Monday, March 9, 2015

Andorra: La Massana and Encamp

Some colourful photos in this post! It was good to leave the greyness of France and spend a couple of quiet days in Andorra to fully recover in the fresh air. We got to Andorra La Vella, the capital of Andorra, around 10pm, after my dad very skilfully navigated very windy, icy mountain roads for a couple of stressful hours. We met up with Marc, the man who would show us the house we would stay in. He was friendly as could be and we still talk of him fondly; he led the way to La Massana, a district a few kilometres from the capital. When we arrived, he gave us all a European greeting of hugs and kisses, like we were best friends catching up. There he showed us around and told us we could contact him anytime -- after all, he lived just above us! I still wasn't feeling well and really needed to lie down; my dad explained I had gotten sick in the past couple of days and he was so kind as to offer to take us to the hospital if I needed it. When he left, we fixed all the beds -- my parents in the only room, and all us kids in the living room -- and settled down for the night. It was a modern house, nothing like Gerard's house the night before, and we all slept well. The next morning, we woke up to the most breathtaking view. The sun was up, the frost evaporating, and all the colours so vibrant and fresh. I went out to the tiny balcony off my parents' room and stood there in the crisp air taking it all in; it was refreshing because I was hot. 
We decided to go to a place called Encamp a few kilometres away (yes, everything is a few kilometres away there, because the whole place is so tiny); there we would drive up the mountain and hopefully get some good views and photos. We got so much more than we thought we would. Yahweh's creation never ceases to amaze when one looks for it. We got to an area we could stop for a bit, so we did and took a few photos. We decided we'd just follow the road the whole way and see where it took us. After a short distance, we got to the end of the road. There were chairlifts there, for the ski season, I guess, but no one was there. There were horses, though; a whole herd of the majestic, huge creatures. There was one with a bell around her neck, the most tame of them all, and she came up to us and let us pat her. It was pretty exhilarating. A stallion was sitting when we got there, but when we tried to get closer to him, he stood up and pretty much scared us by that. He wasn't interested in being patted, anyway, so we left him. Soon after, he started getting angry that we were with the mare, so we thought we should probably leave her before he tried to kick us. My brother had managed to pat a foal, but he ran away when anyone else got near him. When we were sufficiently cold (it was 2*C up there), we got in the car and started driving back down the mountain. We stopped at a river, as close as the road got; my brother and I ran out with a bottle to fill it up. There were huge icicles beside the river and my brother's hands became hot from being so cold while filling the bottle. We ran back up the hill to the warm car and kept driving, but stopped often -- to take photos of the valley, of the mountains, of the house firmly built on the rock just like in the song (unfortunately, I didn't get a good photo of it, it really was beautiful). 
In the evening, we got back to the house and cooked dinner; thankfully I was feeling much better. The fresh air and being with those horses must have done it! We were to leave the next morning; we all regretted we hadn't booked our stay there for longer, as it was so nice. But we had booked our place in Barcelona and would be on our way the next day! 
.... which is the next post. :)
Also, a side note: this is my 100th post! 


  1. Those photos are really interesting. In the first photo of that house did you go inside and what was it like?


    1. Thanks, Sarah :)
      That house is where we stayed for the two nights we were there. It was really nice and modern, but because we only got the bottom floor (the man had the big balcony you can see on top) it was very small for us with six people. We knew that when we booked it, but we really wanted to stay there because it looked like such a nice house. It didn't disappoint.

    2. Our house looks a little similar. I will send you through a photo.

  2. Andorra La Vella, what a stunning place.
    I had never heard of that country before our trip, so glad we got see it.
    Beautiful photos and I love the narration. ☺️

  3. Our time in Andorra was very nice. What a beautiful place. it was a real pity that we didn't stay any longer. Marc is one of those people that truly marks ones' memory thus he has a fitting name.
    Stunning pictures with beautiful views.
    The narration gives it a special touch.
    Those horses are truly special.
    May be one day we go back...


thanks for the thoughts!