hiking to cycling, there is plenty to do all year in Andorra, but we’re particularly happy when we can hit the slopes.

It's one thing to take in the stunning views on foot or from the saddle of your bike, but the experience is on another when you're actually skiing down the mountains.

Once you decide that an Arinsal ski resort vacation is for you, this guide will help you get the most out of your holiday.

Introduction to Skiing in Andorra

Andorra has grown into a world-renowned destination for skiing. And that’s not just because we have mountains everywhere we look. A concerted effort has been made, particularly over the past 10 years, to build the amenities and services that winter tourists expect.

Only a small percentage of Andorra’s land is flat — and that makes it very difficult to farm. Luckily, Francesc Viladomat had the bright idea in 1957 of installing the principality’s first ski lift on his family’s property at Pas de la Casa. Things have gone downhill since then!

Accommodating those on a ski holiday is a specialty for us. As a whole, Andorra is now the fourth-most-popular destination for Brits on a ski holiday.

Overview of Skiing Near Arinsal

Arinsal is a convenient home base for anyone visiting Andorra who wants to ski at Vallnord, the less-crowded and more interesting of Andorra’s two downhill ski resorts.

As Stephen Wood wrote in the Independent: “Vallnord has character, thanks in part to its wooded slopes. Even at its highest point there are trees, in a gladed area with the added hazard of moguls.”

Arinsal Ski Resort Stats by the Numbers

Pal-Arinsal in La Massana is the original foundation for the Vallnord resort. (Ordino-Arcalis was added later.) It’s an internationally-known ski resort because we have:

The slopes at Vallnord, including Arinsal, are served by several modern lifts.The slopes at Vallnord, including Arinsal, are served by several modern lifts.

Who Will Enjoy an Arinsal Ski Resort Holiday?

There is a popular idea that Vallnord is a great place for beginners to learn to ski. And that’s definitely true — many of those 250 instructors are fluent English speakers. Also, because Arinsal’s nightlife scene is so active, there will be plenty to do if you’re just easing into the idea of skiing.

The bars and restaurants also means that couples and groups of friends will enjoy an Arinsal ski resort holiday.

That said, there is a great deal at Vallnord for intermediate skiers as well. When snow conditions are at their peak, the Arinsal ski resort has the longest on-piste run in Andorra from Pic Alt de la Capa all the way down 3,000 feet Cota 1550, where the chairlift goes from.

Freestyle is a popular activity at the well-maintained snowpark.Freestyle is a popular activity at the well-maintained snowpark.

In the upper zones near Pic Negre and Pic Alt de la Capa, there are a few shorter red and black runs. If freestyle is your thing, there’s also a snowpark that includes many boxes, rails and jumps sorted into three difficulty levels, including for experts.

Season and Weather for Skiing at Vallnord

“Sunny with lots of fresh snow” is the short version of the winter weather forecast for the Arinsal ski resort area. Other details include:

Pal-Arinsal vs. Ordino-Arcalis

Pal and Arinsal are connected by gondola. The former is the place to go with the family, has excellent ski schools for those just starting out and some challenging runs for the older members of your group. Arinsal has the closest connection between skiing and everything else — entertainment, apres ski options and great places to stay.

At Arcalis the runs are more likely to cut through trees and offer off-piste skiing opportunities.At Arcalis the runs are more likely to cut through trees and offer off-piste skiing opportunities.

On the other hand — Arcalis is right next door in Ordino parish. Its 24 pistes, served by 14 lifts are on the north and northwest faces of the mountain. That means more fresh powder. It also means some truly glorious off-piste routes.

Prices for Ski Passes at Vallnord

The first thing to know is that lift passes come in two varieties:

  1. Local to just Pal-Arinsal or Arcalis-Ordino, or
  2. both combined.

Arinsal ski resort visitors will be happy to hear that the combined lift pass only comes at a small premium.

For the 2018-19 ski season, Vallnord has set the combined price for adults (16 - 64) at between €86 for two days up to €370 for ten. The separate Arinsal ski pass goes for €78 for a couple days to €330 for 10. The Arinsal lift pass also offers the opportunity for buying half- and single-day passes.

Ski passes can be purchased through Vallnord’s website and existing ones can also be recharged there.

