Andorra, officially the Principality of Andorra (Catalan: Principat d'Andorra), also called the Principality of the Valleys of Andorra (Catalan: Principat de les Valls d'Andorra), is a sovereign landlocked microstate in Southwestern Europe, located in the eastern Pyrenees mountains and bordered by Spain and France. Created under a charter in 988, the present principality was formed in 1278. It is known as a principality as it is a diarchy headed by two Co-Princes – the Catholic Bishop of Urgell in Spain, and the President of France.
Andorra is the sixth-smallest nation in Europe, having an area of 468 km2 (181 sq mi) and a population of approximately 85,000. Andorra is the 16th-smallest country in the world by land and 11th-smallest country by population. Its capital Andorra la Vella is the highest capital city in Europe, at an elevation of 1,023 metres (3,356 feet) above sea level. The official language is Catalan, although Spanish, Portuguese, and French are also commonly spoken.
Links To Peel
Peel mentioned visiting the country in 2001, when he was driving from the UK towards Spain via France and Andorra. In an article published in the Radio Times titled Driving To Sonar (later reprinted in the Olivetti Chronicles, Corgi edition, p88), he described visiting the Andorran town of Les Escalades:
"From Varetz we headed into Andorra in search of a more proletarian experience. We found it in Escalades which is a top destination for those anxious to buy watches, trainers or perfume. In a ten minute walk through town we counted sixty-seven shops selling watches and almost as many selling trainers or perfume. Some sold trainers and watches. Others sold perfume and trainers. The occasional visionary sold trainers, perfume and watches. Actually, I bought some trainers in Andorra myself. You felt you had to."