Ordino Arcalís is inaugurating the Tristaina Solar Viewpoint, a panoramic monument of 25 metres in diameter at an altitude of 2,701 metres
The new structure opens to the public on 9 July and offers spectacular views of the Tristaina lakes and the Ordino valley, named as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.
The viewpoint, located on the peak of Peyreguils, is a piece of engineering that works like a sundial.
The work aims to be a tribute to the peak of Arcalís, known as ‘The Solar Mountain’ due to an extraordinary event that occurs every 7 August and which was discovered by Bonaventura Adellach.
From this summer Ordino has a spectacular new attraction that allows you to enjoy the views over its majestic valley, named a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. This is the Tristaina Solar Viewpoint, which has 360° panoramic views and offers the visitor a new and privileged perspective on the entire Tristaina glacial cirque and the three lakes.
The Tristaina Solar Viewpoint will open to the public on 9 July with an open day on which there will be free use of the Tristaina gondola and the Creussans chairlift for getting to know this new attraction. The Viewpoint is located in the basin of Creussans, specifically on the peak of Peyreguils, at an altitude of 2,701 metres, within the Ordino Arcalís area and a few metres from the border with France. Access is mainly done using the two ski lifts. The last section is done on foot, along a properly adapted and prepared path.
The new attraction in Ordino Arcalís was launched on the terrace of the La Coma Restaurant in Ordino Arcalís and was attended by the Minister of Tourism and Telecommunications, Jordi Torres, the consuls of the Ordino District, Josep Àngel Mortés and Eva Choy, the President of Grandvalira Resorts, Joan Viladomat, the Marketing Director of Grandvalira Resorts, David Ledesma, and the co-authors of the project, Sergi Riba and Toni Riberaygua. In addition, the launch included a visit to the Viewpoint with the promoters of the project.
All of them have highlighted the magnitude and importance of the Tristaina Solar Viewpoint project, which was conceived in 2018 from conversations between the President of Grandvalira Resorts, Joan Viladomat, and the engineer Sergi Riba Porras. Their objective was to place a viewpoint on the peak of Creussans to take advantage of a route that uses the cable lifts (Tristaina gondola and Creussans chairlift) and required a part to be done on foot. This route had to have characteristics that would make it accessible to as many people as possible. “Creating a structure is always a challenge, and for it to be a viewpoint, with the least possible impact on the ground, to be integrated into the landscape, and to be spectacular in terms of the sensations of floating and visuals, does not happen many times in life,” Riba and Riberaygua pointed out during the presentation.
From here, a project began to be proposed that, on the one hand, would allow the maximum number of the surrounding mountains to be seen and, on the other hand, would be a sundial that paid tribute to the meaning of the peak of Arcalís as a solar mountain. In fact, the viewpoint becomes a new point from which to enjoy a natural spectacle that occurs every 7 August at 7:37 am when, on the peak of Arcalís, the sun is visible for three minutes through a hole in the rock. An exceptional phenomenon discovered by Bonaventura Adellach during night expeditions to the peak of Arcalís and “a page in the history of the mountains of Andorra and the Pyrenees,” as Viladomat has indicated.
A sundial at an altitude of 2,700 metres
The Tristaina Solar Viewpoint project is the work of the Andorran engineering studio SRP and the architecture studio TREA, by Sergi and Pere Riba and Toni Riberaygua, with the collaboration of the structural consultant Lluís Moya, who was responsible for renowned projects such as the Torre Agbar in Barcelona, among many others.
The viewpoint, an annular metal structure where visitors can walk, is a large sundial with the central gnomon at 27 metres long, and inclined at 42.55°, the exact latitude where the viewpoint is located according to its geographical coordinates. The ring has a diameter of 25 metres and a total weight of 32 tons anchored on the ground with only four points of contact. The circular shape of the viewpoint offers a 360° panoramic view that covers the Tristaina glacial cirque to the west, the entire Ordino Arcalís resort area to the south and east, and the Auzat valleys to the north, with views of emblematic peaks such as the Pica d'Estats.
A great attraction for Ordino and Andorra
The Tristaina Solar Viewpoint is a new attraction in the tourist offer of the parish of Ordino, as well as all of Andorra. “We look forward to the summer with enthusiasm and with the honour that the parish of Ordino is one of the 701 regions, and the only Andorran region, which has been declared a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO,” said the Consul Major of Ordino, Josep Àngel Mortés, who has highlighted that its location, overlooking the Tristaina lakes, is “one of the must-sees in Andorra.” In her turn, the Consul Minor, Eva Choy, stressed that the “Tristaina gondola is one of the attractions of Ordino Arcalís in the summer, and it will be complemented perfectly with the new Solar Viewpoint”.