Education Sales Administrator, Sarah Fox, has just returned from a week in Andorra, having accompanied one of our February Half Term groups on their ski trip. Here’s her lowdown of the week…
After a long coach journey we arrived into Andorra around 2pm, it was all hands on deck to get everyone checked in at the Hotel Panorama.
All went smoothly as the hotel has a spacious reception with breakout areas for relaxing and plenty of space for around 50 students to relax, the hotel staff are experienced in working with groups and we had a great team of Rayburn Tour Managers in resort.
After a refreshing shower and a change of clothes we enjoyed some free time to explore our new surroundings and become acquainted with Andorra; our home for the week.
The next morning we jumped on the coach for a short journey across to La Massana and descended on the ski hire shop to collect our skis, boots, helmets and poles before hopping on the gondola up to the pistes.
We met the ski instructors outside the ski school, lessons began and the group were off to a flying start!
…Or on a couple of occasions falling!
Throughout the week, the group had a two hour lesson each morning and each afternoon. Most groups follow a similar pattern though lesson times can vary.
As the days went on the group made huge progress as they aced the green beginner pistes, conquered the moderate blues and in some cases made their way over to the more challenging red runs.
Even on a ski trip, it’s not all about the Skiing!
We enjoyed a number of Après ski activities including a pizza evening, sledging (including a pretty epic snowball fight!) and swimming.
If these don’t appeal Andorra has a number of other options including Ice skating, Bowling, a disco night, movie night at the hotel or if its relaxation you’re after, maybe even a trip to Caldea Thermal Spa.
By the end of the week the kids were tired out and after freshening up and a enjoying a final evening meal at the hotel we loaded to coach and hit the road for our return journey
Through slight falls and even a quick trip to the medical centre (don’t worry – it was only a sprain), everyone had a great time in Andorra!
My Andorra highlights….
1. A beginner’s paradise… Across these two ski resorts you have 7 green (learner) runs and 14 blue runs (beginner) so there’s plenty to explore whilst developing their skills and mastering the basics
2. Great for advanced skiers too! There are 7 red runs (intermediate) and 4 black runs (advanced) so there’s plenty more to explore once you’ve done the easy bits!
3. Fantastic Facilities – once you’re up the gondola you’ll have everything you need right in front of you.
• a group canteen providing plenty of choice (and food) to refuel and keep you going on the piste
• Ski School information point for those burning last minute questions,
• a sweet shop,
• Medical centre (hopefully no-one needs it!)
• Storage lockers for groups (and individuals) so you could get away with not having to carry everything around with you
4. A world on your doorstep… if organised evening activities aren’t your cup of tea groups have plenty to do in Andorra La Vella. If shopping’s more your thing, try Avenue Carlemany. If you’d prefer to eat away from the hotel there are plenty of restaurant choices; from the usual chain options to local independent restaurants there’s plenty to tickle your fancy.
5. Après Awaits… Sledging, Pizza Evening, Discos, Swimming, Ice skating, Bowling… Andorra has it all!