Grandvalira Lift Pass
Your Grandvalira lift pass covers not only Soldeu and El Tarter, but the whole of the largest skiable domain in the Pyrenees. Soldeu is just one of six linked sectors which make up the vast Grandvalira ski area, offering 210km of excellent pistes under one convenient ski pass. The ski domain stretches from the border with France, right across the north east of Andorra to the town of Encamp, which sits just outside the capital Andorra la Vella.
The lift system in Grandvalira is modern and efficient, allowing you easy access across all six sectors with your Grandvalira lift pass. The passes have a tiny chip inside which makes them hands-free, allowing you to leave your ski pass in your pocket and get on with enjoying the mountain.
With its 210 kilometers of skiable area and 128 slopes catering for all levels of ability, Grandvalira is the largest ski resort in the Pyrenees and the whole of Southern Europe.
Furthermore, the territory also offers a wide range of restaurants and leisure activities and is regularly the stage for top-level international competitions. Grandvalira is located in the northern part of the Principality of Andorra, next to the border with France.
The area covered by the resort forms part of two of the parishes in Andorra (Encamp and Canillo), and is made up of six sectors that joined together to make one territory 14 years ago: Pas de la Casa, Grau Roig, Soldeu, El Tarter, Canillo and Encamp.
Where is Grandvalira ?
Grandvalira is located in the north-east of the Principality of Andorra, in the parishes of Encamp and Canillo. Its six access routes are easy to find, located along the CG2 motorway that links the country’s capital, Andorra la Vella, with France via the mountain pass of Envalira.
Whether you come by car or bus, there are various ways of getting to the Principality of Andorra.
From Spain, travelers should head for Seu d’Urgell and continue on to the Andorran border. You will pass through the municipalities of Sant Julia de Loria and Andorra la Vella, and follow the signs for France along the CG2. The first access route is that of Encamp.
From France, along the RN20: you can get to Grandvalira directly via Pas de la Casa just after crossing the border. Alternatively, you can cross into Andorra via the Envalira tunnel which will leave you close to the Grau Roig access route. Continue down the CG2 to get to the four other access routes leading to Grandvalira.
If you’re driving then parking can sometimes be difficult around the streets of El Tarter itself as they are quite narrow and if it snows they don’t get cleared very quickly. However, there is a small car park in the village centre by the old church as well as a huge car park in the valley bottom by the access to the slopes.
Leading to the slopes are a gondola and a chairlift, the gondola being found at the far end of the main car park, and the chairlift being located up the footpath at the opposite end of the car park by the ticket desk and other facilities.
If you are a beginner you should take the gondola up, then you will find the school office and meeting point just to the right when you get off at the top. El Tarter forms a part of the Grandvalira ski area, so from here you will be able to access all 210km of slopes.
El Tarter offers all the basics needed for a relaxing snowboard or ski holiday and is within easy reach of Soldeu if you want to venture out during your stay.
Grandvalira ski area info & stats
- Vertical drop: 930 m (2.640 m – 1.710 m)
- Skiable area: 1.926 Ha – 210 skiable km
|Detachable chairlifts 6
|Detachable chairlifts 4
|Fixed chairlifts 4
|Fixed chairlifts 2
· 14 green
· 51 blue
· 45 red
· 18 black
1.032 snow cannons guaranteeing 65% of the resort’s skiable area
4 Competition areas
(9 FIS approved slopes)
3 Freestyle areas
· Snowpark El Tarter
· Snowpark Xavi, Grau Roig
· Snowpark Sunset Park Peretol (The only night snowpark of the Pyrenees)
1 Time run
5 Themed children’s ski areas
- Mon(t) Magic:
· Grandvalira-Canillo sector (El Forn zone)
- Bababoom Circus:
· Grandvalira- El Tarter sector
- Imaginarium Circuit:
Grandvalira-Grau Roig sector Coma III and Piolet zone)
Grandvalira-Pas de la Casa sector
Grandvalira-Encamp sector (Cortals zone)
Grandvalira Adventure Activities
At Grandvalira there are 210 km of slopes to enjoy your favorite sport, and just when you think you’ve seen it all, you’ll realize there’s a lot more to do yet: discover rackets are for more than just playing tennis, try hopping on a snowmobile across white fields and get a bird’s eye view while paragliding, among others. That’s what Grandvalira is: skiing and so much more.
Grandvalira offers crosscountry skiing in order to enjoy the snow in a different way, a terrific experience to share with the family, friends or as a couple.
Explore Grandvalira in a different light, with easy routes and itineraries on snow shoes along snowy trails and over frozen lakes, always accompanied by a guide. The routes are in El Forn (Grandvalira-Canillo sector), in the Adventure Activities Center (Grandvalira-Grau Roig sector) and at Grandvalira-Pas de la Casa sector last 1, 2, 3 or 5 hours.
