Taking in the scenery around us is not just a case of enjoying its charm. Some imagination is required to go on a journey through time and understand that what we see now is the product of the passing of time, which has inexorably altered the elements around us, transforming our surroundings. One of the natural wonders in reach of anyone staying in Andorra is its wealth of lakes and ponds with glacial origins. Scattered over the country’s geography, there are more than 70 lakes and pools of varying size. To discover them is to discover the immense beauty of our mountain scenery.
This info sheet offers a selection of routes that will take you to some of the best-known lakes in the Principality. It is only a small selection, as we cannot include them all!
Lake and pond walks
The Llac d’Engolasters is undoubtedly the most accessible lake in Andorra. Located in Escaldes-Engordany, with a surface area of 7 hectares, it is the only great lake in Andorra at an altitude of less than 2,000m. (Swimming is strictly prohibited, as the lake is used for water storage and contains the sluice-gates for the FEDA hydroelectric plant).
The Estanys del Juclà, is one of the must-visit routes to explore iconic natural spaces such as the Incles Valley—immortalised in the poem “Canigó” by Father Cinto Verdaguer - from which the ascent begins up to the first lake which holds the honour of being the biggest lake in the country (21 hectares).
The Estanys de Tristaina make up one of the most emblematic lake sites in the country. From the Coma d’Arcalís, you can take in the untamed mountain surroundings. The walk around the first, middle and upper lakes—named after their positions—at an altitude of over 2,300 m, is one of the best-known and most accessible routes in Andorra.
If you are looking for more of a challenge, head to the Cercle de Pessons. Surrounded by wild, rocky scenery, the group of lakes that constitute this circle are a clear example of the role of ice ages in their configuration.
Climbing up to the Estany de les Truites will give you a first-hand experience of the Comapedrosa Nature Park, where the lake is located. All the exuberance of the local flora and fauna will be within your reach. Next to the lake, you will find the manned shelter of Comapedrosa, which, in the summer, offers accommodation and food.
The route to the Estany de la Nou is rather demanding, but it is worth the effort. It is found in the Madriu-Perafita-Claror Valley, a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site. Unlike most of Andorra’s lakes, its water temperature is not icy, as it feeds from the groundwater that runs beneath the area.
Remember that there are many more routes that will take you to other high mountain lakes, each of which has its own particular appeal.
Click on this link to find out about them - and enjoy!
PLACES YOU WILL SEE
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