Andorra is one of Europe’s many independent microstates, located in the beautiful Pyrenees between Spain and France. The center of the miniature country is its international capital, Andorra la Vella, and it may just be everything an expat could dream of.
The country’s primary economic vehicle is tourism, known for both for its summer and winter resorts. Its residents also have the highest life expectancy in the world, at an average of a staunch 85 years of age! Moreover, Andorra is widely recognized as a tax haven, and it’s a treasure trove of duty-free shopping.
While the surrounding mountains offer plenty for the summer hiker, they are perhaps best known in the winter for their fabulous ski resorts. The city of Andorra la Vella itself is located at an altitude of 1,409 metres (4,620 ft), and it sits at the confluence of two mountain streams, the Valira del Nord and the Valira del Orient, which join to form the Gran Valira River.
Demographically, the entire nation consists of a small but proud population of around 84,000. Native Catalans make up the largest ethnic group in Andorra, and Catalan is also the country’s principle language, but Spanish & French are just as commonplace, and expats from Spain, Portugal, France, the UK and Italy make up a substantial portion of the population.
The lack of any major airports or railways within Andorra add to its independent, tranquil charm, but at the same time the country’s small size means the real world is never too far away.
Living doesn’t get much more perfect for the expat than in Europe’s micronations. You can enjoy the wealth and protection of the surrounding EU, but the luxury and independence so many expats seek. Although Andorra isn’t a cheap place to live, residents are aplenty with the riches of a long, healthy lifestyle!