Spain Guide


Granada Car Hire

Granada city has a wealth of attractions for the foreign visitor but if you're planning to stay here more than a few days it's worth hiring a car to explore the many treasures of the wider province of Granada and the beautiful region of Andalucia. The Sierra Nevada mountain range and ski resort, the Mediterranean beaches of the Costa Tropical and Costa del Sol and the historic cities of Seville and Cordoba all within easy driving distance.

Drive for 20 minutes south east of the city and you'll be in the foothills of the magnificent Sierra Nevada, home to Europe's most southerly ski resort. From December to April you can ski in the mornings and head for the beaches of the Costa Tropical to sunbathe in the afternoons. The sierra's Mulhacen peak, at 3,481 metres, is the highest in the whole of the Spanish mainland. The area is a magnet for hikers, climbers and nature lovers at all times of the year it's home to more than 100 bird species, including eagles and vultures, and its plant life is one of the richest in Spain.


On the southern slopes of the Sierra Nevada, you'll find the stunningly beautiful region of the Alpujarras where the last rebel Moors took refuge after the fall of Granada. Some of the roads here are hair raising but it's worth the journey because this is one of the most awe inspiring areas in the whole of the Iberian Peninsula. About 100 ancient villages cling impossibly to the mountainsides in this formidable region made famous by former Genesis guitarist Chris Stewart who came here to escape the rat race and chronicled his adventures in his best selling Driving Over Lemons autobiography.

Visit the extraordinary cave houses of Guadix where troglodyte homes, carved out of the soft rock, still provide relief from the searing summer heat for modern day cave dwellers. The neat front doors and little chimneys built into the hillsides are like something out of a Grimm's fairytale a quite extraordinary sight in the 21st century.

The tourist beaches of the Costa Tropical at Motril, Salobreña and Almuñecar are less than an hour's drive south of Granada city. The sub tropical climate here allows the cultivation of a wide variety of exotic fruits and crops including sugar cane, avocadoes, mangoes, papayas and the odd looking chirimoya custard apples.

hen it comes to car hire companies, cheapest doesn't always mean best. These are some of the questions you should be asking before booking a car:

  • Does the company give a commitment on the quality of its cars are they, for example, all under a certain age?
  • Will you have to pay the local IVA tax (Spanish VAT) of 17.5% or is it included in the price?
  • Does the company offer "no quibble" insurance to cover such things as collision damage and theft? Is unlimited third party insurance and basic personal accident damage for the driver and occupants included?
  • Will you have to pay an "excess" charge in the event of an accident?
  • Are any extras such as children's seats and roof racks available and will they be included in the price?