Tag: beach

The 14 Best Things To Do In Cancun With Kids

Cancun has become one of the hottest travel destinations within the last years. It’s the ideal spot for bachelors, party animals, as well as families with kids.

These are 14 of our favorite things to do in Cancun with kids. All of the activities listed above are kid-friendly and ideal for days of family fun!

Fun Things To Do In Cancun’s Hotel Zone

Discover Mayan Ruins- El Rey and El Meco

Visiting Mayan Ruins should be on the itinerary of every traveler visiting Mexico, no matter how old they are. These ancient sites date back thousands of years and are a crucial part of the local culture.

There are two major Mayan archeological sites in Cancun: El Rey and El Meco. Both of them are worth visiting!

El Rey Ruins

While the sites in Tulum and Chichen-Itza are among the most famous in the entire country, the long drive may not be ideal for families with kids. Don’t worry, as the El Rey Mayan ruins are located within Cancun itself!

El Rey ruins are located within the southern part of the Hotel Zone, near the famous Playa Delfines. Admission costs just 50 pesos per person.

El Meco Ruins

El Meco Archeological site is just a few minutes out of Cancun. Like the El Rey Ruins, admission to El Meco costs just 50 pesos per person.

Note: El Meco Archeological Site is temporarily closed.

Beach Day At Playa Delfines

If you need a break from the hustle and bustle of Cancun’s busy Hotel Zone, Playa Delfines is the perfect place to go. This sandy beach is truly spectacular, and it lays just a few miles south of all the resorts. It’s much quieter and more laid-back as opposed to the beaches at the Hotel Zone itself.

This gorgeous public beach stretches for miles, making it the perfect spot to unwind for a few hours. Go for a dip in the crystal-clear waters, or sunbathe for hours on end. Oh, and the soft sand is ideal for building sandcastles, too!

Keep an eye on the horizon. If you’re lucky, you may just spot a dolphin or two.

Go On A Pirate Dinner Cruise

Did you know that your entire family can feel like pirates during a very special themed cruise? Captain Hook offers dinner cruises on an impressive pirate ship. Set sail right from the Hotel Zone, dine on a pirate ship, and enjoy the entertainment.

This unique experience is quite pricey, though. Expect to pay around $US100 per adult. Children tickets are available at discounted rates.

Pirate dinner cruises are available 7 days a week from different operators throughout Cancun.

Hang Out At A Theme Park- Ventura Park

Ventura Park is an adventure-packed theme park ideal for the entire family. From go-karts to waterslides and rollercoasters, this place really has it all.

You can make the most of the park’s waterslides, ziplines, or race go-karts right by the ocean. There’s an indoor state-of-the-art virtual reality arcade, too.

There are lots of attractions here, so it’s best to plan a trip to Ventura Park for the entire day. Tickets start at around US$30 and go up all the way to $70, depending on the attractions you pick.

Check Out The Interactive Aquarium

Not only is a visit to the Interactive Aquarium one of the best things to do in Cancun with kids, but it also doubles as one of the best indoor activities in town. As a result, it’s the perfect attraction to drop by on a rainy day!

The Interactive Aquarium Cancun is conveniently located within the La Isla Shopping Village, right in the middle of the Hotel Zone. Inside, you can admire exotic marine life and learn all about the fascinating underwater world.

The fact that the aquarium is super interactive makes it the perfect spot for families with kids.

Expect to spend at least half an hour to tour the Aquarium. Oh, be sure to drop by the gift shop afterward.

The Cancun Interactive Aquarium is open daily between 9AM and 8PM.

Things To Do In Cancun With Kids

Explore Cenotes

Cenotes are one of the most popular attractions among tourists who visit Mexico. A cenote is a natural sinkhole filled with water. They’re scattered all over the Yucatan Peninsula, and a couple breathtaking ones are within a short drive from Cancun.

Cenote Azul- The Best Cenote Near Cancun

This attraction is a little over an hour out of Cancun. However, it is most certainly well worth the drive!

Cenote Azul is perhaps the most impressive cenote in this part of the Yucatan Peninsula. Guests can swim in the crystal-clear, turquoise waters of two different swimming areas. Thrill-seekers can plunge into the cenote from the cliff diving site, too.

Expect to pay roughly 120 pesos per person for admission.

Extra tip: Consider driving down to Tulum to explore even more spectacular cenotes! And don’t forget to check out the best things to do in Tulum while you’re there.

Hop On A Ferry To Isla Mujeres

Isla Mujeres is a real oasis located a quick 15-minute ferry ride away from Cancun itself. This island is home to some truly spectacular sandy beaches and trendy eateries waiting to be explored. There are a couple of spots ideal for snorkeling, too.

Once you’re on Isla Mujeres, you can rent a golf cart to thoroughly explore all of what the island has got to offer.

You can catch a ferry from the Puerto Juarez pier, located just outside of the heart of Cancun.

Ferries depart every 30 minutes between 5AM and 9PM.

Relax At Parque de Las Palapas

Parque de Las Palapas serves as the booming heart of local life here in Cancun. It’s the perfect spot to grasp some of the local life, as opposed to the tourist-oriented Hotel Zone.

Parque de Las Palapas is more than just your average downtown park, though. There’s plenty of stalls to try out local specialties and purchase hand-made products. You can play a game of soccer, or simply unwind and enjoy the sunset.

There’s always something to do at Parque de Las Palapas, especially on sunny weekend afternoons. You can enjoy live performances and really dive into the local life here. Be sure to drop by!

Day Trip To Xcaret

Xcaret is an adventure park located roughly halfway between Cancun and Tulum, near Playa del Carmen. The drive there will take around an hour each way. At first, you may think that this is yet another Adventure Park. This could not be further from the truth, though.

Unlike most amusement parks in this part of Mexico, Xcaret is an archeological park that celebrates Mexican and Mayan cultures. Guests can choose from tens of different activities, including swimming with dolphins and other marine life, go on a speedboat tour, snorkel, or encounter stingrays.

In the meantime, the adults can unwind at the spa, or go for a romantic wine pairing session at the local wine cellar. The activities are curated for guests of all ages!

Adventure-Packed Day at Selvatica

This is yet another great adventure park located near Cancun. Selvatica is famous for their thrilling Polaris ATV tours through the Mexican wilderness. That’s far from the only activity here, though.

A wide array of attractions make Selvatica Adventure Park one of the best things to do in Cancun with kids by a long shot. Visitors can zipline head-first through the jungle, for example. Believe it or not, it’s not quite as scary as it sounds!

Let’s not forget bungee jumping, ziplining into a cenote, and the famous off-roading tours either. You can check out all of the activities at Selvatica’s official website.

Note that children need to be at least 8 years old to participate in one of the tours at Selvatica. Families with younger kids may want to skip this spot.

Pricing starts at $US99 all the way to $199, depending on the tour you select.

Go On A Road Trip

Road trips are one of the best ways to bond as a family. In addition, a road trip around Mexico is the perfect way to see just how diverse this beautiful country is.

Check out our curated travel guide and plan your perfect road trip around the Yucatan Peninsula. Expect to see ancient Mayan ruins, impressive cliffs, and cute towns along the way.

Best Things To Do In Cancun When It Rains

VR Arcade at Ventura Park

We already wrote about Ventura Park, as we consider it to be one of the best spots to visit in Cancun with kids overall. Their high-tech virtual-reality arcade, however, is another great attraction in its own right.

This part of Ventura Park is fully enclosed, making it the perfect destination for a rainy day in Cancun.

Visit Museo Maya de Cancun

The Mayan Museum of Cancun is the go-to spot to find out more about the fascinating Mayan culture. Unlike the nearby Mayan ruins of El Rey and El Meco, this attraction is fully indoors. That’s why it’s best to save it for a rainy day.

Guests of all ages can discover Mayan culture within Museo Maya de Cancun. There are loads of precious artefacts displayed within the museum, which is already an architectural gem by itself.

Admission will set you back 80 pesos per person.

Shopping Spree At Plaza Las Americas

A shopping mall may not be your first pick when looking for things to do in Cancun. A day at Plaza Las Americas is, however, quite a solid way to spend a rainy day.

Aside from around 200 retail stores, Plaza Las Americas also boasts a food court and a large cinema. Catching a movie followed by a not-so-healthy lunch is indeed a great plan B for a rainy day, just in case.

Plaza Las Americas is open 7 days a week from 10AM to 10PM (8PM on Saturdays).

Bonus- Rent A Car in Cancun

Unsure whether to book your rental car in Mexico? Be sure to check out Rentalmoose. We’re a global car rental broker that serves over 15 000 locations worldwide.

We only offer rental cars from trusted and verified suppliers.

These Are The Best Things To Do In Tulum

Tulum is the ideal year-round destination for tourists from across the world. We’ve hand-picked 13 of our favorite attractions and wonderful things to do in Tulum.

13 Of The Best Things To Do In Tulum

Without further ado, here are our favorite attractions in and around Tulum!

Swim in A Cenote

You simply can’t skip this when in Tulum. Cenotes are natural sinkholes filled with water. They can be found all over the Riviera Maya. Swimming in a cenote is a bucket-list attraction for anyone visiting Mexico.

A cenote is either open, partially open, cave cenote, or underground. Be sure to visit at least one of each kind for the full experience.

Note that all guests are required to shower before entering a cenote. That’s the only way to assure that the water inside remains crystal-clear and free from pollution.

There are so many different cenotes to choose from. We have picked our three favorites that you may want to head to first.

Gran Cenote

Gran Cenote is easily one of the most popular ones in the entire country.

The water is as clear and turquoise as it gets. Going for a swim in this dreamy water, surrounded by the impressive caves, is truly unforgettable. Guests can even dive through the cave, if they dare.

It’s highly recommended to come here early in the morning to beat the crowds. Gran Cenote can get extremely crowded, especially during peak season.

Gran Cenote is 3 minutes away from Tulum.

Cenote Dos Ojos

Cenote Dos Ojos may just be the most spectacular one near Tulum. In fact, we’d go as far as to say that if you only have the time to visit one cenote- it should be Cenote Dos Ojos.

You may be surprised to hear that Cenote Dos Ojos is actually made up of two different cenotes. You can head through the main entrance and explore them both while swimming.

Cenote Dos Ojos is a short half-hour drive from downtown Tulum.

Cenote Car Wash

This cenote may not seem as spectacular as the two above. However, it’s a great place to visit and experience just how different cenotes can be. Once you’re here, you’ll feel as if you’ve traveled to the middle of the jungle.

The open cenote is surrounded by lush mangroves and colorful trees. You can spot plenty of fish, turtles, and even crocodiles!

Thrill-seekers can hop in the water from a wooden platform 5 meters above the surface. This cenote is not as popular as some of the other ones in the area, hence it’s also not as crowded.

Cenote Car Wash is a quick 10-minute drive from Tulum itself.

Try Out Watersports

Any adventure junkie is going to fall in love with Tulum. There are plenty of action-packed attractions to do here, including loads of watersports to try out.

“Tulum Is Better On The Water” according to this local kitesurf rental, and it’s pretty hard to disagree. Mexican Caribbean Kitesurf offers kitesurfing lessons for beginners, experts, and anyone in between.

You can also try out foil surfing, as well as traditional surfing. Kiteboards and stand-up paddleboards can be rented, too. Oh, and you can explore cenotes on a SUP tour. What more could you possibly ask for?

Unwind At A Lavish Beach Club

A day at a beach club isn’t exactly the cheapest thing to do in Tulum. In fact, some of the pricier beach clubs here will ask you to pay around $50 to enter. Luckily, the entrance fee can often be used as credit to spend on food and drinks inside.

Coco Tulum

Coco Tulum is the place to see and be seen at. It’s favored by wealthier tourists who aren’t repelled by the cost. The minimum spend is roughly $25.

Visit Coco Tulum after dusk falls to see the beach club transform into one of the best party spots in town. Order a cocktail, listen to electronic music, and dance till you drop.

Coco Tulum is located in the Hotel Zone, a 15-minute drive south from the heart of Tulum. A car park is available directly by the beach club.

Explore Mayan Ruins In Coba

Mayan ruins are arguably the most significant landmarks in Mexico. Getting a grasp of the ancient civilization is an absolute must, and there are plenty of spots to do it around Tulum. Coba Archeological Zone is one of them.

The lack of tourists is another great part of visiting Coba. Since they’re not as accessible as the ruins in Tulum or Chichen Itza, many travelers decide to skip them. That’s a huge mistake!

Visitors have the chance to climb the ancient pyramid in Coba. Once you’re at the top, you’ll get panoramic views of the surrounding jungle. It’s like a real-life Indiana Jones movie.

The drive from Tulum will take you around 45 minutes one-way. Parking is available on site, expect to pay 50MXN ($2.5).

Dive Into The Tulum Nightlife

Tulum is renowned for its vibrant nightlife, so you definitely don’t want to miss out on it. The best part? You can party 7 days a week, as there’s always something going on!

There are plenty of spots where you can experience Tulum’s nightlife. You can head to Pueblo for a more affordable experience, as opposed to the pricy Hotel Zone. Either way, you’re bound to have fun.

Some of the must-try nightlife spots around Tulum include:

  • Batey Bar (Pueblo)
  • Xibalbar (Pueblo)
  • Kiki (Pueblo)
  • Pasito Tun Tun (Pueblo)
  • Gitano (Hotel Zone)
  • Casa Jaguar (Hotel Zone)
  • I Scream Bar (Hotel Zone)
  • Coco Tulum (Hotel Zone)

Many of the local beach clubs, such as the previously mentioned Coco Tulum, also host parties after dusk falls.

Check Out The Caves At Aktun-Chen Park

by Gary J Wood

Aktun-Chen Park is perhaps one of the most thrilling parks in this part of the country. It’s located just 20 minutes away from Tulum, making it the ideal spot to spend the afternoon.

The cave system has got to be the most impressive highlight of the Aktun-Chen Park. Guests can go for a dip in the underground cenote, explore the cave system on a guided tour, or go for an adventure-filled zipline ride above the wilderness.

Note that this is far from the cheapest thing to do in Tulum. In fact, you can expect to pay upwards of $100 to experience all the attractions in Aktun-Chen.

Drive north along the coast, you’ll reach Aktun-Chen 20 minutes after leaving Tulum.

Look For Jaguars At Punta Laguna Nature Reserve

Visiting this vibrant reserve is an absolute must for anyone who wants to experience Mexico’s exotic wilderness. Book a guided tour of Punta Laguna to learn all there is to know about the local flora and fauna.

The reserve is home to lots of fascinating animals. Bumping into spider and howler monkeys is nearly guaranteed. If you’re lucky, you might just spot a jaguar too. This isn’t a major tourist attraction in the region, or at least not yet. Crowds should not be an issue at Punta Laguna.

Adrenaline junkies will find themselves right at home in Punta Laguna. You can ride the zipline across the lake just like Indiana Jones, or hop in a kayak.

The drive up to Punta Laguna Nature Reserve will take you around an hour one-way.

Visit Tulum Archeological Site

The waterfront Tulum Archeological Site is perhaps the best-known attraction here. Don’t let the crowds discourage you from visiting this spot, as it’s absolutely mindblowing!

What makes Tulum Archeological Site stand out from any other Mayan site in the region is its gorgeous setting- right in front of the turquoise Caribbean Sea.

This Mayan city is made up of over 60 restored temples. The site sits atop a cliff right by the sea. It’s no wonder that this is the most-photographed spot in the region.

After exploring the Archeological Site, you can head down to the small sandy beach. There’s not too much space, so you may want to get here during off-peak hours.

Family Fun At Xel-Ha

If you’re a fan of waterparks, you surely need to drop by Xel-Ha.

Xel-Ha isn’t your average theme park, however. Instead, it’s a fun mix of waterpark attractions mixed with the natural wonderland. In fact, it’s often considered to be one of the most spectacular aquatic parks on the planet. It’s certainly worth visiting, at least for the scenery itself.

Guests can climb the 70-feet (30m) tall lighthouse to admire panoramic views of the area, and then hop on the waterslide to go back down. Xel-Ha Park is packed with fun activities, including ziplines, snorkeling, and natural caves waiting to be explored. Naturally, you’ll also find cenotes and wild jungle trails here.

The park is a 20-minute drive away from Tulum.

Day Trip to Chichen-Itza

This is it, the most famous Mayan pyramid in the country. Chichen-Itza is a bucket-list attraction for travelers across the globe. It may not be in Tulum, though it’s located just a 2-hour drive away. As a result, it makes for a perfect day trip from Tulum!

Tourists are able to climb some of the ancient towers throughout Mexico. However, this is not the case at Chichen-Itza. Climbing the tower is forbidden. You may only admire it from ground level.

As this is the most popular archeological site in Mexico, you can expect it to be rather crowded. Arrive early in the morning to beat at least some of the crowds.

The site is open 7 days a week between 8AM and 4PM. Admission costs around 400 pesos, or $20, per person.

The journey from Tulum to Chichen-Itza and back will take around 4 hours both ways.

Photograph Ven a La Luz At The Hotel Zone

You will probably recognize this unbelievable sculpture from social media. It’s one of the most Instagrammed spots in Tulum, and perhaps all of the Riviera Maya. The 10-meter tall structure has been drawing in crowds ever since its debut in 2018.

As of late 2021, the sculpture can be found at AHAU Tulum. A photo with the wooden art piece will set you back 60 pesos. Expect to wait in a queue, especially on weekends. The site is open between 9AM and 8PM.

AHAU Tulum is a waterfront hotel located within The Hotel Zone.

Swim At One Of The Best Beaches in Tulum

It is no secret that Tulum is home to some of the best beaches in the world. It’s one of the main reasons why so many tourists flock to this part of Mexico every year.

The gorgeous coastline stretches for miles, only bringing one question to mind- what beaches in Tulum are the absolute best?

These are our top picks in Tulum and the surrounding area:

  • Playa Ruinas
  • Playa Paraiso
  • Akumal Beach
  • Secret Beach at Sian Ka’an Biosphere

With that said, you’re bound to have a good time at virtually any beach here. All of them are drop-dead gorgeous!

Playa Ruinas

This is the famous beach that sits right below the Tulum Archeological Site. It’s quite small and often packed with tourists. On the other hand, the scenery is unforgettable. It’s easy to see why so many tourists choose to come specifically to this sandy beach. Come early in the morning to beat the crowds.

Playa Ruinas is open 7 days a week from 10 AM to 6 PM.

Playa Paraiso

This one is an absolute must. Playa Paraiso, rightfully named Paradise Beach, lays just a few minutes south of the Tulum Archeological Site and stretches along the Hotel Zone.

Unlike Playa Ruinas, Playa Paraiso is quite wide and long, hence it can accommodate a lot more people. Hordes of tourists aren’t really an issue, perhaps only during the absolute peak tourist season.

This public beach can be accessed 24/7, free of charge. You can rent chairs, umbrellas and other equipment right on the beach itself.

Akumal Beach

Akumal Beach isn’t exactly in Tulum. In fact, it’s roughly halfway between Tulum and Playa del Carmen, so it’s definitely worth a stop on a drive from Tulum to Cancun.

Amenities and facilities are plentiful at Akumal Beach. You can unwind at one of the waterfront bars and restaurants, or rent a sunbed and sunbathe for hours on end. You can snorkel here, too. If you’re lucky, you may spot turtles and colorful fish.

Expect this beach to get quite crowded, especially on weekends.

The drive from Tulum to Akumal Beach will take you 30 minutes one-way.

Secret Beach at Sian Ka’an Biosphere

The pristine sandy beach at Sian Ka’an Biosphere is ideal for those looking for a more private experience. This secluded beach is in the heart of the Sian Ka’an Nature Reserve. It does not have any facilities.

You’ll need to cycle or hike to reach the secret beach, it cannot be accessed by car. Just finding it is an adventure in itself! Once you’re here, you’ll be rewarded with a serene sandy beach. If you’re lucky, you’ll be the only one there.

Go On A Road Trip

Want to make the absolute most of your time in Mexico? Going on a road trip around the Yucatan Peninsula will allow you to see many different attractions in the region.

We’ve prepared a curated road trip guide around the Yucatan Peninsula. The trip begins in Cancun, then continues south all the way to San Cristobal de Las Casas, before looping back up to Cancun via the west coast.

Check out the full itinerary right here.

Bonus: Renting a car In Tulum

A private car is unarguably the best way of getting around Tulum, especially if you plan to head out of town. Before renting a car in Tulum, be sure to read our guide on Car Rental Insurance in Mexico. It’s better to come prepared!

Don’t forget to book your rental car in Mexico via Rentalmoose. Our platform features over 15 000 locations worldwide, as well as rental cars only from trusted and verified suppliers. Browse through rental cars at your favorite destinations.

Simply click the banner below to get started.

The Best Mexico Road Trip Itinerary

Anyone should visit Mexico at least once in their lifetime. Afterall, this fascinating country truly has it all. Attractions range from postcard-like sandy beaches to Mayan ruins hiding deep in the jungle. Mexico will amaze any kind of traveler no matter if you’re going with your family, a group of friends, or by yourself.

If you’re planning the ultimate Mexico road trip itinerary, you have come to the right place!

Road Trip Overview

total driving distance: 2350km (1460 miles)

Cancun to Tulum- 130 kilometers (80 miles) 

Tulum to Lake Bacalar- 200 kilometers (120 miles) 

Lake Bacalar to Palenque- 650 kilometers (400 miles) 

Palenque to San Cristobal de las Casas- 220 kilometers (140 miles) 

San Cristobal de las Casas to Campeche- 570 kilometers (350 miles)

Campeche to Merida- 270 kilometers (170 miles)

Merida to Valladolid- 160 kilometers (100 miles)

Valladolid to Cancun- 160 kilometers (100 miles)

This curated travel guide will take you on a 2300-kilometer long (1460 miles) loop starting in the paradise resort town of Cancun. For the best experience, we strongly recommend renting a car for this road trip.

Hesitant about renting a car for a road trip? This blog post will change your mind!

These are some of the beautiful spots you will visit during this Mexico road trip:

What is the best way of getting around Mexico?

Unless you’re planning to stick to just one city, the best way of getting around Mexico is by car. Click here to find the best rental car deals for your Mexico road trip.

That way, you’ll get to see scenic drives and see areas that you’d never get to visit otherwise. Not to mention the irreplaceable freedom of altering your itinerary on the go, whenever you please.

Rental Car Insurance in Mexico

Check out this informative blog post to learn all you need to know about rental car insurance in Mexico. It’s not as complicated as it may seem!

Contrary to popular belief, driving around Mexico is safe for tourists. Nonetheless, it’s best to come prepared and read through our rental car tips before the journey.

Book your car via Rentalmoose, a worldwide car rental platform with over 15 000 locations around the globe. Check out our website to compare rental car deals in Mexico.

Cancun- Your Mexico Road Trip Begins Here

Beautiful seaside resort in Cancun, Mexico. Pristine sandy beach, turquoise water and an empty pool. Enjoying the beach is one of the best things to do in Cancun.
Photo by Baumhan

Your Mexican road trip begins in the spectacular coastal city of Cancun! For maximum convenience, we recommend picking up your rental car directly from the Cancun International Airport as you arrive.