Grandvalira offers snow lovers the opportunity to build an igloo. This activity, a great deal of fun with kids, and regularly requested for company groups, demonstrates the techniques for building an igloo, and is always supervised by an expert monitor.
Accompany a driver during working hours and see the route that they take in their ratrac.
Snow tubing is an open air activity where you are launched across the snow by toboggans on a circular cushion. It is a monitored activity and guarantees fun for all the family.
The forests in Grandvalira are the perfect route for a snowmobile ride. You can enjoy this activity at Grandvalira-Pas de la Casa sector, at Grandvalira-Grau Roig sector and on the circuit at Grandvalira-Soldeu sector. Activity for over 18s and also for children accompanied by an adult.
Mushing is an ideal activity for dog lovers and to see spectacular landscapes in a breathless setting. Routes on sleds are pulled by dogs along snowy trails among the forests of Grandvalira. The routes are marked on the circuits of Riba Escorxada (Grandvalira-El Tarter sector) and at the Adventure Activities Center (Grandvalira-Grau Roig sector).
The snow is also the perfect setting for the entertaining game of “team paintball”. Participants will have all the necessary equipment (pistols, clothing and protection) to enjoy the battlefield at the Adventure Activities Center.
The zip-line, over 500 meters long and 40 meters high, located in Mon(t) Magic Family Park Canillo, reaches downhill speeds of up to 80 km/h. This activity is performed in sitting position being necessary to weight minimun 40 kg. The zip-line can pull up two people together in parallel, as long as they don’t exceed 100 kg each separately. It’s an opportunity to enjoy the best views over the lake ‘Llac del Forn’ and experience the adrenaline in the heart of nature. The activity will also remain active in winter, being operational and available to visitors and skiers during almost all year long.
At Grandvalira you can paraglide down the highest peaks in the domain, enjoying spectacular views on the way down. Discover Grandvalira by air.
Panoramic helicopter flights
The helicopter flights are ideal to enjoy the spectacular views of the landscape from the air and during its duration of 10 minutes, it will offer you a privileged view of the landscapes. The incredible views invite a reliving of the experience. This activity is minimum for 4 people and it takes place in Grandvalira-Soldeu sector.
Snow group challenge
Orienteering challenge with activities that include: snowmobile skills circuit, assault course in the forest, archery, ARVA, snowshoe race and surprise orienteering points.
Grandvalira opts to increase its skiing hours and boost the area at the foot of the slopes at Pas de la Casa. In this manner, the Solana/Tubs ski slope is illuminated at night-time, above which the chair lift runs two days a week, Thursday and Saturday, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., subject to weather conditions. This area is suitable for all kinds of visitors. Furthermore, the new chocolate cafe Valor located at the foot of the slopes of Pas de la Casa will also be open at night-time, complementing this nocturnal offer.
An experience in snow and ice.
The Igloo Hotel is located 7,700 feet above sea level in the Grau Roig area, Grandvalira. Exclusive accommodation that is unique in southern Europe.
The hotel is made 100% from snow and has a bar, a terrace, a restaurant, a spa area and 5 rooms. Each igloo/room is approx. 20m2 and has everything you’ll need to enjoy an enchanting night.
The hotel offers 5 rooms which may be reserved privately (private room) or for groups (up to 6 people per room).
The Igloo Hotel includes the following activities:
- 7:00 p.m.: Arrival at the Grau Roig ski school.
- 7:00 – 7:30 p.m.: Welcome drinks.
- 7:30 p.m.: Climb with snow groomer to the Igloo Hotel Exit with snow rackets. Dinner. Jacuzzi and sauna session.
- 9:00 a.m. (following day): Descent from hotel on skis or by chair lift, depending on the option chosen. Breakfast at the Pulka café. *Customers who wish to ski down will have to take up their own equipment.
Customers may book other services during reservation and/or upon arrival at the ski school.
The services offered are:
· Other adventure activities such as mushing, snow rackets, snowmobiles, snow tubing, etc.
· Cross-country ski trips.
· Skiing and snowboarding classes.
· Catering services.
· Delicatessen menu for your igloo stay.
Remember to bring the following:
Clothes for the snow. Clothing must be warm and waterproof. We recommend avoiding jeans, and that you wear warm, comfortable footwear such as après-ski boots (for resting) or Moonboots, a good pair of gloves, sunglasses, spare socks and underwear. (Also advisable are pajamas or trousers and thermal t-shirt), a towel, bathing suits and flip-flops for the jacuzzi, 2 wool hats (in case one gets wet in the jacuzzi), a torch and passport or ID card.
