Pyrenees walking holiday in Andorra

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04 Jul 2020
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08 Aug 2020
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05 Sep 2020
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19 Sep 2020
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Holiday type
Small group holidays
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
Meet a local guide
No matter how experienced your group leader, they can never make up for the knowledge gained from a lifetime in the destination. That’s why many of our trips work with local guides around the world – who invite you into their homeland with pleasure.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

On this tour to the Andorran Pyreness we stay in a locally owned hotel in the village of Soldeu in the north of the country. The hotel is environmentally and socially aware and employs locally, uses local produce for meals, offering both hot and cold buffet meals, and desists from washing towels daily. Our tour leaders live locally in neighbouring Spain and are all thoroughly trained by Explore on the importance of responsible tourism, and pass this on to our groups in the initial tour briefing. A particular focus on this trip is ensuring all picnic lunch litter is collected, so the stunning natural surroundings can be enjoyed by all. We use a combination of local or charter buses for transfers; however, for the most part of course we will be on foot! Our groups are limited to a maximum of 16 customers to reduce the impact on the environment and community, which also means that we can still find local restaurants to accommodate everyone.

In addition to the above, we are continually looking for ways to improve and are proud to be ‘Responsible in everything we do’. Education is key and so all staff, Tour Leaders and partnering suppliers are trained in responsible and sustainable tourism. At our Head Office, we continually strive towards a sustainable and planet-friendly working environment, including having solar panels installed and a company commitment to reducing our plastic usage. As well as this, we have valuable and longstanding partnerships with UK charities Toilet Twinning and Send a Cow, plus many smaller initiatives and projects around the world. We’re members of UK travel industry bodies Tourism Concern and AITO because we believe it’s important to share our knowledge and experience, as well as learn from other operators.

As a company we support Cool Earth. Protecting rainforest is one of the most effective actions to tackle climate breakdown. Cool Earth work with indigenous communities empowering them to conserve their forest; keeping CO2 locked in.

2 Reviews of Pyrenees walking holiday in Andorra

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 24 Jul 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

So difficult to chose! The hikes were the main highlights, because that was what attacted me the most of this trip, a personal challenge for me. The locations were amazing and the routes were always very well planned

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

To trust the organisers and the guide, and to be ready to take on any opportunity provided to do things, try experiences and meet people. Be mindful of your ability with hiking but don't let them stop you as there will be alternatives

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The town was small but I liked that we went to a different place every day. It was not the highest season for tourism so we provided some business.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

An amazing experience. It was all very well organised from the start, which helped to create something great overall. The guide was truly passionate and extremely competent, the group of people had previous experience with the operator and they had helpful feedback. Also, we easily and quickly created a sense of communicty that helped made the trip even more memorale.

Reviewed on 15 Jul 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Beautiful scenery and lovely wildflowers along the paths

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Some of the trekking is hard but Bert our guide gave me alternative paths to follow. Take poles if needed. walking boots and a recycle water bottle.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

used family run hotel, local restaurants and the water was safe to drink from the mountains..

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent, our guide Bert Palmen went out of his way to make sure everyone was happy and he always told us the plan for the following day.

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