Remember to check Rentalmoose for the best deals on rental cars in Mexico.

Cancun is home to some of Mexico’s best beaches, make sure to spend some time in town before setting off on your Mexico road trip.

What to do in Cancun

Cancun is most famous for its pristine sandy beaches, don’t forget to soak in the sun before leaving town. You should definitely visit Playa Delfines, Playa Tortugas, or the Cancun Underwater Museum of Art.

Playa Delfines

The wide, sandy shore seems to stretch endlessly at the Playa Delfines. This quiet beach is favored among locals, and it’s a great escape from some of the town’s busier spots.

Soft sand, turquoise water, free umbrellas, and plenty of amenities, what more could you ask for?

Cancun Playa Tortugas, white sandy beach in Mexico's Cancun. Tall palm tree can be seen in front of the calm turquoise crystal-clear ocean water, clear day in Cancun Mexico.

Playa Tortugas

Playa Tortugas could very well be the best beach in Cancun. Apart from a wide, sandy shore as well as crystal-clear water that’s perfect for swimming, Playa Tortugas offers spectacular restaurants that serve guests practically right on the waterfront.

Don’t miss the wooden pier to enjoy the best views. Adrenaline junkies can bungee-jump from the tower at the pier, too.

Cancun Underwater Museum of Art

The MUSA is a museum unlike any other. Sure, you will find sculptures here. However, that’s as far as MUSA’s similarities to other museums go.

The sculptures found at MUSA are all, as the name may suggest, at the bottom of the ocean. In fact, the only way to see them is to take part in a scuba diving tour or snorkel beneath the surface.

Visiting MUSA is an unforgettable experience.

Cancun to Tulum by Car

Tulum Archeological Site is a must-see on any Mexico road trip in the Yucatan Peninsula. The ruins are set in a picturesque setting, on a seaside cliff. After, visit the sandy beach below.
Tulum Archeological Site

Once you’ve spent enough time in Cancun, it’s time to get in your rental car and drive along the coast down to Tulum! The drive from Cancun to Tulum will take you roughly 2 hours.

What can you see on a drive from Cancun to Tulum?

Before you reach Tulum itself, check out the following hotspots along the way.

Puerto Morelos

Puerto Morelos is a picturesque port town only around half an hour from downtown Cancun. The town is home to even more spectacular, sandy beaches that are worth at least a short visit.

What’s more, the waters off of Puerto Morelos host a great treasure, the best-preserved section of the second largest barrier reef in the world is located right here!

Playa del Carmen

Stormy day, lots of clouds above playa del carmen near cancun in mexico. Cancun to Tulum by car, playa del carmen is one of the best places to see in yucatan peninsula.
Playa del Carmen looks beautiful- even on a stormy day!

Just a stone’s throw away from Puerto Morelos is Playa del Carmen, yet another picturesque coastal town that’s home to spectacular sandy beaches, just look at the photo above!

What’s more, you can take the ferry from Playa del Carmen to the nearby Cozumel island. If you have the extra time, it can make for a great addition to your Mexico road trip!

Adrenaline junkies should definitely drop by the adventure-packed Xcaret park. Some of the attractions inside include swimming in underground rivers, raft tours, visiting a wine cellar, or a children’s waterpark filled with slides and activities.

Akumal

Akumal is yet another coastal resort that you’ll pass on a drive from Cancun to Tulum. Keep your eyes wide open, turtles can often be spotted around here!

What are the best things to do in Tulum

Cenotes

Swimming in cenotes is likely an activity that’s worth marking down on any great Mexico road trip itinerary.

Cenotes are natural water-filled pits that are created after limestone bedrock collapses. They can be found scattered all across the region, and they make for exceptional spots for a swim.

The Cenotes Casa Tortuga can be enjoyed either on your own or during a guided tour. Either way, you will have to pay an admission fee to enter.

Note that a lifejacket and snorkeling equipment is included in your admission fee.

A great alternative is the Gran Cenote, which is perhaps even more breathtaking.

Rentalmoose insider tip: You will be asked to rinse off any makeup products and oils from your skin. Please do so carefully, in order to keep the water in the cenotes clean and crystal-clear.

Taking a boat tour through a river in the jungle, Mexico wilderness near Tulum. Stunning scenery on a cloudy day in the yucatan peninsula.

Mayan Port Ruins

It is no secret that Mexico is home to spectacular archeological sites. You’ve probably heard of the Teotihuacan near Mexico City or the Chichen Itza (which you’ll see later on this road trip). The site in Tulum may not be as monumental, yet it is still most definitely worth visiting when in town.

What makes this archeological site spectacular is its setting, the ruins are right next to the sandy beach. That means you can reward yourself with a swim in the crystal-clear water after touring the Mayan Port.

Open daily between 8AM and 5PM, admission costs 70 pesos per person.

Where to stay in Tulum?

Sophisticated travelers should consider renting a villa at The Strabon. This elegant property features luxurious villas and rooms, as well as an outdoor pool, a great restaurant, and a bar.

If you’re after a cheaper place to stay in Tulum, consider checking in at the LiveTulum. This aparthotel features air-conditioned rooms, a buffet breakfast, and a great location.

Lake Bacalar

Lake Bacalar is a beautiful lagoon in souther Mexico, and a great place to see on a Mexico road trip around the Yucatan peninsula.
Photo by Marc Tran

After a night in Tulum, it’s time to hit the road for your most intense day, driving-wise of course. We recommend setting off early in the morning, as the first milestone of the day is 2 hours away.

Is Lake Bacalar worth visiting

Most certainly! Lake Bacalar is a great under-the-radar destination that you’ll pass on your drive to Calakmul anyway, it’s definitely worth dropping by at least for a short visit.

Fuerte de San Felipe de Bacalar

Head to the center of this small town, park your rental car, and explore the stunning stone fort. Fuerte de San Felipe de Bacalar dates back to 1729. Inside, guests will find a museum full of precious, local artifacts, as well as decorative murals.

The fort also has a moat built around the structure, making for a great photo opportunity.

Open all week except Mondays between 9AM and 7PM.

Afterward, why not head into the town and explore some of the local eateries?

Cenote Azul

Don’t miss the opportunity to swim at the Cenote Azul, you’re on a Mexico road trip after all. After a dip in the cenote, you can enjoy lunch at the restaurant right by the water.

As the next point of interest is a 4-hour drive away, you may want to add an overnight stop here in Lake Bacalar. Luxury seekers should check-in at the lavish Mia Bacalar resort, while a great alternative would be the Hotel Urban Bacalar with an outdoor pool and a budget-friendly price per night.

Calakmul

calakmul archeological site, beautiful mayan ruins are hidden deep inside the jungle. Exploring them is a must on any Mexico road trip itinerary in the yucatan peninsula.

The next stop on your Mexico road trip is the spectacular archeological site of Calakmul.

The Mayan ruins of Calakmul are set deep inside the jungle. Not only does the remote location make exploring the ruins an unforgettable experience, it also lowers the amount of tourists!

Is Calakmul Worth Visiting

Yes! As getting to Calakmul requires a lengthy hike, many tourists decide to skip these ruins. What’s more, guided tours aren’t too frequent here, Calakmul is a real gem hidden in the jungle.

Expect to walk around 1.5 miles (2.4km) to get to the Calakmul ruins.

As visiting Calakmul will likely be an all-day adventure, it’s best to set off from your hotel early in the morning for the next stop on your Mexico road trip.

Admission costs 80 pesos ($4) per person.

Palenque

palenque archeological site. Large mayan pyramid is a must see in this part of mexico.
Photo by Dezalb

It’s time to leave behind the Yucatan peninsula (for now!) and head over to Palenque. As the town is almost 6 hours away from Calakmul, you may want to add an overnight stop somewhere along the way. You can spend the night at the 2-star Tutul-Ha in Escarcega, no detour required.

Unlike the Calakmul ruins, the Palanque Archeological Site is very easily accessible.

The ancient city of Palenque, together with Calakmul and Tikal, formed the three most significant cities of the Classic Maya period. The city was at its peak between 500 and 700 AD.

Due to its historical significance, the remains of the city are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Admission to the Palenque archeological site costs 80 pesos ($4) per person.

Open daily between 10 AM and 3 PM.

Where can you stay in Palenque?

Luxury seekers should spend the night at the 5-star Piedra de Agua Boutique Hotel. The property features a secluded jungle feel, spacious rooms and suites, an outdoor pool, and great staff.

Looking for a more budget-friendly stay? Spend the night at the affordable Axkan Palenque. The hotel features modern rooms, an outdoor pool, and a restaurant.

San Cristobal de las Casas

Agua Azul waterfalls in Chiapas, Mexico. Great sight to see on a mexico road trip.
Agua Azul Waterfalls by Nathan Pickford

The journey from Palenque to San Cristobal de las Casas will take you 5 hours in total. However, do consider adding stops at these attractions along the way:

Misol-Ha Waterfall

You can drop by the spectacular Misol-Ha Waterfalls on your way to San Cristobal.

Some of the activities here include tours to the viewing deck where you can get the best view of the area, touring the grotto or visiting the tilapia (fish) farm.

Afterward, you can grab freshly-prepared fish for lunch at the Misol-Ha restaurant.

Movie fanatics might recognize this waterfall. Misol-Ha was a filming location for the Predator movie.

water flowing down at the misol-ha waterfalls in chiapas mexico, near palenque archeological site.
Photo by Angelika Fuss

Agua Azul Waterfalls

The Agua Azul Waterfalls simply cannot be skipped when visiting Chiapas. The picturesque waterfalls are famous for the blue-colored water, hence the name which translates to Blue Water.

Admire the picturesque waterfalls or the washed-up banks of the river shaped by mother nature herself. The scenery here is an absolute paradise for photographers!

Note that the color of the water is the best during the dry season between November and May.

What to do in San Cristobal de las Casas

Sumidero Canyon

Don’t miss the Sumidero Canyon, a monumental canyon around 90 minutes east of San Cristobal. The grand scenery is best observed from the surface of the water, hop on a guided boat tour and take in the views!

The body of water is surrounded by limerock walls that are 900 meters tall! These unbeatable views are perfect for photography.

Sumidero Canyon seen from the river on a cloudy day in Chiapas, Mexico. Sumidero Canyon is one of the best attractions to see near San Cristobal de Las Casas
Photo by Gretta Bartoli

Guadalupe Church

The Guadalupe Church is perhaps the most photographed landmark in town. Once you get here, you’ll likely find yourself taking lots of pictures as well!

This picturesque church is set atop a hill, providing a great overlook of the city after you climb up the stairs.

Later, step inside the church and admire the decorative interior. The best time to visit the Guadalupe Church is undoubtedly on Guadalupe Day (December 12th of every year).

La Maldita Restaurante

After spending a day in town, unwind at the La Maldita Restaurante. Enjoy dinner at the rooftop terrace, whilst watching the sunset.

La Maldita also offers budget-friendly accommodation where you can spend the night.

Alternatively, you can spend the night at Casa Santa Lucia. This traditional hotel offers stylish, classic rooms with free wi-fi set in a building from the 1700s. Add in the great location by the heart of town, and you have one of the best stays in San Cristobal de las Casas.

Campeche

surfer strolling down a sandy beach at sunset, orange sky and calm waves on the ocean. Beautiful evening in Campeche, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico.
CamboriuVisual

After you’ve spent time at San Cristobal de las Casas, drive back into the Yucatan Peninsula. After a lengthy 10-hour drive, you will arrive in the scenic city of Campeche!

What can you do in Campeche

Don’t miss these spots on your next visit to Campeche.

  • Fuerte de san Miguel
  • Malecon
  • Restaurant El Langostino

Fuerte de San Miguel

At first, this fort was used during local conflicts throughout the 19th century. Fuerte de San Miguel is a great example of military architecture in Campeche.

Today, however, the fortification is home to Mayan relicts found in nearby archeological sites, including the ones found in Calakmul. The precious items are stored in 10 rooms within the old fort.

The museum can be accessed for just 55 pesos ($2.7) per person.

Open Tuesday to Saturday between 9 AM and 3 PM.

Malecón

After a day of driving, stretch your legs as you stroll down the Malecón waterfront promenade. The path is favored among both tourists and locals looking to get exercise or to enjoy a peaceful stroll.

The path stretches for 7 kilometers (4.4 miles) and is a great spot for a jog, or a bike ride.

At the northern tip of the Malecón, you can reward yourself with fresh seafood for dinner. Opposite of the car park, you will find a row of cozy restaurants that serve some of the best food in town.

Don’t know which eatery to pick? You can’t go wrong with Restaurant El Langostino, of the favorites in Campeche!

What are the best hotels in Campeche?

Luxury seekers should most certainly check out the Hacienda Puerta Campeche, a lavish 5-star property right in the heart of the city. The hotel is set in a restored 17th-century Hacienda and features upscale rooms and suites, great decor, two swimming pools, and a spa.

Looking for a hotel that won’t break the bank? Spend the night at the Hotel Plaza Campeche. This property features well-equipped rooms, an outdoor pool, and a great location near the heart of Campeche.

Mérida

uxmal archeological site, mayan structures seen emerging from green  jungle rainforest. Storm and clouds in the distance. Must-see Mayan site on a mexico road trip
Uxmal photographed by Darvin Santos

On your way to Mérida, don’t miss the breathtaking Uxmal Archeological Site. It’s a must on any road trip in this part of Mexico.

Uxmal Archeological Site

The Uxmal Archeological Site could very well be the best Mayan site in all of the Yucatan Peninsula. For this reason, we believe it’s crucial to include it in your Mexico road trip itinerary.

Visitors can admire the famous pyramids, or pay attention to the details such as the decorative facades.

In order to get the most out of your visit here, consider hiring a guide to show you around. A licensed guide will cost you around 700 pesos ($35).

The site is open all week from 8AM to 5PM, though the entrance is closed from 4PM onwards.

Admission costs 418 pesos ($17) per person.

Progreso

If you’re looking to spend some time at a sandy beach, drive up to the coastal town of Progreso.

The wide, sandy shore stretches for miles and makes for a great spot for sunbathing or swimming in the ocean.

What’s more, Progreso is full of affordable, waterfront hotels where you can unwind for a day or two. Alternatively, you can hit one of the town’s beach clubs, too.

Izamal

beautiful yellow church and courtyard with blue and white flags over green yard in the town of izamal. A must-see town on a mexico road trip.

Izamal is a scenic town, largely undiscovered by tourists, a little over an hour east of Merida.

In fact, we suggest stopping here on the way to Chichen Itza to take a few pictures of the bright yellow-colored buildings, stroll down and take in the atmosphere.

Nevertheless, the scenic architecture and an authentic vibe make Izamal a great addition to your Mexico road trip itinerary.

Valladolid

beautiful picture of chichen itza mayan pyramid during sunset, on a sunny day in Mexico. Chichen Itza is an absolute must see when visiting Mexico.
Chichen Itza by José Andrés Pacheco Cortés

Depart Mérida and begin the final leg of your journey before returning back to sunny Cancun. On your way to Valladolid, be sure to drop by the Chichen-Itza Archeological Site. You cannot miss it on your road trip!

Chichen-Itza Archeological Zone

The ancient city of Chichen-Itza is definitely the most famous archeological site in this part of Mexico. While the site is, without a doubt, breathtaking, keep in mind that it is usually packed with tourists.

Chichen-Itza was the capital of the region back between 987 and 1200 AD, the same period saw the peak times of the gigantic city.

The ancient city is dominated by the El Castillo Temple pictured above. Unlike some of the other sites in the Yucatan, guests are not permitted to climb the pyramid.

The site is open all week from 8 AM to 4 PM.

Admission costs 417 pesos ($20.7) for tourists.

Swimming in Cenotes

The are around Valladolid is home to some more colorful cenotes where you can go for a dip in the crystal-clear waters.

Cenote Samaal is one of the best cenotes in Valladolid. After paying an admission fee of 150 pesos ($7.5), you can swim in the crystal-clear water, while accompanied by the soothing sound of the waterfall. Adrenaline junkies can drop down into the water from the jumping area.

Cenote Samula cannot be missed on a road trip around the Yucatan Peninsula. Nearly all of this cenote is enclosed in a cave, resulting in otherworldly scenery as you swim across the water. In fact, it looks so amazing it is hard to believe that it’s not man-made!

Rentalmoose tip: If you only have time to visit one cenote in Valladolid, see Cenote Samula.

Cenote Samaal, large cenotes are sinkholes in mexico taht are popular for swimming. Swimming in cenotes is an unforgettable experience.
Cenote Samaal by Dolanh/Flickr

Zona Arqueológica de Ek Balam

Ek Balam is another Mayan archeological site that’s worth visiting when in the Yucatan Peninsula, it’s located around 25 kilometers outside of Valladolid.

The site features well-preserved structures in a beautiful, jungle setting. It may not be as spectacular as the Chichen-Itza, but it makes a great addition to the itinerary.

Ek Balam is easily accessible by car. The site is open daily between 8 AM and 5 PM, though the ticketing booth closes an hour earlier.

Admission costs 338 pesos ($17) for international tourists.

Rio Lagartos

Before returning to Cancun, make sure you stop by the Parque Natural Ria Lagartos. In this park, you’ll be able to spot thousands of flamingos in their natural habitat.

What’s more, you can take a boat tour around the area to see the spots that are otherwise inaccessible.

Don’t forget to see the beautiful pink lake, which is another highlight in the park!

Don’t forget to use Rentalmoose to find the best rental car deal for this road trip!

Post your pictures from this Mexico road trip online using #Rentalmoose! Our favorite ones will be featured in our travel guides.

Get your car from Rentalmoose, we plant a tree for every booking made with our platform.

The 10 Best Things To Do in Cabo San Lucas

Cabo San Lucas is the most popular getaway in Baja California. Find out the best things to do in and around Cabo with our curated travel guide.

No matter if you’re on your way to Cabo San Lucas right now or you’re planning a trip for next summer, you’ll want to know what the best things to do in Cabo are.

  1. Visit Land’s End
  2. Unwind At The Best Beaches In Cabo
  3. Drive To San Jose del Cabo
  4. Dive At Cabo Pulmo Marine Park
  5. Whale-Watching Tours
  6. Go On A Day Trip To La Paz
  7. See Todos Santos
  8. Play Golf
  9. Explore Santiago
  10. Visit El Triunfo

Year by year, Cabo San Lucas continues to amaze international and domestic tourists as one of the best getaways in Mexico. After all, Baja California is home to exceptional beaches, spectacular landscapes, tasty cuisine, and quirky towns.

Bonus: Rent a Car In Mexico

Unless you’re planning to stick to just one city, the best way of getting around Mexico is by car.

Check out these blog posts to make the best of your next trip to Mexico.

These Are The 10 Best Things To Do In Cabo

Without further ado, let’s jump into each one of them!

Visit Land’s End

Spectacular rock formations at Land's End, which is one of the best things to do in Cabo San Lucas, Baja California, Mexico.
Photo by Liezelzpineda

A visit to Land’s End is unarguably one of the best things to do in Cabo. The rock formations are perhaps the most famous landmark here, so you simply have to see them.

How can you get to Land’s End?

The only way to reach the picturesque Land’s End is by either water taxi, boat, or kayak. You can catch a water taxi from Cabo’s Medano Beach.

Rentalmoose insider tip: For the most unforgettable experience, consider hiring a glass-bottom boat!

The boat trip around the scenic rock formations is an absolute must-do when in Cabo.

Don’t forget to snap a picture of the world-famous El Arco.

Playa Del Amor

After a visit to Land’s End, see both Playa Del Amor and Playa de Los Amantes.

These two beaches are best accessed by water taxis. You could try walking across at low tide (from Divorce Beach) though it is not particularly safe. An inexpensive water taxi from Medano Beach is your best bet!

Keep in mind that the sandy beaches at Land’s End have no facilities. It’s best to bring your own snacks and water if you’re planning to spend time here. The crystal-clear water and spectacular scenery will make it worthwhile.

Spend a Day At One Of Cabo’s Best Beaches

Scenic beach resort in Cabo. Chilling at a sandy beach is one of the best things to do in Cabo San Lucas.
Photo by Robbert van Bloemendaal

In case you didn’t know, Cabo San Lucas is home to some of the best beaches in North America.

These are the best beaches in Cabo

If you’re looking for the best beaches in Cabo, be sure to check out the following spots:

Santa Maria Beach

Are you a snorkeling fan? If so, don’t skip Santa Maria Beach.

This pristine, sandy beach is absolute heaven for snorkelers, as Santa Maria Bay is filled with tropical fish. The crystal-clear waters make the waters here perfect to explore.

As the beach is around 15 minutes outside of Cabo itself, it’s less crowded than some beaches in town.

The best way to reach Santa Maria Beach is by car.

There’s a free car park, public restrooms, and showers available for beachgoers.

Playa El Chileno

Right behind Santa Maria Beach lays another one of the best beaches in Cabo, Playa el Chileno.

This sandy beach, much like Santa Maria Beach, is ideal for both snorkeling and swimming.

You can rent an umbrella at Playa El Chileno for around 200 pesos ($10) per day.

There are public restrooms and showers available for beachgoers. What’s more, there’s the upscale Chileno Bay Club at the end of the beach, where you can enjoy locally-caught seafood for lunch.

Cerritos Beach

Cerritos Beach is one of the favorites among surfers in the Baja California Peninsula.

This sandy beach is perfect for surfing, both beginners as well as experts. What’s more, the wide sandy shore is great for sunbathing and people-watching.

The coast is lined with upscale, beachfront hotels where you can spend the night.

After a day at the beach, pop by the waterfront La Mision Restaurant for an exceptional dinner overlooking the sea.

Cerritos Beach is a 45-minute drive away from the heart of Cabo. Todos Santos, a great town worth visiting, is just a stone’s throw away!

Playa Balandra

Playa Balandra isn’t exactly in Cabo. In fact, it’s a 2-hour drive away from Cabo San Lucas, near the town of La Paz. Is the drive worth it?

Simply put, yes. But don’t take our word for it, check out this video to see why you need to visit Balandra.

As you can see, Playa Balandra looks absolutely spectacular. To no surprise, it is often dubbed the best beach in Mexico.

A short look at virtually any photo of the beach on the internet is enough to understand why. Let alone being able to see it yourself.

When visiting Playa Balandra, make sure you also stop by La Paz itself.

Drive To San Jose del Cabo

Shoreline of San Jose Del Cabo, beautiful tranquil sandy beaches and palm trees, as well as elevated whitewashed buildings.
Photo by Alvaro Bejarano

Get in your rental car and drive east along the main highway, leaving Cabo behind. In around half an hour, you will arrive at the scenic town of San Jose del Cabo.

When in San Jose del Cabo, go for a stroll in the heart of the town.

Mision San Jose del Cabo, beautiful whitewashed church outside of the resort town is one of the best things to do around Cabo San Lucas, Baja California
Getty Images

Snap a photo with the picturesque Mision San Jose del Cabo (photographed above), or walk down the vibrant Art Walk, and explore the street lined with quirky galleries.

