In these days of COVID-19 confinement and uncertainty, we want to propose a virtual outing to a very special place in Andorra: Lake Engolasters. We invite you to listen to the murmur of nature by closing your eyes, opening your soul and soaking up in the peace, quiet and tranquillity of the water, the wind and the forest.
With a surface area of seven hectares, Lake Engolasters is located relatively close to the illa Carlemany shopping centre, in the parish of Escaldes-Engordany. Among the seventy lakes and tarns in Andorra, this is the only one that sits at an altitude below two thousand metres.
The lake can be accessed on foot from both Escaldes-Engordany and Encamp. Moreover, a short and easy two-kilometre hiking trail marked in red and white sets out from Encamp in a straight line, with no major changes in elevation. Along this trail, you will see a number of bordes, typical rural constructions of Andorra, along with countless autochthonous flora species.
The lake is a natural resource used as both a natural and an industrial space. The Electricity Museum offers guided tours of the dam, which boasts the country’s largest waterfall. Built in 1934, this infrastructure was essential to the production of electrical energy, until not long ago. The nature area around the lake has also been used for active tourism activities. When the winter ends, the adventure park, which is especially designed for the children, opens its doors.
Near the lake, you will see the Romanesque Church of Sant Miquel d’Engolasters, which dates from the 12th century and still conserves most of its original architectural elements, along with a few subsequent additions. The height of its nave —a rectangular layout with a circular apse—sharply contrasts with the seventeen-metre-tall bell tower.
An inspiring visit, even if just through thought, to see more of this small country nestled amid the mountains, in the heart of the Pyrenees.