Skiing in Andorra.
The snow excellence
Andorra’s location makes it a unique place for practising ski. Mountains with spectacular slopes, a strategic geography, a substantial investment in technology in recent years and a firm commitment to this sport in all sectors of the economy, makes the country stand at the forefront of the leisure and snow category. Normally the season starts at the beginning of December, and it lasts until mid-April. A total of approximately of 150 skiing days, intense snowfalls and a high percentage of sunny days. The 2017/2018 season consisted of 2.514.049 days of skiing.
Andorra has been a snow destination for over half a century. The first ski lift was installed in the Pas de la Casa area in 1957. This engine was the pioneer and marked the beginning of a story that continues to evolve. Nowadays there is more than 300 km of tracks between the two valleys’ ski domains. All in an incomparable setting that perfectly combines nature with urban life. Andorra took advantage of these factors and has balanced them well to become a top tourist destination.
This growth is possible thanks to the investments that ski resort’s management has made over the years. There are currently two major snow domains in Andorra: GRANDVALIRA with Soldeu – El Tarter and Pas de la Casa – Grau Roig, and VALLNORD with the two resorts of Pal Arinsal, and Ordino Arcalís that add 303 km.
Technology has contributed to the expansion of the ski domains which in turn have managed to maintain the balance between increased visitors, investment and growth. Thus, the country enjoys the most advanced ski lifts, which can transport 156,000 skiers per hour, thanks to the 112 mechanical engines.
The commitment to innovation is evident in the network of snow cannons. Currently, the ski slopes have 60% of the skiable areas guaranteed, thanks to the 1,429 snow cannons and an excellent innovation network.
In the last years, the ski resorts have also adapted to the skier’s demands and snow trends. The advantageous situation of Andorra and its mountains have allowed substantial improvements that have had a positive impact on the image of the country. The desire to continually improve has made the resorts invest in and explore new solutions. Thus, today there are 5 freestyle areas, 6 children’s circuits, 9 ski and snowboard schools, and snow gardens with about 700 dedicated teaching professionals.
Furthermore, there are more than 60 catering points carefully distributed to fulfil and guarantee every skier’s expectations.
Andorra’s ski domains are not just pistes. Freeride has become increasingly popular and the snow resorts have invested in this modality with signed paths and tracks off-piste. The country specialises in all kinds of disciplines to make sure that everybody is catered for.
The activity at the resorts does not end there. Other adventurous disciplines are offered to complement the practice of ski, like rackets and snowmobile rides, dog sledges, helium balloon flights, and even paragliding. At night time, the resorts do not close their doors but extend the days with a gastronomic and leisure offerings that combine catering and the feeling of freedom that ski descents at night provide.
Finally, we’d like to highlight that Andorra has hosted major international sports competitions such as Alpine Ski World Cups, Ski Mountaineering World Cups, Speed Ski World Cups and it’s the chosen location for the Freeride World Tour. Additionally, the country has secured the continuation of these events over the coming years, which will consolidate the brand Andorra in this area.
This is Andorra. A country that has found the formula of excellence each step of the way, has adapted to the changes in the sector and has invested in the snow and it’s possibilities firmly and convincingly. Undoubtedly all this has led to Andorra becoming a reference destination in the snow world.
GENERAL TECHNICAL INFORMATION
• 3.075 Ha of skiable area
• 303 Km of ski runs
• 197 slopes
• 15 competition areas
• 5 freestyle areas
• 15 freeride areas
• 15 ski touring circuits
• 113 lifts
• Passenger capacity: 155.690 skiers / h
• 1.429 snow canons
• 60% guaranteed of the resort’s skiable area
• 89 restaurants
• 9 ski and snowboard schools
• 9 snow gardens
• 7 nurseries