ANDORRA

Date of establishment: September 8, 1278

Brief history:

8th Century – First settlements in the Andorra region.

1278 and 1288 – Through agreements called Paréages, Andorra becomes a co-principality ruled by the Bishop of Urgell in Catalonia, Spain, and the Count of Foix, in France.

1419 – The Andorran parliament is established.

1806 – Napoleon establishes official relations with Andorra .

1866 – Andorra signs a new cooperation treaty with France, called the Treaty of Bayonne.

1933 – Andorra becomes a parliamentary republic.

1993 – Andorra becomes a member of the United Nations.

1993 – Andorra adopts a new constitution and becomes fully self-governing

2011 – Andorra ratifies the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

 

International abbreviation: AD

 

Currency: Euro (EUR)

The official currency of Andorra is the euro, which was adopted in 2002. Andorra does not have its own currency and uses the euro as its sole legal tender. The euro is used for all transactions in Andorra, including purchases, banking transactions, and tourist services. Banknotes are available in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, and 500 euros, while coins are available in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 cents, as well as 1 and 2 euros.

 

Internet domain: .ad

 

Dialing code: +376

 

Time zone: +1 GMT

 

Geography:

Andorra is located in the Pyrenees on the border between France and Spain. It lies at an elevation between 720 and 2 942 meters (2 362 and 9 652 feet) above sea level. Andorra is a mountainous country with many rivers, and lakes. The main rivers are the Valira del Nord and the Valira d’Orient, which merge into the Valira. Andorra has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers and mild winters (at lower altitudes), making it ideal for tourists, especially during the winter season when there is skiing and snowboarding.

 

Highest peak: Coma Pedrosa 2 942 meters (9 652 feet) above sea level

It is located in the western part of the country in the Pyrenees and is part of the Coma Pedrosa Nature Reserve. This area is ideal for hiking, mountaineering and rock climbing outside the winter season. Coma Pedrosa is a popular destination for tourists seeking stunning mountain landscapes and nature.

 

Climate:

A Mediterranean climate with high precipitation and mild temperatures. Summers are hot with average temperatures around 25°C (77°F), while winters are moderate and cool with average temperatures around 4°C (39°F). However, the mountainous areas have a harsher and colder climate with high precipitation and snow in winter.

 

Fauna and flora:

Significant animal species that inhabit Andorra include the Pyrenean chamois, mouflon, golden eagle, alpine marmot, European roe deer, wild boar, European badger, red fox, the squirrel, and the common viper.

Andorra’s flora includes various species of mountain flowers such as Edelweiss, gentians, Alpine pasqueflower, arnica, and mountain butrtercups, as well as forests with mountain pine, silver fir, European beech, mountain ash, downy oak, aspen, rowan, and mountain willow trees.

 

Agriculture:

Agriculture plays a smaller role in Andorra compared to other economic activities such as tourism and trade. Nevertheless, Andorra produces several agricultural crops for local consumption, including cereals, vegetables, and potatoes. Sheep are also raised for milk and meat production. However, agricultural production in Andorra is limited by natural conditions such as the small areas suitable for agriculture and a cold climate, which hinders the growth of plants and animals.

 

Natural resource extraction:

Andorra does not have significant mineral resources, and mining is not conducted in the country. The country relies on imports of resources such as food, textiles, and industrial goods.

 

Industry:

The most important service sectors are tourism and banking.

Tourism is crucial for Andorra as the country offers attractive mountain landscapes and is a popular destination for both summer and winter tourists. Andorra has numerous ski resorts, and in summer, tourists engage in various outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, and rafting.

Banking is also a significant industry in Andorra. The country has many banks and financial institutions that provide services not only to the local population but also to foreign clients.

 

Services and other sectors of the economy: banking, travel, and tourism

 

Natural and historical attractions:

Tourists are attracted to sites such as the Casa de la Vall building, Sant Joan de Caselles Church, and the Caldea Spa Complex.

Andorra has several ski resorts, including Grandvalira, which is the largest in the Pyrenees. Grandvalira offers over 200 kilometers (125 miles) of ski slopes and is a popular destination for skiers of all levels.

In summer, Andorra attracts tourists who come for hiking, mountain sports, and relaxation. The country has many hiking trails and paths that traverse beautiful mountain landscapes, meadows, and forests. Tourists can also visit historical towns and villages, such as Andorra la Vella, the capital of Andorra, which is home to many landmarks and museums.

The country also offers numerous shopping and gastronomic opportunities.

 

 

Form of government: Unitary parliamentary constitutional elective diarchy

Andorra is a dual-headed parliamentary co-principality, meaning it has two heads of state – the President of France and the Bishop of the Spanish city of La Seu d’Urgell. These two officials represent Andorra abroad and are responsible for maintaining international relations. In internal affairs, Andorra has its own parliament, laws, and government, led by a prime minister, who wields executive power. The country functions as a parliamentary democracy with multiple political parties and elections held every four years.

 

Capital city: Andorra la Vella

The largest city in the country. It is located in a valley at the confluence of the Valira del Nord and Valira del Orient rivers and has approximately 24,000 inhabitants. The city offers visitors many historical landmarks, such as the church of Sant Esteve Cathedral and the Casa de la Vall (historic seat of the Andorran parliament), as well as modern shopping options and restaurants.

 

Area: 468 km2 (181 sq. miles)

 

Population: 79,800 (2022)

The main ethnic groups are Spaniards and French, who make up most of the population, with smaller minorities of Portuguese and other nationalities. The main religion is Roman Catholicism. The majority of the population speaks Catalan and Spanish, but French and Portuguese are also spoken.

 

UNESCO World Heritage Sites: 1

 

Madriu-Claror-Perafita (2004) – A unique area with high mountain landscapes, wild rivers, deep valleys, and mountain meadows.

 

National parks: 3

 

  1. Sorteny Valley National Park
  2. Valles del Comapedrosa National Park
  3. Valle del Madriu-Claror-Perafita National Park