5km from Andorra la Vella, Vallnord is made up of three former smaller areas: Pal, Arinsal (connected by a gondola) and Ordino (Arcalis) which remains a separate centre.
Vallnord offers a smaller ski area to Grandvalira, but its combined 90km is nothing to sniff at and with it comes a host of high-speed detachable four- and six-seater chairs and the best snowfall record in the principality.
The Pal-Arinsal sector is the ideal resort for family skiing with pretty, treelined slopes and ski school geared to British needs. Its FIS stadium is one of the biggest in Southern Europe, and the latest trends in skiing and snowboarding are practiced in its freestyle and freeride areas (with an area of 40,000 m2 and chill out included). It also has a Carving Area, two bumps areas and a slalom area.
Ordino-Arcalis Sector is the most Alpine resort in the Pyrenees. Its orientation, on the north/north-west slopes of the mountain, where the snow is very generous, makes this skiable area outstanding for the excellent quality of its snow. It is also known for having some of the most spectacular off-piste skiing at the heart of a perfectly preserved natural landscape, with 25 pistes, 74 snow cannons and 14 ski lifts. In addition, it has a 15,000 m snowboarding park, slalom stadium and a biking circuit with spectacular night-time excursions.
Many other activities can be enjoyed at Pal-Arinsal Mountain Park as well as skiing and snowboarding. Skibíking, snowbiking, orienteering, snowshoeing and helicopter flights are just some of these. There are also many activities intended for children, such as children’s snow bikes and jumps. And last but not least, the themed mountain restaurants should not be missed.
For the liveliest apres-ski head to Arinsal; its compact centre has a dozen or so small-to-medium sized bars. Service by English or Antipodean bar staff is the order of the day, with prices equivalent to those 'back home' or better, so they're lively as soon as the lifts close.