Day 1 - Soldeu, Andorra
Welcome to Andorra! There's a complimentary group transfer from the airport in Toulouse to your hotel. For more information about timing and meeting point details please see the 'Joining Point Instructions' in the trip notes. Situated on the southern slopes of the Pyrenees, Andorra is squashed between France and Spain. Although small, Andorra is blessed with some of the finest scenery in the Pyrenees and is a great base for an active week in the mountains. Make sure you get plenty of rest tonight, as tomorrow your adventure begins.
Day 2 - Siscaro National Park
This morning take your first excursion into Andorra's mountains. It's a 10-minute drive to Grau Roig at the base of the stunning Circ de Pessons. Starting at 2,000 metres above sea level, climb 200 metres to the central of the region's 13 small lakes. At this height, spectacular views can be enjoyed across the Andorran peaks. The rest of the day is a gradual descent back down. This is a great way to ease yourself into trekking and to acclimatise to the altitude. Keep your eyes open for native flora and fauna, such as the griffon vulture, which can often be seen soaring overhead. As you cross the Soldeu ski fields you'll be able to appreciate the steepness of a World Cup black run. From here the descent is more rapid, and the path brings you right into the heart of Soldeu. You'll arrive back at the hotel between 3 and 4 pm, giving you a chance to relax in the sun, explore the village or visit a neighbouring hotel’s spa centre.
Day 3 - Soldeu - Cortals Valley - Zip wiring
Today’s full day of activities takes place in the stunningly beautiful Cortals Valley, about a 30 minute drive away. Half-way up the valley you jump on the bikes for a ride along a flat off road track to the Engolasters Lake giving you the opportunity to enjoy the scenery. Around the lake there are plenty of fun tracks to be taken and you normally have the choice between an easy flat track and a more exciting path through the woods. At the other end of the lake is the zip wiring and tree top centre. After a short briefing, you climb up into the trees and then cross the area by mostly zip lines and some rope obstacles. This is designed to be accessible to all and not too high but then there is an optional area with rope swings and a zip line ridden on a snowboard (these are optional and at an extra cost). After a picnic lunch by the lake you get back on the bikes and take a single track route into the forest to a fun bike park so you can hone your skills on a bit more technical riding or if you don’t fancy it just watch the others trying. Then it is back along the flat off road track to the vehicles. At the end of the day, return by vehicle to Soldeu.
Day 4 - Soldeu - Rafting & Mountain Biking
Crossing the Andorran border into Spain today, encounter different scenery and a more Mediterranean feel. Drive along a mountain pass of the Port de Canto to a height just below 2,000 metres. From here take a 20-kilometre road descent into the village of Sort. Along the way you'll enjoy some spectacular views. Your support vehicles will follow, giving assistance if necessary. Those not wishing to cycle can ride in the van. Your next adventure begins at a white water rafting centre (where there are changing facilities). An ability to swim is essential for this activity. Once kitted out with paddles, helmets, buoyancy aids and wetsuits, local guides will lead you on an exhilarating 14-kilometre white water rafting experience. The rivers around Sort have different grades of rapids (up to class III) and are rated in the top five in the world for safety and enjoyment. After drying off, there'll be some time to relax in the bar or by the pool at the centre, before returning by vehicle to Soldeu.
Day 5 - Soldeu - Free Day
Today you are free to choose from the many optional activities available in Andorra. You may decide to go fishing or visit the thermal baths of La Caldea. If you have a good head for heights, you can try your hand at Via Ferrata climbing or canyoning. There are plenty more opportunities for walking and mountain biking, or you might simply like to relax, enjoy the sunshine or go duty free shopping.
Day 6 - Soldeu - The Iron Route
After being issued with a helmet and a mountain bike, your guides will brief you on mountain biking and give you an opportunity to practice at the hotel. Afterwards, take a 40-minute transfer to the picturesque Ordino Valley. Begin your mountain biking decent at El Serrat, which is the start of Andorra's old iron route. Easy-going off-road tracks take you past old iron mines, mills and forges, finishing in the village of Ordino. The wide dirt tracks are car-free. Though the ground might be a bit rough in places, only basic mountain biking and good normal cycling skills are needed. After a rest and refreshment in the village, get back in the vehicle and head up to the Col de Beixalis (1,800 metres above sea level). Jump on your bike and take a thrilling seven-kilometre off road descent into Encamp. From here, it's a 15-minute drive back to the hotel. You should arrive between 4 and 5 pm.
Note: Throughout the day there will be full vehicle support, so if you'd prefer not to bike, you can walk and/or ride in the vehicle.
Day 7 - Soldeu walk
Take a short walk into the Incles Valley, where today’s hike begins. Walk along a single track through forested mountain slopes, keeping an eye out for pine forest plants, flowers and rhododendrons in June, wild fruit in mid summer and mushrooms in September. It's common to see groups of thickset mountain horses grazing on the high slopes. Continue your climb up to the Cabana Sorda Lake, which sits below an impressive amphitheatre of rock at 2,300 metres above sea level. Stop here for lunch. Eager walkers can hike up to the peak (around 2,600 metres) to enjoy amazing bird’s eye views of the valley. After lunch, descend through thick woodland into the valley and head back to town on foot.
Day 8 - Soldeu
Today your adventure comes to an end after breakfast. You are free to depart at any time. If you'd like to take our complimentary group transfer to Toulouse Airport, please advise us at the time of booking. It will be an early morning transfer to Toulouse Airport and you will arrive at approximately 9 am.
Accommodation, Food (as stated), Transport, Selected Activities
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