Church of St Coloma, Andorra la Vella

The little church of St Coloma, just outside Andorra la Vella.

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London to Andorra La Vella by train...

A French count and a Spanish bishop disagreed over who should rule a small rural enclave high up in the Pyrenees.  They decided to rule jointly, and the result was the Principality of Andorra, the only country in the world whose official language is Catalan.  Today it's no longer rural - its spectacular scenery is home to more ski resorts and duty-free perfumeries than you can shake a stick at.  But if you look hard enough, the odd bit of historical interest remains...

Andorra has no rail station or airport, but it's easy to get there by Eurostar from London to Paris, Intercités de Nuit overnight train from Paris to l'Hospitalet près l'Andorre (the station closest to Andorra) and then by road through the Pyrenees into Andorra la Vella.  Alternatively, you can travel by train to Toulouse then take a bus from Toulouse station to Andorra la Vella.

COVID-19 update:  See COVID-19 updates & travel information.  Eurostar is running a reduced service.  Beyond Paris, train service is close to normal.

Train times, fares & tickets...

small bullet point  London to Andorra La Vella by train

small bullet point  Andorra to Barcelona

small bullet point  Useful country information

small bullet point  Hotels & accommodation in Andorra

small bullet point  General European train travel information

small bullet point  Luggage   Taking bikes   Taking dogs


large bullet pointUseful country information

Bus operator in Andorra:

There are no trains in Andorra, but buses link it with France & Spain. 

Buses France-Andorra:  www.andorrabus.com.

Buses Toulouse-Andorra:  www.andorrabybus.com

Buses Barcelona-Andorra: www.autocarsnadal.com.

 

To check train times and fares in France and book online: www.raileurope.com or www.thetrainline.com. To check for any disruption affecting trains in France (SNCF website, in French only), www.sncf.com/fr/horaires-info-trafic.  Eurostar times & fares

 

Railpasses:

Beginner's guide to European railpasses    Buy a rail pass online

 

Time zone:

GMT+1 (GMT+2 from last Sunday in March to last Saturday in October).

 

Dialling code:

 

+376

 

Currency:

£1 = approx 1.11 euros  Check current exchange rates

 

Tourist information:

www.andorra.ad  Tripadvisor Andorra page  Hotels & accommodation

 

Page last updated:

25 November 2021. Train times valid 12 Dec 2021 to 10 Dec 2022.

 

large bullet pointLondon to Andorra La Vella

There are no trains in Andorra, the closest railway station is l'Hospitalet près l'Andorre, a little station in France on the scenic local line from Toulouse towards Latour de Carol in the Pyrenees.  An Intercité de Nuit overnight train links Paris with l'Hospitalet every night all year round.  Sadly, the bus from l'Hospitalet to Andorra ceased in 2019, but you can take a taxi, a very scenic ride.  Alternatively, you can get off the night train in Toulouse and take a bus to Andorra from there, this takes longer but avoids the expense of a taxi.  If you'd prefer daytime trains to a sleeper, see option 2, which suggests taking Eurostar to Paris, a daytime TGV high-speed train to Toulouse then a scheduled bus to Andorra.

Option 1:  By overnight train...

London ► Andorra (using a taxi from l'Hospitalet)

London ► Andorra (by bus from Toulouse)

Andorra ► London (using a taxi to l'Hospitalet)

Andorra ► London (by bus to Toulouse)

How much does it cost?

 1.  London to Paris

 by Eurostar:

 From £52 one-way, £78 return 2nd class.

 From £115 one-way, £199 return 1st class.  Child fares 

 

 2. Paris to Toulouse or

 l'Hospitalet:

In a 2nd class

reclining seat:

In a 2nd class

6-berth couchette:

In a 1st class

4-berth couchette:

 One-way fares from:

€20

€35

€65

 

 3. Toulouse or l'Hospitalet 

 to Andorra:

 The bus from Toulouse to Andorra costs €33 each way.

 For taxi cost from L'Hospitalet to Andorra, see the advice above.

