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About Andorra

The Principality of Andorra is perched high in the Pyrenees, bounded by the lands of the Republic of France and the Kingdom of Spain, the two countries that provide this long established co-principality with its Heads of State. This unique situation dates back to the late 13th century, when the co-sovereignity of the Spanish Bishop of Urgell and the French Count of Foix was established when rulings known as the Pariatges were signed in an effort to bring long standing hostilities to an end. The Bishop of Urgell now shares the constitutional role with the President of France, as the successor to Henry, King of Navarre and Count of Foix, who became King of France in 1589. However, an elected General Council is the legislative power.

Despite its ancient origins, which date back to 805 AD, Andorra is a modern European country with a distinctive culture that nevertheless welcomes new residents from all over the world. The main language is Catalan, although Spanish is widely spoken and French and Portuguese are also commonly used, and the Euro is the official currency. Andorra is not a member of the European Union, but is accessed through either France or Spain, meaning that a visa to enter Schengen countries may be necessary for the visitor to Andorra if they do not have the automatic right to enter the EU.

Located as it is in the Pyrenees, Andorra has a high mountain climate, although there are Mediterranean influences, leading to average minimum temperatures of -2 C and average maximum temperatures of 24 C, with mild, dry summers, snow in winter and sunshine throughout the year, although the terrain of high peaks and verdant valleys mean that there are significant variations depending on altitude and location.

With a land area of 468 km2 and a young and varied population of around 85,000 inhabitants, only 37% of whom have Andorran nationality, the main economic factors in Andorra are trade, tourism and finance, with tourism taking an increasingly important role in generating employment. There is a strong cultural tradition, with prestigious international events taking place throughout the year, in addition to numerous dance, music and traditional folklore festivals. Sport is also an important driver of the economy, with trekking, climbing and cycling popular in the summer months and skiing and snowboarding mainstays in winter, with the Grandvalira Ski Resort providing slopes to cater for all levels of expertise, a ski school, 63 connected lifts, and a vibrant apr├Ęs ski culture. Another popular pastime is diving in lakes of pure, crystalline water, 2000 metres above sea level. There are numerous hotels throughout the country, from simple hostels to luxurious hotels and spas offering a variety of treatments, as well as many apartments available for either short or long lets. Its rich historical legacy means that Andorra has monuments and museums, while its duty free status ensures that shopping is another very popular attraction.

Andorra is a welcoming country that increasing numbers of people are visiting for shorter or longer stays. With easy access from both France and Spain, diverse attractions to suit all tastes and a high standard of accommodation and visitor facilities, Andorra could be just what you are seeking for your holiday destination.