Currency & Money
The currency of Andorra is the Euro. There are cash machines in the village where you can easily withdraw money, alternatively you can still exchange money at most hotel receptions, just watch out for the exchange rate in hotels though as they can be quite low. The closest banks can be found a 10-15 minute bus ride away in either Pas de la Casa or in Canillo, both towns are also reachable on your skis as the ski areas are linked.
Duty Free Allowances
Andorra has customs on both the French and Spanish borders with regular vehicle searches carried out. The main duty free allowances, as per the Andorran government in October 2015 are:
Tobacco & Cigarettes – 300 cigarettes or 150 cigars (under 3g each) or 75 cigars (over 3g each)
or 400g of pipe tobacco
Alcohol – 1.5l of liquors over 22% (or 3l of liquors or aperitifs under 22% or sparkling wine) plus 5l of table wine
Perfume – 75g of perfume plus 375 ml of eau de cologne
Other Industrial Products – Up to a value of €900 per person or €450 if aged under 15
For more information please visit the official customs website of Andorra.
Andorra is well known for its duty free shopping opportunities and undoubtedly the best place to take advantage of the bargains on offer is in the capital city of Andorra la Vella. However, if you prefer not to venture out of the resort there are a few places you can indulge in a spot of retail therapy in and around Soldeu itself.
Soldeu is home to a small selection of quality ski and snowboard shops where you can pick up everything you will need for a ski or snowboard trip. Esports Calbo (located within the main gondola building) is one of the larger sports shops in Soldeu with a good selection of clothing, equipment and gift ideas. It is also worth mentioning Slidewayz (great for snowboarders), Pic Negre and Esports Bonell which are all located on the main road running through the village and have an excellent and varied selection of ski and snowboard related goods.
There are a few small supermarkets in Soldeu, where you can pick up everyday groceries, postcards and gifts; these include Supermarket Post and Pirineu Supermarket both located on the main road “Carretera General”.
Shopping in El Tarter is a little limited; however you do not have far to travel to Soldeu, Andorra la Vella or Pas de la Casa. In El Tarter you will be able to stock up on groceries at Supermarket Pirot located near Dylan’s Bar.
On the main road just at the edge of El Tarter you will find Caves Manacor, a never ending store specialising in delicatessen products, cheeses and typical foods from the region which you can sample as you wander around the store, they also stock a large selection of liquors, cigarettes, household items and gifts. Just next door in the car park you will also find a perfumery.
Andorra La Vella
For more extensive shopping opportunities you might want to pay a visit to the capital city of Andorra la Vella. If you want to go, there are a couple of options:
Firstly is public transport, buses depart regularly from the main road through the villages of Soldeu & El Tarter and pick you up on Av. Meritxell in Andorra la Vella for the return. See timetable below for further details.
Second option is a taxi, they work pretty much the same as anywhere else, hotel receptions will usually call one for you, or you can flag one down if you see one. The official price set by the government is €1.12 per km during the daytime (07:00 – 21:00) and additional supplements apply at night, during public holidays, for journeys outside of Andorra and for large items of luggage. Taxis cannot generally be pre-booked in Andorra, therefore you just have to wait for it to come.
If you are driving you will find various (chargeable) car parks in the centre, the main ones being located inside the Illa shopping centre and at Parc Central.
Once you have arrived in Andorra la Vella, you will find a fantastic array of shops selling predominantly electrical goods, jewellery, perfume, alcohol, cigarettes and tobacco, all at duty free prices. There is also a large indoor shopping centre called Illa Carlemany which is home to a number of shops, restaurants and a cinema complex, all spread over four floors.
Contrary to popular belief Andorra is not completely tax free, in 2007 a sales tax was introduced and this currently stands at 4.5%, however this is still very low and prices generally remain a fair bit cheaper than most other parts of Western Europe.
Buses to Andorra La Vella
The bus service to Andorra la Vella is operated by two companies – Hispano Andorrana and Cooperativa Interurbana Andorrana. It costs €3.30 one way from Soldeu and El Tarter to Andorra la Vella and the main line number is L3 (although you can also catch the L4 which runs less frequently).
Tickets are bought in cash on the bus. The bus stops in Soldeu and El Tarter are on the main road. The bus stop to return is on Av. Mertixell in the centre of Andorra la Vella.
Bus Times To/From Soldeu & Andorra la Vella
Monday to Saturday 08:40 – 21:40 (Every 20 mins) 07:40 – 20:40 (Every 20 mins)
Sunday 08:40 – 21:40 (Every 30 mins) 08:40 – 20:30 (Every 30 mins)
You can also catch the bus on line L4 to & from Pas de la Casa.
Pas de la Casa
An alternative would be to take the 15 minute bus journey over to the neighbouring resort of Pas de la Casa, due to its location on the French border Pas is well known for its large selection of shops specialising in duty free goods such as cigarettes, alcohol, perfumes and clothing.