Tenerife is only a small island yet there’s plenty to see and do. Renting a car is a great way to independently escape from your resort and discover the attractions of this fascinating volcanic island. Around Playa de Las Americas and Los Cristianos there are some great theme parks which can easily be reached by private transport though most of them do offer free buses from the centre of the resorts.
For an extended outing take the TF-1 motorway east and stop at the beach at El Médano which has hosted the world windsurf championships. Further north, near the village of Candelaria, are the fascinating Pyramids of Guimar. The origin of these ruins has not been explained and one suggestion is that their Mayan style means there was contact between the Canary Islands and the Americas long before Columbus’s epic voyage. The capital city of the island, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, lies near the end of this motorway.
Over on the northwest coast is the charming town of El Sauzal which is well worth a visit if you enjoy your wine (not a great idea if you’re driving though). The popular Puerto de la Cruz is further west and is home to Loro Parque which is one of the best theme parks in Tenerife. The rest of this coastline across to Punta de Teno is a beautiful drive along a rugged coastline.
The west coast is great for discovering by car as there are many rocky coves which are great for snorkelling. Also the winding drive up to the Masca Valley is tremendous beyond the vertical cliffs at Los Gigantes. However, the number one destination for practically everyone who rents a car in tenerife is the Mount Teide National Park. This volcanic landscape attracts over four million annual visitors intent on seeing Spain’s highest peak.
Tenerife Car Hire
Tenerife car rental is big business with local operators in every resort offering vehicles for hire. The price of renting a car in Tenerife varies according to where you hire it from and the time of year. Some of the best deal tend to be available from online brokers rather than local car hire operators.
By all means shop around or even leave it until you arrive in the Canaries, but we’ve found that Zest Car Rentals is an excellent choice for car hire from Tenerife Airport.
If you pre-book your car rental in Tenerife you’ll just need to go to the car hire company on arrival at the Tenerife Sur airport. Here you’ll be asked for your driving licence, passport and a print out of your car rental booking. You’ll then be given your keys and directed to where you can collect the car. It’s generally a good idea to pay a little extra and get fully comprehensive insurance and make sure you’ve nominated a second driver or requested a baby seat in advance if booking on the internet. Also, be sure to check whether the car takes diesel or petrol and whether you need to return it full or empty.
Whether it’s worthwhile renting a car on arrival is a decision you’ll need to make in advance. You can easily get to all the main resorts in Tenerife by bus or taxi and that means you can enjoy a few beers on the flight rather than worrying about drink driving laws. Some people prefer to arrange their Tenerife airport transfers in advance then collect a rental car from their resort for a few days during their holiday. This works out as a very convenient and economical option.