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Timanfaya National Park Lanzarote via Playa Blanca

Filed under: Car Hire in Lanzarote,Trips — Tags: — admin @ 12:30 pm March 24, 2012

This is a trip made on 14 March 2012 from Puerto del Carmen to Playa Blanca and then on to Timanfaya National Park in Lanzarote. Car rental was purchased on the leisurecars.com web site for 3 days hire from Puerto del Carmen for only £42. The Hertz rental location was in the Casa Mar area of Puerto del Carmen and the Economy vehicle was a Peugeot 207 with only 16,000 km on the clock. Peugeot 207 Car Hire Lanzarote A deposit of 550 euros was taken off the credit card in lieu of taking excess cover and the car was checked for damage which showed no significant problems and only a few superficial scratches. The statement of vehicle condition was signed which showed a quarter tank of fuel. Always check the fuel gauge before leaving the rental location as in this instance the gauge only showed an eighth of a tank left. This was brought to the attention of Hertz and amended.

Given the popularity of Timanfaya National Park, it is better to arrive in the afternoon if you are driving as most of the organised coach tours arrive in the morning, making Timanfaya very busy during this period. The morning can be spent in Playa Blanca which will complete a great day trip in Lanzarote.

Leaving Puerto del Carmen on the LZ-504, the route to Playa Blanca is straightforward and takes about 30 minutes. Turn left from the LZ-504 onto the main LZ-2 Arrecife to Playa Blanca road via Yaiza. Alternatively a shorter drive is to turn off just before Yaiza onto the LZ-702 down to Playa Blanca, a total of 24 km.

Playa Blanca

Playa Blanca is the main ferry port for crossings to Corralejo on the northern tip of Fuerteventura. There are a couple of ferry companies, Fred Olsen which operates a faster service taking 20 minutes or the Naviera Armas taking 35 minutes and slightly cheaper. Playa Blanca is a fairly small resort with a small sandy beach and a pleasant promenade of mainly restaurants with tables outside overlooking the beach and sea, a definite must for fish and seafood lovers with tapas from 3 to 4 euros per dish. Lunch can be taken in Playa Blanca or at Timanfaya National Park. The main reason for taking lunch in Timanfaya is to try the BBQ meat which is cooked over the volcano using geothermal heat and is absolutely delicious. Otherwise eat in Playa Blanca which will offer a wider choice and be much cheaper.

From Playa Blanca to Timanfaya National Park, take the LZ-2 north to Yaiza and then take the LZ-67 through Timanfaya to the entrance at Islote de Hilario, a total of 23 km. A few kilometres before the entrance are Echadero de Camellos (The Camels’ Resting Place) where camel rides on the volcano can be taken and offer a unique Lanzarote experience.

Timanfaya National ParkOpened in 1970, The Montanas del Fuego (Fire Mountains) or Timanfaya form an area in southwest Lanzarote where volcanic eruptions between 1730 and 1736 have created a unique, almost lunar landscape. Entrance fee is 8 euros and includes the “Route of the Volcanoes” tour, a 14 km coach tour with pre-recorded commentary in various languages. The route takes in the main centre of the eruptions in Timanfaya highlighting the unique geological and geomorphic points on interest. A good tip is to sit on the right hand side of the coach as this offers the more dramatic scenery and stops are made along the route to take photographs from inside the coach. The last tour leaves at 1700 except between 15 July – 15 September which is 1800.

El Diablo Restaurant, Timanfaya

El Diablo restaurant in Timanfaya National Park is open from 1200 – 1530 except between 15 July – 15 September when it is open 1200 – 1645. The restaurant is circular with glass walls providing fantastic views across Timanfaya while eating. Look out for the BBQ section on the menu where the meat is cooked on a large cast iron grill over a hole in the ground. The English section just refers to “Barbecued Meat” with no mention of being cooked by volcanic heat compared to the French “Viandes au grill du Volcan” or the Spanish “Carnes a la barbacoa del volcan”. Prices for steak range from Entrecote at 13 euros to Sirloin at 15.20 euros and T-Bone at 19.70 euros. Half a chicken (which comes thoroughly recommended!) was 8.10 euros and there is also sausages, veal, pork and mixed kebab available.

The drive from Timanfaya National Park back to Puerto del Carmen is the reverse of some of the route already travelled. Take the LZ-67 back to Yaiza and join the LZ-2 towards Arrecife, turning off onto the LZ-504 to Puerto del Carmen.