Octopus Aguachile is a seafood dish at Don Sanchez restaurant, one of the best Mexican restaurants in San Jose del Cabo in Baja California.
Octopus Aguachile, one of the go-to dishes at Don Sanchez

Don’t skip a meal at the scenic Don Sanchez Restaurant, one of the top picks in the region. Choose from a selection of delicious dishes, such as tacos or local seafood. Take a look at these mouth-watering photos of what you can expect at Don Sanchez. Yummy!

Surf and Turf Taco at Don Sanchez is a modern take on Mexican cuisine. Don Sanchez is an award-winning restaurant in San Jose del Cabo by Todd Chapman.
Surf and Turf Taco at Don Sanchez

Don Sanchez is open daily from 6 PM to 10 PM.

Catch the sunset at the panoramic Cielomar Rooftop located at the top of the upscale Viceroy Hotel. Admire the spectacular sunset while sipping on a refreshing drink, or pop by for dinner. Open daily until 10PM.

Dive At Cabo Pulmo Marine Park

Shore of Cabo Pulmo National Park seen from right above the surface of the ocean. Cabo Pulmo Marine Park is a diver's paradise near Cabo San Lucas.
Photo by Clr_flickr

A 2-hour drive from Cabo San Lucas will take you to a paradise among divers, Cabo Pulmo Marine Park.

The tiny Cabo Pulmo village was established back in the late 1980s to protect one of the gems of Baja California, the largest living coral reef on this continent.

Today, the village is a great starting point for unforgettable diving and snorkeling tours.

Companies like Blue Passion Baja offer a wide selection of diving tours, as well as introductory courses for beginners, every day of the week all year long. Make sure to take a look at their website to book your adventure.

If you’d prefer snorkeling, Blue Passion Baja also offer daily snorkeling tours to the breathtaking coral reef.

Cabo Pulmo has a few great alternatives for those who would rather stay on dry land as well. Admire the scenic natural beauty of the region during an ATV tour, and see spots that are otherwise inaccessible.

Adrenaline junkies should check out the 3.5-hour long Mountain Biking tour across the desert landscape. Keep your eyes wide open, this remote area is home to some fascinating wildlife!

Go Whale-Watching

A large whale is emerging from the surface of the water. Beautiful marine life is a reason why you should go on a whale watching tour in Cabo San Lucas. One of the best things to do in Cabo is whalewatching.

The marine life off the shore of Cabo San Lucas is diverse, lively, and perhaps some of the best in this part of North America. Afterall, Cabo Pulmo Marine Park is home to one of the largest living coral reefs in the world.

When can you see whales in Cabo?

The best time of the year to go on a whale-watching tour in Cabo San Lucas is from January to March, though the season starts in December and finishes in April.

If you go whale-watching during those months, seeing a whale is pretty much guaranteed.

There are various different whale-watching tour operators in Cabo San Lucas. Rentalmoose recommends booking your tour with Whale Watch Cabo. Unlike other operators, Whale Watch Cabo gives you a guarantee of sighting a whale.

If there are no sightings during your tour, you will be offered another one at no extra cost. Note that the Whale Guarantee is offered only during the whale season (December 15th-April 15th).

What’s more, the daily tours are guided by marine biologists who will share lots of insight about marine life with you.

Go On A Day Trip To La Paz

A family of three watching the sun set on a sandy beach in La Paz, Mexico. Some say Baja California is home to some of the most wonderful sunsets on the planet, and this vibrant photograph proves it.
Photo by Yotut/flickr.com

No trip to Baja California could possibly be complete without paying a visit to its capital, La Paz. Most travelers only focus on visiting the resort of Cabo, without considering to see La Paz. In effect, La Paz has become a more authentic, under-the-radar destination.

As La Paz is a 2-hour drive away from Cabo San Lucas, we recommend setting off early in the morning. That way, you can see most of what this fascinating city has got to offer.

Local Market- Mercado Municipal General Nicolas Bravo

Rentalmoose loves local food markets. We think they’re one of the greatest ways to take in the hustle and bustle of any city or town. No matter whether you’re in Athens, Cameron Highlands, or Tallinn, the local market is the vibrant heart of local life.

The fresh food market here in La Paz, Mercado Municipal General Nicolas Bravo, is a must-visit in town. Make sure to get here early, the market is open from 6AM daily.

Historic District

Spend some time at the cozy Jardin Velasco park, or cross the street and admire the Catedral de Nuestra Señora de La Paz. The cathedral dates back to the 1800s!

From there, you can cross a couple of blocks on foot and you’ll find yourself on the panoramic Malecon.

Malecon

This waterfront promenade stretches for 3 miles (5 kilometers) and it’s undoubtedly the favorite hangout among locals. You’ll find joggers getting their morning exercise here, or groups of friends hanging out at the sandy beach.

Across the street from the promenade, you’ll find amazing restaurants and bars that provide great views of the shore. Don’t know which one to pick?

Drop by Restaurantes Bismark, one of the best picks in town. Apart from serving a wide variety of tasty meals and drinks, this eatery provides unbeatable views of the Malecon.

Restaurantes Bismark is open daily between 8AM and 11 PM.

Oh, when you’re in La Paz don’t forget to drive up to Playa Balandra!

See Todos Santos

colorful traditional decorative flags waving in the air above a street in Todos Santos, a peaceful town 30 minutes away from Cabo. Todos Santos in Baja California Mexico.
Thomas Hawk/Flickr.com

Hop on the highway along the west coast of Baja California and drive along the coast. Around an hour after leaving Cabo, you will reach the popular town of Todos Santos.

Since 2006, The Mexican government dubbed Todos Santos a Pueblo Magico. The government selected only around 100 towns in the country for the title, honoring the spots for their cultural influence, natural beauty, or historical significance.

As beautiful as Cabo is, there’s no denying the fact that it is full of tourists. Todos Santos, on the other hand, feels like a completely different world. It’s so serene that it’s hard to believe that the booming resort town of Cabo is just an hour away.

Once you’re in Todos Santos, find an on-street parking spot in the heart of the town and explore it on foot.

Hotel California

Don’t skip a visit to the Hotel California. Despite the urban legend, this is not the place that Glenn Frey sang about. Nonetheless, the hotel is a major attraction in Todos Santos and it’s worth dropping by for a visit.

Punta Lobos

Punta Lobos is a secluded, sandy beach favored among surfers. If you’re lucky, you might spot a whale from the shore!

There’s a large boulder next to the beach. If you decide to hike up to the top, you’ll be presented with panoramic views of the area. For the most magical experience, get to the top during the sunset.

El Faro Beach Club

After the drive, why not relax at a sandy beach? Visit the upscale El Faro Beach Club for the ultimate luxury experience in Todos Santos.

Sip on a colorful drink while overlooking the ocean, swim at the infinity pool, or book a massage at the Arena spa.

If you’re willing to escape the Cabo craze for a little longer, you can spend the night at the beachfront Guaycura Hotel.

The beach club is open Wednesday thru Monday from 10:30 AM to 7 PM.

Play Golf

Photo by Jeff Shewan

Golfing is a big-time activity in and around Cabo San Lucas. There are tens of different country clubs, both public and private, where experienced golfers (as well as beginners) can head for a game.

The only issue with golfing in Cabo is deciding which club to pick.

The best golf club in Cabo San Lucas

Quivira Los Cabos

Without a doubt, the most spectacular golf club in Cabo is the Quivira Los Cabos. This incredible golf course has earned countless awards, including a spot in the top 100 best golf courses in the world by Golf Digest.

This 18-hole course spans over 7000 yards, opening up to spectacular waterfront views.

After an exciting game, head over to the Quivira Golf Clubhouse for a juicy steak, or to simply take in the views once again.

Explore Santiago

Canon De La Zorra, Santa rita hot Springs are two scenic spots in Santiago Baja California. One of the best things to do in Cabo san Lucas, Mexico.
Photo by J M/Flickr.com

Much like Todos Santos, Santiago is a cute little town that can serve as a great escape from the craze of Cabo.

This tiny town dates back to the early 1700s, it specialized in agriculture. Over the last centuries, the town hasn’t really changed. Its untouched beauty makes Santiago one of the best places to visit around Cabo San Lucas.

When you’re in town, don’t miss the pretty Mision de Santiago Church that can be admired both inside and out.

Make sure you head up to the Canon de la Zorra. Admire the waterfalls set in a beautiful, desert setting.

This scenic spot is perfect for a swim, or simply photographing the beautiful views. You can either visit it independently (the entry fee is around 150 pesos [$7.5]) or on a guided tour.

Note that the only way to get to the canyon is via a sandy, unpaved road.

Before heading back to Cabo, stop by the Santa Rita Hot Springs. Open all week except Wednesday between 7AM and 7PM.

Visit El Triunfo

Photo of El triunfo mining town sign, stating the city only has 327 inhabitants as of 2010. El triumfo is a great under the radar destination near La Paz, Baja California, Mexico.
Photo by Amante Darmanin

If you’re a fan of spots that are very under-the-radar, you will love El Triunfo. As you can see in the photo above, El Triunfo has a population of just 327 people.

To be completely honest, El Triunfo is far from an attraction-packed tourist hotspot. In fact, the top-rated attraction in town, according to Tripadvisor, only has 3 reviews. Believe it or not, that’s exactly why the rustic town of El Triunfo is worth visiting.

The town was first established in the 1700s as a mining town. Once the mines shut down in the 1920s, the majority of the population moved elsewhere. Until fairly recently, El Triunfo remained essentially untouched for the past century.

In order to attract tourists, the 327 inhabitants began restoring some of the historic buildings and turning them into quirky restaurants, galleries, and other touristy attractions.

Today, El Triunfo remains one of the best-preserved former mining towns in all of North America.

What can you do in El Triunfo?

The highlight of any visit to El Triunfo is the town’s landmark, La Ramona Chimney. From there, you can see the rest of the mining complex, including Panteon Ingles and El Mirador.

Afterward, explore the heart of town right across the monumental chimney. For the best pizza in town (frankly speaking, there is no competition, though the pizza here is in fact great!), pop by Cafe El Triunfo.

Before leaving, pop by one of the town’s museums or galleries. The El Triunfo Piano Museum is set inside a 19th-century building, and well worth a visit when in town.

Don’t forget to book your rental car in Cabo with Rentalmoose, a worldwide car rental broker with over 15 000 locations around the globe.

We plant a tree for every booking made with us.

The ultimate Cyprus road trip itinerary

Explore the best parts of the fascinating island of Cyprus with this 4-day road trip itinerary. Pristine beaches, monumental monasteries, archeological sites, and medieval castles guaranteed!

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Larnaca to Limassol- 70 kilometers (45 miles)📍

Limassol to Omodos- 40 kilometers (25 miles) 📍

Omodos to Paphos- 60 kilometers (35 miles)📍

Paphos to Kykkos Monastery- 110 kilometers (65 miles)📍

Kykkos Monastery to Nicosia- 90 kilometers (55 miles)📍

Nicosia to Girne- 30 kilometers (20 miles)📍

Girne to Golden Beach- 130 kilometers (80 miles)📍

Golden Beach to Ayia Napa- 130 kilometers (80 miles)📍

Ayia Napa to Larnaca- 60 kilometers (35 miles)📍

740 kilometers (460 miles) in total

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

The total driving distance for this road trip is a little less than 750 kilometers. Rentalmoose recommends dedicating at least 4 days to complete this road trip.

If you want to see all of the attractions along the way, it’s best to spend at least a week on the road.

What is the best time of the year to visit Cyprus?

The best time to visit Cyprus is between May and June, as those are the two driest months of the year. The temperatures are pleasant, with a daily average of around 25 degrees Celsius. When going in May or June, you can avoid the hordes of tourists that visit Cyprus in the summer.

Visiting Cyprus during the summer is great weather-wise. It’s very hot, ideal for laying at the beach. However, the scorching heat can get overwhelming when exploring archeological sites or strolling through villages. It’s also the peak of the tourist season.

Can you cross Greek and Turkish parts of Cyprus?

Yes! Cyprus has a rather bloody history followed by a Turkish invasion in the 1970s, and a large part of the island belongs to Turkey. Tourists can freely cross the Greek and Turkish sides at designated checkpoints.

Despite the region’s history, Cyprus is safe for tourists. There is an army of UN peacekeepers to maintain safety between the two sides, and there is a “buffer zone” at the border of the two parts of Cyprus. There haven’t been conflicts since the checkpoints first opened in 2003.

Rentalmoose insider tip: Make sure to enter Cyprus from the Greek side (i.e. Larnaca International Airport) as the Turkish entrance points are deemed illegal by the Greek authorities, and you won’t be able to cross into the Greek part of Cyprus.

Road Trip Extensions

If you want to explore the region even further, consider extending the trip into one of these picturesque regions.

Turkish Riviera

You can take a ferry from Cyprus to mainland Turkey and then make your way over to the picturesque Turkish Riviera. Enjoy the breathtaking natural beauty and historical sites, as well as terrific cuisine. Click here for the guide.

Greek Islands

While in the Mediterranean, why not explore nearby Greek islands? There are hundreds of them to choose from! Consider going to Rhodes or Santorini, and check out Rentalmoose travel guides to plan your ideal road trip.

Why should you get a rental car in Cyprus?

Cyprus is the ideal destination to explore in a rental car! The main roads are well-developed (B-roads, not as much. Try to stick to the main roads.), and there are some scenic coastal and hillside drives.

Public transport in Cyprus is rather hectic, it’s impossible to access some hotspots in remote parts of the island by bus.

There are plenty of parking spaces around touristic locations around the island.

When booking your rental car, don’t forget to add excess coverage provided by Rentalmoose. If you take check-in photos when picking up your rental car, you can qualify for a 50% discount from the excess coverage fee!

Can tourists drive in Cyprus?

Yes! National driving licenses are recognized. Tourists who wish to rent a car in Cyprus do not need an International Driving Permit. It’s enough to take a valid license issued in your home country.

Driving in Cyprus can feel chaotic to those who haven’t driven in countries like Greece or Italy. The traffic rules are not strictly enforced, on-street parking is a common sight everywhere (sometimes even in the middle of intersections or roundabouts) and locals seem to be driving as fast as they please.

Cyprus has left-hand side traffic.

Now that you’re all set, let’s dive into your exciting Cyprus road trip itinerary!

Larnaca

larnaca cyprus, small square and cobblestone roads. Whitewashed buildings, traditional architecture, empty tables. sunny day in cyprus

Colorful streets of Larnaca. Photo by Dimitris Vetsikas.

Welcome to the picturesque island of Cyprus! For maximum convenience, Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car directly when you arrive at the Larnaca International Airport. Browse through available options via Rentalmoose.

What are the best attractions in Larnaca?

Church of Saint Lazarus

The Church of Saint Lazarus, or Agios Lazaros in Greek, dates back all the way to the 9th century. The monumental structure, located in the heart of Larnaca, is a prime example of Byzantine architecture, one of the best in Cyprus. 

Though parts of the church were destroyed by the Ottomans, the rest has undergone restoration in the 17th century and can be admired in nearly all of its glory.

The tomb of Saint Lazarus can be visited under the sanctuary within the church. If you wish to learn more about the history of the region, visit the museum.

The church of Saint Lazarus can be accessed from Monday to Saturday from 8 AM to 6:30 PM, and on Sundays from 6:30 AM to 12:30 PM and 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM

Admission to the church is free of charge. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting places of worship.

Hala Sultan Tekke

The Hala Sultan Tekke is a mosque located on the western shore of the Larnaca Salt Lake, just a few kilometers west from the city center. 

Originally, the mosque was built on top of Umm Haram’s tomb, the foster-mother of the Prophet Mohammed. The structure itself was constructed much later, in the late 1700s, by the Ottomans.

After taking a look at the lake, travelers can stroll around the surrounding area. In the summer, you can hike along the trails that will take you around the dried-up salt lake. If you’re lucky, you might spot flocks of flamingos.

The mosque is open all week from 8:30 AM to 7:30 PM. Admission is free of charge. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting places of worship.

Finikoudes Beach

Unwind after a day of exploring Larnaca at Finikoudes, the city’s main beach right in the heart of Larnaca. You can rent a sunbed and umbrella for around 3 EUR. If sunbathing isn’t your thing, why not go for a dip in the sea?

You can then stroll around the wonderful promenade filled with exotic palm trees, get souvenirs at the local gift shops, or step inside one of the numerous cafes for a refreshing drink.

Grada Taverna

For an authentic Mediterranean dinner, head to Grada Taverna in the northern part of Larnaca. This delicious eatery serves some of the best local food you can find in all of Cyprus. Choose from dishes such as a selection of kebabs and grilled meats, fresh seafood, or meze. 

The restaurant is considered one of the best picks in town, book your table ahead if planning to visit on the weekend.

Grada Taverna is open all week except Mondays from 6 PM to 11 PM.

What are the best hotels in Larnaca?

Palm Beach Hotel and Bungalows

When in Larnaca, why not stay at one of the city’s beautiful waterfront hotels? Consider checking-in at the Palm Beach Hotel and Bungalows, a 4-star seafront hotel north of the city. The property features elegant decor, a large spa and wellness center, a gym, and trendy restaurants.

Edem Hotel

If you are traveling on a tighter budget, the 3-star Edem Hotel might be perfect for you. Located just a short walk away from Finikoudes Beach, this property features well-equipped rooms with complimentary wi-fi, as well as a bar. Finikoudes is 4 minutes away on foot.

Next on your Cyprus road trip itinerary: Limassol, 50 minutes

Limassol

limassol marina, harbor, beautiful port with blue water, parked luxury yachts and a waterfront restaurant with outdoor seating under an umbrella. colorful buildings in the distance.

Photo by Dimitris Vetsikas

Drive along the southern coast of Cyprus for a little less than an hour until you reach Limassol, the second-largest city on the island.

Is Limassol worth visiting?

Of course! Limassol is the trendy, modern hotspot of Cyprus. The city’s colorful promenade lined with cafes and restaurants, a monumental castle, and nearby archeological sites all attract thousands of international tourists as well as locals.

Limassol Marina

Once you get to Limassol, park your rental car at this car park near the marina. The first 30 minutes are free of charge, then 3.50 EUR for the first two hours and an extra Euro added per every hour. 

Then, it’s time to explore the upscale Limassol Marina! Walk along the promenade docked with expensive yachts, drop by one of the cafes for a refreshing beverage, or go on a waterfront shopping spree.

Limassol Castle

After spending some time at the modern marina, make your way over to the Limassol Castle in the city’s historic district. The castle that’s here today was built by the Ottomans back in the late 1500s. Guests can admire the exterior or step inside, as the structure has been turned into The Cyprus Medieval Museum.

The museum is home to some precious medieval artifacts, including an exhibition of Medieval pottery or tombstones.

Limassol Medieval Castle is open from Monday to Saturday between 9 AM and 5 PM, and on Sundays from 10 AM to 1 PM. 

Admission to the museum costs 4.5 EUR per person. Tickets can be purchased upon entrance.

Kolossi Castle

The Kolossi Castle, located about 10 kilometers away from the heart of Limassol, is one of the most important historical sites on the island. The fortification dates back to 1210 when it was first constructed. It used to be one of the strongholds of the Crusaders. The castle was later demolished and had been rebuilt in the 15th century. 

The archeological site is open all week from 8.15 AM to 7.45 PM. Admission costs just 2.5 EUR per person.

Kourion Archeological Site

As you make your way out of Limassol, be sure to stop at the Kourion Archeological Site. According to archeologists, the Ancient City of Kourion was one of the major settlements on the island. The site is famous for its colorful mosaics that once decorated the mansions and other buildings within the city.

Once you’re at the site, don’t miss the ancient Kurion Theatre. The theatre dates back to the second century BC, it could seat 3500 spectators and provided panoramic views of the sea.

The Kourion Archeological site is open all week between 8 AM and 7:30 PM. Admission costs 1.5 EUR per person.

Next on your Cyprus road trip: Omodos, 40 minutes

Omodos

omodos traditional village, stone buildings, outdoor restaurant tables and a woman walking with stroller through cobblestone street. tourists at a gift shop in the distance. Mountains in background

Photography by Dimitris Vetsikas.

It’s time to head inland, leaving Limassol behind. Head up the mountains for a little over 30 minutes until you reach the village of Omodos, set in the middle of the countryside. Don’t be fooled by the size of it, Omodos is famous for its aromatic wine and an annual wine festival!

What can you do in Omodos?

Omodos Square

Observe the local life at Omodos Square, right in the heart of the village. It’s been the vibrant center of local gatherings ever since its completion in 1910.

Today, you can stroll around the square, admire the picturesque whitewashed village, or step inside one of the cafes for a snack.

Timios Stavros Monastery

A short walk from the square will take you to the monumental Timios Stavros Monastery. Inside, guests can find what is said to be an element of the cross that Jesus Christ was crucified on. The monastery has a beautiful courtyard with views that open up to the mountains.

Katoi Restaurant

Before leaving Omodos, head to the renowned Katoi Restaurant for another delicious meal in Cyprus. The large eatery is located in one of the oldest buildings in the village and has been renovated and decorated in a tasteful style. The Mediterranean cuisine served here is authentic, fresh, and tasty. It is by far the best restaurant in Omodos.

The restaurant is open all week from noon to 4 PM, and from 7 PM to 10 PM on weekends.

Rentalmoose insider tip: As it’s the most popular place to eat in Omodos, Rentalmoose recommends booking your table ahead of your visit.

Next on your Cyprus road trip: Paphos, 50 minutes

Paphos

paphos shore, dramatic coastline with cliffs and blue water hitting the coast. cloudy yet sunny day in cyprus

Photography by Dimitris Vetsikas.

The last leg of a journey for the day is a short drive back to the coast and the city of Paphos.

What are the best things to do in Paphos?

Tombs of the Kings

When in Paphos, you can’t skip the Tombs of the Kings archeological site. The tombs date back to the Hellenistic period, and the underground network of tunnels and chambers can be explored by the public.

Despite the name, Tombs of the Kings were actually used to bury high ranked officials rather than actual kings.

The tombs are open from 8:30 AM to 7:30 PM. Admission costs 2.5 EUR per person.

Tombs of the Kings photographed by Walkerssk.

Paphos Castle

Drive over to the lively Paphos Harbor, and then stroll down to the large medieval castle right at the edge of it. The Paphos Castle was originally built as a fortification during the Byzantine times to protect the town’s harbor, and was later rebuilt in the 1400s after it had suffered major damage after an earthquake in 1222. The castle then changed ownership multiple times and was used as a salt store by the British until 1935 when it was declared an ancient monument.

Today, the monumental castle serves as a reminder of the island’s past. Guests can admire the exterior and the surrounding sea, or step inside and wander around the interior.

Admission to the Paphos castle costs 2.5 EUR. Open daily between 8:30 AM and 5 PM.

Nea Paphos

Nea Paphos is a large archeological site, one of the must-see ancient sites in all of Cyprus. The park consists of ruins from ancient times up to medieval times, the majority is from the Roman period. Guests can see the ruins of five different houses (Dionysus, Theseus, Aiona, Orpheus, and the Four Seasons), as well as the Asklepieion, the Odeon, and the Saranta Kolones.

