One of Europe’s Top Ski Destinations – 286kms Ski Area
Andorra has spent millions of Euros in recent years upgrading her ski facilities, and millions more improving her infrastructure to cope with the extra tourists and residents, with new luxury hotels opening in recent years in ski resorts such as Soldeu Andorra the ski destination is open for business. Total ski area for Andorra now stands at around 300kms of connected pistes although split between the two main ski aras. Many specialist services are avaliable from heliskiing to ice diving and mountain climbing.
February 2012 saw Andorra, Grandvalira-Soldeu successfully host “The 2012 Alpine Ski World Cup for Women”. This is one of the most important international competition circuits in the world along with the Winter Olympic Games and the World Alpine Ski Championships. The circuit is staged annually and held at first class ski resorts capable of offering the correct level of challenging course design.
Andorra tourist authorities have invested heavily in snow cannons providing a good cover of snow no matter what the weather tries to dictate. For many ski enthusiasts artificial snow isn’t the same as the naturally falling snow but for families and residents the guarantee of ski conditions is a welcome development.
Like most ski resorts across Europe, the economic crisis has hit tourist numbers. Tourists numbers from Spain and France have been particularly affected. Official statistics illustrate a ten to fifteen per cent drop in ski holiday tourists in recent years. The up side to this drop in tourist numbers and increase in investment has produced a good ski infastructure without the quees. If you have skiied in France or Italy in recent years you will be familiar with 10 minute waits for some of the busier lifts. In Andorra you will be unlucky if you have to wait more than a couple of minutes for even the busiest lift.
For those who have travelled to Andorra in recent years the runs have been bliss, with few people on the slopes compared to the normal number during what is normally peak season.
Andorra has two main ski areas, Grandvalira and Vallnord. The Grandvalira area contains the inter connected resorts of Soldeu and El Tartar and the lively Pas de la Casa. A big advantage of staying in the Grandvalira is that they are all linked together via an efficient lift system, offering 193km of pistes on the full area lift pass. Pas de le Casa is a lively resort, which suits younger skiers looking for lively nightlife with groups of friends.
Vallnord’s total ski area is 93kms. Its resorts are Pals, Arinsal (interconnected) offering a range of skiing for begginners to enthusists alike and Arcalis which has a large free ride areas suitable intermediate and off piste enthusiasts.