Situated between France and Spain in the southern Pyrenees, with an average altitude of 1800 mt above sea level and summits almost 3000 mt high, Andorra is the country with the highest average altitude in Europe.
Area: 468 km² -- Population: about 71,000 -- Density: 154 per km² Government: Parliamentary co-principality -- Capital: Andorra la Vella -- Language: Catalan -- Religion: Catholic -- Currency: Euro -- Telephone code: +376 -- International car plate: AD -- Internet suffix: .ad
Andorra consists of 7 communities called parròquies: Andorra la Vella, Canillo, Encamp, Escaldes-Engordany, La Massana, Ordino, Sant Julià de Lòria.
Its territory is covered with pastures and evergreen forests, and includes two valleys of glacial origin Valira del Norte and Valira del Este, formed by two streams which join in the vicinity of the capital Andorra La Vella in the Gran Valira river, a tributary of the Ebro. Because of its isolated position, Andorra remained in the centuries out of the events of other European countries, maintaining ties only with France and Spain. In the last decades however thanks to an improvement in communications and to a flourishing tourist economy the country is getting nearer and nearer to mainstream Europe.
Andorra is the last surviving part of the Marca Hispanica, a buffer territory created by Charlemagne as the last defence against the Moors. In the 11th century the Urgell Count was granted Lordship over this land, and his successors donated their right to the bishopry of the town, who in their turn submitted for protection to the Catalan Lords of Caboet, whose descendant was the French Count of Foix; at that point in the 13th century a dispute arose between the Spanish bishop and the French rulers, which ended in a Treaty of 1278 which assigned joint lordsip over Andorra to both adversary. In the course of time the French sovereignty passed from the Count of Foix to the State, but since 1993 the co-principality is a mere formality, and the country is ruled by its own modern parliamentary government.
Cities and places of interest
The capital, Andorra la Vella situated in the heart of the Pyrenees, is an ancient city rich of shops and an important tourist destination.
How to arrive
Since there is no railway station or airport, Andorra can only be reached by road.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Madriu Perafita Claror Valley's
The main resources are tourism and sheep raising.