The site is open all week from 8 AM to 7:30 PM. Admission costs 4.5 EUR per person.

Rentalmoose insider tip: If you are planning to visit the Tombs of the Kings, the Castle, and Nea Paphos, consider purchasing a combined ticket. For 8.5 EUR, you can access all of the attractions listed above.

The Windmill Restaurant

For dinner, head over to The Windmill. This family-run restaurant features Greek cuisine with lots of vegan-friendly options. Enjoy a platter of grilled seafood, or traditional lamb chops.

Open daily from 6:30 PM to 10 PM. It’s one of the favorites in Paphos, book your table ahead of the visit.

What are the best hotels in Paphos?

The Elysium Hotel

Sophisticated travelers should spend the night at the prestigious Elysium Hotel. This elegant 5-star property features stylish Byzantine-style decor, vivid gardens with tennis courts and an outdoor pool, spa and wellness center, and a steam room. Tombs of the Kings are practically next door.

Roman Boutique Hotel

The Roman Boutique Hotel is just a short stroll away from the heart of Paphos. The 3-star hotel features ancient decor, large rooms, an outdoor pool, and a spa. 

Add in the perfect location just a kilometer away from the harbor, and you get one of the best reasonably-priced stays in town.

Next on your Cyprus road trip itinerary: Kykkos Monastery, 2 hours 30 minutes

Kykkos Monastery

kykkos monaster. whitewashed stone architecture, outdoor staircase and large belltower. sunny day in kykkos monastery cyprus

Photography by Julian Nyca

Today, you’ll drive back inland to see the picturesque Kykkos Monastery. First, drive along the coast to see three pristine beaches.

What is the best beach in Paphos?

Coral Bay

Coral Bay is a popular beach around 15 minutes away from Paphos. The pristine beach is lined with resorts and different amenities. It’s perfect for families, as the water is shallow and the currents are calm. There are also lifeguards on duty during the summer season. After swimming, travelers can sunbathe or stroll down the golden sands.

Lara Bay

Lara Bay is a must-visit location in the northwest part of Cyprus. Apart from clear water and pristine sand, this small beach is known to be a home for loggerhead and green turtles. If you’re lucky, you might just spot the little guys!

The secluded sandy beach doesn’t have any facilities. It is recommended to drive to the beach with a 4WD car.

Latsi Beach

Latsi Beach is a rather long pebble beach around 40 minutes away from Paphos. The beach is ideal for swimming and sunbathing, as there are lifeguards on duty across the shore, and there are sunbeds and umbrellas that can be hired for the day.

Afterward, you can head to one of the waterfront cafes or taverns for a quick snack.

Kykkos Monastery

Kykkos Monastery lays in the picturesque hillside, within the vibrant Paphos Forest. The structure dates back to the 11th century when it was commissioned by a Byzantine Emperor.

Today, it remains one of the most famous and wealthiest monasteries in the country. If you only have time to see one monastery in Cyprus, this is it! Admire the exterior and its beautiful surrounding hills, then step inside and examine the beautiful artwork and decor that’s stored here.

Kykkos Monastery is open all week between 10 AM and 6 PM.

Next on your Cyprus road trip: Nicosia, 1 hour 40 minutes

Nicosia

Photo by Sergei Gussev.

Continue east towards Nicosia, the famous divided capital of Cyprus. 

Is Nicosia worth visiting?

Most definitely! Whilst Nicosia may not be the most picturesque spot in Cyprus, it’s a fascinating city that’s worth seeing, where you can truly see the division between the Greek and Turkish sides of the island.

Selimiye Mosque

Seeing a Gothic church-turned-mosque is certainly not a common sight, that’s exactly what makes the Selimiye Mosque unique. It’s a great symbol of the confusing history of the city, as well as all of Cyprus. A Gothic church was turned into a mosque by the Ottomans back in the 1500s. It’s located in northern Nicosia (Turkish part of the city)

Cyprus Museum

The Cyprus Museum is home to a selection of precious items found in different excavation sites all over the island. In fact, the museum doesn’t showcase any imported pieces and focuses only on artifacts found in Cyprus. The exhibits are from between the Stone Age and the Roman period.

The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday between 8 AM and 6 PM, Saturday from 9 AM to 5 PM, Sunday 10 AM to 1 PM. Closed on Mondays.

Admission to the Cyprus Museum costs 4.5 EUR per person.

Ledra Street

Shopping freaks should definitely visit Ledra Street. It used to be the go-to shopping spot for locals up until Nicosia’s division in 1963. Back in 2008, it was reopened once again, it was a symbolic step in improving the relationship between the two sides.

Today, the street is lined with stores where tourists can find clothes, souvenirs, accessories, as well as cafes and restaurants. 

What’s more, travelers can climb the 11th floor of the Shacolas Tower and enjoy panoramic views of the area. Open all week from 10 AM to 5 PM.

Giagia Victoria

During your road trip in Cyprus, you have to try a portion of traditional Cypriot coffee. Head over to Giagia Victoria, one of the best cafes in town. Order a cup of strong Cypriot coffee or a portion of regional cakes and delight.

Giagia Victoria is open daily from 7 AM to 10 PM.

Which hotel in Nicosia is the best?

The Landmark Nicosia

Sophisticated guests should book a room at the 5-star Landmark Nicosia. The elegant property features spacious rooms and suites, stylish decor, an outdoor pool, and a wellness center that’s equipped with an indoor pool and a large gym.

Hotel Valide Hanim Konak

If you’re traveling on a tighter budget, consider staying at the 3-star Hotel Valide Hanim Konak over on the Turkish side of Nicosia. This boutique hotel features 7 air-conditioned rooms with Wi-Fi. Unwind after a long day at the cozy Konak Cafe.

Next on your Cyprus road trip: Girne, 40 minutes

Girne

st hilarion castle on top of large cliff mountain in northern cyprus. the ruins can be accessed from a small mountain road. cloudy day in cyprus

St Hilarion Castle photographed by Yolanda Coervers.

St Hilarion Castle

Remains of the St Hilarion Castle are set on top of a tall mountain in northern Cyprus. It is one of the best-preserved Crusaders Castles in the world! It is a spot worth visiting for both history lovers as well as photographers, as there are panoramic views of Cyprus and the Mediterranean.

How to reach Saint Hilarion Castle?

Follow the winding road which will take you to a small car park. You can leave your rental car here and explore the castle on foot. Be sure to take your camera, stunning views are guaranteed!

Remember to post your best photos from this road trip online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!

The ruins can be accessed for 9 Turkish Lira (1.15 EUR), from 8 AM to 6:30 PM daily.

Bellapais Abbey

Bellapais Abbey is another monastery worth visiting during your Cyprus road trip. The ruins of the 13th-century monastery are a spectacular sight. Once again, be sure to take your camera with you!

Bellapais Abbey can be accessed for 10 TL (1.3 EUR), between 8 AM and 7 PM daily.

bellapais abbey monumental arches and ruins, three large trees in distance. sunny day in northern cyprus

Photo by Kasjan Farbisz.

Optional: Girne (Kyrenia) Harbor

If you have the extra time, drop by the small town of Girne, or Kyrenia. You can stroll down the harbor or visit one of the seafront restaurants. There are also various hotels you can stay at if you choose to extend your stay.

Azure Restaurant

Drop by the Azure restaurant in Girne for a delicious lunch. This cozy eatery offers a mix of Mediterranean cuisine, mainly focusing on Turkish dishes. 

Open all week from 1 PM to 10:30 PM. 

Next on your Cyprus itinerary: Golden Beach, 2 hours 10 minutes

Golden Beach

cyprus golden beach. empty sandy beach, long cove with calm blue sea and hills in distance. golden beach in cyprus is very underrated

Photo by Dimitris Vetsikas

It’s time to head to the northeastern tip of the island to see the Golden Beach, one of the best beaches on the island. The drive adds an extra 2 hours of driving to the journey each way.

What is the best beach in northern Cyprus?

The famous Golden Beach is an unspoiled, pristine sandy beach at the northeastern tip of Cyprus. A lot of tourists don’t make it here as the drive is around 2 hours one-way from Nicosia. They are, however, missing out a lot!

Rental Moose Mascot posing with tourist on the coast of a sandy beach in Northern Cyprus. Find the best beach in Cyprus with our curated cyprus road trip itinerary.

The wide sandy beach is perfect for sunbathing, an afternoon stroll, or a dip in the crystal-clear Mediterranean. If you’re lucky, you might spot turtles as well.

Don’t forget to bring your own water, umbrella, and snacks. The beach is secluded and doesn’t have any facilities.

Next on your Cyprus road trip itinerary: Konnos Beach, 2 hours 20 minutes

Konnos Beach, Fig Tree Bay & Nissi Beach

nissi beach cyprus, crystal-clear water on an empty day. small island connected with sandy path. one palm tree on sand, no tourists. sunrise in cyprus

Nissi beach photographed by Dimitris Vetsikas

Before heading back to Larnaca, make one last stop at the southeastern tip of the island. This part of Cyprus is home to some of the best beaches you can find.

Fig Tree Bay

Most tourists agree that Fig Tree Bay is one of the best beaches in Cyprus. In fact, it was deemed the 3rd best beach in the world by the Big 7 Travel in 2019. It was ranked the third best beach in Europe in 2011. The award-winning sandy beach is definitely worth a visit!

The wide sandy beach stretches for about 500 meters and is renowned for its crystal-clear waters and pristine sand.

Konnos Beach

Konnos Beach is a small sandy beach near Ayia Napa. The tiny bay features a 200-meter stretch of soft, golden sand, as well as calm waters. The sea here is perfect for snorkeling. Travelers can also rent a sunbed and umbrella and sunbathe for hours. 

The small beach isn’t as crowded as Fig Tree Bay or Nissi Beach.

konnos small bay and two sandy beaches with blue sunbeds, tourists swimming in emerald green water. boats in distance and green trees around the shore

Konnos Beach photographed by Dimitris Vetsikas.

Nissi Beach

Nissi Beach is a popular sandy beach in Ayia Napa, known for its clear water and pristine sand. The dreamy beach features a small sandy path to Ayia Napa island, making Nissi Beach the perfect backdrop for your photos. Sunbathe, go for a dip in the sea, or cross the street and check-in at one of the waterfront hotels.

Adventure junkies can rent some watersport equipment and head out to sea!

nissi beach sandy path connects to ayia napa island, two children playing in sand, crystal clear water, no tourists, waterfront resort hotel in distance.

Photo by Dimitris Vetsikas.

Hokkaido Restaurant

For dinner, head over to Hokkaido in Ayia Napa. Take a break from all the Mediterranean cuisine and enjoy some authentic Japanese food, such as sushi and other dishes that are cooked on teppanyaki grills. 

Rentalmoose order tip: You can’t go wrong with a combination of fresh seafood grilled on the teppanyaki.

Open daily from 4 PM to 11 PM. It’s one of the favorites in town, be sure to book your table ahead!

Drop-off

For maximum convenience, Rentalmoose recommends dropping your rental car off at Larnaca airport directly before leaving. Click here to browse through car rental options in Larnaca!

Don’t forget to book your rental car via Rentalmoose for your next road trip in Cyprus.

On our platform, you can find the top rental companies at the best price, along with tens of curated travel guides around the globe. Get your car from Rentalmoose!

We plant a tree for every booking made with our platform.

Post your pictures from your next road trip in Cyprus online using #Rentalmoose! Our favorite ones will be featured in the upcoming blog posts.

Greek Islands- Santorini Itinerary By Car

Santorini is the definition of an ideal Greek island. It’s full of picturesque villages, scenic natural beauty, tasty cuisine, and fascinating archeological sites. Explore the best of Santorini with this comprehensive road trip itinerary!

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Fira to Oia- 12 kilometers (7.5 miles)📍

Oia to Ancient Thera- 23 kilometers (14.3 miles)📍

Ancient Thera to Pyrgos- 7 kilometers (4.4 miles)📍 

Pyrgos to Akrotiri- 8 kilometers (5 miles)📍

50 kilometers (31 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, road trip, Greece, Beach, foodie

What is the best time of the year to visit Santorini?

The best time of the year to visit Santorini is in May and September. That’s when the weather is still pleasant and there aren’t too many tourists around the island. 

The weather is the hottest during July and August, it’s best to go during these months if you plan to spend lots of time on the beaches. Keep in mind that it is also the peak of the tourist season, and Santorini tends to get very crowded during the summer.

Why should you rent a car in Santorini?

Santorini, despite being a rather small island, is definitely best explored using a rental car. The comfort of altering your itinerary on the go, freely extending the road trip, or finishing it early can only be achieved when traveling by car.

Public transport around Greece tends to be rather hectic for international tourists. Most ticketing booths and schedules are available in Greek only, and buses irregularly travel between destinations. Not to mention the crowds and the fact that bus tickets can only be purchased in cash at the booths, right before leaving.

Road trip Extensions

Mainland Greece

Your Greek getaway doesn’t have to end here! Before leaving Greece, fly to Athens and drive all the way to Thessaloniki, exploring the best attractions in mainland Greece along the way. Click here for the travel guide and plan your ideal road trip through mainland Greece.

Rhodes

Rhodes is the definition of Greece as most tourists know it. Here, you can find some of Europe’s most pristine beaches, spectacular natural beauty, and fascinating towns with ancient historical sites. Click here for the guide.

Rental Moose mascot posing at a viewpoint overlooking a beautiful sandy beach in Kos, Greece. Check out our curated Greek Island itineraries.

Can tourists drive in Greece?

Yes! As Greece is a member of the European Union, tourists can use their domestic driving licenses issued in other EU member states. Travelers who do not have a driving license issued in an EU country should obtain an International Driving Permit (click here to learn all about them).

Driving in Greece for first-timers might be overwhelming at first. Locals tend to drive aggressively without much regard for others, be extra cautious when driving a rental car around Santorini, and make sure to get excess coverage provided by Rentalmoose when booking your vehicle.

Don’t forget to take check-in photos when picking up your rental car, that way you are eligible for a 50% rebate from the excess coverage fee.

Once you’re all set, let’s dive into this exciting Santorini itinerary!

Fira

Photography by EzPzPics.

Welcome to the sunny island of Santorini! For maximum convenience, Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car directly when you arrive at the airport. Browse through car rental options that support airport pick-up via Rentalmoose.

Santorini is often regarded as the most beautiful island in Greece, it surely is one of the most unique ones. It provides a perfect mix of historical sites, delicious cuisine, scenic natural beauty, and vibrant nightlife. Santorini is a volcanic island, the caldera is what remained after an eruption that happened centuries ago, and resulted in shaping Santorini’s unique landscape. 

Is Fira worth visiting?

Most certainly! Fira is the main town on the island, and it has plenty of attractions and spots worth visiting. You can find plenty of scenic points, restaurants, hangouts and nightlife spots all around this small town. Here are some of our favorite spots and the best things to do in Fira.

Karavolades Stairs & The Old Port

Enjoy a fair bit of exercise as you walk down the Karavolades Stairs, often referred to as the 587 steps. Tourists traveling with children will surely love seeing many donkeys traveling up and down what was once the main donkey trail that connected the town to the port.

 The exhausting stroll will take you down to the harbor, where you can hire a boat or go on a fishing tour.

You can either walk back up the same way or take the cable car and regain energy. The cable car to Fira costs just 6 EUR per person. Note that passengers are required to wear masks.

Rentalmoose insider tip: Try to visit the old port outside of the peak hours, otherwise you might find yourself stuck in a long queue for the cable cars.

Three Bells of Fira

After your cable or ride (or hike, if you can handle it), walk along the cliffside road until you reach the Virgin Mary Orthodox Church. The church is a famous attraction due to its whitewashed facade, blue dome, and the Three Bells of Fira overlooking the sea. It is hands-down one of the best photo opportunities in Santorini.

Remember to post your pictures from this trip online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!

Three Bells of Fira photographed by Judith Scharnowski

Obelix

When in Santorini, you can’t miss out on the delicious cuisine! Make your way across the narrow streets until you reach Obelix, the best place in Fira to try real Gyros. As it’s one of the favorites among both tourists and locals, prepare to wait a bit for your food. It is well worth it, though!

Open all week from noon until 9:30 PM.

Rentalmoose order tip: Don’t skip out on their famous Gyros or Souvlaki.

PK Cocktail Bar

PK Cocktail Bar is one of the go-to nightlife spots in all of Santorini. It’s always vibrant, crowded, and well-known among locals. It has been welcoming guests for over 40 years and remains one of the top picks on the island. Sip on a delicious cocktail as you watch the sunset from the outdoor terrace, order a cup of aromatic coffee, or smoke a tasty cigar.

PK Cocktail Bar is open all week until midnight.

Parking in Fira

You can drop off your rental car at one of the small public car parks located along the main road. The majority of public car parks in Santorini are usually free, the few paid ones cost under 2 EUR per hour.

On-street parking is permitted unless there are signs that state otherwise. Generally, if there are other cars parked along the street, you should be fine as well.

Where to stay in Santorini?

As the total driving distance for this road trip doesn’t surpass 100 kilometers, Rentalmoose recommends staying at one of these hotels during your trip to Santorini.

Iconic Santorini

Iconic Santorini is an impressive boutique cave hotel located in Imerovigli, at the highest point of the caldera. This idyllic spot is centrally located from the hustle and bustle of the cruise shopping port of Fira. Oia’s famous sunsets are only a short drive away.

The 5-star property features a stunning infinity pool overlooking the sea, magnificent suites, an upscale restaurant, and a wellness facility. It is the perfect choice for sophisticated travelers visiting Santorini.

Photo courtesy of Iconic Santorini

Grand View Hotel

Don’t want to splash out hundreds of Euros per night on an ultra-luxurious hotel in Santorini? Consider checking-in at the 3-star Grand View Hotel instead. This property, located in Megalochori, features a stunning outdoor terrace and swimming pool overlooking the sea at a fraction of its 5-star competitors. 

Add modern decor, a charming restaurant, complimentary parking, and Grand View Hotel becomes a very attractive budget-friendly stay in Santorini.

Next on your Santorini itinerary: Oia, 20 minutes

Oia

Photography by Michelle Maria.

Depart Fira and continue towards the northern tip of the island. After roughly 20 minutes, you will reach Oia, the second-largest town in Santorini, and one of the most picturesque spots you can find. It is also quieter than Fira, especially once dusk falls.

What can you do in Oia?

Ammoudi Bay

Cool down from the scorching heat and go for a dip in the Aegean Sea at Ammoudi Bay. Adrenaline junkies can find opportunities for cliff-jumping, foodies can drop by one of the waterfront fish taverns and dive into local seafood. 

Alternatively, you can go on a boat tour directly from the bay to see picturesque bays, other islands, and the famous volcano.

Ammoudi Fish Tavern

Once you get hungry, head to the Ammoudi Fish Tavern located in Ammoudi Bay. Apart from fresh fish and tasty seafood, the eatery offers a beautiful waterfront dining experience with panoramic views of the sea and the nearby island. The restaurant is popular, you might want to book ahead during the peak season to ensure you get the best table.

The tavern is open daily from 11 AM to 11 PM.

Byzantine Castle Ruins

Santorini’s magical sunsets are famous around the world. For the best view of the sunset, head to the point right next to the Byzantine Castle Ruins. Spectacular sunsets with panoramic views of the iconic whitewashed buildings, traditional windmills, and deep blue water, attract hordes of tourists every evening. Make sure to find your spot long before the sunset itself to get an unobstructed view!

Church of Panagia

The Church of Panagia is a lovely whitewashed Orthodox church in the heart of Oia. Its pristine facade makes for a perfect backdrop for photography. Alternatively, visitors can step inside and admire the decorative interior. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting places of worship.

Hike to Fira

If walking down the 587 steps to the old port in Fira wasn’t enough exercise for the day, you can wander down the scenic trail all the way to Fira. The hike is around 10 kilometers long one-way, spectacular views along the way are guaranteed, as you’ll be walking practically on the edge of the caldera. Click here for more info on the hike between Fira and Oia.

Next on your Santorini itinerary: Ancient Thera, 35 minutes

Ancient Thera

Photography by Norbert Nagel

After exploring Oia and Fira, it’s time to head out and see what the southern part of the island has to offer. Be sure to drop by the Ancient Thera archeological site. The winding road leading to the site, filled with tight hairpins and chicanes, is a super fun drive.

What is Ancient Thera?

Ancient Thera is a large archeological site of an ancient town of Thera, its history dates as far as the 8th century BC. The remains of the settlement are located on top of the Mesa Vuono Mountain, providing spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding areas.

You can follow the chicane-filled road and park your rental car near the entrance to the site, or leave your car in Perissa and reach the top of the mountain on foot. Wear comfy shoes as there is lots of ground to cover, and the hiking conditions can be challenging for the inexperienced.

The archeological site is open between 8 AM and 3 PM and remains closed on Mondays.

Kamari Beach

Hiking around the archeological site for a few hours might wear you out. In that case, reward yourself with a relaxing evening at Kamari Beach just a short car ride down the mountain from Ancient Thera. 

Catch a glimpse of the setting sun, go for a swim, or feel the mix of volcanic sand and pebbles as you stroll down the shore. You can also walk around Kamari and step inside one of the local restaurants or shops.

Next on your Santorini itinerary: Pyrgos, 15 minutes

Pyrgos

Photography by DanaTentis

Is Pyrgos worth visiting?

Definitely! Pyrgos is a scenic whitewashed village around 15 minutes away from Ancient Thera that remains frequently overlooked by tourists, hence it is usually calm and peaceful. Once the capital of Santorini, Pyrgos is one of the best-preserved, authentic villages on the island. Its natural setting between vineyards makes it even more charming.

Admire the panoramic view of the village first from this viewing point. Then, make your way into the town, park your rental car, and stroll around Pyrgos on foot. The best way to see the beauty of this cute village is by simply walking around and exploring its narrow streets.

Art Space Santorini

As Pyrgos is surrounded by vineyards, it would only make sense to see a winery and learn about the local wine culture. The perfect space to do so is Art Space Santorini. The venue features a wine-oriented museum located in an old winery.

Art enthusiasts will enjoy the exhibition of wine-related art pieces. Guests can also tour an active winery and the nearby vineyard.

You can taste and purchase locally-made wine, too. Remember that driving under the influence is strictly forbidden.

Art Space Santorini is open all week between 11 AM and 7 PM.

Santorini of the Past

Learn all about Santorini’s regional history at Santorini of The Past, a wonderful museum focused on depicting the everyday life of Santorini. The museum features a collection of historic items and fascinating artifacts on display. Of course, scenic surroundings and panoramic views are guaranteed.

Metaxi Mas

Try what could very well be the best restaurant in all of Santorini. Metaxi Mas serves Greek dishes with a slight Cretan twist. The cozy taverna hosts guests in an indoor area or their stunning terrace with panoramic views of the island. Each dish can be paired with local wine, of course.

Metaxi Mas is open from noon until midnight, 7 days a week. It can get busy during the weekend, book ahead to reserve a spot in the outdoor seating area.