“Speed Kills” Initiative in Dubai

Filed under: Car Hire in Dubai — Tags: — admin @ 11:07 am November 25, 2011

Following the success of a previous “Speed Kills” campaigns where road deaths have been reduced by 50 percent, the United Arab Emirate of Dubai has launched a second initiative until the end of December 2011.
Sheikh Zayed Road DubaiDubai car hire customers should be aware of the campaign and that radars have been installed by police across Dubai. For full details click here.

Paphos to Nicosia via the Troodos Mountains

Filed under: Car hire in Cyprus,Trips — Tags: — admin @ 3:05 pm October 14, 2011

This is a trip made in October 2011 from Paphos to Nicosia via the Troodos Mountains stopping off in Omodos, Platres, Troodos and Kakopetria before staying the night in Nicosia and crossing the border into the northern Turkish side of the city.

Picked up the Honda HR-V car hire in Paphos at around 0915 and headed eastwards along the motorway A6 towards Limassol (Lemesos as it is sign-posted locally) turning off at Avdimou following signs for Pachna and Omodos. Heading north the road climbs steadily offering views over hills and valleys before arriving in Omodos at 1030. Omodos Cyprus Omodos is a small village on the wine route with a picturesque cobbled square. There are many wine tasting places in the village which also has a number of local embroidery shops. The meandering narrow streets ooze traditional Cypriot character and the village is also home to the Monastery of the Holy Cross, one of the oldest and most historic monasteries in Cyprus.

Driving further north into the foothills of the Troodos Mountains was the small town of Platres. Platres seems to be a place on the move with internet access in most restaurants and cafes and messages from the local Community Council about developments in the town. On the down side these developments need to be paid for and parking in Platres was all pay and display (1 euro for 2 hours). Platres has a leafy Alpine feel to it with the temperature noticeably lower and the air fresher. Views down the valley to the coast at Limassol could only be glimpsed through houses although Platres makes a good stop off for lunch – take your IPad and also catch up on your emails!
View from Mount Olympus Road Further north is the namesake village of the mountain range, Troodos which turned out to be somewhat of a disappointment. A man-made feel with one large hotel, a couple of restaurants, a small shopping area selling toot and an ice-cream van! The views were possibly spectacular but obscured by cloud and the air was full of odd looking flying insects. Troodos is only 4 Km from Mount Olympus which at 1952 metres is the highest point in Cyprus. At the top is a goverment installation and again there was poor visibility for viewing. The best views of the trip were on the way down from the top of Mount Olympus before joining the main road back to Troodos with spectacular views down the coastline to the sea. The Old Kakopetria
Descending the northern slopes of the Troodos Mountains but still at an altitude of 667m is the charming village of Kakopetria with its main square surrounded by restaurants and shops. On the eastern side of the Karkotis river is the old village which has been beautifully maintained through a preservation order issued in the 1970′s. A walk along the narrow cobbled street reveals a historical look at life in a Cyprus village and is well worth the visit.
Taking the B9 road, the drive to Nicosia was a little slow especially after reaching the outskirts of the city. With only a small map of the old walled city and surroundings, it was a case of asking for directions which were excellent. The car was left overnight at D’Avila Car Park on the south side of the old city which was very close to the accommodation at the Centrum Hotel, located just off Ledra Street, a pedestrianised street with the border crossing across the Green Line into the Turkish Occupied Area of the city.
Ledra Street NicosiaA walk down Ledra Street is very similar to Carnaby Street in London; trendy shops, cafes, restaurants and bars sit side by side with ubiquitous eateries like Maccy D and KFC. As you stroll north these peter out to reveal a Police Station with prefab building outside. No need to show your passport crossing from south to north as you then enter UN occupied no man’s land. This 50 metre stretch of Ledra Street is surrounded by derelict buildings and a street runs across east to west with huge 10 metre high steel barriers making viewing either over or either side impossible. Along part of this street before the barrier is a building site style screen with large images and commentary of the UN’s efforts to reconcile the situation. Continuing on Ledra Street was Turkish immigration where you can either have your passport stamped or fill out a piece of paper with Name, Nationality and Passport Number and have that stamped. Stamping the piece of paper seemed the sensible option. The north side of Ledra Street picks up where the south side left off with plenty of bars, restaurants and shops. Prices are in Turkish Lira although Euros are accepted but it is probably better to pay by credit card. The streets in the north of the city were much quieter and as dusk fell, the Call to Prayer could be heard from the impressive Arabahmet Mosque.
If you enjoy a beer then try the Efes Pilsen available on draught in a few bars – a very nice drop and far superior to the Keo on offer in the south.

