Holidays to Arinsal

Summer holidays in Arinsal provide a peaceful launchpad for explorations into the Pyrenees and the heights of Comapedrosa Nature Park

The mountain village of Arinsal drapes itself along a valley in the north-west of Andorra, not far from the Spanish border. The forested slopes of the Pyrenees close in on either side – a preview of the walking and cycling territory that’s the highlight of a summer holiday in this neck of the woods. Back at base, the restaurants and cafés are as international as their clientele. For a change of scene, hop on a bus to La Massana and its family-friendly adventure park or head to the capital city of Andorra La Vella. 

Walking in Comapedrosa Nature Park: the top of Andorra

Comapedrosa Nature Park lies just north of Arinsal, where you can hike marked paths to high mountain waterfalls, lakes and forests – all watched over by Coma Pedrosa itself which, at almost 3,000m tall, is Andorra’s highest peak. For a walk with a hearty mountain food finale, climb through forests and along a ravine to a stone-clad mountain refuge called – you guessed it – Comapedrosa.

Summer holidays exploring La Massana and the Ordino Valley

Arinsal is the last village up one of the two valleys above La Massana. Just 15 minutes bus ride away from Arinsal you'll find La Massana, a bustling village where the gondola goes up to the treetop ropes courses and playgrounds of a mountain top park. Bike tracks are also up here and range from smooth sidewinding paths to bumpy backcountry trails.

If you prefer boots to bikes, follow the river valley from La Massana to the start of the Camí Ral d’Ordino footpath. It’s an easy 6km trail connecting valley villages, wooden bridges and churches. It also traces part of the Iron Route that follows the history of the forges and mines in this patch of the Pyrenees.

Biking on the agenda?

Whilst Arinsal is a walkers paradise in the summer, some may be interested to hear that there are hundreds of bike-friendly routes and roads around Arinsal but particularly in the nearby town of La Massana, with rentals ranging from road bikes and MTBs to e-bikes that help make long-distance rides achievable for more casual cyclists.

For those interested in sporting events, you may have heard of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup that takes place every summer in the Vallnord bike park above La Massana. It’s impossible not to get swept along with the joy of the spectators, who travel from all over to watch cyclists speed down some seriously hair-raising trails.

Family holidays in Arinsal

Arinsal is a great destination for families with a range of activities on offer as well as a selection of hotels with family-friendly facilities available. Kids will love the Mountain Park in the nearby town of La Massana, you catch the gondola up the mountain and at the top there are numerous games and activities. There are also plenty of walking trails in the area that cater to different abilities so if you're after family friendly walks or a bit more of a challenge then there's plenty to keep you on the trails.

The hotels in Arinsal also have great facilities for kids, the hotel Princesa Parc even has an on site bowling alley (additional charge), great fun for all the family.

Europe’s highest capital: Andorra La Vella

The capital city of Andorra la Vella is a 30-minute bus ride away from Arinsal and a great day-trip to enjoy its lively summer atmosphere. Wander the stone-walled old quarter to see Casa de la Vall, the seat of one of the longest-running parliaments in Europe, and past the handsome St Esteve Church. The riverside park is a lovely walk too. Restaurants, stylish spas, including the Caldea spa which is the largest thermal spa in Southern Europe and the famous tax-free Shopping Mile also offer a break from the trails. Once a month, Mercat de la Vall hosts local craftspeople selling everything from homemade sweets and aromatherapy oils to screen-printed t-shirts and jewellery.

Why book a summer holiday in Arinsal with Inghams?

With over 85 years of outdoor travel experience, our holiday packages to Arinsal include flights, transfers, and accommodation, so you can relax and leave the small details to us. Our experts can help you choose the best holiday for you, and our team in resort can give you the inside scoop on how to spend your time away with us.

At Inghams, we do walking holidays differently. With no fixed itinerary, you have more time in your destination and the freedom to walk as much or as little as you like, discovering some of Andorra's best walking routes and activities at your own pace.

Added value

All holidays include flights from the UK and transfers

24/7 support & tailored advice from our local resort team

Walking in and around Arinsal

On an Inghams walking holiday, you have the freedom to explore the area at your own pace. Make each day a new adventure, with as much or as little walking as you like.

Why we love walking in Arinsal

Arinsal is a hidden gem in the summer. Tucked away in the Pyrenees, it's a peaceful retreat and a paradise for walkers. Trails range in abilities from family-friendly walks to challenging hikes and with a reliable bus service you can easily reach neighbouring towns like La Massana to explore further. The walking routes are also some of the best marked trails we’ve seen in Europe with clear signage and many even offering QR codes that you can scan to find directions translated into numerous languages. With Andorra known for its many forests, mountains, lakes and wild life, we're sure you'll love walking here as much as we do.

