Leisure, shopping, hot springs, UNESCO-protected nature... just some of the attractions in the parish of Escaldes-Engordany
The parish of Escaldes-Engordany is the youngest in Andorra. It was founded in 1978, when it separated from Andorra la Vella, although both Comuns (local council districts) share the same urban centre. But despite its youth, it has much to offer visitors, especially if you're interested in nature, shopping and wellness. If you're visiting the city, be sure to note some of the parish's geographical, historical and cultural details. To enjoy it to the full!
The parish of Escaldes-Engordany: facts and figures
If you look at a map of Escaldes Engordany, you'll notice a big green "stain". The biggest in Andorra. This is none other than the Madriu-Perafita-Claror Nature Park, the largest protected area in the Principality, covering over 40,000 hectares. In fact, it covers almost the whole parish, except for its westernmost part. This is why there are no large towns, other than theComúmain town or the nearby Els Vilars. As well as Andorra la Vella, it also shares borders with Encamp, La Massana, Sant Julià de Lòria and Spain.
The Madriu-Perafita-Claror Nature Park is of fundamental importance to the country. Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site cultural landscape, this official protection and centuries of conservation by Andorrans means there is no industry, not even tourism, within its boundaries, except for excursions along its well signposted paths.
Hot springs: the secret of the parish
One of the best-kept secrets of the parish of Escaldes-Engordany are the hot springs that rise hot from the ground, ideal for a whole range of wellness treatments.
This highly valued natural resource has led to the creation of numerous spa centres, bringing international fame to the parish. The main one is Caldea, which was founded in 1994 and has since pioneered the concept of "thermal spa leisure": thermal spring water treatments with a good measure of fun for all ages. Indeed, the Likids centre is a spa area especially for children. It recently added Inúu to its offerings, a wellness centre where you can enjoy the very latest and most innovative treatments.
A major shopping hub for all your needs
The other key feature of Escaldes Engordany is its passion for shopping. Shopping centres and stores of all kinds fill the town's streets, especially in the pedestrian area known as Vivand, with around 200 shops, restaurants and hotels. Clothes, accessories, electronic goods, sports equipment, cosmetics and much more....Even a perfume museum!
If you like shopping, then this parish is definitely for you! But if your interests also lie in culture and history, then the beautiful Romanesque church of Sant Miquel d'Engolasters and the Escaldes-Engordany Arts Centre (CAFE) are well worth a visit.