Vizzavona to Refuge d'Onda with children


Posted: Sun, Jul 9, 2017, 7:44


We are planning to walk a little bit of the GR20 this summer with our young children. We plan to walk from Vizzavona to Refuge d'Onda and then walk back the same route the next day. I have a couple of questions:

1. Roughly how long is this walk for an adult?
2. We're planning to stay in the ready pitched tents to reduce weight. What are the mattresses like?
3. Booking the tents - is it 23 euros for 1 tent for two people?
4. With Bedbugs at Onda?

Any other advice gratefully received.

Thank you!




Posted: Sun, Jul 9, 2017, 11:56

Hi Rachel,

I can only answer your first question, as when I walked in June I carried my own tent. However, I can tell you that on the whole track from Conca to Calenzana, I only saw two children (aged 8 and 12 I think, who probably also did a 1 or 2-day trek with their family) and I've seen a lot of raised eyebrows about that, as the track is rough underfoot and very steep at some places.

For an adult, breaks not included, Vizzavonna - Refuge de l'Onda will take about 5h and 15min, while the other way around it is about 6h. You should keep in mind that in July and especially August you cannot take a whole day for the hike as thunderstorms may already come in (early) in the afternoon and you don't want to be stuck on the track somewhere then. I think it is also important to realise, the second half of the track hardly provides shade or shelter.

I don't recall this as one of the particularly tough stages, although the climb up to l'Onda on your first day is a long way up, as you will have seen on the map. The first part is a walk in the woods and you walk along along some nice cascades, offering nice places to have a break, but the last couple of hours to l'Onda are a lot steeper, including some scrambling along bigger rocks in the lower part of the valley, a very rocky path in the middle, and some walking on granite slabs at the higher end (in some places these are steep and probably slippery when wet). A very stony path leads down from the gap to the refuge.

I don't know you or your children (how old are they, will they be walking themselves, are you planning to carry them?) and I can't estimate what they are capable of. Personally, I think for young children to walk it themselves would be too challenging.

Good luck with your decision!