Other Ski Pass Details

Other details you should know when planning your trip include:

If you are visiting the Arinsal ski resort and want to use the gondola or chair lifts without skiing, there are separate passes for these.

Package Deals for Passes

Especially if you book through one of the big online brokers, it can be fairly easy to find offers. These usually bundle some combination of ski hire, lessons and lift pass into a discounted price.

There are plenty of opportunities to take impressive photos while skiing at Arinsal.There are plenty of opportunities to take impressive photos while skiing at Arinsal.

Vallnord also sells seasonal Arinsal ski passes, as well as ones that include access to Arcalis. These come in versions for families, at a discounted rate for repeat customers who book early and in combination mountain-biking season passes.

Extras for an Arinsal Ski Resort Holiday

If you’re keen on watching top-level ski competition, the calendar of events at Arinsal includes:

Nearby Activities for Off Days

Andorra is famous for combining snow on the ground with sun in the sky, but unexpected bad weather happens. And in extreme cases, the lifts and ski runs may be closed for safety reasons.

Also, we’re the ski resort closest to Andorra la Vella and the shopping Andorra if famous for. Even if you’re not forced to miss a day, taking some time off for duty-free purchases can be a welcome break.

As well, with everything from karaoke bars to high-end restaurants the Arinsal nightlife has a wide range of possibilities for how to spend your apres ski time.

Sant Moritz as a Base for an Arinsal Ski Resort Holiday

At Apartaments Sant Moritz, we are conveniently located close to the ski slopes. Our rental apartments are an easy two-minute walk to the gondola, so you can be out of bed and on the mountain in no time. As well, Esports Sant Moritz has a location right next door so ski rental pickup is a breeze.

Book your stay with us and be right in the middle of Arinsal's ski resort oasis.

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Andorra Ultra Trail 2015

Autor: Caio

ANDORRA ULTRA TRAIL VALLNORD 2015: 25 a 28 junio

¿Os habéis imaginado algún día recorrer todo un país de una sola vez? ¡Venid a descubrir nuestras montañas andorranas bajo la luna llena!

Nuestro pequeño país no es solo el paraíso del shopping, sino también un terreno de juego excepcional para los amantes de la naturaleza, de la montaña y del trail.

Superación y solidaridad son los pilares de un evento que desde sus principios, no se olvida de la sostenibilidad.

Con el Andorra Ultra Trail Vallnord tendréis la oportunidad de admirar Andorra desde sus cimas más altas. Recorreréis el parque natural Comunal de las Valles del Comapedrosa y el de Valle de Sorteny; pasaréis por el Valle del Madriu, declarado patrimonio mundial por la Unesco, acariciaréis los 3.000 metros de altitud en un entorno puramente mineral. Podréis conocer la magia de las cimas bajo la luna llena, la buena convivencia de los avituallamientos, el espíritu de superación, el buen humor y la amistad que nacen compartiendo la aventura.

Una flora resplandeciente, unos ríos llenos de espuma que bajan las pendientes, unos lagos glaciares parcialmente helados, unos bosques profundos, unos céspedes de altitud perfumados al regaliz, unos rebaños en total libertad, el grito de las marmotas, el vuelo del quebrantahuesos, las sonrisas de 300 voluntarios y el entusiasmo del público andorrano que os acompañará con sus palabras de apoyo.

En resumen, una gran fiesta del deporte pero también y sobre todo de los valores de la montaña: hospitalidad, convivencia, autenticidad y respeto.

Cinco pruebas os esperan, ahora os tocará elegir. Unas carreras para todos los gustos que os harán (re)descubrir "el país de los Pirineos".

 

ALOJAMIENTO "OFICIAL": Apartamentos Sant Moritz

El pack incluye (57€/noche para hasta 4 pax):

  • *Alojamiento en apartamento tipo A para hasta 4 personas
  • Parking interior gratuito
  • WIFI gratis

ALOJAMIENTO en Hostal Micolau

El pack incluye (41€/noche para 2 pax):

  • *Alojamiento en habitación doble para hasta 2 personas
  • Parking interior gratuito
  • WIFI gratis

 

*Nota especial: estancia mínima de 2 noches.

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