Andorra

 

CLIMATE
Andorra has a high mountain climate with Mediterranean influences. Temperatures are low in the winter and mild in the summer, with significant variations depending on altitude and orientation.

Andorra has a high percentage of sunshine and a generally dry climate.
The average annual minimum temperature is -2ºC and the average maximum is 24ºC. The highest rainfall is recorded in the autumn, while winter precipitation is largely snow.


IDENTITY CARD


We invite you to visit the Principality of Andorra, the “biggest” of the small states in Europe and the only one located in the heart of the Pyrenees.

On a stage of 468 km2 you will be the main characters in numerous unforgettable experiences which you can enjoy throughout the whole year. Andorra is nature par excellence, a space of incomparable beauty, ideal for open-air sports activities both in the summer and in the winter. Trekking and skiing are two examples of the activities you might find in the Principality.
Andorra is also a millenary country: Romanesque art, museums and monuments, cultural routes, festivities and celebrations... are just a small sample of its rich historical legacy.
Discover a country in which two pillars of our culture, respect and love of nature and its origins, live together in perfect harmony with comfort, modernity and the latest technologies.
Over 1,500 trades with the products of the best trademarks, an exquisite gastronomy, an extensive quality hotel offer, international cultural and sports events… and much more!

Time Zone (GMT+1).

Electricity The standard electricity supply is 220-volts AC/60 cycles.


POLITICAL REGIME


Parliamentary co-principality. The only country in the world with two heads of state, a special feature resulting from the mediaeval document known as “Pareatges” and the historical evolution of the country.

The co-princes, the bishop of Urgell and the President of the French Republic, are the exclusive Andorran heads of state in person, jointly and indivisibly. At the present time they are his Excellency Mr. Joan Enric Vives i Sicília and his Excellency Mr. Nicolas Sarkozy.
On March 14, 1993, the first written constitution of Andorra was signed and the Principality became a democratic, social state in law.
The General Council (Consell General) exercises the legislative powers and its members, the councillors, are chosen by universal suffrage for four years.


ECONOMY


Trade and tourism (60%) and finance (16%) are the three motors behind the economy and, at the same time, the sectors which generate most jobs.

Agriculture and stockbreeding, the two axes of the traditional economy until the arrival of tourism in the 1960s, now only account for 0.36% of the paid population.


OFFICIAL CURRENCY


Euro, which was the successor of the Spanish peseta and the French franc, which coexisted in the country until the European currency came into force. (Exchange rate on the 6th of December 2010: 1€ = 1.33U$D)


HISTORY


Legend: Legend tells that Charlemagne founded Andorra in 805 in recognition of aid given by its inhabitants against the Saracens.

Tradition: The earliest known document to mention Andorra is the act of consecration of the cathedral of Santa Maria of Urgell in 839, which names the parishes (administrative and territorial divisions) of Andorra as the fief of the Counts of Urgell.

A history of counts, bishops and noblemen: Between the 9th and 10th centuries, the Andorran valleys belonged to the Counts of Urgell, who ceded them to the See of Urgell in 988 in exchange for other possessions in the Cerdanya, although it was not until the 12th century that Andorrans recognised the sovereignty of the See of Urgell in an agreement signed with the bishop Bernat Sanç in 1176. A period of struggle for the sovereignty over the Andorran valleys ensued, particularly with the Counts of Urgell, which caused the bishops to call on the closest nobles for aid and protection. For its cooperation with the bishop, the House of Caboet was given the valleys of Andorra in fief. Through the marriages of subsequent generations, the house of Caboet became linked with the houses of Castellbò, Foix and Béarn. The 13th century was a period of bitter struggle between the Counts of Foix and the See of Urgell to reduce the rights of the bishops over Andorra.

An end to hostilities: Hostilities were brought to an end with the signing of two rulings, known as the Pariatges, by the bishop of Urgell, Pere d’Urg, and the Count of Foix, Roger Bernat III, in the period 1278-88. The Pariatges established the co-sovereignty of the Bishop of Urgell and the Count of Foix over Andorra, thus creating the Principality of Andorra as we know it today.

Andorra is still a co-principality, under the shared rule of the Bishop of Urgell and the President of the French Republic.

Changes and surroundings: During the 15th century the Counts of Foix assumed sovereignty of Navarre. When, in 1589, Henry, King of Navarre and Count of Foix, Viscount of Béarn and Lord of Andorra, ascended to the French throne, his co-rule over Andorra as Count of Foix became fused with the French crown. In 1793, due to the feudal origin of the bonds linking Andorra to France, the French Republicans refused to recognise their relationships with Andorra and to receive tributes from the territory. In 1806, Napoleon restored the feudal tradition and the French claim to co-lordship over the Principality of Andorra.

Continuity: Despite a number of historical and political changes, Andorra is still a co-principality, under the shared rule of the Bishop of Urgell and the President of the French Republic.

Evolution: From feudal lords to constitutional heads of State, from the creation of the Land Council in 1419 as the first ‘parliament’, where parish representatives could meet to discuss the problems of their communities, to the constitutional heads of State of the present day, the Andorrans have never ceased to look forward, modernising and updating their institutions continuously. In the second half of the 19th century, the ‘New Reform’ brought substantial changes to the political and administrative running of Andorra. Suffrage was granted to all heads of household, and the power of the General Council was increased.

The creation of the Executive Council in 1981 was the first step in the most recent and decisive reforms in the Principality of Andorra, which would culminate in widespread public calls for a written Constitution to be drafted. The process ended on the 14th March 1993 with the ratification of the first written Constitution of Andorra, which transformed the Principality into an independent state and redefined the powers attributed to its representative institutions.

  

Hosted by      Organized  by  
Govern Andorra   World tourism Organization