Next on your Santorini itinerary: Akrotiri, 15 minutes

Akrotiri

The Red Beach photographed by Pat Scrap.

Having explored the village of Pyrgos, it’s time to head towards the southeastern tip of Santorini. This part of the island has even more natural beauty, as well as some of Santorini’s best beaches.

What can you do in Akrotiri?

Akrotiri Archeological Site

Akrotiri Archeological Site is dubbed “the Greek Pompeii” and is regarded as one of the most remarkable sites in the country. Its history dates back to the Bronze Age!

The excavation site has been covered by a roof, it doesn’t look too appealing from the outside, but the treasures it holds are worth seeing. You can check out the artifacts on display, too.

Akrotiri Archeological Site is open from 8 AM to 3:30 PM on Wednesdays and from 8 AM to 8 PM for the rest of the week. Admission tickets cost 12 EUR per person.

Akrotiri Lighthouse

Head to the easternmost point of Santorini, where you will find the picturesque Akrotiri Lighthouse set on a cliff above the shore. It’s one of the oldest lighthouses in Greece, dating back to the late 1800s. The whitewashed walls of the lighthouse make it another ideal backdrop for photos.

If you want to experience another otherworldly sunset, hang around the lighthouse. This spot provides similarly spectacular views as the sun sets, yet it’s less popular among tourists. It’s easier to get an unobstructed view here than in Oia. Not convinced? Just look at the photo below.

Akrotiri Lighthouse during sunset photographed by Skeeze.

What are the best beaches in Santorini?

The area around Akrotiri is home to some of the best beaches in Santorini. Keep in mind that Santorini is a volcanic island, you won’t find any picture-perfect beaches with palm trees and white sand.

Mesa Pigadia Beach

Mesa Pigadia Beach is the perfect getaway from Santorini’s crowds. This tranquil pebble beach is perfect for sunbathing or swimming in its crystal-clear water. When you get hungry, pop inside the Mesa Pigadia restaurant for a snack right by the sea.

Red Beach

Red Beach is one of the most photographed beaches in Santorini, mainly because of its iconic red volcanic sand and the red cliffs surrounding the beach. Apart from sunbathing and swimming, Red Beach is perfect for snorkeling.

Vlychada Beach

The beach in Vlychada, much like Red Beach, offers a spectacular natural setting, as the volcanic shore is surrounded by dramatic cliffs. The otherwordly landscape makes Vlychada Beach stand out among any other beaches on Santorini.

Sunbeds are available for just a couple of Euros. There are also beachside bars and cafes where guests can pop by for a drink.

What’s more, there is a vibrant marina just a few minutes away from the beach, where visitors can admire some of the docked yachts or enjoy fresh seafood.

Perissa Beach

Perissa Beach has got to be the busiest beach on all of Santorini. It is also, however, the one with the most hotels, restaurants, and nightlife opportunities. Sunbeds are available as far as the eye can see. 

Tired of sunbathing all day? Spend some time at one of the beach clubs, or walk around the nearby town of Perissa. There is always something to do near Perissa Beach.

Drop-off

For maximum convenience, you can drop your rental car off at Santorini Airport directly before leaving. Browse through car rental options that support airport drop-off using Rentalmoose.

Don’t forget to book your rental car via Rentalmoose for your next road trip in Greece. On our platform, you can find the top rental companies at the best price, along with tens of curated travel guides around the globe. Get your car from Rentalmoose!

We plant a tree for every booking made with our platform.

Post your pictures from your next road trip in Greece online using #Rentalmoose! Our favorite ones will be featured in the upcoming blog posts.

Athens to Thessaloniki by Car- Greece Trip Itinerary

Greece is one of the hottest travel destinations in Europe, what better way to explore than with a week-long road trip? See the best archeological sites, dreamy beaches, and natural beauty with this comprehensive travel guide.

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Athens to Delphi- 185 kilometers (115 miles)📍 7.15 EUR Highway toll

Delphi to Volos- 210 kilometers (130 miles)📍 7.2 EUR Toll

Volos to Meteora- 145 kilometers (90 miles)📍 11.8 EUR Toll

Meteora to Mount Olympus- 155 kilometers (95 miles)📍 5.7 EUR Toll

Mount Olympus to Vergina- 75 kilometers (45 miles)📍

Vergina to Thessaloniki- 70 kilometers (45 miles)📍 1.2 EUR Toll

850 kilometers (530 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, road trip, drop-off at another location, Greece, Beach

This travel guide takes you on an exciting Greece road trip starting in Athens, the capital of Greece. Then, you’ll go inland towards Delphi, before spending a night in the coastal city of Volos.

Next, you’ll get to see the otherwordly hanging monasteries of Meteora, before stopping overnight in Litochoro at the foot of Mt. Olympus.

Finish off with a stop at The Royal Tombs of Aigai and an unforgettable night in Thessaloniki.

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

The total driving distance is around 850 kilometers. With that in mind, Rentalmoose recommends dedicating at least 5 days for this road trip. To fully explore the best of what each location has to offer, spend at least 10 days on the road.

What is the best time of the year to visit Greece?

The best time of the year to go on a road trip in Greece is during the sunny months, typically between May and September. The weather is the hottest during July and August, but it is also the peak of the tourist season.

You can avoid hordes of tourists while still catching a glimpse of the perfect weather when you visit during June and early September.

Road trip extensions

Greek Islands

Your Greece road trip doesn’t have to end here! Extend your road trip and visit some of the country’s most picturesque islands. Rentalmoose recommends going to Rhodes or Santorini.

Turkish Riviera

Forget South East Asia, the Turkish Riviera is dubbed one of the world’s best summer getaways. Party your heart out in Bodrum, swim in the Blue Lagoon, and enjoy the world-famous Turkish breakfast in Antalya. Click here for the guide.

Why should you rent a car in Greece?

Mainland Greece is ideal to be explored by rental car. The roads are, for the most part, well-maintained, and there are some magnificent scenic drives around Meteora, Delphi, and Mount Olympus. A road trip in Greece is a great way to see the country.

Outside of Athens, public transport tends to be rather hectic for international tourists. Most ticketing booths and schedules are available in Greek only, and buses travel between cities quite irregularly.

A rental car is definitely the best way of getting around mainland Greece.

Don’t forget to take check-in photos when picking up your rental car to qualify for a 50% rebate from the excess coverage fee!

Are there toll roads in Greece?

There is a fair amount of toll highways and paid roads around Greece. Fees can be settled when passing toll booths, mostly in cash though some booths will accept credit cards depending on the highway operator. Take cash to pay the highway tolls, just in case.

You can use this toll calculator to precisely calculate fees between Greek cities.

Can tourists drive in Greece?

Yes! As Greece is a member of the European Union, tourists can use their domestic driving licenses issued in other EU-member states.

Travelers who do not have a driving license issued in an EU-country should obtain an International Driving Permit (click here to learn all about them).

Driving around Athens may become chaotic if you’re not familiar with the unsaid rules that everyone seems to follow. Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car when leaving Athens and using public transport to get around the capital.

Now that you’re all set, let’s dive into this Greece road trip itinerary!

Athens

acropolis athens monumental ancient parthenon, seen behind green trees and athens skyline on a clear day.

The Acropolis photographed by Leonhard Niederwimmer

This road trip kicks off in what could very well be the most fascinating city in this part of Europe. Welcome to Athens!

For maximum convenience, Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car at Athens International Airport. Browse through car rental options that support drop-off at another location via Rentalmoose.

Don’t forget to take check-in photos of the car to qualify for a 50% rebate from the excess coverage fee.

Rentalmoose insider tip: Athens is infamous for its notorious traffic jams. Get around the city using public transport and rent your car once you’re ready to leave town.

What can’t you miss in Athens?

Parthenon- the Acropolis

The Parthenon is an absolute must-see in Athens, no matter whether you are into history or not. The elevated rocky hill in the heart of Athens is home to the Parthenon as well as other ancient monuments that make up the famous Acropolis.

Wear comfortable shoes: the Acropolis is on a hilltop and the only way to reach it is by hiking! The walk up to the ruins takes around 15 minutes.

As the Acropolis is undoubtedly the main highlight for tourists in Athens, be sure to book your tickets in advance. Check the official website for details. 

Tickets for the Acropolis cost 20 EUR per person. During the winter (November to the end of March) ticket prices are reduced to 10 EUR. 

If you’re planning to visit other ancient sites, consider purchasing a combined ticket that grants you entrance to the Acropolis, as well as the Ancient Agora, the Roman Agora, Kerameikos, and more. A combined ticket costs 30 EUR and can be purchased online. Keep in mind that you have to visit all of the sites within 5 days, otherwise the ticket expires.

Rentalmoose tip: The Acropolis can get extremely crowded, especially on weekends. Visit the monuments during the week, or near the closing time, to avoid hordes of tourists.

Acropolis Museum

Once you’ve seen the famous Acropolis, make your way to the museum practically across the street.

Inside, you will find loads of precious artifacts dating back to prehistoric times. The Acropolis Museum features a collection of ancient art and items housed in a stunning contemporary building.

Travelers can also visit the archeological excavation area right beneath the museum!

The museum is open all week from 8 AM during the summer season. Admission costs 10 EUR per person. Purchase your tickets online to skip the queue.

UPDATE: As of April 2021, the Acropolis Museum remains closed until further notice. Refer to the official website for more details.

Monastiraki Flea Market

Feel the authentic city vibe as you wander around the streets of the Monastiraki district, one of the oldest parts of Athens. Begin your journey at the picturesque main square, right next to the Monastiraki metro station.

Make sure to step inside the vibrant Monastiraki Flea Market. Shopping freaks will be happy to hear that you can find pretty much anything here! Vendors are selling a variety of goods ranging from clothes to regional delicacies, jewelry, or souvenirs.

An outdoor market in Athens. Photo by Kirkandmimi.

Exploring the narrow streets of Monastiraki will surely wear you out, head up to one of the iconic rooftop bars!

Couleur Locale Athens

Couleur Locale is one of the best rooftop bars/restaurants in Monastiraki, perhaps even in all of Athens. Located just by the main square, the bar offers unbeatable views of Athens and the Acropolis. It’s a perfect backdrop for photos, remember to post your best photos online #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!

Guests can enjoy a tasty lunch, an aromatic cocktail once dusk falls, or a refreshing coffee in the afternoon. Click here for the menu.

What are the best hotels in Athens?

Four Seasons Astir Palace

Luxury travelers should consider checking in at the Four Seasons Astir Palace, a serene beachside getaway just half an hour away from the heart of Athens. The prestigious property features three private beaches, eight onsite restaurants, a world-class spa as well as upscale shopping, bars, and lounges. Greece’s first Four Seasons hotel really is a fabulous one.

Plaka Hotel

If you want to stay in the lively heart of Monastiraki, spend the night at the Plaka Hotel. This 3-star property features 67 modern rooms and suites. After a busy day of exploration, guests can sip on a drink at the rooftop terrace while admiring panoramic views of the Acropolis.

Next on your road trip in Greece: Delphi, 2 hours 20 minutes 7.15 EUR highway toll

Delphi

Ancient sites in Delphi photographed by Konstantin Arzumanidis

Depart Athens and head northwest for a little over 2 hours until you reach Delphi. As this is not an overnight stop, it’s best to leave Athens early in the morning to explore all of what Delphi has to offer.

Is Delphi worth visiting?

Most certainly! The stunning ancient ruins are worth a quick peek at the very least. If you have the extra time, drop by the museum and visit the modern town of Delphi. Spend a few hours in Delphi before continuing on to Volos.

The ancient ruins & the museum

Unarguably, the main highlights of Delphi are the fascinating ruins and archeological sites. Hike around the mountains and explore the Temple of Apollo, the monumental Ancient Theatre, the Stadium, or the Gymnasium where athletes would prepare for the Pythian Games. The sites are open all week from 8 AM to 8 PM.

Rentalmoose insider tip: Get a grasp of the region’s history whilst exploring the ruins of Delphi and download the EasyGuideApp Delphi as your virtual guide. Alternatively, consider booking a traditional guided tour to learn all about these fascinating sites.

Learn even more about the sites and their history at the Delphi Archeological Museum, one of Greece’s most important museums! Open Wednesday-Monday from 8 AM to 8 PM, and between 10 AM and 5 PM on Tuesdays.

Admission tickets cost 12 EUR per adult and 6 EUR per child. The ticket includes entry to the museum as well as the archeological sites. Current prices can be found here.

Taverna Dion

Walking around the sites will surely make you hungry. Before you set off further, follow the main road into the town of Delphi until you reach Taverna Dion, the go-to restaurant in Delphi. The Taverna uses a variety of locally-sourced products to create delicious, regional dishes.

Next on your road trip in Greece: Volos, 2 hours 30 minutes 7.2 EUR Highway Toll

Volos

Landscape of Volos photographed from Mount Pelion by Dimitris Vetsikas.

Follow the spectacular mountain roads, and then make your way to the coastal city of Volos.

What should you see in Volos?

Portaria

Make your way north of Volos and explore the lovely village of Portaria, situated on the steep slopes of Mount Pelion. The village is full of scenic mansions, spectacular viewpoints, and cozy restaurants perfect for dinner. 

You can stretch your legs as you hike around the Centaurs’ Path, or wander around the Spring of Manas. Alternatively, you can visit one of the other 20 villages scattered around Mount Pelion.

Mylopotamos Beach

After exploring the villages around Mount Pelion, head further east until you reach the dreamy Mylopotamos Beach. The white-pebble beach features crystal-clear water, absolutely perfect for a dip, and pristine views of the surrounding cliffs. It is regarded as one of the best beaches in all of mainland Greece, yet remains unspoiled by over-tourism.

Athanasakio Archeological Museum of Volos

History freaks can visit the Athanasakio Archeological Museum of Volos. Apart from various fascinating exhibits from the Neolithic period, guests can also find entire burials that have been incorporated in the exhibition, making for an unforgettable experience.

Open all week except Tuesdays from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Tickets are priced at 4 Euros per adult and 2 Euros for a reduced ticket.

Isalos Beach Club

Admire the sunset while enjoying tasty dinner at the Isalos Beach Club, Volos’ best beach club, and overall trendy hangout. It certainly isn’t the cheapest place to eat or drink in Volos, but the cool experience is well worth it. 

Isalos Beach Club is open all week from 9 AM till 3 AM, and nonstop on weekends.

What are the best places to stay in Volos?

Domotel Xenia Volos

Luxury seekers should most definitely consider checking in at the 5-star Domotel Xenia Volos. This beachfront property features modern rooms with sea views, a spa and wellness center, a beach, and a lively rooftop bar. Not to mention the location near the heart of Volos.

Despotiko

Would you rather stay a bit further from the busy city? Book a room at the stylish Despotiko up in Portaria. This 4-star property located in a chic mansion features stylish decor and an outdoor pool. 

A private car park is available at no extra charge.

Next on your road trip in Greece: Meteora, 1 hour 50 minutes 11.8 EUR Highway toll

Meteora

Meteora’s out-of-this-world scenery photographed by Ioannis Ioannidis

After a day in the coastal town of Volos, it is time to head back inland. A 2-hour drive will take you to Meteora, one of the highlights of mainland Greece.

Is Meteora worth a visit?

Meteora is, without a doubt, worth visiting! Six monasteries situated atop spectacular natural pillars make an impressive sight to say the least. It is no surprise that the monasteries are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The hanging monasteries of Meteora

An absolute must when in Meteora is visiting the clifftop monasteries. Back in the day, they were nearly impossible to access as the monks who spent their time here hardly had any visitors. Today, bridges and stairs have been constructed to make it easier for tourists.

Spectacular views in Meteora photographed by Ioannis Ioannidis

The Great Meteoron Monastery

Great Meteoron Monastery is the most popular one, its history dates back to the 14th century making it the oldest and largest of the six. The Great Meteoron Monastery began the monasticism in the area, it is worth at least a quick peek. 

The hike up the hill takes around 40 minutes one way. The monastery is open between 9 AM and 3 PM. Closed on Tuesdays.

Rentalmoose insider tip: The monasteries tend to get crowded during peak season. It’s best to visit them in the morning or right before the closing time.

Varlaam Monastery

Varlaam Monastery is the second biggest monastery in Meteora, located near the Great Meteoron Monastery. It was founded around 1350 by a monk named Varlaam, who managed to climb the cliff. 

Varlaam monastery is open between 9 AM and 4 PM and remains closed on Tuesdays.

St. Stephen’s Monastery

St. Stephen’s Monastery is perfect for the slightly lazier travelers, as it is the easiest one to access. Forget long hikes and steps, all you have to do is cross one single bridge. Nonetheless, this monastery is just as impressive as the other five. 

St. Stephen’s Monastery is open between 9 AM and 1:30 PM, then 3:30 PM until 5:30 PM. Closed on Mondays. You can check the opening hours and closures of all six monasteries here.

If you have the extra time, be sure to visit the other three monasteries. In that case, consider staying the night in Meteora before departing further.

Next on your road trip in Greece: Litochoro, 2 hours 5.7 EUR Toll

Mount Olympus

Mount Olympus photographed by Ioannis Ioannidis.

A visit to mainland Greece couldn’t possibly be complete without stopping by the monumental Mount Olympus, the tallest mountain in Greece, and one of the country’s national treasures. The mountain is often portrayed in Greek mythology, and now it’s your chance to visit it!

Can you hike Mount Olympus?

Mount Olympus is a well-known destination among trekkers and mountaineers, it is clear to see why. The trailhead begins in the town of Litochoro, the entire trek to the summit is difficult and takes multiple days to complete. There are easier trails for less-experienced tourists, too. 

Check out Olympus Paths for a complete guide to trekking in Mount Olympus, or book a guided tour with them.

Litochoro

Litochoro is a small town at the foot of Mount Olympus, it serves as a base for mountaineers and tourists who are planning to hike to the summit of the mountain. There is a variety of restaurants, shops, accommodation options, and car parks around the town.

St. Dionysios Monastery

When in Litochoro, be sure to visit the St. Dionysios Monastery. Its history dates back to the 1500s. The original monastery was destroyed during WW2 and is currently being restored to bring the monument back to its former glory. It is well worth a visit when in Litochoro, the monastery makes a perfect backdrop for photography.

The monastery can be accessed free of charge. Remember to dress and act appropriately when visiting places of worship.

Check the directions here.

Erato Wine Restaurant

What better way to end a day of hiking than with a delicious Greek dinner? In the evening, make your way to Erato Wine Restaurant, one of the favorite eateries among locals and tourists in Litochoro. The terrific mountain view is worth mentioning, too.

Rentalmoose insider tip: You can’t go wrong with Gyros or locally-sourced grilled meats. The restaurant can get crowded on weekends, be sure to book your table prior to your visit.

The restaurant is open from noon until midnight on weekdays and from 9 AM until midnight on weekends.

Where to stay near Mount Olympus?

Cavo Olympo

Sophisticated travelers will enjoy spending the night at the 5-star Cavo Olympo. The prestigious seafront hotel features chic rooms and suites situated in a beautiful resort, a spa and wellness center, and an outdoor pool.

Cavo Olympo is only for adults, children are not permitted within the hotel.

Mythic Valley

Traveling on a slightly tighter budget? Consider booking a room at the 3-star Mythic Valley, right in the heart of Litochoro. This property offers stylish rooms with free wi-fi and a complimentary breakfast buffet, all at a price that doesn’t break the bank. 

Next on your road trip in Greece: Vergina, 1 hour

Vergina

The Royal Tombs in Vergina photographed by DocWoKav/Wikimedia Commons.

This optional leg of the journey requires a small detour on your way to Thessaloniki. The detour adds around 40 minutes extra to the total driving time, it is well worth it for history freaks.

What can you do in Vergina?

Vergina is a small village around an hour away from the center of Thessaloniki. At first, it may not look particularly interesting. The village, however, is home to one of the most important archeological sites in Greece.

Museum of The Royal Tombs of Aigai

The Royal Tombs of Aigai are an absolute must-see for any history buff visiting mainland Greece. The somewhat remote location of Vergina makes it often overlooked by international tourists, don’t make the same mistake! The museum is situated atop underground tombs. Royal tombs, to be precise. What makes the tombs of Aigai royal?

The Royal Tombs of Aigai are home to Phillip II or the Phillip of Macedon. Primarily known as the father of Alexander the Great, one of the most famous figures of the ancient world. Guests can also see the (apparent) tomb of Alexander’s child, Alexander IV, as well as a collection of precious artifacts found during the excavation. The experience is truly unforgettable.

Admission tickets to the museum and archeological sites cost 12 EUR per adult and 6 EUR per child. If you want to explore the local museums further, purchase a combined ticket for 15 EUR. Guided tours are available, it’s best to book one ahead of your visit.

The museum is open all week until 8 PM.

Next on your road trip in Greece: Thessaloniki, 55 minutes 1.2 EUR Toll

Thessaloniki

Photography by Emilia Babalau-Maghiar.

The final leg of the journey is a 70-km drive east towards Thessaloniki, the second-largest city in Greece and the vibrant heart of this part of the country.

Is Thessaloniki worth visiting?

Most definitely! Thessaloniki is a diverse, fascinating city. Deep-rooted in history, full of waterfront bars, and a trendy, coastal vibe, Thessaloniki is the perfect place to visit during your road trip around mainland Greece.

White Tower of Thessaloniki

No visit to Thessaloniki could be complete without a photo by the White Tower of Thessaloniki

The waterfront landmark is located within walking distance of other attractions (Ladadika District and Tsimiski Street), that’s why Rentalmoose recommends parking your rental car at a car park near the White Tower for the day. Finding an on-street parking spot is nearly impossible during peak season, a private car park costs around 2 EUR per hour.

After you get your photo with the famous White Tower (remember to post it online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!), you can enter the museum that spans across 6 floors of the tower. Then, make your way to the viewing terrace and enjoy panoramic views of the city.

The tower is open all week from 8 AM to 8 PM. Admission costs 8 EUR per adult and 4 EUR per reduced ticket.

Ladadika District

Be sure to go for a stroll around the vibrant Ladadika District in the very heart of Thessaloniki. Ladadika is the go-to spot for nightlife, entertainment, and dining near the sea. Back when Thessaloniki was ruled by the Ottomans, Ladadika was a large market. Today, the market is gone and the traditional buildings have been turned into charming bars and restaurants.

Ouzou Melathron

Out of all the delicious eateries and taverns around Ladadika, Ouzou Melathron has got to be one of the best ones. Try some of the best Greek cuisine accompanied by a glass of aromatic Ouzou (if you’re not the driver, of course) while dining outdoors on the vivid street.

Open all week between 1 PM and 1 AM.

Tsimiski Street

Tsimiski Street is Thessaloniki’s main shopping avenue. The 1.2 kilometer-long street is lined with high-end boutiques, making it perfect for shopping freaks. You can also catch a movie at the multiplex cinema located in the Plateia shopping mall or go for a coffee at a waterfront cafe nearby. 

Rentalmoose insider tip: If you can’t find a parking spot near Tsimiski Avenue, head to Plateia’s shopping mall car park and leave your rental car there.

