Cycling Corsica Plus! Beaches and Bonifacio

Cycling Corsica Plus! Beaches and Bonifacio

From the sea, Corsica appears as a large piece of Alpine Europe floating on a cobalt blue sea. Corsica is geologically more closely related to the Alps than it is to its larger neighbor to the south, the Italian island of Sardinia. But culturally and linguistically this birthplace of Napoleon is all Mediterranean. Palm-lined streets bustle with colorful marketplaces and the island's official language, French, mingles with a variety of exotic dialects brought here from northern Africa, Italy, and the rest of the Mediterranean basin. An island of beauty, Corsica is also an island of delightful surprises for the touring cyclist.

If this sounds like a great ride but you'd prefer an 8-day tour check out Cycling Corsica

OR

Italy's Sardinia island is a short ferry ride away so do both tours and save $400.

Tour Dates & Prices

Date
Price
Private Room Fee
Note
May 15-25, 2019
USD$5595
USD$650
 Book by November 15 and save $200!
Sep 11-21, 2019
USD$5595
USD$650
 Book by November 15 and save $200!

* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the private room charge. This charge will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available it will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.

Trip At-A-Glance

  • Length / 11 Days
  • Avg. Distance / 58 km (36 miles) per riding day
  • Difficulty / 301
  • Countries / France
  • Price / From USD$5595
More Photos
  • Tour Summary
  • Daily Itinerary
  • Map
  • Reviews
  • Similar Tours
Tour Summary

Daily Ride Summary

Distance

1 No cycling today.
2 24 mi / 39 km
3 46 mi / 74 km
4 32 mi / 51 km
5 29 mi / 47 km
6 49 mi / 78 km
7 44 mi / 71 km
8 56 mi / 90 km
9 39 mi / 63 km
10 18 mi / 29 km
11 No cycling today.
  • Highlights
    Mountain scenery, Extraordinary coastal scenery, French and Mediterranean food, Picturesque villages, Beautiful Pisan and Genoese churches, Fabulous beaches, Impressive watchtowers along the coast.
  • Includes
    11 days, 10 nights' accommodation; 5 dinners with wine, 1 lunch, all breakfasts; van support, 2 to 3 bilingual tour leaders; shuttle back to Bastia on Day 11

    The Usual (Included with every ExperiencePlus! tour)

    • Superb tour leaders who are fun, bilingual and avid cyclists.
    • Help with flights, trains and pre/post tour hotels.
    • Comfortable lodging in 3-4 star hotels. 
    • All breakfasts and at least half of your dinners.
    • Use of a high quality 27-30 speed bike.
    • Full van support to carry luggage – and tired cyclists, too! 
    • Special events like wine tastings, cultural visits and chocolatiers.
    • All tips and gratuities at tour hotels and group meals.
    • Unique routes, marked with our famous chalk dust arrows.
    • Daily mileage options.
    • Detailed route map and free use of our traveling resource library.

    What's not included:

    • Transportation to and from the bicycling tour including airfare, or train travel
    • Helmets - we ask that you bring your own to ensure the best fit
    • Meals not listed in the itinerary
    • Tour Leader gratuity

    See the complete list of what's included with every ExperiencePlus! Tour.

  • Countries
    France
  • Begin/End
    Bastia/Bonifacio
  • Arrive / Depart
    Bastia-Poretta Int'l Airport (BIA) / Figari Sud Corse (FSC), 22 km from Bonifacio (There are also ferry options available)
  • Total Distance
    436-524 km (269-323 miles)
  • Avg. Distance
    58 km (36 miles) per riding day
  • Difficulty
    301
    Moderate coastal rides at the beginning and end of the tour. A few days have hilly or mountainous terrain with a couple climbs of 5 to 10 miles. Two rest days possible.
  • Terms
Daily Itinerary

DAY 1: Arrive Bastia, Corsica

Highlights: Historic capital of Corsica, sidewalk café, gourmet introductory dinner

Bright blue and white fishing boats and sidewalk cafés await you today as our tour begins near Bastia, Corsica's historic capital and its most picturesque city. We recommend arriving a day early to soak in the charms of this centuries-old Mediterranean seaport. We'll fit you with a bicycle this afternoon so you can ride to a viewpoint above the city, and then reconvene this evening for a traditional French gourmet dinner together.

DAY 2: Bicycle to Rogliano

Highlights: Scenic cycling in Corsica's panhandle, Genoese history and settlements

After breakfast you'll head north on an easy ride along the east side of Cap Corse, Corsica's panhandle. You'll want to stop for a snack or coffee in Erbalunga to see its Genoese coastal tower before cycling through the tiny port of Santa Severa. Stop for lunch and perhaps a swim in Macinaggio before heading inland to our hotel.

