Grandvalira was formed in 2003 as the amalgamation of the separate lift companies that ran the resorts of Pas de la Casa, Grau Roig and Soldeu-el Tarter. Bigger was deemed better, and the fully linked area now covers a very respectable 210km of pistes.
- Highest Point: 2,640m
- Descent: 930m
- No. lifts: 67
The resort has tried hard to shed its image as a tacky ‘bargain basement’ winter destination, and has generally succeeded. However, its duty free status still means plenty of good cheap booze flows, and you’ll return with a bigger hole in your liver than your pocket.
The Parks – 4/5
All of the village bases have a terrain park close by, so you’ll never have to commute far for your hits.
The El Tarter Snowpark is easily the best freestyle set-up in Andorra and probably in the whole of the Pyrenees. It is served by the Tossa Espiolets chairlift and is home to some mighty cheese wedges. The park extends almost the entire length of the face and is divided into a number of lines for different abilities; everyone is well catered for, whether you’re taking your first foray or are a seasoned pro.The park now has five earth-shaped mounds in a row for serious kicker action once covered in snow.
“The El Tarter Snowpark is easily the best freestyle set-up in Andorra and probably in the whole of the Pyrenees“
Not too far from Soldeu village is the Sunset Park. As the name suggests, this park opens in the afternoon and closes around 10pm. It is located next to the friendly Peretol Hotel in the small village of Bordes d’Envalira. The park is served by a T-bar but it currently isn’t yet lift-linked to the rest of the area. However, if you eat at the hotel or are a guest they will happily give you a lift back to Soldeu. The park is set up to have features for all abilities, and the locals say it has the best jibs. They usually have an airbag as well. Every Friday and Saturday they run a video competition on their website giving you a chance to win some goodies.
If you need any kit, head to Slidewayz in Soldeu which is located on the main street. It was founded by the UK’s very own Tyler Chorlton and English-born Spanish snowboard legend Merlin Balfour.
Pas’ main park, the ‘Isards’, is unlikely to open this season, but over the back of Pas in the Grau Roig sector near the village of Piolet is the Snowpark Xavi. This one is heavily jib-focused, featuring picnic tables and plenty of easy rails and boxes.