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Tenerife is one of the most popular of the Canary Islands. The island's fantastic location off the coast of Africa means year round sunshine, perfect for enjoying the idyllic beaches. Many people choose to organise Tenerife car hire because it saves money on airport transfers and lets you explore beaches that aren't on the tourist path. If you arrange Tenerife airport car hire you will have the freedom of the road as soon as you step off your flight.

Getting to Tenerife

You will have no trouble finding cheap flights to Tenerife because they depart from airports throughout the UK and are offered by leading scheduled and low cost airlines. Tenerife has a good year-round climate but to get the best flight deals and Tenerife hotels aim for times outside the school holidays. When flying to Tenerife you will arrive at either Tenerife Airport South (TFS) or Tenerife Airport North (TFN), so make sure that you book your Tenerife car hire from the right one!

Picking up a car in Tenerife

The majority of visitors to Tenerife will collect their hire car from the airport. Both of the island's airports have plenty of car hire kiosks where you can collect the keys to your car. If you'd rather not navigate Tenerife's roads straight after a long flight then you can always collect a car in your resort. Lots of major operators are also happy to arrange a delivery direct to your door, though you may have to pay more for this

Where to stay in Tenerife

If you are looking for holidays in Tenerife you will be able to choose between big resorts with plenty of leisure activities and smaller, quieter resorts - some of which are just for adults. Tenerife car hire will let you explore outside of your resort so whether you want wild nightlife and the family-friendly water parks or quieter secluded beaches it's all within reach. Las Americas is a popular resort for the nightlife, while San Miguel de Abona is worth trying for a more relaxing break. Granadilla and La Laguna vie for the spot of prettiest town on Tenerife. Vilaflor is set upon a mountain top, and a great spot to get away from it all. You could visit Tenerife for the February festivals that take place across the island, or try November's wine festival for something a little less raucous!

Our top five day trips by car:

1. Pyramids at Guimar

Before you get your hopes up, Tenerife's pyramids aren't quite on the same scale as the ancient ones of Egypt. In fact these ones have been dated to the 19th century. However being more modern doesn't make them any less mysterious. No-one has yet explained the purpose of the pyramids, although theories range from them being simply a pile of rocks and a by-product of farmers clearing the land to more elaborate theories of Freemasonary symbolism, and even that they represent a missing link connecting the ancient pyramid structures of central America and Egypt.

If you want to go and develop your own theories on these six mysterious structures you'll find them in the town of Güímar, which is just off the TF-1 motorway, about 26 kilometres from Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Guimar Pyramids website

Tenerife Mount Teide
2. Lunar Landscapes and Mount Teide

The bizzare volcanic rock formations that line the slopes of Mount Teide create an other worldly landscape - it's an amazing location to just take a stroll through. Gravity defying towers stand out among the grey landscape where the lava has been eroded over the years. If you're up for a hike you can set out to conquer Mount Teide, although most visitors choose to take the cable car. It drops you off at La Rambleta station, 3555 metres above sea level, near the peak of the volcano (the actual summit is closed unless you have a permit). Don't rush the trip at the top, you can wander to a couple of view points and admire the incredible views - on sunny days the other Canary Islands are clearly visible.

The cable car station is located at km 43 on the TF-21 road, running through the Teide National Park

Cable car website

3. Los Gigantes Cliffs

Just as the name implies, these cliffs are pretty big. The pretty big which is 500 metres high in fact. If you fancy seeing these giants in all their glory you can take a boat out to see the cliffs loom overhead or drive out to the Archipenque Mirador viewing point which is on the approach road to the resort of Los Gigantes. The cliffs form a scenic backdrop to the resort, so you could also spend a day on the beach whilst keeping the cliffs in sight. The cliffs protect the town from the trade winds, which probably helps to make the entire west coast the sunniest in Tenerife.

4. Quad Park

When we suggested you hire a car to see more of Tenerife, we weren't really thinking of off roading - but a quad ride through some of Tenerife's rugged terrain certainly is thrilling, so we thought we'd add it in. Head to The Quad Park in Arona to drive the trails and circuits running through 200,000 square metres of natural landscape - it's the only 100% off roading experience in Tenerife. Obviously fully automatic quads, helmets and safety glasses are all provided!

To find Quad Park Tenerife follow signs to Arona from the TF1. The Quad Park is signposted from the village of La Camella.

Tenerife Anaga Mountains
5. Anaga Mountains

Both a car and nerves of steel will help you explore the Anaga Mountains which dominate the northeast portion of Tenerife. However the rewards are plentiful n this relatively undiscovered part of the island. The views of the sheer green mountain slopes are sublime from Barranco de Las Huertas, you can discover tiny hamlets clinging to the sides of ravines, take a hike through a mist-filled drago tree forests and there are even some places where locals live in caves. Go explore!

The TF-12 is the main route through the mountains of Anaga.

General Advice on Hiring a Car

When you purchase car hire you are entering into a contract with your car hire company. Always check their terms and conditions before you buy to make sure you're aware of your responsibilities when you collect your car in Tenerife, and any additional charges.

Here's a few things to watch out for:

  • Almost all car hire companies add a mandatory fee for drivers under the age of 25.
  • Check what level of insurance is included for the hire car in Tenerife. In particular check how much the excess is (the amount you need to pay in the event of any accident) you may want to take out additional insurance.
  • Check what the fuel policy is with your car. Don't forget to fill up the tank before you drop it off if you've agreed to return it full!
  • Find out if there's a maximum daily mileage - especially if you're planning to do a lot of driving in Tenerife!
  • You'll need to pay a deposit (or pre-approve one) to pick up the car. Most car rental companies will only accept credit cards for this.

  • If you'd like more advice on common charges (and what you can do to avoid them) read our complete guide to car hire.