 

Buy tickets header

  Buy tickets at Raileurope.com

How to buy tickets

Or buy at www.thetrainline.com

Or buy at www.eurostar.com & en.oui.sncf...

How to buy tickets by phone...

What's the journey like?

1. London to Paris by Eurostar...

Eurostar trains link London & Paris in 2h20, travelling at up to 300 km/h (186 mph).  There are two bar cars, power sockets at all seats and free WiFi.  Standard Premier and Business Premier fares include a light meal with wine (or breakfast, on departures before 11:00).  There's a 30-minute minimum check-in (10-minutes for business premier) as all border formalities are carried out before you board the train.  More information about Eurostar including check-in procedureSt Pancras station guide Gare du Nord station guideHow to cross Paris by metro or taxi.

Eurostar e320   Eurostar e320 first class seats

A Eurostar e320 at St Pancras.  More about Eurostar.

 

1st class:  Standard Premier or Business Premier.

Eurostar e320 2nd class   Eurostar e320 cafe-bar

Standard class seats.  Larger photo.

 

One of two cafe-bars, in cars 8 & 9.  Larger photo.

2. Paris to Toulouse or l'Hospitalet by Intercité de Nuit:  Watch the Intercités de Nuit video

The train has air-conditioned couchette cars and a reclining seats car.  Couchettes are flat padded bunks, each provided with a clean pillow and (on these French overnight trains) a special lightweight sleeping-bag, a welcome change from the traditional sheet and blanket.  2nd class couchettes have 6 bunks per compartment (upper, middle and lower on each side of the compartment), 1st class couchettes have 4 bunks (upper and lower each side).  There are washrooms and toilets at the end of the corridor.

Each couchette passenger gets a small bottle of mineral water, earplugs (if you really feel you need them), and tissues.  There's a security lock on the door which cannot be opened from outside, and staff are on hand if you need them.  Only passengers with tickets and reservations are allowed on board, and there are minimal stops between midnight and 06:00 to ensure a safe and smooth journey through the night.  Men and women share the same compartments in couchettes, as you don't normally fully undress, but on French night trains, women travelling alone can ask for a place in a ladies-only compartment.  The train also has reclining seats, but a couchette allows you to sleep properly and is recommended.

Intercite de nuit overnight train in Paris

Intercité de nuit sleeper train at Paris Gare d'AusterlitzMore information about Intercités de Nuit Watch the video.

InterCite de Nuit couchette   Refurbished French 2nd class 6-berth couchettes   Refurbished French 1st class 4-berth couchettes

Couchette with sleeping-bag & mineral water

 

2nd class 6-berth couchettes...

 

1st class 4-berth couchettes...

The castle at Foix

If you choose to go via l'Hospitalet, you stay on the sleeper train as it climbs into the Pyrenees south of Toulouse.  This is Foix, between Toulouse & l'Hospitalet.  The castle is on the right just south of the station.

Mountains in the Pyrenees

Beyond Foix, the sleeper train climbs higher into the mountains...

Mountain   l'Hospitalet station

...and arrives at l'Hospitalet-pres-l'Andorre station, pictured above right...

3.  Take road transport to Andorra...

If you choose to go via l'Hospitalet, travel to Andorra by taxi.  If you choose to go via Toulouse, Toulouse to Andorra by bus...

Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station   Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station

Toulouse to Andorra bus at bus stand 15.  Photo courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

 

Bus station in Toulouse Matabiau forecourt.  Photo courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

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Option 2:  By daytime trains...

This option runs daily all year round except Christmas Day.  You can travel from London to Andorra in a day if you like.

London ► Andorra

Andorra ► London

How much does it cost?

How to buy tickets...

What's the journey like?

1. London to Paris by Eurostar...

Eurostar trains link London & Paris in 2h20, travelling at up to 300 km/h (186 mph).  There are two bar cars, power sockets at all seats and free WiFi.  Standard Premier and Business Premier fares include a light meal with wine (or breakfast, on departures before 11:00).  There's a 30-minute minimum check-in (10-minutes for business premier) as all border formalities are carried out before you board the train.  More information about Eurostar including check-in procedureSt Pancras station guide Gare du Nord station guideHow to cross Paris by metro or taxi.

