EL TARTER, ANDORRA
El Tarter ski holidays…
El Tarter is a relaxed, quieter village just two kilometres along the valley from Soldeu.
The village is linked directly to the vast Grandvalira ski area by a 10-seater cable car and a 4-seater chairlift, allowing good access to the slopes. With the English-speaking ski and snowboard school, the small nursery, and snow garden this village is an excellent choice for families and couples. Accommodation ranges from self-catering apartments to good quality larger hotels, and while there are a handful of bars and restaurants, evening activities in El Tarter tend to be on the quieter side.
SKIING IN EL TARTER
What to expect...
El Tarter Expert
"Look at the slopes of El Tarter from afar and you'll see the "X" logo of Grandvalira formed by two slopes crossing. Only one is skiable, which is the black FIS World Cup slope Aliga, and is one to challenge yourself with".
LOCAL SKI AREA - EL TARTER
Ski holidays in El Tarter are perfect for first time skiers and snowboarders due to the fantastic ski schools and excellent value for money.
The local ski area in El Tarter is an excellent area for beginners and early intermediates, as it has some long easy runs that are great for getting your ski legs back at the start of your holiday. Leading to the slopes are a gondola and a chairlift, the gondola being found at the far end of the main car park, and the chairlift being located up the footpath at the opposite end of the car park by the ticket desk and other facilities.
The local ski school is one of the best in Europe for native English speakers and is easily accessed by taking the gondola up to the meeting point which is right where you get off. Here you will also find the Bababoom circus where the little ones can enjoy a slope designed just for them, with endless surprises.
Upon arrival at the slopes you will notice the impressive El Tarter snow park, which plays host to the Total Masters of Freestyle event every season and a good place to practice some kickers, rails and freestyle tricks if you are a thrill seeker or play it safe and just watch the experts practice their skills.
Just above the snow park is the start of the Gall de Bosc blue run, which is one of the longest runs in Grandvalira. At 8.2km it offers a complete summit to resort descent that even beginners will be able to do after a few days and is linked to other pistes so you can take a different ride each time. It is a pretty gentle slope all the way down and finishes with a lovely route through the woods to bring you back to the meadows at the base of the lift back up.
WIDER SKI AREA - GRANDVALIRA
Grandvalira is the largest ski resort in the Pyrenees, reaching an altitude of 2640m.
With El Tarter being the perfect place to enjoy some mellow skiing and great for families, those looking to push themselves a bit more can easily access the vast Grandvalira ski domain, which ranks amongst the world's leading ski areas, rivals its Alpine counterparts and is entirely skiable without ever having to remove your skis. The neighbouring resort of Soldeu is easily accessible and can be a good starting point to explore the wider area. Soldeu, similar to El Tarter has a beginner's area next to the gondola, which leads to the upper slopes that have some lovely long cruising blues and fast reds mixed up with a few modest black runs and miles of easily accessible ungroomed inter-piste terrain.
To take advantage of the full Grandvalira you can head to Grau Roig, which is a quieter and more sheltered area that is great for freeriders before heading to Pas de la Casa. This popular resort of can be accessed by the Port blue run from Grau Roig that offers some incredible mountain views and some lovely resort ones as you weave down to the town. The main Directa I red run offers a steeper more challenging route down to keep those more intermediate and advanced skiers happy. Beginners and families will find Grandvalira a great area to ski as there is enough to keep mixed groups satisfied along with the opportunity of you all being able to ski the area together.
SKI EXTRAS IN EL TARTER
For access to the slopes of El Tarter, a Grandvalira lift pass can be purchased, providing access to the full Grandvalira ski area - 210km of slopes across six sectors (El Tarter, Soldeu, Canillo, Encamp Pas de la Casa and Grau Roig). Grandvalira lift passes can be collected from the ticket windows at the base of the gondola. Should you need a day's rest from skiing mid holiday, non consecutive ski passes can be purchased
The Grandvalira ski school in El Tarter provides group ski lessons for all levels, 3 hours per day for up to 5 days. Previously the Grandvalira ski school operated on a first coming first served basis with regard to morning lessons. You can now pre book and guarantee morning lessons (subject to availability). Once the morning lessons are full, afternoon slots will become available.
You can collect your rental ski equipment from Nordic Esports, inside the Nordic hotel situated a stones throw away from the El Tarter gondola. Your rental equipment can be collected from 16:00 the day before, allowing quick and easy access to the slopes on your first day.
It's always cheaper to choose a saver package if you need a lift pass, lessons and equipment rental. We have various combinations available that can save you lots of money and are happy to guide you in what to book.
Min Ski Elevation:
Max Ski Elevation:
Gondolas / Cable Cars:
Approximate transfer times:
- Barcelona: 4 Hrs
- Toulouse: 2¾ Hrs
- Lleida: 3½ Hrs
eL TARTER VILLAGE
El Tarter is a small village approximately 1.5km from Soldeu in the direction of Andorra la Vella and Spain, which offers a much more laid back holiday experience.
El Tarter is a small village approximately 1.5km from Soldeu in the direction of Andorra la Vella and Spain and offers a much more laid back holiday experience than the bigger resorts.
