Nouvelle traduction : En Andorre, le Parc des Trois Nations, plus grand parc naturel des Pyrénées!
On August 24, 2018, the birth certificate of the largest natural park in the Pyrenees, Three Nations Park, was signed in Andorra. This territory covers more than 400,000 hectares across Andorra, Spain and France. It highlights the cooperation that has been achieved for several years between these three countries and augurs well for the implementation of future action and projects. One thing is certain: if you want to practice hiking in Andorra, you will now evolve in the largest natural park in the Pyrenees!
Andorra, Spain and France : a common brand for 4 natural parks in the Pyrenees
Two main goals clearly displayed
It is now official: the Pyrenees Three Nations Park was officially born at the end of August. Concretely, it brings together within one entity the following four natural parks of Spain, France and Andorra:
- the Alt Pirineu Natural Park (Spain),
- the Pyrenees Ariégeoises Regional Nature Park (France)
- the natural parks of the Sorteny Valley and the Comapedrosa Valley (Andorra).
As the director of the Pyrenees Ariégeoises Regional Natural Park, Matthieu Cruège, emphasizes, the main objective of the creation of the Pyrenees Three Nations Park is to better promote this area as well as its protection, particularly in terms of biodiversity (fauna, flora, etc.) of what is now one of the largest high mountain areas in Europe.
Other specific goals
The creation of the Pyrenees Three Nations Park also intends to help its various actors to improve the joint tourism promotion of the territory thus defined (for example the highlighting of the many hiking trails in Andorra, such as the famous GRP, in Spain and Ariège ), to promote its socio-economic dynamics and to facilitate exchanges in terms of sustainable development and natural heritage.
In order to fulfill these specifications, the advent of the largest Pyrenees natural park provides a legal and political framework for the actions of project leaders. All while taking advantage of existing structures relating to the 4 parks now grouped under the same entity.
Zoom on the Pyrenees Three Nations Park
The Pyrenees Three Nations Park covers exactly 428,700 hectares and 158 municipalities in Catalonia (15), Andorra (2) and France (141).
If, during your stay in the Principality, you embark on some of the most prestigious hikes in the Sorteny or Comapedrosa valleys, you will be able to move into the brand new Pyrenees Three Nations park!
The origins of the Pyrenees Three Nations Park project
The new cross-border space was born of passion of a specialist of the region, Ariégeois Michel Sébastien, unfortunately deceased in 2016. The latter was one of the main initiators and promoters of the Pyrenees Three Nations Park, as André Rouch, President of the Pyrénées Ariégeoises National Park, rightly recalls it.
A new playground for hikers!
Current and future joint actions
Joint actions already exist between the different parties, like the cross-border meetings initiated within the framework of the Interreg Poctefa Green, a project financed by European funds.
Exchanges already fruitful
Regularly, Catalan producers come to Castillon-en-Couserans to explore their passion for cheese, and the Ariège producers also regularly visit Catalonia.
Will the hiking specialists in Andorra follow the same path to give their Catalan counterparts the magnificent beauty of the Principality’s landscapes, and vice versa? This, in any case, is another idea of cooperation, such as those aimed at defining a common image with a view to facilitating tourist reception and economic exchanges within the Pyrenees Three Nations Park.
An application for UNESCO in the line of vision
The leaders of the Pirenees Three Nations Park also post their target of applying to UNESCO by 2020-2021, for classification as a transboundary biosphere reserve. This would be a first for the Pyrenean chain!
An even more valued practice
The Three Nations Park includes the Alt Pirineu Natural Park in Catalonia, the Ariège Pyrenees Regional Nature Park and the Nature Parks of the Sorteny Valley and the Comapedrosa Valley in Andorra.
During their multiple journeys on the Principality’s trails, nature lovers and hiking enthusiasts will have already noticed for a long time the importance of preserving natural spaces by protecting the biodiversity of the area and adapting economic practices and human resource models that respect the environment.
This possible recognition by UNESCO would definitely validate the excellence of the project of the Pyrenees Three Nations Park.