Andorra is the sixth-smallest nation in Europe, a micro-country located between the border of Spain and France. It is a country so small that it doesn’t appear on many maps of Europe. Zoom in real close and you will see Andorra. When I had the chance to visit Andorra on a day trip from Barcelona, I jumped at the opportunity!
I never thought that I would step foot in this micro-country and I quite frankly didn’t know what to expect. But here I was, on a bus tour through the Pyrenees, en route to Andorra. All I knew prior to this trip is that Andorra is a a tax-haven. And I suspected that it would be beautifully mountainous.
The mountains exceeded my expectations the entire trip through the Pyrenees. It seemed that all the mountains in Andorra were dusted with snow. As we neared the Spanish border to Andorra, my excitement doubled. This was my first border crossing in Europe. We waited as the line through the boarder slowly inched forward. Once our wait was up, we were rewarded with an Andorra passport stamp.
What I saw next, I was not expecting: gas station after gas station. There had to be six gas stations upon entry to Andorra. This may not seem extreme, but after spending the last 6 hours in small towns, it was surely a site to see. We weaved our way through the streets toward the capital city, Andorra la Vella.
Our stop in Andorra la Vella was only for a coupe hours. We had time to quickly eat and walk around a bit. While we didn’t have much time to explore, it was evident this city is extremely commercialized. The city itself is essentially an outlet mall. Everywhere I looked, there were stores. The best part about all these stores is that they’re tax free. Citizens from France and Spain come to Andorra to take advantage of these tax free deals. I did some window shopping and browsed a bit however I’m not much of a shopper while traveling. While in Andorra though, I had to take advantage of the tax-free deals. I ended up stopping by the grocery store to stock up on some chocolate and cheese (the essentials).
My time in Andorra was short. While it is a small country, I felt that I barely scratched the surface during my short trip. From my experience, Andorra is a country geared completely toward consumerism. Yet the mountains in the distance indicated that there was more to this country than shopping.My adventure through Andorra was part of the Three Countries One Day trip through Explore Catalunya. This is not a sponsored post, I just loved this tour!