Getting around Arinsal

Buses

Arinsal offers a good and reliable bus service to take you to neighbouring towns. The L5 route runs throughout the day and generally departs every 15 minutes, it can take you to La Massana in around 15 minutes or onto the capital city of Andorra La Vella in around 30 minutes, from there you can connect to other bus routes to travel further.

Summer lifts

The summer lift opening dates vary slightly year to year but in La Massana the lift operates during peak season (usually starts from 22nd June) and is normally open everyday (lifts payable locally, lift schedules are weather dependent and subject to change).

Our favourite walks in Arinsal

The walking in Arinsal is so good that every route could be classed as a favourite, but here are just a few routes that we really love:

Walk this way if you want a glimpse of the local area

This gentle walk, known as the Interpretation circuit of the Comapedrosa is a nice introduction to the Comapedrosa park and Arinsal. You'll walk in a circuit and pass traditional constructions, local flora and fauna, rivers, pine forests with the Scots pine and local wildlife.

Those after a challenge will love this walk in the Comapedrosa Nature Park

  • Approx. 4hrs 30mins of walking
  • 585 metres of ascent
  • Challenging ability

This walk, officially known as Cami de Percanela to Les Fonts and Pla de L’Estany, begins in Arinsal and takes you through forests, past rivers and into the Comapedrosa Nature Park. Its a long and challenging walk so those embarking on it need to ensure they have the correct equipment as well as food and drink.

Seeking a view point? Walk this way

  • Approx. 1hr 40mins of walking (one way)
  • 489 metres of ascent
  • Moderate ability

This route, Erts: Cami Del Jou-Roc De La Cauba begins in the charming village of Erts  you’ll head along the forest path until you reach a viewpoint where you’ll see wonderful views of La Massana and nearby villages. You’ll head to the Jou forest which is a tranquil place to stop for a moment and admire the beautiful Scots pines. Please note this is not a circular route and you have to walk back the way you came.

Set your sights on Pal for this walking route

  • Approx. 1hr 30mins of walking (one way)
  • 435 metres of ascent
  • Moderate ability

Officially named Cami del Cardemeller – Font Del Bisbe, this route begins in Pal, this walk is of moderate ability and follows trails through the valley and up to a great clearing where you’ll have views over Pal. Please note this is not a circular route and you have to walk back the way you came.

For every walk you will need: We recommend having suitable walking shoes with good grip, appropriate clothing, sun cream, sun glasses, rain jacket, a warmer layer, rucksack, at least a litre of water, a snack and cash for mountain huts/transport. You may find walking poles useful. See the "useful information & guidelines" tab below for more information.

 

Useful information & guidelines

Recommended equipment

Comfy walking boots, waterproofs, rucksacks, walking poles and a re-usable water bottle are useful for hiking around Arinsal.

Hiking guidelines

The mountains and lakes are a natural paradise, with lots to explore and discover. To help them stay that way, and remain enjoyable and safe places for everyone, we recommend following our little list of do's and don'ts:

  • Plan your route well and don't overestimate your self
  • Check the weather forecast
  • Tell someone where you're planning to walk and what time you're expecting to be back
  • Take all the recommended equipment
  • Make a note of emergency numbers
  • Don't leave the marked trails without a guide
  • Let nature stay wild by not picking flowers (it's illegal in some places) or getting close to/making contact with wild animals
  • Always leave gates as you found them and don't climb over fences
  • Leave no trace

Check out our Responsible Walking insider guide if you want more tips for your summer walking holiday.

Hotels in Arinsal

  • from£679pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Hotel Montane 011

Hotel Montane offers guests a convenient location in the centre of Arinsal, making it the perfect base to get out and explore. 

 

  • from£639pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Hotel Sant Gothard Swimming Pool

The Hotel Sant Gothard is right next to Arinsal centre and offers a large outdoor pool during the peak summer months as well as gardens, delicious food and a small wellness area (payable locally).

  • from£561pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Xalet Besoli aparthotel - bar

The Hotel Xalet Besoli offers comfort, good value and friendly service all within easy reach of the centre of Arinsal. Enjoy summer afternoons on the outdoor terrace and make use of the bar-café.

  • from£591pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Ext 1

For those looking to venture out to the walking trails the Xalet Verdu makes a comfortable base to stay. It offers a great location in Arinsal with easy access to cafes, shops and public transport routes.

  • from£669pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    3.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Exterior Summer River02

Located just outside of Arinsal in Erts the Hotel Palarine is a home away from home, with a sunny garden to enjoy a beverage after a day out and about exploring all that Arinsal has to offer. 

