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Alicante

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See: Why hire a car in Alicante ? | Why not? | Ratings | Summary | Comments

Generally, we would say that a hire car is a good idea if you are flying into Alicante and then heading for one of the various coastal resorts in the area. Additionally, we would say that it’s more the case here than it is in any other destination in mainland Spain.
Please note that Carornocar.com is currently being revised and updated in preparation for the 2021 tourist season. For additional Alicante car hire advice, please use the comments form below.

cool Why? Visiting Alicante using a hire car

Why do you need a car in Alicante ?


Do you need a car in Alicante? Here are a few reasons why:
  • We would advise getting a rental car in Alicante for all of the obvious reasons you would expect here. Alicante car hire is cheap, the roads are of a good standard, and with a rental car, you will have a huge amount more flexibility.
  • In terms of specific places to visit when you hire a car in Alicante, this is mainly a matter of exploring coastal scenery and beaches in either direction from the city. Also,  a car can also be useful for exploring inland, and particularly for heading to attractive local towns like Teruel. (See also Valencia – you can do some of this by train).
  • There have been some improvements in the tram network around the city of Alicante in recent years, but there’s still nothing stretching out as far as the airport. Most of the more recent holiday resort development has been very much based around serving tourists who either have their own hire cars, or who are more likely to use and taxis and resort shuttles.

foot-in-mouth Why not? Visiting Alicante without a car

Why don't you need a car in Alicante ?


The one place where you really will find that public transport is more than adequate is in the city of Alicante itself.

Alicante city & resorts without a car

  • With the tram work network having expanded massively in recent years, you should have no problem getting around using either this system or the local buses. However, there is a sharp decline in service standards the moment you get outside the city.
  • Historic Alicante is also easy enough to walk around.
  • Various bike hire options are ideal for gentle cycling along the beach.
  • Since you will often be walking in narrower medieval streets, there’s always plenty of shade – but be warned that much of the old town is hilly.
  • Alicante is popular with road cyclists, but there aren’t so many off road trails, and designated cycle paths are limited to a few areas around the waterfront.
  • There are a few urban cycling routes in Alicante.
  • Most of the central area in Alicante is also either pedestrianised, or on streets which are closed off for through traffic.
  • Within major resorts like Benidorm, you will find adequate local bus services, including tourist buses.
  • Most major resorts have a huge range of activities within easy walking distances of the main hotels.
  • Local buses and suburban trains are also more than adequate for reaching some of the nearby coastal towns.

Beyond Alicante without a car

  • To reach Benidorm from the airport, you can take an hourly coach service, bookable online from ALSA – https://www.alsa.com/en/web/bus/home.
  • The same company also offer direct buses from Alicante to Murcia via the airport. In both cases, the airport transfer will take about an hour.
  • The local trains might not take you to anywhere particularly useful. However, you can certainly fly into Alicante and then continue on by express train to other parts of Spain.
  • If you are looking for a fast link to Madrid or Barcelona, or if you want to take a day trip to Valencia (see those pages for further details).
  • Alternatively, you can also travel onwards from Alicante to any of the Balearic Islands by ferry.

Integration

A key factor to consider when trying to get around Alicante without a car is whether or not public transport services are well integrated with each other. Generally, in Alicante, this really isn’t the case, although with a bit of research, you’ll find your way around easily enough.
  • The centre of transport in Alicante is the main station, which will be labelled “Terminal” or “Estacion Intermodal”. This station has been expanded to cater for new fast AVE services to Madrid, taking around 2 1/2 hours.
  • Local mainline train services will all use the Terminal station.
  • However, the train to Benidorm (change there for Denia) is operated as part of the tram system. By all means take it to enjoy the ride, but the bus is much quicker!
  • Trams currently terminate in an underground station at Luceros, which is around 300m walk from the main station. There is a plan to extend this to the main station, but this project is currently on hold due to budget constraints.
  • There’s a bus station at Avenue Loring. Again, this isn’t quite at the railway station, so allow time for a short walk.
  • The old railway station next to the bus station is now an impressive arts space and tourist centre. However, you won’t find any trains here, so don’t fall into this  trap!
  • You’ll see the Alicante-Murcia mainline just behind the car rental lots at the airport. The nearest station is at Torrelano, about 2.5km / 30 minutes walk away. Generally, buses will be quicker for getting from the airport to Murcia, but if you want to take the train, budget for a short taxi ride.

