Thursday, May 3, 2012

Andorra, A European Park City, Utah

 One of the adventures that we had during our trip was the little day trip that we took to Andorra. What a memorable day it was. Andorra you might ask.....what is that? Well, it is a little country that sits in between France and Spain. I didn't even know it existed until this trip! It is a little valley town that is surrounded by mountains and to get into it you have to drive up a long zig-zag road on a mountain. France and Spain used to fight over who owned this piece of land, until it finally just became its own country. When we were driving there, it was snowing, but by the end of the day, it was sunny. Weird.

As we were driving around and looking at the scenery, Nate and I both thought that it looked a lot like Park City, Utah. It didn't have that old European look like France or Spain does but it looked more modern and hip. All the buildings looked new and similar to the architecture to Park City. We felt like we stepped out of Europe for a while and into America. There were even people skiing and snowboarding on the mountains that we drove by like in Park City. There isn't really an official language there, but it seems like Spanish was the most common. They also speak French, English and many others there as well. A big melting pot it seemed.

We were starving so the first thing we did there was eat. We just picked a restaurant and didn't even know where to go. Well we picked wrong I guess, because it was the worst meal that we had on our entire trip. It tasted like some young poor college meal. Awful. Plus in Andorra, smoking is allowed in all public places, including restaurants. They did have a cool long narrow looking Coke can though.

We were excited that day because every meal that we ate was in a different country. Breakfast was in France. Lunch was in Andorra. And dinner was in Spain that night! You can't say you do that that often!
 As we were walking around I made a comment to Nate that this country just seems so confused. They don't really know what they are. They don't really have any identity that you can put your finger on or describe to someone. They don't have an official language or culture. They aren't really French, and they aren't really Spanish. They are just there and clueless as to what they are. Kind of interesting.

The best part about Andorra, and the reason why most tourists come is.........
They don't have any taxes! So things are way cheaper there. It is known to be a country that people come to "shop till they drop," and then leave. That is another reason why it reminded me of Park City with all the cheap outlet stores they have there and all the shopping. So I took advantage of this no tax thing and did some shopping while I could.

 I absolutely love the store, Desigual. They have it in London, Spain, France, pretty much everywhere. I was anxious to find out if they had it in Andorra. And they did! See, I love this store and walk through it a lot, but I have never bought anything. It is so expensive. Like a t-shirt is about 80 pounds which is around $130! And even when they have clearance, it is still really expensive. So I was excited when I could go to one in Andorra and at least get somewhat of a discount. I knew this was my only chance really to buy something there. The Andorra Desigual is the cheapest that that store will ever get. So I splurged and got myself a cute purse. There were so many to choose from. I had to get a smaller one to hide it through the tight Easy Jet airline security. (I already was at my maximum baggage limit) I was so excited and I loved it!
We had a lot of fun in Andorra and now we can at least say that we have been there and know what it is all about. It isn't a place that I want to travel to any time soon, but it was fun while it lasted. I think it would be the perfect place to come for a winter weekend to ski, shop and relax with your family.

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