  • Distance: 24 mi / 39 km
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:
    • U Sant'Agnellu

DAY 3: Bicycle to Saint-Florent

Highlights: Scenic cycling on Cap Corse, Mediterranean beaches

Today's ride is one of the most spectacular bicycle rides in the Mediterranean basin. We suggest an early start as you'll want to stop often for photographs. You can even take a swim during your lunch stop. Our route follows a chain of Genoese watchtowers, built along the coast in the late Medieval period to provide the local villagers early warning of impending attack by pirates. We'll continue south along the west side of the Cap Corse to our hotel right on the water, located in the ancient Roman town of Saint-Florent.

DAY 4: Rest day in Saint-Florent

Highlights: 11th-century Pisan cathedrals, enchanting bay of Saint-Florent with nearby beaches

A stop to our first 11th-century Pisan cathedral begins our day. Pisa ruled Corsica unchallenged until 1133 A.D. when the pope divided the island between Pisa and rival Genoa. Our optional ride continues on to the most famous Pisan cathedral in Corsica as we wind our way through hilltop villages and river gorges.

DAY 5: Bicycle to L'Ile Rousse

Highlights: Beautiful coastal landscape with breathtaking vistas and Mediterranean beaches

You'll head across the unique Désert des Agriates today. This stony landscape that was once rich with wheat fields is unlike any area on the island and offers some beautiful panoramas. After soaking up the views you'll coast down to the beach for a refreshing swim if you wish. Our efforts today will be rewarded as we explore the coastal town of L'Ile Rousse with its charming center and beach. And if that's not enough, we'll watch the sunset into the sea.

DAY 6: Mountain Day

Highlights: Coastal to mountain scenery, spectacular wildflowers in season, Genoese history

You'll head into Corsica's interior today. This is the main "mountain day" on the tour, so take your time and enjoy the spectacular scenery. Climbing over the pass of Saint Colombano you'll enjoy a wonderful cruise down the Navaccia river valley to Ponte Leccia, named for the 17th-century Genoese bridge still in use. You'll then have a steady long climb to be rewarded with a beautiful descent through chestnut forests as we head into one of Corsica's most interesting regions.

  • Distance: 49 mi / 78 km
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 7: Bicycle to Aléria, shuttle to Pinarello

Highlights: Ancient capital of Roman Corsica, luxurious beachfront hotel

The trend today is down though there are a few hills that will certainly get your attention before you reach the coast. Our destination, Aléria, was one of the principal Roman trading towns and capital of Roman Corsica by 170 B.C. From Aléria we'll shuttle just under an hour to our luxurious beachfront hotel, and home for the next two nights.

DAY 8: Rest day or stunning ride

Highlights: Visit Pinarello's charming little port, relax at the beach, or take a challenging ride into the hills

Our hotel is on the beach, and you may very well want to spend the day soaking in the sun there. Go for a swim in the clear blue waters of the bay, unwind by the hotel's swimming pool, or sign up for some pampering at the hotel's wellness center. Pinarello beach is one of the many beautiful beaches to the north of Porto-Vecchio. The sea is azure blue, and the 1.2 km long, narrow sweeping beach has soft white sand, is backed by dramatic mountains and overlooked by a Genoese watchtower. Pinarello has a pretty little port and plenty of opportunities for refreshments and water sports. For those of you who want more cycling, we'll offer an incredible roller-coaster ride on the famous Route de Bavella.

DAY 9: Bicycle to Bonifacio

Highlights: Visit Porto Vecchio and the Seaside fortress of Bonifacio

This morning we'll ride through Porto Vecchio a well-known seaside resort, bounded on the west by the relief of Ospedale and to the east by the Tyrrhenian Sea. We will then continue onto Bonifacio at the southern tip of Corsica. This magnificent village perched on limestone cliffs was the prize possession of both the Pisans and Genoese who fought over it for over 150 years.

DAY 10: Explore Bonifacio

Highlights: Morning ride along the coast to the lighthouse, guided tour of Bonifacio

This morning we'll have a leisurely ride out to a lighthouse and some beautiful alcoves. We'll regroup in the afternoon with a local guide to reveal Bonifacio’s intriguing history. Tonight we'll celebrate our final dinner together.

  • Distance: 18 mi / 29 km
  • Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
  • Lodging:

DAY 11: Tour ends in Bonifacio, Corsica

Highlights: Bon Voyage! Shuttle to Bastia

Our tour ends this morning after breakfast. For those flying out of Bastia we will transfer you to the airport arriving at noon. OR Sardinia is just a few miles across the Strait of Bonifacio, so maybe you plan to explore more of the Mediterranean. Whatever your plans, bon voyage!

  • Meals: Breakfast
Map

Map

Reviews

Reviews

  • Fantastic trip, thanks.

    Dean H., Berwick, Australia
  • Trip of a life time!

    Bruce T., Thornbury, Ontario
  • I hope you can always find such great people to lead your tours, as it is they (and the arrows) that keep us coming back. We are seriously entertaining the possibility of Expedition Plus for 2008...

