~ El Tarter ~
So I am pretty lucky when I go to Andorra as my Aunty has an apartment up in El Tarter, It’s about a 4 hour bus ride to get there from the Barcelona Airport or usually 3 by car. The best time to go is in the middle of the day as you avoid all traffic, there is only one road in and out of Andorra so you can imagine the traffic at rush hour.
Andorra is basically on a huge mountain so you’re either constantly going up or down. El tarter is a cute little village between Soldeu and Encamp, it has a massive carpark and is probably the more preferred gondola in the area because of this. El Tarter has great beginner slopes and even better intermediate slopes. You can literally snowboard to France from El tater and it is an awesome experience.
The food on the mountain is pretty average unless you want to spend a fortune on lunch. I mean a couple of nice lunches up on the slopes is cool but when you start paying £30 for a main dish everyday it gets pricey. James and I ate baguettes everyday. We either treated ourselves to the convenient £6 chicken baguette up on the slopes or we came down to the village supermarket, got a baguette, ham, cheese and some Pringles for £5 between us. By the way this baguette was HUGE! The only problem is you have to come down and stash your snow gear etc before trekking down to the supermarket. We also always made sure we had snacks on us, always a mandarin and a protein bar to keep us going before we ended up stopping for lunch.
The village itself is pretty small, there isn’t much to do. There are two awesome bars just down the road from where we stayed, one is called Dylan’s and the other Quinnaburra. The Quinnabarra restaurant makes the best cocktails (basically the shard in London standard) at the low price of £6 each. Also when you make friends with the bar tenders like we did, they’ll knock a few off every night. I wouldn’t recommend eating out anywhere in the village, it is all pretty expensive and it isn’t the best food, we mostly cooked up at home and then went out for drinks as alcohol was ridiculously cheap.
We went down to La Vella a couple of times which is about a 45 minute bus ride down, its where the main city is and where all the shops and restaurants are. The shops all had sales on when we went so we got some serious bargains, especially shops like Zara and pull&bear, we got things for half the price than what you would pay in the UK.
If you walk 25 minutes up Andorra, you get to a little village called Soldeu, this is a very flash end of Andorra, the hotels are super luxe and everyone has thousand dollar snow coats on. But if you want a walk to somewhere new this is a great place to go, it also has a three level spa in the Wellness hotel which over looks the snowy mountains, it costs about £40 for 3 hours but is totally worth it!