Where are the best beaches near Thessaloniki?

Halkidiki Peninsula

Explore some of the best sandy beaches in mainland Greece when you visit the Halkidiki Peninsula just a drive away from the city. There are over 50 pristine beaches waiting for you! Halkidiki Peninsula is perfect for a day trip from the city.

Armenistis Beach

Armenistis Beach is perfect for active beachgoers and well worth the 3-hour drive from Thessaloniki. Crystal-clear waters, soft sands, and beautiful surrounding areas are guaranteed. There are lots of amenities, including sunbeds and umbrellas and watersport activities at your disposal.

Continue reading if you’d rather visit a beach near Thessaloniki.

Agia Triada Beach

Agia Triada Beach is a long beach just 20km away from the center of Thessaloniki. The beach features crystal waters and lots of activities, bars and waterfront restaurants. Despite its attractiveness, the beach remains calm for the majority of the season.

What are the best hotels in Thessaloniki?

The Met Hotel

Luxury seekers should check-in at the 5-star Met Hotel. The property is conveniently located in Thessaloniki’s New Port and offers modern decor, a spa, and a magnificent rooftop pool that overlooks the city.

Plaza Hotel

Are you traveling on a tighter budget? Consider spending the night at the Plaza Hotel, a stylish 3-star hotel located near the heart of Thessaloniki. The property features modern, chic rooms, suites with a sea view, delicious breakfast, and a great location, all at a reasonable price.

Drop-off

For maximum convenience, drop off your rental car directly at Thessaloniki Airport “Makedonia” when leaving Greece. Browse through car rental options that support airport drop-off and drop-off at another location via Rentalmoose.

Don’t forget to book your rental car via Rentalmoose for your next road trip in Greece. On our platform, you can find the top rental companies at the best price, along with tens of curated travel guides around the globe. Get your car from Rentalmoose!

We plant a tree for every booking made with our platform.

Post your pictures from your next road trip in Greece online using #Rentalmoose! Our favorite ones will be featured in the upcoming blog posts.

The ultimate Rhodes Itinerary By Car

Rhodes is a breathtaking Greek paradise within the Dodecanese Islands, near the coast of Turkey. The island’s pristine beaches, archeological sites, scenic roads, and traditional restaurants are scattered all across the island, making Rhodes the perfect destination for a road trip. Plan your ideal Rhodes road trip with this comprehensive travel itinerary!

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

East Coast of Rhodes to Lindos- 50 kilometers (30 miles)📍

South of Rhodes to Prasonisi- 50 kilometers (30 miles)📍

West Coast of Rhodes- 160 kilometers (100 miles)📍 

260 kilometers (160 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, Greece, Beach, foodie, scenic roads, history

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

The total driving distance is a little over 250 kilometers. That said, Rentalmoose recommends dedicating 4 days for this road trip at the very least. Spend a day to explore the city of Rhodes, then make overnight stops in Lindos and the Elafos Hotel near Mussolini’s Villa.

If you want to explore each location thoroughly, spend at least a week on the road.

What is the best time of the year to visit Rhodes?

The best time to visit Rhodes, much like any other Greek island, is right before the peak season begins (early June), or after it finishes (late August). That way, you can enjoy the perfect summer weather without the hordes of tourists that come to Rhodes during peak season.

Why should you get a rental car in Rhodes?

Rhodes is ideal to be discovered by a rental car. Tourist attractions are scattered all over the island, and some of the pristine beaches can only be accessed by car or on foot. Not to mention the ability to alter your itinerary on the go, freely extend your trip or end it before schedule.

Public transport around Greece tends to be rather hectic for international tourists. Most ticketing booths and schedules are available in Greek only, and buses irregularly travel between destinations. Not to mention the crowds and the fact that bus tickets can only be purchased in cash at the booths, right before leaving.

A cabriolet is the most fun type of car you can get in Rhodes. Photography by Manolis D

Road trip extensions

Turkish Riviera

The breathtaking Turkish Riviera is just a ferry ride away from Rhodes! The ferry from the city of Rhodes will take you to Marmaris, you can then make your way across the picturesque Riviera and see its incredible natural beauty and serene beaches. Click here for the guide.

Santorini

There are regular ferries between Rhodes and Santorini around twice every week. The journey takes about 8 hours, but experiencing the otherworldly scenery of Santorini is well worth it. Click here for the Rentalmoose guide to Santorini.

Mainland Greece

If you’re a fan of long road trips, our Athens to Thessaloniki travel itinerary is definitely worth considering! The 1000km journey will take you across the spectacular sites in mainland Greece, such as the hanging monasteries of Meteora or the famous Mount Olympus.

Can tourists drive in Rhodes?

Yes! As Greece is a member of the European Union, tourists can use their domestic driving licenses issued in other EU-member states. Travelers who do not have a driving license issued in an EU-country should obtain an International Driving Permit (click here to learn all about them).

Driving in Greece for first-timers might be overwhelming at first. Locals tend to drive aggressively without much regard for others, be extra cautious when driving a rental car around Santorini, and make sure to get excess coverage provided by Rentalmoose when booking your vehicle.

Don’t forget to take check-in photos when picking up your rental car, that way you are eligible for a 50% rebate from the excess coverage fee.

Once you’re all set, let’s dive into your Rhodes itinerary by car!

City of Rhodes

Palace of The Grand Master of The Knights of Rhodes. Photography by Peter Linter.

Welcome to the sunny island of Rhodes! For maximum convenience, Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car directly when you arrive at Rhodes International Airport.

Browse through car rental options that support airport pick-up via Rentalmoose.

Once you’ve picked up your rental car, make your way to the city of Rhodes at the northern tip of the island. Any great Rhodes itinerary will include a few days in the City of Rhodes, and ours is no different.

The island’s capital is full of traditional architecture, a monumental castle, and beaches.

What can you do in Rhodes?

Palace of The Grand Master of The Knights of Rhodes

The Palace of The Grand Master of The Knights of Rhodes, often simply referred to as Kastello by locals, is one of the very few examples of Gothic architecture in Greece. The structure dates back to the 7th century and has undergone restoration in the 20th century.

Visitors can tour the castle, where some of the chambers are home to art exhibitions, while others display precious artifacts.

The castle is set within Rhodes’ Old Town, you can walk around and explore the charming area.

The castle is open daily between 8 AM and 8 PM, however, the exhibitions are open only until 5 PM. Admission tickets cost 8 EUR per adult and 4 EUR per child.

A charming alley somewhere in the city of Rhodes. Photography by Kirkandmimi.

The Acropolis of Rhodes

The remains of the Acropolis of Rhodes are situated atop the Monte Smith hill. The archeological site includes remains of an ancient stadium, a temple, and a restored Roman Odeon where events are still held today.

The panoramic view from the summit of Monte Smith hill is especially spectacular during sunset.

The site is open 24 hours a day, entry is free.

This archeological site is without a doubt one of the must-visit attractions that deserves to be on every Rhodes itinerary.

Elli Beach

Elli Beach is the go-to waterfront hangout in the city of Rhodes. The cosmopolitan beach is known for its crystal-clear water, perfect for a dip. The lively beach is full of watersport activities, sunbeds available for rent, and waterfront bars and restaurants.

Once you’ve soaked enough of the sun, you can cross the street and gamble at the Casino Rodos, or admire some of the wildlife at the small aquarium right off the beach.

Finding a parking spot might be tough around the peak tourist season. Try this free car park just a short walk away from the beach.

Alexis 4 Seasons Seafood Restaurant

On an island like Rhodes, trying the local seafood is an absolute must! Once you get hungry, head over to Alexis 4 Seasons Seafood Restaurant in the old town. The upscale restaurant serves delicious seafood such as shrimps, seabass, or cuttlefish. The charming outdoor area located in the heart of Rhodes’ old town is the cherry on top.

As the restaurant is quite popular, be sure to book ahead during the peak season. The restaurant is open all week from noon until midnight.

What are the best hotels in Rhodes?

Mitsis Grand Hotel Beach Hotel

Sophisticated travelers should check-in at the 5-star Mitsis Grand Hotel. This vibrant beachfront resort, located in the heart of Elli Beach, features spacious rooms and suites with sea views, three pools (both indoor and outdoor). There is also one extra pool with fresh water for children, a spa, and six different restaurants.

Mitsis Grand Hotel is the only 5-star beachfront hotel in the city of Rhodes.

Marco Polo Mansion

Enjoy a stylish trip back in time when you stay at the Marco Polo Mansion, a 3-star hotel set within the narrow streets of Rhodes’ old town.

The hotel is known for its tasteful decor, perfect location, and a great restaurant. Treat yourself to a Greek dinner in the green outdoor area, or go for a stroll around the authentic old town.

Next on your Rhodes itinerary: Lindos, 1 hour

East Coast to Lindos

Beach of Lindos. Photography Emilian Robert Vicol.

Head south along the east coast of Rhodes, leaving the city behind. Before you get to Lindos, there are various attractions worth visiting dotted across the east coast of Rhodes. Here are some of the best ones, consider adding them to your Rhodes itinerary.

Kallithea Springs

Kallithea Springs is less than 10 kilometers from the city. The thermal springs have been around since the ancient times, and were brought to international fame by the Italians in the early 20th century.

Today, the springs have been refurbished and turned into a lavish retreat. Monumental yet tasteful architecture, authentic decor, a crystal-clear bay with a top-rated beach bar, and the hot springs themselves, of course, all attract international tourists as well as locals. 

The exclusive getaway is open all week from 8 AM to 6 PM. Admission costs around 5 EUR, paid upon entrance. If you want to use the sunbeds, you’ll have to spend at least 5 EUR in the cafe.

If thermal baths aren’t exactly your thing, why not drop by simply to enjoy the views? Photo by Dimitri Houtteman

WaterPark in Faliraki

A short 5-minute drive south from the Kallithea Springs will take you to Ammoudes, a beachfront resort. There are various attractions here, including the Faliraki public beach, though the WaterPark remains the absolute highlight.

From thrill-seekers to families with small children, everyone will find activities suitable for them at the WaterPark. Choose from a variety of waterslides, pools, and attractions.

The WaterPark is open all week between 9:30 AM and 7 PM. 

1-day admission costs 24 EUR per adult and 16 EUR per child. Purchase tickets either upon entry or online.

A scenic coastal drive on the East Coast of Rhodes. Photo by Erik Karits

Anthony Quinn Bay

Another stop worth making on your way to Lindos is the spectacular Anthony Quinn Bay, named after the great Mexican-American actor. It features a small beach surrounded by the rocky bay perfect for sunbathing (sunbeds are available), clear water ideal for swimming, and scenic surroundings.  

Photography by Denimeij

Taverna Epta Piges

This marvelous lunch spot is located a little further inland, though the delicious food and serene scenery are well worth the detour.

Head to Taverna Epta Piges, located within the beautiful Seven Springs, for an unforgettable culinary experience. This taverna is a must-visit on any Rhodes itinerary.

The tavern features an outdoor area set in the heart of the Seven Springs, providing spectacular views to accompany your meals. Taverna Epta Piges serves the finest Greek cuisine, meals are made from locally-sourced ingredients and are cooked to perfection. Give it a shot!

After lunch, feel free to explore the picturesque Seven Springs itself.

Rentalmoose order tip: Taverna Epta Piges is famous for their juicy grilled meats, why not try a steak? Perhaps order a portion of Dolmadakia, minced meat and rice wrapped in vine leaves.

Taverna Epta Piges is open all week from 9 AM to 11 PM.

Tsambika Beach

If you’ve enjoyed your time at the Anthony Quinn Bay, just wait until you see this! Tsambika Beach looks straight out of a fairytale, with golden sands spanning the shore and plenty of activities.

You can rent a sunbed and umbrella for just a few euros, or go for a swim in the pristine water. Adrenaline junkies can rent jet skis or participate in one of the various exciting watersport activities.

There are various waterfront restaurants (taverns), snack bars, and a casual beach club, too. 

Despite its popularity, Tsambika Beach is hardly ever crowded, even during the summer months. You can leave your rental car right by the beach.

Acropolis of Lindos

The Acropolis of Lindos is perhaps the most fascinating archeological site in all of Rhodes. The hilltop remains date back to the 6th century BC. The walk up from modern-day Lindos can be exhausting, but the fascinating Acropolis is well worth it. 

Alternatively, you can get a donkey ride to the top for less than 10 euros, though animal rights activists urge tourists not to do so.

Once you’re atop the hill, you can explore the remains of ancient Lindos, including the ruins of the monumental Athena’s Temple, or photograph the panoramic coastal views. 

Admission to the acropolis of Lindos costs 12 EUR per adult and 6 EUR per child. The site is open daily from 8 AM to 8 PM.

Photography by Kirkandmimi

Taverna Kamariko

Another evening on a Greek island means another unforgettable dinner in an authentic tavern. When you get hungry in Lindos, head to Taverna Kamariko near the heart of town. Leave your rental car at the hotel and feast on regional specialties accompanied by a glass of aromatic ouzo.

The tavern is open all week between noon and 3 PM (lunch service), and 6:30 PM and 11 PM (dinner service).

Where to stay in Lindos?

Mitsis Lindos

Sophisticated travelers should consider booking a room at the prestigious Mitsis Lindos. The monumental 5-star hotel features a fantastic beachfront location, modern rooms, a spa, an outdoor pool, a private sandy beach, and Italian decor both inside and out.

Mitsis Lindos is an adult-only hotel.

Lambis Studios

Looking for the best budget hotel in Lindos? Give Lambis Studios a shot. The 3-star property offers well-equipped rooms, an outdoor pool, a snack bar with pool tables, and a good location near the heart of town, all for a reasonable price.

Next on your Rhodes itinerary: Prasonisi, 55 minutes

Prasonisi- South of Rhodes

Photography by Ri Butov.

After a night in the town of Lindos, make your way south towards the southernmost tip of Rhodes.

Mojito Beach Bar

Take a break from driving at Mojito Beach Bar, one of the trendiest hangouts in this part of Rhodes, located around half an hour away from Lindos. Cool down in the crystal-clear sea, relax on the sunbeds or enjoy some of the snacks and drinks while listening to lounge music in the background. 

Mojito Beach Bar is open all week from 8:30 AM until midnight.

 Prasonisi

This peninsula is loved by windsurfers and kiteboarders. During low tide, the small island is connected to Rhodes by a slim trail of golden sand, which vanishes as the tide rises. The peninsula is a perfect spot to see sunsets, try out kiteboarding, or sit back and enjoy the views.

If you’re interested in windsurfing, you can rent equipment or book lessons through Prasonisi Center.

Prasonisi Peninsula during low tide. Photo by postcardtrip.

Once you get hungry (or thirsty), step inside one of the beachfront taverns or laid-back bars. Lighthouse Tavern is one of the best eateries in Prasonisi.

Next on your Rhodes itinerary: West & Central Rhodes, 4 hours

West of Rhodes

The absolutely spectacular clifftop castle of Monolithos photographed by Ri Butov.

As you leave Prasonisi behind, follow the main coastal road along the west coast of Rhodes. This part of the island, much like the other coast, is dotted with exciting attractions. The first one is around 50 minutes away from Prasonisi. Make sure you see them on your Rhodes itinerary.

What should you see in the West of Rhodes?

Castle of Monolithos

The ruins of the Castle of Monolithos (pictured above) are a spectacular sight, and an absolute must on any Rhodes itinerary. The remains of the 15th-century castle are situated on top of a cliff, opening up to astonishing views of the sea.

Keep in mind that you will have to use your imagination to picture what the castle must have looked like back in its glory days, as it isn’t exactly well-preserved. Despite its condition, the ruins are most definitely worth seeing. Wear comfy shoes, there is some hiking to be done!

The ruins can be accessed 24 hours a day. Admission to the ruins of the Monolithos Castle is free of charge.

Rhodes is a photographer’s paradise and the Castle of Monolithos is just one of many unique photo opportunities.

Kritinia Castle

The Kritinia Castle is just around 40 minutes away from the ruins of the Castle of Monolithos. The Kritinia Castle dates back to the 1470s and was used by the Italians as a base back in the 20th century. Hence, the ruins are a mix of architectural styles from different periods of time,

Just like the Castle of Monolithos, Kritinia Castle can be accessed 24 hours per day with no entrance fee.

If you don’t have the time to see both Kritinia and Monolithos castles, pick the latter one. The Castle of Monolithos is arguably better for a short visit, due to its scenic setting.

Mussolini’s Villa

After the Castle of Kritinia, head inland towards the mountains. Take the winding roads up to the summit of Profitis Ilias, the highest point of Rhodes. The scenic drive will take you all the way to the summit, where you can explore Mussolini’s abandoned villa and spend the night in a chalet-style hotel.

The now-abandoned villa was supposed to be Benito Mussolini’s summer retreat where he would spend his retirement. However, the Italian dictator was executed and had never actually visited the villa.

Today, what’s left of the monumental villa has become one of the top spots for urban exploration in Rhodes. The eerie villa can be explored both inside and out. As the building isn’t maintained or taken care of in any way, shape, or form, its condition is getting worse every year. Get a chance to see it before it’s completely ruined.

Paraga Restaurant

Are you looking for the best food in Rhodes? The ultimate Greek culinary experience? Head down to the Paraga Restaurant in Apollona, just 10 minutes away from the summit of Profitis Ilias. 

Paraga is widely regarded as one of the best restaurants in Rhodes that serves authentic Rhodian cuisine. The restaurant itself is located in a traditional home, making the entire experience even more unforgettable.

Rentalmoose order tip: When in Greece, you can’t go wrong with juicy Souvlaki, or grilled meat. Paraga serves incredible lamb chops.

The restaurant is open all week from noon until 8:30 PM, 9 PM on Saturdays.

Elafos Hotel

The top of the mountain is home to the charming Elafos Hotel, where you can pop in for dinner or spend the night. The 3-star property features rooms with scenic views and an onsite cafe. 

The chalet-style hotel in the mountains is a dramatic change of scenery from the coastal parts of the island.

Another look at the Castle of Monolithos and its spectacular surrounding area. Photo by Milengga.

The Valley of The Butterflies

Continue following the chicanes until you reach The Valley of The Butterflies. Just like the name suggests, this stunning nature park is home to thousands of butterflies. Sadly, tourism reduced the butterfly population, yet the valley still remains a must-see in Rhodes.

The colorful insects are attracted by the sweetgum tree forest (the only natural forest of oriental sweetgum trees in Europe!) and the valley’s humid climate. Guests can stroll around the park and admire vibrant butterflies of practically all colors.

The park is open all week between 8:30 AM and 4:30 PM. Admission tickets cost just 5 EUR, children can enter free of charge.

Koskinou

Before you get back to the city of Rhodes, consider stopping at the picturesque village of Koskinou, a beautiful hilltop village just 5 kilometers away from Rhodes Town. 

Koskinou is favored among photographers for its beautiful whitewashed buildings with colorful front doors, countless mosaics, and green courtyards. The narrow streets are perfect for an afternoon stroll.

Step inside Almiro Gliko in the heart of Koskinou for a refreshing snack before leaving.

Drop-off

For maximum convenience, drop off your rental car at Rhodes International Airport right before leaving. Browse through car rental options that support airport drop-off via Rentalmoose.

DON’T HAVE A CAR YOU CAN TAKE ON A ROAD TRIP? NO PROBLEM!

Don’t forget to book your rental car via Rentalmoose for your next adventure. This Rhodes itinerary is perfect to follow by rental car.

On our platform, you can find the top rental companies at the best price, along with tens of curated travel guides around the globe. Get your car from Rentalmoose!

We plant a tree for every booking made with our platform.

Post your pictures from your trip following our Rhodes itinerary and tag #Rentalmoose! Our favorite ones will be featured in the upcoming blog posts.

The best Baltic Road Trip Itinerary for the Summer

The best Baltic road trip for the summer

Whenever you think of a summer getaway in Europe, you probably think of Italy, Cote D’Azur, or the Turkish Riviera. This summer, spice things up and go on a road trip around the underrated Baltics! This travel guide will help you plan your ultimate road trip around Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (Click the red pins for directions):

Tallinn to Haapsalu- 100 kilometers (60 miles) 📍

Haapsalu to Parnu- 110 kilometers (65 miles) 📍

Parnu to Riga- 180 kilometers (110 miles) 📍

Riga to Jurmala- 40 kilometers (25 miles) 📍

Jurmala to Klaipeda- 255 kilometers (160 miles) 📍

Klaipeda to Kaunas- 215 kilometers (135 miles) 📍

Kaunas to Vilnius- 100 kilometers (60 miles) 📍

1000 kilometers (600 miles) in total

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

The overall length of this road trip is a little over 1000 kilometers. Rentalmoose recommends dedicating at least 6 days (5 overnight stops) for this adventure at the very least.

To truly experience the best of what each destination has to offer, spend at least 10 days on the road.

What is the best time to visit the Baltics?

The best time to visit Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania is definitely during the Summer (June-August) or late Spring (from May).

The tourist season peaks during the Summer break, which is from late June till the end of August. Expect some spots to get crowded, and hotel prices to be higher than off-season.

You can pick up your rental car directly as you arrive in Tallinn, and drop it off in Vilnius before leaving.

Browse through car rental options that support airport pick-up and drop-off at another location via Rentalmoose. Add excess coverage, just in case.

When picking up your rental car, use the Rentalmoose app to take check-in photos of the condition of the vehicle.

If you take check-in photos of the car, you can qualify for a 50% rebate from the excess coverage fee.

Trip Extensions

Explore the Baltics even further with these two road trip extensions, curated by Rentalmoose.

The Manors of Estonia

Did you know that Estonia has over 400 beautiful manors and castles? Many of them have been turned into unique hotels, restaurants, or museums.

Drive across Estonia and visit the best manors around the country. Click here for the guide.

Rental Moose mascot posing with the facade of Kau Manor in Estonia.

Poland

Once you’re in Vilnius, Poland is just a few hours away. Scenic natural beauty, sandy beaches and vibrant cities await.

Plan your Polish getaway with this Rentalmoose travel guide to Poland.

Can tourists drive in the Baltics?

Definitely! Keep in mind that the road regulations may slightly vary depending on the country you’re in.

Estonia

Estonia – the country where Rentalmoose, Skype, and TransferWise all come from – accepts most of the driving licenses in the world. International Driving Permits (click to learn all about them) are not mandatory when driving in Estonia.

Latvia

Tourists from most countries, including EU-citizens and Americans, can use their domestic license to drive in Latvia. If you’re unsure, contact your local government office, or get an IDP.

Lithuania

You can use your domestic driving license in Lithuania as long as it has a photo. If not, you need to have a photo ID along with the driver’s license. International Driving Permits are not mandatory.

All three nations have right-hand side traffic.

Now that you’re all set, let’s dive into your Baltic road trip!

Tallinn

Tallinn old town, vibrant square full of outdoor restaurants and tourists wandering around. Large medieval cathedral in the background and traditional architecture.

Tallinn’s old town photographed by Erkko Vuorensola.

Welcome to Tallinn, the capital of Estonia and the birthplace of Rentalmoose! For maximum convenience, pick up your rental car directly from the airport and explore this vibrant city.