The village is traditionally Andorran in appearance and the locals are friendly and helpful. Although quite small many people return year after year due to the compact layout, easy access to the slopes and cosy feel to the village. There is a couple of local shops if you need to pick anything up and a regular ski bus links to the larger town of Soldeu where you will find more amenities.
If you're driving, then parking can sometimes be difficult around the streets of El Tarter itself as they are quite narrow and if it snows they don't get cleared very quickly. However, there is a small car park in the village centre by the old church as well as a huge car park in the valley bottom by the access to the slopes. Leading to the slopes are a gondola and a chairlift, the gondola being found at the far end of the main car park, and the chairlift being located up the footpath at the opposite end of the car park by the ticket desk and other facilities. From here you can access all the 210km of the Grandvalira.
Evenings in El Tarter tending to be quite low key with a handful of restaurants and bars but the après ski can be quite vibrant and a good mix of locals and visitors.
RESTAURANTS & BARS
In El Tarter you find food from 30 different kitchens: Bar, European, Pub, Spanish, Italian, Brew Pub, Gastropub, Argentinean, South American, Steakhouse, Barbecue, International, Grill, Mediterranean, Pizza, and many more!
Although the village has only a few bars and restaurants, they are all highly recommended and very popular with people from neighbouring resorts skiing over to visit them.
L'Abarset restaurant and terrace lives in El Tarter which without doubt is one of the leading spots for après ski in Andorra, it hosts a range of concerts and parties that are the talk of the mountain. The food here is very traditionally and comes highly recommended. Dylan's is another notable venue with a modern restaurant, cocktail and chill out bar.
L'Abarset Restaurant serves up traditional mountain dishes and is a very popular après ski venue which also hosts live music and events.
IQQS is unusual bar that features a terrace-lounge with hammocks, where skiers can rest, recharge their batteries with a nice drink and some good food. Snowclub El Tarter by San Miguel is just a few metres from where the cable car arrives and is easily accessible both with and without skis. With a chill out area with sofas and a DJ booth you can grab a bite to eat and relax.
The après ski scene in El Tater is one of the most well known in Andorra which is ironic given its small Andorran feel.
Located at the base of the El Tarter lifts, L'Abarset offers a constant schedule of parties throughout the winter season with appearances by big name DJs and artists. With the party starting at 4pm, the large terrace fills up quickly with people dancing in ski boots to VIP's quaffing champagne.
The Sport Wellness Mountain Spa can offer a relaxing experience, whilst activities such as snowshoeing and dog-sledding are also available.
Located in El Tarter, Grandvalira Outdoor Centre offers a wide range of mountain-based and adventure activities to keep you entertained. With pursuits such as snowshoeing, heli-skiing and mushing there is lots to keep even the most daring person happy.
For those looking to experience the mountains from above there is paragliding available in El Tarter and ziplining in neighbouring Canillo, where you will experience stunning views from 40 meters off the ground. If you prefer to have your feet firmly on land, then there is a ice rink to keep you grounded, well depending on your skating ability!
Husky dog sledging is perfect for non-skiers. This is a great family activity and something you really need to do together – when else can you drive your own team of huskies!
There is a limited offering for non-skiers or adventure seekers in El Tarter but if you are happy to jump on a bus then there are lots of options to fill your day.
The capital Andorra La Vella is a short trip on the bus and there you can take advantage of the duty free shopping or take it easy in Caldea, Europe's largest thermal spa.
Around 30 minutes away is the town of Encamp where you can get a pedestrian pass to use the Funicamp cable car which takes you to the high-altitude Collada d'Enradort ridge at 2447 metres to experience amazing views and the popular restaurant.
Who is El Tarter Suitable For?
Here are the highlights...
The ski school in El Tarter is British-run so everyone is taught by British instructors who will give them the best tips in a fun-packed lesson, with a kids ski race at the end of the week.
With the laid back feel of the resort, El Tarter is a great place for families to enjoy a ski holiday. The predominance of self-catering accommodation makes an appealing option for many, along with a compact town that is easy to get around. The ski school is one of the best in Europe for English speakers and easily accessed by taking the gondola up. Next to ski school is the Bababoom Circus where little ones can enjoy a specially designed slope just for them that is full of surprises.
Skiing or boarding in the area surrounding El Tarter is great for almost any level. With plenty of nursery and beginners' slopes, pretty tree lined red runs and a few challenging black runs.
There are some lovely greens and blues that are accessible straight from the gondola in El Tarter, which are great for learning on or enjoying a nice easy ski. The Gall de Bosc blue is the longest run in Grandvalira at 8.2km and accessible for beginners and intermediates alike so you can ski together. Higher up there is some motorway reds that are good for intermediates and then the Snow park which hosts freestyle events every season and has a good array of kickers, rails and jumps for those looking for an adrenaline fix.
EL TARTER WEATHER
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EL TARTER WEBCAMS
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MAP OF EL TARTER
Find your way…
Here's our map of El Tarter showing you the key hotels and apartments as well as some of the main points of interest.