitality of the accommodation providers

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

The 'Grand Randonee' (GR) 20 is considered to be one of the most challenging and interesting walks in France. Traversing the island from north to south across mountainous landscapes with inspiring views it is on the bucket list of keen walkers. This guided walk takes in the southern section of the route. During the 5 days of hiking you will gain an appreciation for the rural communities who live in the region and the rugged wilderness that characterises the route. Your main luggage is transferred, allowing you to walk with just a day pack. From the forest of Vizzavona to the Needles of Bavella, the full GR20 experience is encapsulated in the daily views ranging from alpine meadows where sheep graze, to views to the sea as far as the distant Italian island of Elba.

What's included

  • 6 breakfasts – continental breakfasts are served and usually consist of breads, jams, coffee, tea and juices. 5 picnic lunches - they are included from day 2 to day 6 and generally consist of sandwiches, salads, fruits, vegetables – depending on what products are available, 6 dinners – will also vary according to the fresh produce available.
  • In gite d’etapes or refuges (dormitory type accommodation with hot showers) for 6 nights
  • Luggage transfers daily, max 15 kgs and one piece of luggage per person - on request it may be possible to increase to 20kgs but this must be requested and agreed to in advance
  • Local guide (we endeavour to use local guides with a good command of the english language, although there may be some rare occasions when the level of english is minimal. all guides will be there for your safety)

Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Vizzavona
Arrive in Vizzavona. In the heart of the GR20 and surrounded by beech and Laricio pine forest, this small hamlet is a haven for hiker. Dinner and night at the gîte or refuge (according to availability at booking). A group briefing will be arranged just before dinner where you will have the opportunity to meet the group and discuss the trip with your guide.
Day 2 Vizzavona to Capanelle (7.5-8hrs)
A long first day beginning at the Pass of Vizzavona and climbing to Bocca Palmente. In the heart of the forest of Vizzavona, you will cross several watercourses until Bocca Palmente where the view is fantastic. Next, after passing the crest, you will encounter several sheepfolds before finally arriving at the sheepfolds of Capanelle where you will spend the night in a gîte. Approximate ascent 1000m / descent 400m.
Day 3 To the Pass of Verde (5 hrs)
From Capanelle, you will go to the sheepfolds of Traggete before reaching the Plateau of Gialgone. You will cross the footbridge of I Spiazzi under which you can have a swim. You will then descend, protected by the biggest and most majestic Corsican pines, before arriving at the Pass of Verde. Approximate ascent 700m / descent 950m.
Day 4 To Cozzano (8 hrs)
You will begin this day by an ascent towards the refuge of Prati and will have beautiful views on the massif of Renosu. The view is at its best when you will reach the crest line and you will be able to view the sea until the Island of Elbe if the weather allows it. Next, you will descend in the middle of big rocky slabs and then will go towards Cozzano, a town in the heart of Corsica. Approximate ascent 750m / descent 1300m.
Day 5 To the Sheepfolds of Basseta (6 hrs)
This first part of the day will be devoted to the climb towards Bocca Di l’usciolu. After almost 1000m of uphill you will reach the peak point of the walk then enter into a forest of centennial trees. The path finally descends and the vegetation becomes denser. After the crossing of a stream, you will arrive at the sheep pastures of Basseta. Approximate ascent 910m / descent 505m. In the case of bad weather there is an alternative route which also takes 6 hours, with ascent of 887m and descent of 483m.
Day 6 To Bavella (9hrs)
This is the longest and hardest day of the week! There are two possible paths and you need to choose your route for the day - either the alpine way through the Needles of Bavella or you can follow the softer classical way, which is composed of forests, maquis and springs. The day begins along a route through a forest, following which you cross a footbridge and continue through old sheepfolds towards Mount Incudine. From the Asinau Valley, you descend to Bavella and its famous “Aiguilles”. By the GR20 : ascent 982m / descent 1100m, or Via the alpine route: ascent 1170m / descent 1200m
Day 7 Trip concludes in Bavella
The trip concludes after breakfast. From Bavella you can continue on your own to Bastia, Figari, Ajaccio and Calvi. Note: There is a bus that leaves for Ajaccio at 6am and arrives at around 8am. For information and timetables see www.corsicabus.org