Eurostar e320   Eurostar e320 first class seats

A Eurostar e320 at St Pancras.  More about Eurostar.

 

1st class:  Standard Premier or Business Premier.

Eurostar e320 2nd class   Eurostar e320 cafe-bar

Standard class seats.  Larger photo.

 

One of two cafe-bars, in cars 8 & 9.  Larger photo.

2.  Paris to Toulouse by TGV...

TGVs have 1st & 2nd class and a cafe-bar, with power sockets at all seats and free WiFi.

TGVs to the Spanish border at Paris Montparnasse   1st class on a TGV Atlantique

TGVs to Toulouse, waiting to leave Paris Gare Montparnasse...

 

1st class on TGV Atlantique, showing semi-compartments.  Courtesy Rafal Tomasik.

TGV interior by Christian Lacroix, second class   TGV bar car

2nd class seats on the TGV.  Most are unidirectional, some are in bays of 4 like this.  See 360° photo

 

The café-bar car, serving drinks, snacks & microwaved hot dishes.  See a typical menu here...

3.  Toulouse to Andorra by bus...

Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station   Bus station next to Toulouse Matabiau station

Toulouse to Andorra bus at bus stand 15.  Photo courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

 

Bus station in Toulouse Matabiau forecourt.  Photo courtesy of Andrew McIntyre.

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large bullet pointMoving on from Andorra...

Andorra to Barcelona...

 
 

The Petit Train Jaune from Perpignan/Villefranche to Latour de Carol...

There are regular buses between Andorra and Barcelona Sants station taking around 3h15, see www.autocarsnadal.com and buy tickets at www.andorradirectbus.es.  There are also competing Alsa & Eurolines buses which you can book at Omio.com (formerly GoEuro.com).

There are also trains from Latour de Carol to Barcelona, see www.renfe.com (the Barcelona-Latour de Carol route is classed as a Barcelona suburban service, so ignore the main journey planner, leave the site in Spanish mode, and look for the 'Cercanias' link below the main enquiry form on their home page.  Select the Barcelona suburban area).

Andorra to Perpignan:  Le petit train jaune...

If you don't mind paying for a taxi between Andorra and Latour de Carol (there's now no bus service), the scenic narrow gauge petit train jaune runs from Latour de Carol through the Pyrenees once or twice daily in winter, much more frequently in summer, connecting with a standard gauge service at Villefranche at the eastern end of the line into Perpignan.  This makes for a very scenic and interesting alternative route into/out of Andorra.  The petit train jaune is run by the French national train operator SNCF, so train times, fares and online ticketing for the petit train jaune can all be done through www.thetrainline.com.  For info of the Petit Train Jaune, see www.ter.sncf.com/occitanie/loisirs/train-jaune (let me know when they change this yet again!)   For train times between London and Perpignan, see the London to France page.

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large bullet pointEuropean Rail Timetable & maps

Thomas Cook European Timetable -  click to buy onlineTraveller's Railway Map of Europe - buy onlineThe European Rail Timetable (formerly the Thomas Cook European Timetable) has train & ferry times for every country in Europe plus currency & climate information.  It is essential for regular European train travellers and an inspiration for armchair travellers.  Published since 1873, it had just celebrated 140 years of publication when Thomas Cook decided to pull the plug on their entire publishing department, but the dedicated ex-Thomas Cook team set up a private venture and resumed publication of the famous European Rail Timetable in March 2014.  You can buy it online at www.amazon.co.uk (UK addresses) or www.europeanrailtimetable.eu (shipping worldwide).  More information on what the European Rail Timetable contains.

Rail Map Europe is the map I recommend, covering all of Europe from Portugal in the west to Moscow & Istanbul in the east, Finland in the north to Sicily & Athens in the south.  Scenic routes & high-speed lines are highlighted.  See an extract from the map.  Buy online at www.europeanrailtimetable.eu (shipping worldwide) or for £9.67 at www.amazon.co.uk (UK addresses).