What are the best places to see in Tallinn?

The Old Town

While you’re in town, be sure to visit Tallinn’s famous old town. It’s one of the best-preserved medieval cities in this part of Europe, hence it’s a highlight for practically all tourists visiting this city. Here are some of the best attractions in the old town.

Raekoja Plats

The heart of the old town, the Town Hall Square, is certainly worth a stroll. Step inside one of the numerous cafes and enjoy the medieval architecture. Visiting in winter? Be sure to attend the magical Christmas market!

Kohtuotsa Viewing Point

Take in the best view of the city from the Kohtuotsa Viewing Platform. Walk up the hill and enjoy the panoramic views. The city’s skyline makes for a perfect backdrop for photos.

Remember to post your best photos online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!

Admission to the viewing platform is free of charge.

If you have the extra time, visit the Town Hall Pharmacy and St Olav’s Church.

Balti Jaam Market

Satisfy your shopping needs at the Balti Jaam Market, Tallinn’s go-to market. You can find nearly everything there, ranging from clothing to fresh produce and delicious street food.

The market is open Monday to Saturday from 9 AM to 7 PM and from 9 AM to 5 PM on Sundays.

Noa Chef’s Hall

Getting hungry? Book a table at Noa Chef’s Hall, Tallinn’s exquisite fine-dining restaurant. Enjoy a selection of delicious dishes from their wine-tasting menu paired with aromatic wine all while looking at the Bay of Tallinn.

As this top-rated restaurant can get crowded, be sure to book ahead of your visit. Tables can be booked via Noa Chef’s Hall’s website.

Restaurant Moon

Traveling on a tighter budget?

Give Restaurant Moon a shot, it’s one of the best places in town where you can find modern Russian cuisine. As this is one of the top picks in town, be sure to book a table in advance.

Open from noon to 11 PM Monday to Saturday, and between 1 and 9 PM on Sundays. 

Looking for more attractions in Tallinn? Check out our travel guide through Estonia’s castles and manors to find more fun things to do in town!

What are the best hotels in Tallinn?

Hotels in the Old Town

Sophisticated travelers can choose from a variety of high-end hotels in Tallinn. Some of the Rentalmoose favorites include The 3 Sisters Boutique Hotel, Schlössle, or Hotel Telegraaf.

Hotels in the City Center

If you’d rather stay in the city center, consider booking a room at the Swissotel or Hilton. Both of them are conveniently located in the heart of Tallinn!

Radisson Blu Tallinn, one of our favorite properties in town, is currently closed. The hotel is expected to re-open in Q1 2022.

Next on your Baltic road trip: Haapsalu, 1 hour 20 minutes

Haapsalu

haapsalu cute white buildings with red roofs, seen from haapsalu castle. City view, surrounded by trees and baltic sea in the background.

View from the top of the castle in Haapsalu photographed by Tiia Monto.

Is Haapsalu worth visiting?

For sure! This charming town was once the go-to vacation getaway for the Russian aristocracy. Today, the town is known for its beautiful promenade, traditional streets, great restaurants and a picturesque railway station.

Haapsalu Promenade

Stroll down the waterfront promenade in Haapsalu. Step inside the Old Haapsalu Town Hall where you can learn more about the region’s history. Tickets cost 4 Euros per person, open until 5 PM between Wednesday and Sunday.

After a visit to the museum, enjoy delicious lunch at Wiigi Kohvik. This restaurant, located along the promenade, offers tasty desserts, colorful drinks, and affordable meals, enjoy them with a panoramic view of the sea.

Haapsalu Castle

Later, head inland and wander around the narrow streets of the cute town of Haapsalu. Be sure to visit the Haapsalu Castle. Guests can climb the top of the castle to get the best views of this town! Open daily between 10 AM and 6 PM.

Next on your Baltic road trip: Pärnu, 1 hour 20 minutes

Pärnu

aerial view of parnu. waterfront buildings and parks, bridge connecting to mainland. sunset in estonia.

Aerial view of Pärnu, shot by Kristian Pikner

What can you do in Parnu?

Parnu Beach

Be sure to visit the sandy Parnu Beach, a true highlight of this Estonian town. Located just 15 minutes away from the city center, the large sandy beach offers everything a beachgoer needs: calm sea, white sand, surfing equipment rentals, and stalls that sell snacks and refreshments. 

Tervise Paradiis Spa & Water Park

Traveling with kids? Visit the Tervise Paradiis Hotel, an action-packed property in Parnu. Thrill-seekers can spend their day at the water park (admission starts at 18 Euros per adult). Alternatively, you can relax a the spa or go for lunch in the hotel restaurant.

What are the best places to eat in Parnu?

Superlsaksad

Once you get hungry, consider heading to Supelsaksad. Although the restaurant serves great regional food, they are famous for their freshly-prepared cakes and desserts. Open until 10 PM on weekdays and 11 PM on weekends.

Rentalmoose order tip: Their lamb salad is to die for!

If you’d rather go to a different place, consider booking a table at Villa Ammende, Villa Wesset, or Mon Ami.

Which hotel should you book in Parnu?

Luxurious hotels

Sophisticated guests will find themselves at home at the classy Villa Ammende. Would you rather stay at a beachfront hotel? Take a look at the Hedon Spa. if you haven’t fallen in love with these two hotels, book a room at Rosenplanter

Budget-friendly hotels

Would you rather stay at a more affordable hotel? Consider checking into the beachfront Rannahotell, Strand Spa & Conference Hotel, or the Estonia Medical Spa.

Next on your Baltic road trip: Riga, 4 hours 30 minutes

Riga

Medieval buildings in the heart of the old town of Riga, Latvia. Panoramic view of riga's old town from above on a sunny day in the Baltics.

The heart of Riga photographed by the talented Ecksplorer.

After a four and a half hour drive from Parnu, you will arrive in the capital city of Latvia. Welcome to Riga!

What to see in Riga?

Old Town

When in Riga, make sure to visit the picturesque old town. A quick look around will be enough to realize why people often call Riga “Paris of the North”. Soak in the vibe from one of the vibrant cafes or wander around and admire the architecture.

House of The Black Heads

Step inside the House of The Black Heads, a famous museum and venue for countless exhibitions and events. Look at the building’s facade or step inside and follow the trails of history along the decorative rooms and chambers. Open daily from 10 AM to 6 PM.

St. Peter’s Church

You can’t miss the monumental St. Peter’s Church in the heart of Riga’s old town. There are regular concerts at the church, be sure to check the official website for the schedule!

Open daily until 7 PM.

Riga Central Market

Rentalmoose loves heading to local markets in cities around the world. Riga is no different, the Central Market is actually Europe’s biggest market! 

Riga Central Market is so iconic that it has earned itself a spot as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is one of the most important places in all of Latvia, and a must-see for tourists.

Stroll around the bazaar and check out the vendors who sell all kinds of goods and souvenirs. Open all week between 7 AM and 6 PM. 

Portofino

Take a break from regional cuisine and head for lunch to Portofino, the best Italian restaurant in Riga. Choose from a variety of Italian dishes, including fresh oysters, aromatic pizza, or vegan alternatives. 

Rentalmoose insider tip: As this is one of the most popular eateries in Riga, booking in advance is recommended.

Open 7 days a week from noon until 11 PM.

What is the best hotel in Riga?

Pullman Riga Old Town

If you’re looking for the most exquisite and luxurious stay in Riga, check-in at the Pullman. This prestigious 5-star property features spacious rooms and suites, delicious cuisine at the restaurant, and lots of amenities.

Tallink hotel

Traveling on a tighter budget doesn’t necessarily mean having to stay at bad hotels. In fact, Tallink Hotel is one of the best-rated hotels in Riga, yet the room prices are beyond reasonable. 

Art freaks take note: The Latvian National Museum of Art is a short 15-minute walk from the hotel!

Next on your Baltic road trip: Jurmala, 40 minutes

Jurmala

jurmala sunset at beach. Beautiful orange sky reflects in the surface of the baltic sea, sandy beach and one person standing in the water in the distance.

Sunset at Jurmala Beach photographed by Egor-220.

Jurmala is a scenic resort town just half an hour away from Riga. Head here on your way to Klaipeda, or on a separate day trip from Riga. Either way, Jurmala is worth a visit!

Why should you visit Jurmala?

Jurmala Beach

Jurmala is best known for its long, vibrant Jurmala Beach. You definitely have to visit it during your road trip!

Sunbathe on the golden sand, go for a dip in the Baltic Sea, or come in the evening and attend one of the legendary parties. Speaking of parties, check out this next location.

Legend Restaurant & Beach Club

If you’re a fan of luxurious beach clubs, be sure to visit Legend when in Jurmala. Once you’re inside, you might feel like you’ve entered Nikki Beach or a vivid beach club in Miami.

Legend features a top-rated restaurant with seafront dining, a heated outdoor pool, and a selection of drinks as well as shisha.

Enjoying the vibe at Legend does come at a high price, though. Sunbeds start at 30 euros, while poolside beds cost 120 euros.

Faces

When you’re hungry, head into the city and go for lunch or dinner at Faces. This trendy eatery is one of the best spots in town to enjoy fresh seafood. Great service and an unforgettable experience are guaranteed!

Open all week until 11 PM. 

Next on your Baltic road trip: Klaipeda, 3 hours 20 minutes

Klaipeda

white church in klaipeda, lithuania. beautiful architecture, church is surrounded by green grass and trees lurking into the frame. sunny day.

Photography by Drakonas

After you leave Jurmala, it’s time to enter the next country on this road trip. Say hello to Lithuania! Your first stop here is the town of Klaipeda.

What are the top attractions in Klaipeda?

Lithuanian Sea Museum

Admire and learn about all kinds of marine life when you visit the Lithuanian Sea Museum. The museum consists of different aquariums, exhibitions, and a dolphinarium. You can even book your own individual session with the dolphins!

Admission tickets start at 7 euros per adult and 3.5 euros per child. Purchase your tickets online to save time.

Curonian Spit

Spend a day out in nature when you visit the Curonian Spit National Park. The impressive sandy peninsula is almost 100 kilometers long in total, and it has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its natural beauty.

Ferry

The easiest way to get to the park is via a ferry from Klaipeda to Smiltyne. The ride only takes a few minutes, click here for the ferry schedule.

Note that there are two different ferry terminals in Klaipeda. The old terminal, located in the city center, is just for travelers on foot and bicycles. The new ferry terminal, located further from the city center, is for cars as well as travelers on foot, bicycles, trucks, and buses.

Klaipeda ferry service is the best way to get to the Curonian Spit. Ferry boat seen from above, leaving the old ferry port in the center of Klaipeda

Once on the Spit, drive down the road (there is only one road that can be accessed by car, bicycle, or on foot) and observe as the sand dunes and forests roll by. You can even cross into Russia, as long as you are not on foot.

Keep in mind that there is an ecological charge of 20 euros when entering the park.

Klaipeda Castle

Return back to city life and visit the monumental Klaipeda Castle. This Teutonic castle’s history dates back all the way to the 1200s, making it a true gem for history fans. Step inside the chambers and enjoy a trip back in time as you wander around the museum.

Admission costs below 2 euros per adult, guided tours are available at an extra cost.

What are the best hotels in Klaipeda?

Michaelson Boutique Hotel

If you’re looking for a hotel right opposite the Klaipeda Castle, look no further than the Michaelson Boutique Hotel. The elegant property offers spacious, stylish rooms, as well as an onsite restaurant with delicious food. The perfect location within the old town and right opposite the castle is the main highlight, of course.

Amberton Hotel Klaipeda

A bit of luxury doesn’t always have to come at a high price. In Klaipeda, budget travelers can treat themselves and stay at the 4-star Amberton Hotel Klaipeda. The hotel features modern rooms, an outdoor pool, a spa, and a fitness center!

Next on your Baltic road trip: Kaunas, 2 hours 10 minutes

Kaunas

old town kaunas, traditional architecture and large brick church in the middle of the frame. tourists walking around on this sunny day in lithuania

Photography by Makalu.

What can’t you miss in Kaunas?

Laisves Avenue

When in Kaunas, you absolutely can’t miss strolling down Laisves Avenue. The walking street runs through the heart of the city, connecting the old and new districts together. 

The total length is a little over 1.5 kilometers long, and there are countless cafes and restaurants you can stop at to recharge your batteries.

Devil’s Museum

Devil’s Museum is exactly as fascinating as the name suggests. The museum consists of a collection of sculptures portraying devils around the world. See how different cultures picture the eerie devil, be sure to photograph the artifacts.

Open 7 days a week from 11 AM. Admission is below 4 euros per person.

Numan

For lunch, consider heading to Numan, one of the trendiest places to eat in Kaunas. The delicious beautifully-presented meals are served in a classy, yet casual setting. 

Rentalmoose order tip: After lunch, be sure to try one of the sweet desserts to complete the experience. Then, it’s time to hit the road one more time.

Vilnius

the skyline of vilnius across the river. aerial view, some modern skyscrapers and traditional buildings provide a diverse architectural style. sunny day with some clouds in the distance.

Vilnius’ skyline photographed by Peggy und Marco Lachmann-Anke

This road trip (if you don’t choose to extend it) finishes here, in the capital of Lithuania. Welcome to stunning Vilnius!

Is Vilnius worth visiting?

Of course! Vilnius is one of the most history-packed cities in this part of Europe, and it is most certainly worth spending at least a day here.

Old Town

When walking through the Old Town in Vilnius, you will soon realize that it is hard to define one architectural style of this well-preserved district. You’ll pass by Gothic churches, baroque houses and of course, the neoclassical Town Hall and the medieval castle.

Gediminas Castle Tower

For the best views of the area, climb up the Gediminas Castle Tower. Panoramic views offer a great photo opportunity, remember to post your best photos online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a free rental car!

Admission to the tower costs 5 euros per adult, there are also museums you can visit directly below the tower.

Museum of Illusions

Challenge your brain when you visit the Museum of Illusions. All sorts of fascinating illusions, inventions, and gadgets are scattered around the 400 sqm museum, making it perfect for a trip with kids.

Entry tickets cost 11 euros per adult and 9 euros per child. Children below 7 enter free of charge!

Amandus

Head to Amandus for the ultimate gourmet experience in Vilnius. The tasting menu will take you on a journey across a variety of flavors, and can be paired with aromatic wine. Keep in mind that the tasting dinner has to be booked in advance, check out their website for more details.

Amandus is open Tuesday to Saturday between 7 PM and 10 PM for dinner service.

What is the best place to stay in Vilnius?

Grand Hotel Kempinski

Sophisticated travelers don’t have to leave the old town when picking their hotel. Spend the night at the Grand Hotel Kempinski, a luxurious 5-star hotel right in the very heart of Vilnius. Relax at the swimming pool or spend your evening at the onsite bar. As expected, it isn’t the cheapest hotel in Vilnius.

Esperanza Resort

Stay in a retreat just out of Vilnius when you check-in at the Esperanza Resort. The 5-star property features a stunning lakeside location with a private beach, stylish decor, a pool, a spa and wellness center, and more. Vilnius and its old town are just 40 kilometers away.

Drop-off

When you’re ready to head back home, simply drop your rental car off directly at Vilnius International Airport. Browse through rental car options that support airport drop-off via Rentalmoose.

Win a free rental car

Whether you’re chilling at the beach club in Jurmala or wandering the streets of the old town in Vilnius, be sure to take lots of photos during your Baltic road trip.

Post the best photos from your Baltic road trip online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a Rentalmoose discount or even a rental car free of charge!

Sydney's opera house and high rise buildings and harbor on a clear sunny day

Sydney To Melbourne- Australia Road Trip Itinerary

Australia’s East Coast from Sydney to Melbourne, explore the best of Australia with our Australia road trip itinerary.

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Sydney to Jervis Bay- 200 kilometers (125 miles)📍 

Jervis Bay to Batemans Bay- 140 kilometers (85 miles)📍

Batemans Bay to Narooma- 70 kilometers (45 miles)📍

Narooma to Eden- 140 kilometers (85 miles)📍

Eden to Lakes Entrance- 240 kilometers (150 miles)📍

Lakes Entrance to Wilsons Promontory- 280 kilometers (175 miles)📍

Wilsons Promontory to Phillip Island- 130 kilometers (80 miles)📍

Phillip Island to Melbourne- 140 kilometers (85 miles)📍

1340 kilometers (830 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, Drop-off at another location, Australia, Beaches

Pristine sandy beaches, dramatic coastlines, fascinating marine life, and exotic forests await! Explore the stunning natural beauty of the land Down Under during a coastal road trip from Sydney to Melbourne. Kangaroos, koalas, and surfing opportunities are guaranteed, of course!

This travel guide takes you on an epic Australian road trip along the picturesque coast of New South Wales and Victoria. Pick up your rental car in the vibrant city of Sydney, then head south along the picturesque Grand Pacific Drive, one of the most scenic driving roads in the country.

Continue through Jervis Bay, where you can sunbathe with kangaroos on Pebbly Beach. Drive south until you reach Batemans Bay, where you can stay overnight.

Try the best seafood in your life at the famous Narooma Oyster Festival, go on a whale-watching cruise in Eden or stroll down the Ninety Mile Beach, one of the longest beaches on the planet.

Stay overnight near Lakes Entrance, then hike Mount Oberon to admire the panoramic view of Wilsons Promontory National Park. Stop for the night at Phillip Island, where you can peek at the Little Penguins Parade or lap a racetrack in a go-kart.

Later, continue to Melbourne and indulge in the city’s Greek cuisine.

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

Rentalmoose recommends making 3 overnight stops during this Australian road trip at the very least.

This travel guide is designed to take you around the absolute must-see highlights, though expect to make more stops along the way.

To put it into perspective, this road trip took me nearly two weeks to complete, and I would dedicate even more time if I had the chance to do it again!

When is the best time to visit Australia?

Keeping in mind that the seasons in Australia are switched (Summer is between December and February), it’s usually best to go right before the summer or directly after it finishes.

The weather is still warm enough to swim in the ocean, yet the crowds are smaller compared to the summer when the tourist season peaks.

Great Ocean Road Trip Extension

Once you get to Melbourne, consider adding a few extra days to your road trip itinerary to drive down the coastal Great Ocean Road, one of the world’s most scenic driving routes.

Admire the monumental Twelve Apostles (right by the Great Ocean Road) during a helicopter tour, attend the surfing championship in Bells Beach, tour the coast in a World War 2 aeroplane or swim in a volcanic lake in Colac.

Click here for the adventure-packed travel guide around the Great Ocean Road, starting in Melbourne.

Why should I book a rental car in Australia?

Unless you’re planning to stay in a single city, a rental car is definitely the go-to means of transport in Australia. Some of the smaller towns along the way, as well as beaches or hiking trails, can only be accessed by car. Road trips in Australia are the best ways to see the country.

What’s more, the ability to change your itinerary on the go can only be achieved when traveling by car.

Not to mention the absolutely breathtaking views along the coastal roads, such as the Grand Pacific Drive (one of the best driving roads on the planet!).

For extra peace of mind during your road trip, Rentalmoose recommends adding excess coverage when booking your rental car. Once you’ve picked up the car, don’t forget to take photos of the car to qualify for a 50% discount from the excess coverage fee.

Can tourists drive in Australia? 

Yes! You can drive with your foreign driver’s license for up to 3 months in Australia, as long as it’s in English. If your driver’s license is not in English, you need to obtain an International Driving Permit prior to leaving.

Check out this blog post to learn all you need to know about the International Driving Permit.

The traffic laws in Australia are strictly enforced.

Driving under influence is completely unacceptable and can land the offender in jail. 

In terms of speeding penalties, the Department of Transport and Main Roads claims that the average speeding ticket is $210, which equals just below 130 euros. Going less than 13km/h over the limit will cost you $177 (105 EUR).

Traffic in Australia is on the left-hand side of the road.

Once you’re all set, let’s dive into this Australian road trip around the East Coast!

Sydney

sydney downtown opera house during sunset

Your Australian road trip begins in the vivid city of Sydney, the capital of New South Wales. For maximum comfort, pick up your car directly at Sydney Airport.

Find car rental companies that support drop-off at another location and airport pick-up via Rentalmoose. Once you’ve got your car, it’s time to dive into this diverse city!

What can you do in Sydney?

Begin by exploring the busy heart of Sydney. Drop off your car at the Sydney Opera House Car Park just a walk away from the city’s most recognizable landmarks. The car park is open nonstop 7 days a week, the current rates can be found on the official website.

Wander around the waterfront and continue towards the famous Opera House. Admire the unique architecture, photograph the landmark with the Harbour Bridge in the background or step inside and attend one of the daily events (click here for the schedule). Explore the heart of Sydney even further by taking a ferry to other parts of the city.

Continue strolling around the waterfront and enter the colorful Royal Botanic Gardens. Enjoy the refreshing ocean breeze as you examine the exotic flora and observe the colorful birds, admire the monumental Government House or lay down in the vibrant grass and simply watch the ocean.

Those who are curious about the park’s history can take part in one of the guided tours of the park.

The Royal Botanic Gardens are open all year round from 7 AM, admission is free of charge.

No visit to Sydney could possibly be complete without a day at Bondi Beach. Often ranked as one of the best urban beaches in the world, Bondi Beach is the precious jewel of Sydney.

The busy sandy beach is the perfect place to swim or surf in the ocean, lay down and sunbathe or hop inside one of the numerous eateries and cafes along the streets. Hate it or love it, Bondi Beach is a piece of Sydney’s history and shouldn’t be missed when in town. 

Looking for a change of scenery? Drive up to the glamorous Blue Mountains, a National Park less than 2 hours west from the heart of Sydney. Admire the view from viewpoints high above the ground, ride down the world’s steepest railway or explore the eerie Jenolan Caves all within the park.

The winding roads around the park provide spectacular views and are extremely fun to drive around. As we all know, scenic driving is a must on any proper road trip.

aerial view cliff in blue mountains national park nsw australia

Sydney is packed with attractions of all kinds, including a vibrant nightlife scene. That’s why Rentalmoose recommends spending at least one night in town before continuing the journey.

What are the best hotels in Sydney?

Luxury travelers should check out the Park Hyatt Sydney in the heart of town. The modern 5-star hotel offers a selection of elegant rooms and suites overlooking the Sydney Harbour or the city’s landmarks. Relax after a scorching day at the rooftop pool or indulge in fine dining cuisine at the award-winning restaurants.

Sydney is known for being one of the most travel destinations in the world, and the city’s hotels are no exception. In recent years, however, stylish budget-friendly hotels began popping up all over the city. One of the most interesting hotels in town that don’t break the bank has got to be the Rushcutters Bay Vibe Hotel.

The affordable 4-star hotel is located just a 5-minute drive away from the heart of Sydney and offers modern rooms and suites as well as a rooftop pool and a fitness center. A private car park is available at an extra cost. 

Next on your Australia road trip: Jervis Bay, 2 hours 40 minutes

Jervis Bay

jervis bay secluded beach turquoise water green plants white sand australia

Photography by Anna Palinska.