    June W.
    Saint Paul, MN
  • You do a great job of service, support and fun. Thanks so much for another great trip! We love going places with you!

    Leslie M., Fort Collins, CO
  • Would love to do it again and again. The leaders were incredible

    Kelly D., Ft Collins, CO
  • Corsica was really magical. It has everything, lush forests, desert, beaches, mountains. I would love to go back .

    Susan A., Colorado Springs, CO
  • What was your favorite experience on this trip? Swimming in the Mediterranean Sea 7 out of 10 days. The bike trip was great and I look forward to doing another one.

    Jim M., Coquitlam, BC
  • We wanted to ride the hills and enjoy the beaches and scenery near the water. We got it all! We had a great time on this trip. Thanks so much!

    Judy W., Sonora, CA
  • The riding was superb. The group was excellent. You have great people and a great format.

    Peter M., Auckland, NZ
  • Corsica''s natural beauty was amazing. The riding routes were excellent. It''''''''s a beautiful place to experience by bicycle because you get to fully experience the glory of the island.

    Mary Ann D., Pleasanton, CA
  • The opportunities to swim was a real plus. The rides were challenging without being exhausting. The scenery was typical of travel brochures, the weather was ideal for cycling.

    Charles B., Mississauga, Ontario
  • Amazing experience sad it is over.

    Kym and Peter H., East Grosford, Australia
  • Our guides were fabulous! The arrows were the best - no bickering about which turn to make - really made the routes go smoothly.

    Gerry L.
    Belvedere, CA
  • A great way to experience Corsica.

    Nadine K., Edmonton, Alberta - September 2017
  • It was simply the best trip ever. I don't think it can be matched.

    Kathleen D., Tucson, AZ
  • How would you describe this tour to a friend? Challenging bike tour in alp-like setting with spectacular ocean views. Thank you!

    Cathy M., Portland, OR - May 2018
  • The meals were all excellent, and the ride around Cap Corse was out of this world. I couldn't recommend this trip more. It was wonderful, a great way to see new places, make some friends, get physical activity and enjoy all the food and wine, too.

    Jane C., Lucca, Italy
  • Beautiful country both interior and coast. Good routes devoid of traffic. I''ve loved my trips with ExperiencePlus! You do a great job!

    George C., Salt Lake City, UT
  • Each guide excelled in a different area which made their team work unbeatable. Working in the tourism industry I sometimes think I look at things even more critically & yet the overall tour was superb - this was my first time using ExperiencePlus but would definitely do so again...[My favorite parts were] Cycling through the mountains (despite the climbs!) Hotels overlooking the sea - so we could leave our balcony doors open and sleep to the sound of the waves. Someone to take care of the daily stuff - meals/luggage/hotels so we could relax and simply enjoy the day... ExperiencePlus came highly recommended to me, and delivered its promises. Overall a fabulous vacation.

    Deleyse L.
    Hercules, CA
  • It was amazing to do Corsica and Sardinia back to back. The riding in Corsica is second to none with its wild beauty and then to do Sardinia where even the mountains seem polished. There is such a contrast in these two islands that are so close together. This trip was without a doubt at the top of our list as the most fabulous trips we have done, which now number 17 in Europe.

    Sharon M., Vancouver, BC, Canada
  • Keep doing the same things because it is great! All of your leaders have been exceptional.

    Ole L., Fort Worth, TX
  • The trip was wonderful in all ways!

    Elaine M., Pittsford, NY
  • I love the hotel at Pinarello. The route to the mountains, the ride to St Florent and the fun dinners with other riders.

    Dede M., Sonora, CA
  • Beautiful, fun, great way to travel and visit. We love you guys - looking forward to our next trip!

    Jonathan L., Portland, OR - May 2018
  • The routes chosen had beauty. We loved buying food along the way and choosing a picnic site. It was a very nice group of people. The guides were wonderful...We are very happy with your tours. This was our fifth and if we remain healthy we plan to take five more. It's not about the bike for us. We merely use the bike for the unique experience of seeing a country from a different point of view.

    Robert B.
    Lancaster, PA
  • Loved Corsica. Jonathan and Stephane were wonderful. Already looking forward to the next trip.

    David A., Colorado Springs, CO
  • Many great experiences, of course. Optional day ride for a day at the beach on the east coast of Corsica was a treat. The final meal in Bonifacio was excellent, the town striking. Everything was enjoyable from my point of view.

    John G.
    Scottsdale, AZ
  • A well run company with an excellent staff, good equipment, good accommodations and an arrow marking system that all but eliminates navigational issues.

    James W., Sonora, CA
  • Doing both Corsica and Sardinia back to back was the trip of a life time.

    Bruce T., Thornbury, Ontario
  • A must do trip to experience the beauty of Corsica. Highly recommend doing it back to back with Sardinia.

    Dennis D., Calgary, Alberta - September 2016
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