Algarve Car Hire

Filed under: Cheap Car Hire in Portugal — Tags: — admin @ 8:13 am August 10, 2011


Car hire in the Algarve is very competitive and as such you can find some excellent deals especially if renting a vehicle at Faro Airport. If you are staying in the western Algarve or driving further afield in Portugal the car hire will provide a much cheaper option than taking a taxi or using the airport transfer service from Faro Airport.
When you think you have a great car rental deal it is always important to check what is or is not included. A great headline price can often conceal many added extras especially if buying locally. Pre-bought car hire usually gives the best prices and also time to do those comparisons on inclusions and exclusions.
Driving is on the right in Portugal and please remember to take an up to date road map as all roads in Portugal were re-classified in 2004.

Picking Up a Car at Nice Airport

Filed under: Car hire in France — Tags: — admin @ 7:36 am July 30, 2011

Nice Airport has a newly opened Car Rental Centre where all vehicles are picked up and dropped off from the 5 car hire agencies located at the airport; Avis, Europcar, Hertz, National and Sixt. Having a central centre for car hire in Nice Airport provides easy access with its location in Terminal 2 behind the parking lot P5. There are still car rental counters in the Arrivals Hall at Nice Airport which are open until 2200. In Terminal 1 the counters are located through the door to the right of Gates A1/A2 Information Office and in Terminal 2 use the doors between Gate A2 and A3. After 2200 car hire pick up can only be made from the Car Rental Centre. From Terminal 1 take the free shuttle to Terminal 2 and get off at Gate A3.

See All of Orlando’s Attractions with a Hire Car

Filed under: Car Hire in USA — Tags: , , , — admin @ 11:27 am May 30, 2011

The city of Orlando in Florida is the perfect holiday destination for families. Children will love experiencing all the theme parks Orlando has to offer, and parents will love enjoying the sunshine state’s wonderful weather. In order to experience all of Orlando’s attractions during your visit, you will need car hire. Cheap car hire in Florida will enable you to quickly and conveniently see all these attractions.

•    Walt Disney World Resort
Located in Lake Buena Vista in Florida, Walt Disney World is about a 35 minute drive from Orlando. Consisting of 4 theme parks, 2 water parks, as well as some areas for adults, you will need plenty of time and energy to take it all in! Children will love seeing their favourite Disney stars in the flesh.

•    Sea World
Located 10 minutes’ drive south of downtown Orlando, Sea World offers families the chance to experience the diversity of sea life. While there, you can see some of the world’s most dangerous sharks up close, take a trip through the arctic exhibit and see walruses and polar bears, and even visit Sea World’s most famous resident, Shamu the killer whale.

•    Universal Orlando Resort
Consisting of two theme parks, Universal Orlando Resort is the perfect theme park for adrenaline junkies! Home to some of Orlando’s scariest thrill rides, a visit here is not for the faint hearted! For those who are not fans of scares, there’s still plenty to do. The recently opened World of Harry Potter is great fun for fans of the schoolboy wizard.

If you are looking for the perfect international car hire for your holiday, you should be sure to come to us here at LeisureCars.com.

Places to Visit by Hire Car from Malaga

Filed under: Car hire in Spain — Tags: , , , — admin @ 3:05 pm May 27, 2011

The stunning resort of Malaga is one of the most popular holiday destinations for UK tourists. The heart of the Costa del Sol, every year tourists are attracted to the stunning Mediterranean coast and flawless climate. Although relaxing by the sea is wonderful, Malaga and its surrounding areas have much more to offer. Car hire in Spain can help take you away from the busy tourist areas and see a different side to this part of Spain.

Drive south of Malaga and you will be able to experience the stunning coastal towns of Marbella and Puerto Banus. Home of the Spanish elite, Marbella is a place to see and be seen. In Marbella, you can experience the opulence of all the luxury stores, spend a day being pampered or merely relax on the gorgeous beach, taking in all the glamour that Marbella has to offer.

Puerto Banus is where the Spanish elite keep their luxury yachts moored. The marina is home to some of Spain’s most exclusive restaurants, where you can watch the world go by while enjoying wonderfully fresh seafood. Perfect for couples, a day a Puerto Banus could be spend indulging in some retail therapy, or simply relaxing on the beach or at the marina.

