Top Lift: 2580m
Ski area: 193km of piste
Adult lift pass: 176-232€ for six days
In a Nutshell
Essential Guide to Grandvalira Pas de la Casa
Grandvalira is a large linked ski area with seven different resorts: Pas de la Casa, Encamp, Canillo, El Tarter, Soldeu, and Grau Roig. The biggest and best-known are Soldeu and Pas de la Casa, and together the six resorts promote themselves as a world-class destination for serious skiers.
However, you can’t talk about Pas de la Casa without mentioning the nightlife: it’s some of the wildest we’ve ever seen. That said, this part of Andorra is much more than a place with cheap(ish) beer and pistes attached.
The 192km of piste in Grandvalira is linked up by a high-speed lift network and there are gentle green runs for beginners to start on and some decent blue ones for them to progress to once the basics have been mastered. For the more experienced there is a good mix of red and black runs.
Several of the best pistes are at the Pas de la Casa end of the ski area, but nevertheless it’s here that the spirit of old Andorra lives on in rudest health, courtesy of its charmless concrete architecture, and the full-throttle, and distinctly British and Irish nightlife – which gains in intensity as the clock ticks towards midnight. Families and older skiers should steer clear, and check into neighbouring Soldeu instead – leaving the twentysomethings to have a holiday they won’t easily forget.
The majority of hotels and apartments are conveniently located close to the slopes and everything is within a short walk of the nightlife. You can party (almost) all night in Pas – the closing time of nightclubs is at 3am except for Fridays and Saturdays when it is 4am. On special occasions, such as Christmas and New Years’ Eve they stay open until 5am.
Bordertown shopping spree
Pas de la Casa is also a great place for shopping. Due to its location on the French-Andorran border, people come here to take advantage of Andorra’s low tax and duty free prices. Because of this you’ll find a plethora of shops and supermarkets offering everything from alcohol and perfume to clothing and electrical goods. Most of the shops are on or around three streets: Carrer de Sant Jordi, Avenida d’Encamp and Carrer Major.