 

 

  • from£896pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    4.5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Vistes Exteriors Piscina 2020

The Hotel Princesa Parc & Spa offers a majestic hotel in the mountains. With plentiful facilities on offer including an extensive spa, outdoor pool and fantastic family facilities. 

 

 

  • from£919pp
  • @accommodation.PropertyRating

    5 Rating

    We rate all of our accommodation based on their facilities, service level, character and customer feedback. Our ratings may vary from the official star rating.

Exterior Hotel Princesa Parc

Diana Parc Hotel offers a luxury hotel in the heart of Arinsal. Relax in the large rooms with mountain views, or spend some time in the outdoor pool. Complete your day with a cocktail and some live music at the Piano Bar. 

Things to do in Arinsal

Relax at the famous Caldea Spa

Spa’s don’t get much better than the Caldea Spa. It’s one of the largest thermal spas in Southern Europe and just a 30-minute bus ride from Arinsal. Its iconic 80 metre high tower is the highest tower in Andorra. Head inside to marvel at the architecture and of course, enjoy the extensive facilities that were built to make use of the local hot springs. Mineral-rich water flows from the earth at 70ºC or you might want to try the ice pools if it's a warm summer day. The different areas and pools are plentiful with hydro massage jets, whirlpools, waterfalls and treatments available to book.

Fun for all the family

Arinsal is a great destination for families that love being out and about in nature, with plenty of walking trails to suit different abilities as well as local attractions to explore. The mountain park in La Massana is great fun with a miniature train, zip lines, bungee jumping, tubing and plenty more, it'll keep the kids entertained for hours.

Walk across the Tibetan Bridge

Don’t look down! The Tibetan Bridge is a architectural masterpiece sitting 158 metres above the Vall del Rui and stretching 603 metres wide. It’s a thrill seekers dream with incredible valley views on either side and a must-see on a summer holiday in Arinsal. The bridge is in Canillo and can only be accessed by the official Canillo bus or from the Roc del Quer viewpoint car park. We recommend booking onto our excursion if you'd like to visit.

Explore Comapedrosa Valley National Park

Right on Arinsal’s doorstep is the Comapedrosa Valley National Park that's just beautiful in the summer. It's home to Andorras highest peak, Pic del Comapedrosa, which sits at 2,942 metres. The area is highly protected with a range of wildlife and nature spots including lakes, waterfalls and forests. There are a number of hiking routes to explore in the summer and three mountain refuges within the park, one of which offers light refreshments.

Shopping haven

If retail therapy is on your agenda then the lower tax rates here will be very welcome. Andorra la Vella has 'The Shopping Mile', which is partially pedestrianised. It begins in Avinguda Meritxell and passes all the way to Vivand. You'll find plenty of shops to browse with clothing, perfumery, sports equipment as well as electronics available to buy. The area also offers cafés and restaurants, so you can take a well-earned break from carrying the shopping bags.

Family activities in Arinsal

A natural playground in the Pyrenees - the peaceful resort of Arinsal is great for families looking for adventure in nature.

Family walks in Arinsal

The hiking paths are really well marked in Arinsal, you’ll find information on the difficulty of trails and accessibility – great for families wanting to carefully plan out their routes. You’re also right on the doorstep of the Comapedrosa National Park where you’ll find forests, lakes and waterfalls – children can keep their eyes peeled for local wildlife such as lizards, deer and marmots (just be sure to keep a safe distance and leave nature undisturbed).

The “Salva la Serenalla” route is also great fun for families. It’s an easy walking route that follows the fictional story of a Serenalla lizard that’s become lost in the woods and needs the children’s help to find and rescue her. Along the route you’ll have clues to find the Serenalla as well as educational facts on the area – the route is around 2 kilometres long and the La Massana tourist office is able to provide more information on this route if needed.

Water babies

The Caldea spa in Andorra la Vella is around 30 minutes by bus from Arinsal and sits within an iconic building – recognisable as the large glass pyramid. Within Caldea there is an area dedicated to children of certain ages called Likids - great for children to splash around in or relax (there are refurbishment works planned during some months in 2024 so ensure you check opening dates and hours before visiting).

Activity parks

Not too far from Arinsal you'll find the Pal Arinsal Mountain park (open during selected months and some activities have age restrictions). It offers a number of activities for children including a mini pedal car circuit, electric train, archery, zip lines, rope parks and more.

Good to know

Hiking trails: 100km

Terrain: Mountain terrain

Best time to go: June, July, August & September. Enjoy cool air at the top of the mountains but head back to resort for the Pyrenees sunshine

Best for: Walkers of all abilities, families, nature

Fly into: Barcelona airport 

Transfer time: approx. 3 hours

24/7 Support and advice: Over the phone from our local resort team

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