For a relaxing escape for the whole family, nothing can beat a drive to the stunning Guadalhorce lakes. A popular weekend escape for residents of Malaga, it’s the perfect place to avoid the tourist hoards. This natural setting is the perfect place to either enjoy some water sports, or simply while away the hours.

So if you are looking for international car hire, you should be sure to come to us here at LeisureCars.com.

Go Off the Beaten Track with Car Hire in Australia

Filed under: Car Hire in Australia — Tags: , , , — admin @ 9:03 am May 24, 2011

A trip to Australia is one that will never be forgotten. This majestic country offers unbeatable climate, stunning scenery and some of the world’s most hospitable people. By far, the best way to experience this wonderfully unique country is by car. Car hire in Australia will give you the freedom to experience everything that the country has to offer.

Australia is a country of many different sides. They have some of the world’s most cultural and cosmopolitan cities in Sydney and Melbourne, as well as beautifully scenic locations, gorgeous beaches and unique wildlife. With international car hire, you will be able to turn your holiday into an adventure. Your trip will be transformed into a truly unforgettable experience, getting away from the usual tourist traps and experience every side of the country.

There are many road trips you can take to make the most of your Australian experience. Driving between Sydney and Brisbane, you will follow the stunning East Cost, taking in the beautifully lush forests of New South Wales to the sun drenched state of Queensland. You could also take a trip between Melbourne and Adelaide, experiencing the stunningly rugged Victoria coastline with its beautiful rock formations. A drive around Australia would not be complete without a visit to the majestic Ayers Rock. Easily reached from the attractive town of Alice Springs, a visit to this mythical site is an experience that will stay with you for a lifetime. All of this is possible with car hire in Australia.

The Benefits of Hiring a Car in South Africa

The recent football world cup has propelled South Africa to one the fastest growing tourist destinations. From the vibrancy of Cape Town to the stunning vistas of Table Mountain, South Africa is a place that begs to be explored. Car hire is the best way to enjoy a holiday here. Cheap car hire in South Africa will allow visitors to take in this beautiful country at a pace that suits them. There are many benefits to hiring a car in South Africa.

•    Visit Wherever You Choose
South Africa is a country that offers something for everyone. You could take in the shopping and nightlife of the big cities, or take a more sedate trip around the beautiful countryside. Whatever your preference, car hire will enable you to do it on your trip.

•    Save Money
Car hire is more affordable than you might imagine. With your own car, you’ll have no excursion costs, taxi fares or bus tickets to purchase, meaning you could avoid many of the little costs that tend to accumulate on a holiday.

•    Choose The Car That Suits You
Car hire firms will always have a range of cars that you can chose from, meaning that you can choose the vehicle that will perfectly suit what you want to do on your holiday. If you plan on exploring the cities and towns of South Africa, you can choose a small, fuel efficient car, or if you wish to trek some of the country’s game reserves, you can choose a rugged, 4-wheel drive vehicle.

Day Trips to Take on Your Portuguese Holiday

Filed under: Cheap Car Hire in Portugal — Tags: , , , — admin @ 4:58 pm May 18, 2011

Any Portuguese holiday is likely to begin in Lisbon, the city that is home to Portugal’s largest airport. It’s a beautiful, historic city boasting stunning architecture and a rich culture. But Portugal has much more to offer. With car hire in Portugal, you can take a number of day trips to help you experience everything the country has to offer.

•    Porto
Porto, known as Portugal’s second city, offers as much to see as Lisbon. From the stunning cathedral quarter to the quant riverside area, there’s something for everyone. For those who enjoy shopping, you can take in the markets at Bolhão or the more high end shops of the down town area.

•    Cascais and Estoril
The beautiful town of Cascais is said to be the Spanish king’s favourite harbour town. As well as many relaxing sunbathing spots, Cascais has some stunning castle ruins and a fun sea park. In the nearby town of Estoril, you could take in a delicious sea food lunch, take in a round of golf, and even visit the place that is thought to have inspired the bond film Casino Royale, the Casino de Estoril.

•    Carcavelos and Oeiras
Take your car hire a short way down the coast, and you can visit one of the most popular water sports locations in Europe. Carcavelos beach has huge waves and is almost always blessed with sun, making it perfect for surfers. In the nearby town of Oeiras, you can take a walk along the beautiful beach and taste some of the local wine.