Punta Sant'Eliseo
20167 Tavaco
GPS : 42.036107,8.898184

Solitary ridge hike with a marvellous 360° panoramic view

Difficulty: hard
Type: round trip
Duration: 5
Difference in height: + 900 m / - 785
Length: 10 km
Attention: no water points available.

Punta Sant'Eliseu (1247 metres above sea level) has a breathtaking panoramic view of the bays of Ajaccio, Sagone and Liscia to the west and of Monte d'Oro (2390 metres above sea level) and Monte Renoso (2352 metres above sea level) to the east. The path can be quite challenging in some parts: it is quite a difficult hike: you should avoid setting off in the hottest hours and you must know that orientation can be very difficult in case of fog.
In Tavaco you can visit the parish church of St Martín, which was built on the spot where the locals won a battle against the Moors centuries ago. You will also find several chestnut dryers, bread ovens and fountains.

Road access
From Ajaccio, you must take the N193 road towards Bastia. At the last roundabout on the N193, you should continue in the direction of Bastia. After 11 kilometres you must take the road D129 towards the village of Tavaco. Keep driving until you reach the village hall and park along the road.

After parking your car near the village hall, take the road which winds up through the village. When you reach the little square where there is an old bread oven, you must turn left. You must pass between two houses and reach a road on your left: keep walking until you reach the signal which indicates the beginning of this excursion: Sarrola-Carcopino.

After crossing a small stream, the path, which can be sometimes hidden by Corsican scrub, takes you up to a ridge at an altitude of 636 metres, where you can catch your breath and admire the mountains which dominate the village of Vero, the Cruzzini valley and the Vallona valley.

The difficulty begins to increase: the path becomes more and more difficult and climbs rather steeply. In addition, it is well exposed to the sun: you must be well equipped and have a good supply of water to tackle this hike.  After this long stage, you will reach a small rocky promontory (1040 metres above sea level), from where you can see two paths: do not take the path that runs along the crest; but take the one which starts on your left in the direction of the Gulf of Ajaccio. After 150 metres of walking, leave the path on your right and climb up through the vegetation.

The ascent is rather difficult, but you can catch your breath at 1102 metres above sea level, where you can sit on a nice meadow. After this little break, you must continue climbing and follow the path in the direction of the ridge. After a twenty-minute walk you will reach the summit and you can enjoy the splendid panorama offered by Punta Sant'Eliseu.
For the return journey you have several possibilities: you should leave a car at Bocca di Pianu d'Arbori in Sarrola-Carcopino, so that you can easily take the car you have parked in Tavaco. If you do not have this possibility, then you must walk back to your starting point.

If you have left a car in Sarrola-Carcopino, then you will just have to go back the same way you came, but at a certain point you will see that the ridge splits in two: do not take the same path as on the way up, but take the other one. Keep walking, following the markers until you reach Piano Maio at an altitude of 1154 metres – here you must take the path on your right, until you reach a Corsican peony meadow (a botanical species endemic to the island, with pink petals which can be admired in May, when they are in bloom).

The path continues downhill until it reaches Bocca di Bufonaggia. You must continue descending and at a certain point you will reach two houses: after the second one you must take a track which goes up on your right. After 250 metres, you will find a second path thanks to which you can reach Bocca di Pianu d'Arbori.

Grade: mostly well-marked, sometimes strenuous footpath. Some physical fitness and a sense of direction is required (especially during the descent!). Very little shade.
Refreshment and accommodation: in Ajaccio.
Tip: visit the tortoise park A Cupulatta – on the N 193 at Km 21 (www.acupulatta.com).
Alternative: a descent is possible to Sari-d’Orcino from the peak in a westerly direction along the ridge.
Map: IGN 4151 OT (1:25.000).

The full description of this hike is in the guide, opposite, available in all the bookshops and relay points of Corsica. To buy this book online, scan the flashcode with your smartphone or go to the link below:
Available in French, English, German and Italian.

The full description of this hike is in the guide, opposite, available in all the bookshops and relay points of Corsica. To Buy this book online, click on the link below.
Available in French, English, German and Italian.


Punta Sant'Eliseo

20167 Tavaco