Verdict

Do you need a car in Alicante?
  • Unless you are planning on spending most of your time in the city of Alicante itself, then everything in this region lends itself towards getting a hire car.
  • Because so much of the tourism here is centred on resorts like Benidorm, rather than on the city proper. If you want to do anything other than shuttle to and from the beach, then an Alicante hire car is going to make sense.

yell Ratings: How does Alicante compare?

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Summary

Do you or don't you need a car in Alicante ?

Categories
Africa Tanzania

Zanzibar

Situated just off the coast of East Africa, opposite the Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam, the small island of Zanzibar is sufficiently compact that there isn’t really much point in getting a rental car here.

Unsurprisingly, none of the major European car hire brokers offered us any prices when we searched for Zanzibar car hire.

Categories
Ghana

Accra

Generally,  Accra car hire advice leans towards not doing so. The Ghanaian capital is not a destination where you will find any of the major car hire companies. Therefore, most visitors will just stick to using local shuttle bus and taxi services.

Please note that Carornocar.com is currently being revised and updated in preparation for the 2021 tourist season. For additional Accra car hire advice, please use the comments form below.

Many of the major resorts in Accra are along the coastline to the east of the city centre. Resort transfers aren’t particularly fast or convenient, but the resorts along Teshie Rd are reasonably well connected with Kotoka International Airport. The airport is to the northeast of the city centre, and to the north of the major resorts.

There are a number of excursions into rainforest parks. Other natural features which are well worth seeing are generally done by minibus tour. These will all take you well into the Ghanaian interior.

Public transport in Accra

Following decades of almost non-existent service, the Ghana Railway Development Authority (GRDA) is now overseeing a major investment in track infrastructure. In addition, there is now major technical and financial input from China. It seems like future years will see the restart of inter-city services within Ghana. For the time being, trains are only really useful for suburban services within Accra.

Accra does have an extensive public bus system, including one high profile bus rapid transit route. However, these services are aimed more at local users than at tourists. Furthermore, there is no dedicated airport bus. If you are staying at a hotel within Accra, then local bus services should at least be able to provide useful links to and from the city centre.

cool Why? Visiting Accra using a hire car

Why do you need a car in Accra ?


  • A hire car, or hired car with driver, is always going to allow you to see each destination at your own pace.
  • Wheels will be needed to visit Ghana’s spectacular national parks (see below).
  • Public transport is poor.
  • Rail services in Ghana are currently being redeveloped, but at the moment, they are of little use to tourists.

foot-in-mouth Why not? Visiting Accra without a car

Why don't you need a car in Accra ?


  • Most visitors will take some kind of organised tour, rather than self-drive hire.
  • Roads relatively unsafe, and not well developed beyond a small number of trunk highways.
  • Very limited car hire services available.

Accra car hire verdict

Not really worth looking at trying to hire a car here – few options available.

yell Ratings: How does Accra compare?

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Ghana Holidays and Accra car hire?

Is it worth hiring a car in Accra? Ghana has a total of 21 protected park areas, including no less than 7 national parks. This makes the country ideal for exploring as part of a tour package, and a wide range of options are available, often including flight packages from the UK or elsewhere. The main interest of Carornocar is whether or not there is any reason to hire a car for independent or small group travel within a destination. Based on the relative lack of road infrastructure in Ghana, and the remoteness of the national parks relative to the city of Accra itself, our Accra car hire advice still remains a firm “no”. However, this doesn’t mean we don’t think you should move around outside the city, far from it! Ghana.

Summary

Do you or don't you need a car in Accra ?