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large bullet pointFind hotels in Andorra

Find hotels at Booking.comMy favourite hotel search site: www.booking.com

www.booking.com is my favourite hotel booking site and I generally prefer booking my hotels all in one place here.  You can usually book with free cancellation - this allows you to confirm your accommodation at no risk before train booking opens.  It also means you can hold accommodation while you finalise your itinerary, and alter your plans as they evolve - a feature I use all the time when putting a trip together.  I never book hotels non-refundably.  I have also come to trust their review scores - you won't be disappointed with anything over 8.0.

Tip:  It can pay to compare prices across multiple hotel sites:  HotelsCombined.com is a price comparison site which compares hotel prices on Booking.com, Hotels.com, Expedia, Accor, Agoda and many others.  Though if there's not much in it, I prefer keeping all my bookings together in one place at www.booking.com.

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large bullet pointTravel insurance & VPN...

 

Staysure travel insurance

 

Confused.com logo

Always take out travel insurance...

You should take out travel insurance with at least £1m or preferably £5m medical cover from a reliable insurer.  It should cover trip cancellation and loss of cash & belongings up to a reasonable limit.  These days, check you're covered for covid-19-related issues, and use an insurer whose cover isn't invalidated by well-meant but excessive Foreign Office travel advice against non-essential travel. An annual policy is usually cheapest even for just 2 or 3 trips a year, I use an annual policy myself.  Don't expect travel insurance to bail you out of every missed connection, see the advice on missed connections here.  Here are some suggested insurers, I get a little commission if you buy through these links, feedback always welcome.

UK flagwww.staysure.co.uk offers enhanced Covid-19 protection & covers you even if the FCDO advises against non-essential travel.

UK flag

If you have a pre-existing medical condition or are over 65, see www.JustTravelCover.com - 10% discount with code seat61.

UK flagYou can use www.confused.com to compare prices & policy features across major insurance companies.

 Australian flag New Zealand flag  Irish flag    If you live in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland or the EU, try Columbus Direct.

 US flag If you live in the USA try Travel Guard USA.

 

Curve card

Get a Curve card to save on foreign transaction fees...

Banks often give a poor exchange rate, then charge a currency conversion fee as well.  A Curve MasterCard means no foreign transaction fees and gives you the mid-market exchange rate, at least up to a certain limit, £500 per month as I write this.  The balance goes straight onto one of your existing debit or credit cards.  And you can get a Curve card for free.

How it works:  1. Download the app for iPhone or Android.  2. Enter your details & they'll send you a Curve MasterCard - they send to most European addresses including the UK.  3. Link your existing credit & debit cards to the app.  4. Now use the Curve MasterCard to buy things online or in person or take cash from ATMs, just like a normal MasterCard. Curve does the currency conversion and puts the balance onto whichever of your debit or credit cards you choose.  You can even change your mind about which card it goes onto, within 14 days of the transaction.

I use a Curve Blue card myself - I get a little commission if you sign up to Curve, but I'm recommending it here because I think it's great.  See details, download the app and get a Curve card - they'll give you £5 cashback through that link, too.

 

Express VPN

Get a VPN for safe browsing.  VPNs & why you need one explained...

When you're travelling you often use free WiFi in public places which may not be secure.  A VPN means your connection to the internet is encrypted & always secure, even using unsecured WiFi.  In countries such as China where access to Twitter & Facebook is restricted, a VPN gets around these restrictions.  And lastly, you can select the geographic location of the IP address you browse with, to get around geographic restrictions which some websites apply - for example one booking site charges a booking fee to non-European visitors but none to European visitors, so if you're not located in Europe you can avoid this fee by browsing with a UK IP address using a VPN.  VPNs & why you need one explainedExpressVPN is a best buy and I use it myself - I've signed up as an ExpressVPN affiliate, and if you go with expressvpn.com using the links on this page, you should see a special deal, 3 months free with an annual subscription, and I get a small commission to help support this site.

 


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