The après ski in Andorra has always been a large feature of the country, and while Grandvalira and Vallnord Pal-Arinsal have been tirelessly working year on year to make Andorra one of the top ski destinations in Europe, what happens after you’ve been on the mountain remains a large part of your ski holiday to Andorra, so what is Andorra après ski?
Après in Andorra (as it’s more commonly referred to) is not just about drinking, it’s about a social atmosphere that you wouldn’t find on any other type of holiday. It’s about letting your hair down and mixing with people that all have one thing in common, a love of the mountain.
There’s no better feeling than giving your legs a well-deserved rest and re-fuelling your body whilst telling stories of epic jumps or falls, all surrounded by like-minded people doing exactly the same. In Après ski bars there’s no pressure to change from your ski gear and you are encouraged to relax in the varied venues, normally surrounded by instructors and mountain workers who like to join in the atmosphere after a day working on the slopes.
If you get the opportunity it’s well worth exploring the local restaurants in resort as Andorra has such a wide selection to offer, from tapas bars to Argentinian steak houses you’ll certainly never go hungry – and with house wine and beer extremely good value for money you are never likely to go thirsty either.
From bars and restaurants, to local events and customs we’ve compiled a brief look at the various popular resorts in Andorra to give you an idea of what you can expect.
Arinsal is a very family friendly resort and that filters through off the slopes as well, the bars are very welcoming with plenty of offers to entice you in. The main concentration of bars is in the centre of the village, so there is no problem getting between them and in each venue, you’ll find friendly faces to welcome you in. You’ll generally find the instructors socialising in the bars (normally still in their uniform), and in Arinsal it’s long been tradition that various bars send up camera men and women onto the slopes to film you while you are in ski school, not only does this allow you to see yourself progress throughout the week (as well as catching any funny falls) but it’s also a useful tool for the instructors to give a bit of feedback. Frequently you’ll find acoustic guitarists providing live music around resort and they are very happy for you to join in or even have a go yourself! Check out the bars here.
Soldeu, like Arinsal, is a small village with the bars and restaurants concentrated in the centre and they soon fill up when the slopes close for the evening. In Soldeu you’ll never be too far from a table football table (which is unofficially the national sport of Andorra). Slightly different to the tables you find in France (the tables in Andorra have a different formation and the players have separate feet, rather than together), it’s winner stays on and you’ll generally find the locals gravitate to the tables, it’s well worth watching a few games and having a go yourself. The week gets broken up by events, quizzes and live music held in the venues and if you are lucky you may even get to see one of the resident ski instructor bands.
El Tarter may seem the most low-key of all the resorts, but don’t let it fool you. Home to L’Abarset, a funky and modern outdoor venue that attracts international DJs and crowds from the whole of Grandvalira. Opening just a few years ago, this venue quickly established itself as one of the premiere places after the slopes have closed.
The après ski in Pas de la Casa probably has the biggest reputation and it is certainly well-known for being the lively resort. With the slopes ending into the heart of resort, after just a few short steps you can find a selection of après ski bars to start your evening. Drinks offers and hearty food will entice you in and then good music and live sporting events will keep you there. In Pas de la Casa après ski can continue into the early hours of the morning (if you want it to) and keep an eye out for the skis and snowboards attached to the ceiling – these aren’t just for decoration – in days gone by people used to get attached to them upside down to try and drink various drinks!
At Andorra Resorts, we have teamed up with various après ski venues across the country to offer you discounts and offers to save money while you are on holiday, they are completely free of charge and all you have to do is remember to download and print them before you go. You can find them here;