Andorra is one of the smallest countries on the planet, you can travel all over it in half an hour. Spanish and French traditions are mixed in the culture of Andorra, however, this is a very conservative Catholic country, where the population is brought up in strict traditions. It is quite calm and there is practically no crime. Andorra is famous for its ski resorts, the heights of which are second only to those in Switzerland. Beautiful landscapes, mild climate and a high level of service will help you relax without worries, and shopping in local shops, where everything is much cheaper than in neighboring European countries, will definitely cheer you up.
It is best to go to ski resorts from December to mid-April.
The official language of Andorra is Catalan close to Spanish. Spanish and French are widely spoken, and English is widely spoken in most tourist areas of the country.
Geography in Andorra
According to top-engineering-schools, Andorra is located in southwestern Europe between Spain and France. This is a small country, its area is 468 square meters. km. 90% of its territory is occupied by the Eastern Pyrenees. The highest point is the peak of Coma Pedrosa (2947 m), the rest is high mountain valleys with a height of 900-3000 m. The rivers Valira, Ordino, Ariège, Fontargent, Ransol, Tristaina and Arinsal flow through Andorra. There are many glacial lakes and sources of thermal and mineral waters on the mountain slopes.
Climate in Andorra
The climate in Andorra is quite mild, due to the proximity of the Mediterranean Sea. The country is surrounded on all sides by the Pyrenees, which protects it from the cold northern winds. In summer, daytime air temperature reaches +20..+22 degrees, at night there is about 10 degrees of heat. In winter, during the ski season, during the day the air warms up to 8..10 degrees Celsius, and night frosts reach -3 degrees. The rainiest month is May, there is a lot of rain in autumn, and snowfalls are frequent in winter. On average, from 700 to 1000 mm of precipitation falls annually.
Best time to visit:
The ski resorts are best visited from December to mid-April.
Types of Tourism in Andorra
Andorra is one of the most popular winter destinations, it is famous for its ski resorts with well-equipped slopes and developed infrastructure. In winter, it is almost always sunny here, and the surrounding nature, combined with clean mountain air, will help restore strength. The season starts in December and ends in mid-April. The main resorts of Andorra are Soldeu el Tarter, Pas de la Casa Grau Roig, Pal Arinsal, Ordino Arcalis, Escaldes and Encamp.
Ordino Arcalis located at altitudes up to 2800 m and is more suitable for intermediate skiers. The resort is located on the northern slopes, so the snow cover lasts much longer than in other resorts. The height difference here is 680 m. In the local “Snow Park” with a half-pipe, you can go snowboarding.
Pal-Arinsal is the nearest resort of Andorra from the capital (10 km). This is a single complex of two ski centers, the height difference within which exceeds 1000 m. two new chairlifts will be installed – a six-seater will replace Les Fonts and a four-seater will replace La Tossa. The beginner ski area will have a new conveyor lift and the area itself will be 50% larger. A new covered car park with 600 spaces will also be opened.
Pas de la Casa Grau Roig is Andorra ‘s largest, most popular and highest mountain resort. It is also considered the most extreme, as it has quite steep slopes. By the beginning of the 2005-2006 season. a new six-seater chair lift will be installed here, which leads to two new slopes, 58 new snow cannons, and the artificial snow system will be modernized. In the beginner area in the Grau Roig sector, a four-seater chairlift will replace two older lifts.
Soldeu el Tarter is suitable for beginner skiers because there are many ski schools and the slopes are mostly gentle. A lot of young people rest here. For the 2005-2006 season. the resort will open a conveyor lift for beginners.
In Grandvalira, the ski area that combines the resorts of Pas de la Casa Grau Roig and Soldeu El Tarter, since 2005 it is possible to book and buy ski passes online.
Cross-country skiing is best done in La Rabassa. Wide flat ski tracks and sleigh rides are suitable for a relaxing family holiday.
Not far from the capital is Escaldes . In addition to skiing, you can visit the water center of Caldea, where geysers, a steam shower, a cascade of four pools with hydromassage, water games, a sauna, Indo-Roman baths, a solarium, a gym, a jacuzzi, massage rooms and tennis courts will help you rejuvenate.
Andorra – a duty-free zone, so many tourists come here to shop and buy quality goods at low prices, 25-40% cheaper than in Spain or France. Mass sales are held in spring and autumn, where discounts apply. They mainly buy alcohol, perfumes, cosmetics, watches and ski equipment.
An extensive commercial center has been formed in the capital of the country, it is located on three avenues. The best stores are “Andorra 2000”, “El Punt de Trobada”, “Escale”, “Pyrenees” shopping center.