Spain Guide

 

La Pineda Car Hire

What with the fine, sandy beaches, the Aquopolis water park and Port Aventura theme park on your doorstep you may not have the time or inclination to venture further afield during your holiday in La Pineda. But if you hire a car for some or all of your stay here you'll be able explore the countryside of Tarragona, visit traditional Spanish pueblos and historic sites which are a world apart from the tourist orientated beachfront resorts.

The city of Tarragona is a short drive northeast along the coast and is well worth a visit with its wealth of ancient buildings and monuments including Roman aqueducts, amphitheatres and monasteries.

Barcelona is less than an hour's drive away and is definitely worth a visit if you're into art, culture, museums and sight seeing. With its mind blowing Gaudi architecture, this must rate as one of the most fascinating cities in the world; but like all big cities it suffers from traffic congestion and parking problems so you might prefer to book a day excursion with one of the local travel agents.

Head into the mountains to the north west of Barcelona to visit the breathtaking Benedictine Monastery at Montserrat. The monastery is one of the oldest of its kind in Europe and is home to the famous statue of the Black Madonna, the patron saint of Catalonia. The extraordinary rock formations of these mountains have attracted religious pilgrims for thousands of years.

In the hinterland around the resort you'll find many medieval towns and villages to explore, with castle ruins, ancient walled towns and huge monasteries built in the Middle Ages.

The independent state of Andorra famous for its ski slopes and tax free shopping is close enough for a day trip. The Salvador Dali museum in Figueres, where some of the painter's most important works are housed, is another popular day trip from Pineda. It's about two hours drive northeast of the resort.

Local hotels, travel agents and car hire firms all supply rental cars but if you're holidaying in high season make sure you book in advance to avoid disappointment. You'll be more comfortable with air conditioning if you're travelling in July or August.

These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself before choosing your car hire company:

  • If you've booked the car to be waiting for you on arrival, you'll want to know if the company will arrange for a representative to meet you. There's nothing worse than arriving in the middle of the night to find no car.and no one to complain to! Or will they deliver the car to your hotel with no extra charge?
  • 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 16% 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?

For just popping around the resort and surrounding area, try hiring a scooter or bicycle.

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