Hiking the Exquisite Island Worlds of France and Italy

Overview

Corsica is a wildly beautiful French island possessing one of the most diverse landscapes in Europe. Miles of untouched coastline, rugged granite peaks, sun-splashed villages, and ancient, mysterious standing stones are among its many enchantments. Neighboring Sardinia, belonging to Italy, is an island-world with a colorful pageant of traditions, churches where Christianity and paganism intermingle, and a fiercely independent character. Our perfectly crafted journey combines these two Old World cultures with a marvelous mix of coastal and mountain hikes, evocative prehistoric sites, elegant picnics, wine and cheese tastings, and a delightful cuisine born of the sea. A stay at the incomparable Hotel Su Gologone is a glorious grand finale to our adventure.

Excellent trip design with superior hotels and food. The islands themselves were even more beautiful than I had expected from the brochure, and there was an excellent balance of hiking and enjoying our accommodations/towns/hotels.
— Julie L. Harbour Island, Bahamas

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-4
Ajaccio, Corsica / Col de Bavella / Bonifacio

Gorgeous hikes on Corsica bring you among the standing stones at Filitosa and Cauria, created by a Neolithic people some 8,000 years ago, to a deserted beach (a wonderful setting for our elegant picnic lunch), and around the mountaintop setting of the Col de Bavella (4,000'). In Bonifacio, you’ll hike along limestone cliffs above the turquoise sea and enjoy a private lunch at a goat shepherd’s farm, where you’ll sample a variety of cheeses, including brocciu, made with fresh goat milk.

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Days 5-7
Alghero, Sardinia / Monte Ferru

In Sardinia, hike on a granite promontory with dramatic bays and sea-sculpted rocks, and explore a nuraghe, an ancient stone structure built between 800 and 500 BC. Our trails also lead along the headlands of Punta Giglio, with its vivid seascapes, and through the cork oak forests and mint-scented maquis of Monte Ferru. Later, we visit an extraordinary underground well-temple dating to 1000 BC.

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Days 8-11
Sinise Peninsula / Tiscali

Hiking on the Sinise Peninsula reveals 360-degree views of the dazzling aquamarine sea. At a nearby coastal lagoon, local fishermen prepare our traditional lunch, followed by wine tasting at the prestigious Contini winery. Our final hikes lead to an ancient, mysterious nuraghic village with round stone dwellings tucked in a chasm near the top of Monte Tiscali, and through a remote canyon filled with pink oleander to a tiny half-moon beach accessible only on foot or by boat (great swimming here!). Depart on Day 11 via Olbia.

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Highlights

Highlights

Hike among Corsica’s craggy peaks and spectacular cliffs above the sea
Sardinia’s blue lagoons, fishing villages, and ancient traditions
Fine wines and regional delicacies, from freshly caught seafood to brocciu (sheep or goat cheese) and pane carasau (Sardinian cracker bread)
Enjoy a private lunch at a goat shepherd’s farm

Details

Length: 11 days
Cost From: $5595  
Arrive: Ajaccio, Corsica
Depart: Olbia, Sardinia
Lodging: 10 nights 3-, 4-, and 5-star hotels
Meals: All meals included except 3 dinners
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

9 hiking days on moderate to strenuous trails, 3-7 hours a day, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day's hike)