Depart Sydney and head south towards the city of Wollongong. The picturesque coastal road, known as the Grand Pacific Drive, is one of the most scenic driving roads in the country and serves as the perfect introduction to see the natural beauty of Australia. 

Grand Pacific Drive

Don’t hesitate to get off the main road and discover the region more thoroughly, there are hundreds of pristine beaches along the way and it is impossible to mention them all.

To put it into perspective, Wollongong alone has nearly 20 wonderful beaches.

And that’s just one of the cities you’ll be passing!

That said, a must-see on your drive to Melbourne is the famous Jervis Bay. The bay is lined with various unspoiled sandy beaches, safe turquoise water, and hiking trails through the exotic wilderness of the nearby forest.

Don’t skip the Callala Beach, the longest beach in the entire bay.

Pay a visit to Huskisson, the most adventure-packed town in Jervis Bay.

Looking to explore more of the underwater world?

Go on a snorkeling tour with Woebegone Freedive.

Relax at the Shark Net Beach, or rent a kayak next door and make your way around the crystal-clear ocean on your own.

There are plenty of hotels in Huskisson if you decide to extend the trip and stay overnight.

Once you get hungry, drop by Stonegrill Huskisson for a tasty meal. Guests can choose from the a la carte menu or cook on the stone grill themselves. The delicious food paired with welcoming service makes the Stonegrill the go-to restaurant in Jervis Bay.

Open daily from 5:30 PM until 9 PM on weekdays and 10 PM on weekends.

Next on your Australia road trip: Batemans Bay, 1 hour 50 minutes

Batemans Bay

kangaroo looking at ocean pebbly beach australia batemans bay

Is Batemans Bay worth visiting?

Continue south along the highway for around 2 hours until you reach Batemans Bay. The vivid coastal town is one of the favorite getaways in New South Wales, offering breathtaking beaches, delicious fresh seafood, and an overall cool, coastal vibe.

Murramarang National Park

When in Batemans Bay, you can’t skip the Murramarang National Park. The National Park is packed with wild forests full of colorful, exotic birds, as well as secluded beaches.

Don’t know what to see in Murramarang National Park?

Visit the scenic Pebbly Beach. The wide beach is often completely free of tourists. If you’re lucky, you might spot the local kangaroos.

Your rental car can be dropped off by the campground, just a 5-minute walk from the beach itself. 

Cullendulla Creek Nature Reserve

Hikers will enjoy their time in Batemans Bay as well.

Visit the Cullendulla Creek Nature Reserve, a large park near the bay which is absolutely perfect for hiking. The tracks will take you among mangroves, forests, gum trees and beaches.

Choose the Square Head Track 2, as this short trail is just below 2 kilometers round-trip and offers an easy hike between exotic gum trees, finishing with a perfect picnic spot on a secluded beach.

Sunday Market

If you’re looking to observe the local life, take part in the Batemans Bay Sunday Market. The market, held on the first and third Sundays of every month, is full of stalls selling all sorts of antiques, clothing, jewelry, and accessories of all kinds.

Wander around the stalls while listening to live music played by local artists, drink an aromatic coffee or indulge in some local delicacies.

The stalls are open between 8 AM and 1 PM. 

Rally of The Bay

Petrolheads are in for a treat, as Bateman Bay is home to the Rally of The Bay. Watch as powerful rally cars race across 7 different stages around the bay, filled with chicanes, skids and hops.

The adrenaline-packed rallying event takes place annually. Visit the official website for more information including the event schedule.

Where to stay in Batemans Bay?

BIG4

Traveling with kids? Consider spending the night at the BIG4 Batemans Bay. The beach resort offers well-equipped homes, along with a wide array of attractions such as an outdoor pool, a tennis court and a beachfront location.

A private car park is available at no extra cost.

Mariners on The Waterfront

If you would rather stay near the heart of Batemans Bay, book a room at Mariners on The Waterfront. The hotel is situated just a short walk away from local eateries and cafes, and 600 meters from the closest beach. The hotel features modern rooms, an outdoor pool and a free private car park.

Next on your Australia road trip: Narooma, 1 hour

Narooma

ocean waves hitting rocks narooma wagonga inlet australia beautiful beach

What can you see in Narooma?

Hop back on Princes Highway for another hour until you reach the scenic coastal town of Narooma. The serene Wagonga inlet, the town’s famous oyster festival, and heavenly beaches make Narooma an absolute must-see.

Wagonga Inlet

When in Narooma, be sure to visit the Wagonga inlet. The best way to explore the magnificent inlet is from the water.

Drop off your rental car by Riverside Drive and head go for a Walgonga Inlet Cruise. Choose from daily cruises between 1 and 3 hours each. Admire the best views during the sunset cruise, watch the sea life and photograph the scenic surroundings.

Check the pricing and schedules on their website.

Montague Island

Discover Montague Island, one of the most popular tourist attractions in this part of Australia. Choose from a selection of boat tours that best suits your needs, as the only way to access the island is by boat.

Whale watching out in the ocean, snorkeling with seals, or admiring Little Penguins or just some of the activities to choose from. Montague Island itself is known for its natural beauty and plenty of wildlife and should definitely be marked on your itinerary. 

Narooma Oyster Festival

Are you a seafood lover?

If so, you should most definitely visit the town during the annual Narooma Oyster Festival. The award-winning festival is a celebration of the region’s yummy oysters and is perfect for foodies, families, and friends. Indulge in the locally-caught seafood while enjoying live music, purchase local art or simply admire the spectacular views.

Next on your Australian road trip: Eden, 1 hour 40 minutes

Eden

eden australia green fields and ocean dramatic coastline nsw

Continue along Princes Highway for a little over an hour and a half until you reach the charming town of Eden. Eden, famous for its fishing culture, whale watching tours, and of course, immaculate beaches.

Long Beach

Before you reach the city, take a slight detour off the highway and spend some time at Long Beach. The secluded beach (not to be confused with Long Beach in Batemans Bay, or the one in California) is overlooked by monumental Pinnacles.

Drop your car off at the free car park and walk directly to the beach, or hike along the Pinnacles Walk.

Hooked On Seafood

As Eden is known for its fish, it only makes sense to try some fresh seafood while you’re here. Head to Hooked On Seafood, the best restaurant in town. Choose from a selection of fish, shrimps, crab or oysters. Observe local fishermen as you feast on regional seafood right by the ocean.

Open daily between 9:30 AM and 7 PM. 

Whale-watching tours

Go for a whale-watching boat trip with Cat Balou Cruises. The operator offers a selection of sightseeing cruises between 2 and 4 hours each.

See playful dolphins in Twofolds Bay, admire the wilderness in secluded parts of the coast or watch enormous whales. No matter which cruise you pick, each one offers an unforgettable experience. Click here to book.

Next on your Australia road trip: Lakes Entrance, 2 hours 50 minutes

Lakes Entrance

lakes entrance town aerial view on a sunny day from ocean

Photography by Mark Wyld

Drive down Princes Highway and cross into Victoria until you reach Lakes Entrance, another major hotspot that you should visit during a road trip from Sydney to Melbourne.

What is there to see in Lakes Entrance?

Gippsland Lakes

Don’t skip the Gippsland Lakes, the most popular tourist destination in the region. Wander around the wilderness, rent a boat and cross the lakes yourself or have a go at fishing. If you’re lucky, you might spot the endangered Burrunan Dolphins.

Raymond Island

You’ve seen kangaroos at Pebbly Beach back in Batemans Bay, now it’s time for the second animal that’s become an easily recognizable symbol of Australia.

Take the free ferry from Paynesville to Raymond Island, which is home to Victoria’s largest koala population. Hike down the Koala trail and see if you can spot any of the cute furry animals.

You can also rent a bicycle and cycle around the area instead.

Ninety Mile Beach

Did you know that the beach by Lakes Entrance is one of the longest in the entire world? Check for yourself and visit the famous Ninety Mile Beach. Stroll down the golden sands, go for a dip in the turquoise ocean or try to spot whales and dolphins from the shore. 

Waterwheel TAV

Getting hungry? Visit the Waterwheel TAV, a local pub that offers tasty cuisine including steaks and pizza along with a wide selection of drinks. What’s more, guests can enjoy their meals while admiring the lakes at the pub’s outdoor terrace.

Open daily from 10 AM.

Spend the night at the Bellevue on the Lakes. The 4-star hotel features well-equipped modern rooms, an outdoor pool, a heated indoor pool and barbecue facilities available for the hotel guests. A car park is available free of charge.

Traveling on a tighter budget? Consider checking into the Lakes Waterfront Motel. The motel offers either rooms or standalone cottages with retro decor, an outdoor swimming pool, and an incredible waterfront location. Free parking is available.

Next on your Australia road trip: Wilsons Promontory National Park, 3 hours 30 minutes

Wilsons Promontory

wilsons promontory national park sand beach turquoise ocean australia

Photography by Siggy Nowak

Set off from Lakes Entrance and continue near the coast. You will arrive in Wilsons Promontory, one of Australia’s best national parks, in around three and a half hours.

What can you do at Wilsons Promontory?

Norman Bay

Relax at the picturesque Norman Bay. Go for a swim in the ocean, sunbathe on the shore or hike the local trails. Travelers can go for a canoe tour any day between December and January, or rent their own kayaks from First Track Adventures.

Surfing is allowed on one part of the beach.

Sightseeing Cruise

Drive down to Port Welshpool and park your rental car by the old ferry terminal building at the end of Lewis Street. Then, go for a sightseeing cruise to Refuge Cove.

The secluded spot is home to fascinating marine life, including sharks, seals, and dolphins. Cruises are available daily, check the schedule and pricing information here.

Hike up Mount Oberon

Looking for the best photo opportunity in Wilsons Promontory? Hike up to the summit of Mount Oberon. The trek up to the top does get exhausting, but the panoramic views from the 558-meter high summit are absolutely worth the effort!

Admire the Southernmost point of mainland Australia and the islands scattered around the crystal-clear waters. Watching the sunset from high above the ground is that extra touch that completes the magical experience.

Next on your Australia road trip: Phillip Island, 1 hour 50 minutes

Phillip Island

phillip island australia victoria green beach on cloudy day
Photography by Wei Chung Low

Is it worth going to Phillip Island?

Absolutely! Phillip Island is one of the favorite getaways for locals and tourists in Melbourne, and it is clear to see why. The island, apart from spectacular beaches and a dramatic coastline, is the perfect place to experience Victoria away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Don’t forget that it is one of the best places to spot Little Penguins, too.

Surfing

Phillip Island is known as one of the best spots in Australia when it comes to surfing, why not try this exciting watersport for yourself? Experienced surfers can hire equipment from Island Surfboards and hit the beaches.

Never tried surfing? Don’t know where to start? Island Surfboards offers surf lessons for intermediate surfers as well as beginners who have never touched a surfboard. Click here for details.

Cowes Beach

Relax at one of the beaches scattered around the island. One of the favorite beaches for swimming has got to be Cowes Beach, right by the vivid heart of Phillip Island. Go for a refreshing swim in the ocean, walk down the golden sands or wander around the seaside cafes and shops in Cowes.

Phillip Island Circuit

Motorsport fans are in for yet another trip during this road trip. The Phillip Island Circuit is a world-class racing track that hosts events such as the MotoGP, as well as a series of local automobile races and track days.

Watch as powerful cars or motorcycles lap the track, book a passenger hot lap around the track, or have a go at the famous circuit yourself in a go-kart.

Penguin Parade

As the sun is about to set, be sure to head to Summerland Beach. Observe as little penguins return to their home after a day of fishing, known as the daily Penguin Parade. Watch one of Australia’s largest penguin colonies from the viewing platform, or peek at the animals from the underground viewing point.

Click here to book your tickets. 

Phillip Island is packed with adventures, that’s why Rentalmoose recommends stopping here for the night. There are plenty of elegant hotels, villas and holiday homes that offer spectacular ocean views, great service, and an amazing experience overall.

The Clifftop

Get the best panoramic views of the ocean when you check-in at the Clifftop. The hotel is situated by Smiths Beach and offers stylish rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows, a beautiful shared space with a pool table and a cozy fireplace, as well as scenic natural surroundings.

A private car park is available free of charge. 

North Pier Hotel

If you’d rather stay in the vivid center of Cowes, consider booking a room at the North Pier Hotel. The budget-friendly, recently renovated hotel features modern rooms with ocean views, a beach just across the street as well as a convenient location in the heart of the Cowes township with lots of nearby eateries, shops, and bars.

Next on your Australia road trip: Melbourne, 1 hour 40 minutes

Melbourne

melbourne skyline aerial view melbourne skyscrapers during sunset victoria australia
Photography by Moerschy

What should you see in Melbourne?

Head to downtown Melbourne and get a photo with the picturesque Flinders Street Station. The main railway station in town has been open since the early 1900s and now serves as a major tourist attraction due to its monumental facade.

The station is present on many Melbourne postcards and souvenirs, despite the fact that what’s inside is fairly uninteresting. Don’t expect to spend too much time here, as pretty as it is to look at it’s not much more than a busy train station.

Cross the street to enter Federation Square, the vibrant cultural heart of Melbourne. Admire the abstract art installations or the magnificent buildings surrounding the square.

Step inside one of the art galleries, such as the Australian Center for the Moving Image, and discover the country’s artistic history. Wander around the trendy cafes and bars, or simply sit down and take in the artsy vibe.

Your rental car can be dropped off at this Wilson Parking multi-story car park. 

For the best view of the city, take the elevator up to the Skydeck on top of the 91-story Eureka Tower. Admire the panoramic views high above the ground, or try The Edge experience and enjoy the view from a glass cube suspended 300 meters above ground level, if you dare.

Open 7 days a week between noon and 8:30 PM.

A private car park is available right beneath the tower.

Great Ocean Road

Though the city itself is packed with attractions and various activities, a 90-minute drive west will take you to the beginning of the scenic Great Ocean Road, one of the world’s best scenic drives. Extend the trip and explore the natural beauty of the western coast of Victoria with our travel guide.

Where is the best Greek food in Melbourne?

Did you know that Melbourne has the most Greeks out of any city outside of Greece? With such a large Greek community, you definitely shouldn’t miss out on trying some authentic Greek cuisine when in Melbourne.

Head to Stalactites, a family-run restaurant with some of the finest Greek dishes in the country. Let the fresh meals take you on a journey to Greece.

Rentalmoose order tip: try souvlakis, grilled meat, or moussaka.

Don’t worry about coming too late or too early, the restaurant is open 24 hours a day, all week.

Where to stay in Melbourne?

Luxury seekers should consider booking a room at the QT Melbourne. The 5-star hotel features extremely stylish rooms and suites, as well as a fitness center.

The highlight of the hotel is its trendy rooftop venue where guests can grab a drink while admiring the city’s skyline. Add in the perfect location in the very heart of Melbourne and you will clearly see why this is one of the top picks in town.

A private car park is available at an extra cost.

Those looking for a more budget-friendly alternative should spend the night at the Plough Hotel. The hotel features well-equipped rooms, a convenient location near the city center and an outdoor terrace, as well as a bar and restaurant.

A private car park is available at no extra cost.

Looking for more attractions and hotels in Melbourne? Check out the Rentalmoose Great Ocean Road travel guide, where you will find more exciting things to do in Melbourne including trendy laneways, vibrant gardens and a local market.

Drop-Off

If you’ve decided to end your journey in Melbourne, Rentalmoose recommends dropping off your rental car directly at Melbourne Airport when you’re leaving. Browse through rental companies that support drop-off at another location, as well as airport drop-off, via Rentalmoose.

Win a free rental car!

The scenic journey between Sydney and Melbourne is packed with incredible natural beauty, secluded beaches, and dramatic coastal views, so I’m sure you will take lots of photos. Post your best photos from this trip with #Rentalmoose. Rentalmoose’s favorites will be rewarded with a Rentalmoose discount or even a rental car free of charge!

kangaroo on green field australia pebbly beach

oludeniz blue lagoon turquoise sea with boats sandy beach and green trees aerial view

The Sunny Turkish Riviera- Turkey Itinerary by Car

A trip through the sunny Turkish Riviera with Rentalmoose. Explore the best of it with our curated Turkey itinerary.


Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Antalya to Goynuk Canyon– 40km (25 miles) 📍 

Goynuk Canyon to Phaselis and Olympus– 60km (40 miles) 📍

Olympus to Adrasan– 10km (6 miles) 📍

Adrasan to Fethiye– 200km (125 miles) 📍

Fethiye to Marmaris– 140km (85 miles) 📍

Marmaris to Bodrum– 170km (105 miles) 📍

620km (385 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, Drop-off at another location, Turkey, Beaches, Summer, Short Trip

This travel itinerary takes you on a road trip across the Turkish Riviera, starting in Antalya going to Bodrum through beautiful beaches, scenic driving roads, and authentic Turkish towns. 

The road trip is roughly 600km in total and is divided into various sectors ranging anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 and a half hours.

Rentalmoose recommends dedicating at least three days for this adventure, with two overnight stops along the way in Adrasan and Marmaris. Add more overnight stops to make the most out of this Turkey itinerary.

What is the Turkish Riviera?

 The Turkish Riviera, also called the Turquoise Coast, is a beautiful region in the southwestern part of the country. This part of Turkey is famous for its beautiful beaches and crystal-clear water, exclusive hotels, delicious cuisine, and ancient history. It is vastly underrated among international tourists!

Why is the Turkish Riviera worth visiting?

 This part of Turkey is perfect for travelers who adore the sun, wonderful beaches with crystal clear water, and monumental views. The Riviera has a lot of various attractions for families, couples, groups of friends, and solo travelers. 

No matter if you choose to stay in a chic hotel or a budget hostel, there are plenty of options to choose from at different price points.

Business Insider has referred to Bodrum (the finishing point of this journey) as the perfect under-the-radar luxury tourist destination for 2020, surpassing hotspots such as Bali or the Greek island of Mykonos. Explore the beautiful Turkish Riviera with our Turkey itinerary!

Is Turkey safe for tourists?

The US Department of State has ranked Turkey the second-lowest level of risk for tourists, except for regions near the Syrian and Iraqi borders, which have gotten higher risk ratings. The western part of Turkey remains safe for tourists.

Turkey is, however, one of the most seismically active countries in the world. It is recommended to be familiar with the safety procedures if an earthquake does occur.

Road Trip Extensions

Extend your road trip and discover the region even further! When you’re done exploring the Turkish Riviera, fly over to Athens and choose to drive across mainland Greece, or visit Santorini.

Alternatively, you can take a ferry from Turkey to Rhodes! Click here for the Rentalmoose road trip guide to Rhodes.

Why should you get a rental car in Turkey?

A rental car is definitely the go-to type of transportation for this road trip. The points of interest along the way are located within driving distance of each other, and getting a car will be a lot more convenient than traveling by bus. 

The freedom to roam around, change courses, or extend your road trip is only available when you travel by car. There are also beautiful views along the coastal roads and the traffic isn’t as heavy as in major cities, such as Istanbul or Adana. Lastly, car rentals are relatively cheap in Turkey.

When booking your rental car, do not forget to add excess coverage provided by Rentalmoose for extra protection. After picking up the car, be sure to take check-in photos of the vehicle and qualify for a 50% discount from the excess cover fee.

Can tourists drive in Turkey?

Yes! As long as your driving license is in English, you can drive in Turkey with a foreign license for up to three months. If your license isn’t in English, you will have to get an International Driving Permit before heading off for holiday. Drivers younger than 18 are not permitted to drive in Turkey at all.

Check out this blog post to learn all you need to know about International Driving Permits.

The driving limits in Turkey are 50km/h in urban zones, 90km/h outside cities, and 120km/h on highways.

Speeding is a common occurrence in Turkey, police pay a lot more attention to drink-driving rather than excessive speed.

If you do happen to get caught for speeding or a different minor offense, you might have to pay your fine on the spot. 

The fines for exceeding the limit by less than 30% are around 170TL (23 Euros). Getting caught driving at more than 30% above the limit will result in a 350TL (47 EUR) penalty.

Driving under the influence is not tolerated in Turkey. Police often carry out routine checks to check if drivers are sober, especially during the weekends. Do not drink and drive.

Traffic in Turkey is on the right side of the road.

HGS- The Highway Toll System in Turkey


There are no paid sectors along this road trip. However, your rental car will most likely come equipped with an electronic HGS device that will automatically be billed when passing paid highway sections. Most rental companies will sum up this fee when returning your car, the cost will depend on the amount of paid sections you have driven through.

There are no paid HGS sectors along this route.

When is the best time to visit Turkey?

Rentalmoose recommends visiting the Turkish Riviera between May and June or September and October. The weather is hot and sunny this time of the year, perfect for a swim in the Mediterranean or wandering around the streets of Bodrum. It is also the peak of the tourist season, so expect some destinations to get crowded. 

Antalya can get so hot during the summer that it can become unbearable for tourists who are not used to this type of harsh climate.

Now that you’re all set, let’s dive into this Turkey itinerary!

Antalya

altinkum beach in antalya turkey riviera coast colorful light

Altinkum beach in Antalya.

 Welcome to the sunny city of Antalya! Rentalmoose recommends picking up your rental car directly at the airport and heading down into this fascinating city.

What to do in Antalya?

Kaleiçi

Begin by exploring the coastal Old Town, the true heart of this city. Don’t hesitate to get lost among the historical Ottoman mansions, as the cobblestone streets are lined with cafes, restaurants and boutiques. The Kaleiçi district is the perfect place to discover a traditional part of Antalya.

Turkish Breakfast

Trying the world-renowned Turkish breakfast is a must during your stay in the Turquoise Coast. Head to Vista Restaurant, located steps away from the sea, for delicious breakfast and aromatic tea, all while enjoying panoramic views of the Mediterranean.

Konyaalti Beach

For a bit of relaxation, pay a visit to one of the city’s dreamy beaches. Rentalmoose recommends heading to Konyaalti Beach in the western part of town. 

This pebble beach stretches for around 5 kilometers and is known for its clean water and lots of cafes and restaurants in the area. 

It is popular among both tourists and locals, so it may not be perfect for travelers who are looking for a quiet and secluded spot.

This public beach can be accessed for free. You can also rent a sunbed for just a few Turkish Lira (between 1 and 2 Euros).

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Goynuk Canyon, 40 minutes

Goynuk Canyon Adventure Park

goynuk canyon turkey whitewashed stone turkish riviera

Goynuk Canyon near the resort town of Kemer.

After leaving Antalya, take the D400 highway south towards the resort city of Kemer. This coastal highway will take you to destinations within the Kemer region.

 Adventure junkies can stop at the Goynuk Canyon near Kemer, a local adventure park with zip lines and a canyoning safari. Thrilling zip lines combined with the park’s natural beauty make the Goynuk Canyon an unmissable spot.

 The attraction owners recommend staying in the park for at least 2 hours in order to fully enjoy it. Tickets can be purchased here or upon entrance.

Next on your Turkey itinerary: The ruins of Phaselis and Olympus, 1 hour

The historic ruins of Phaselis and Olympus

phaselis nothern harbor ruins on beach at turkish riviera

The remains of the northern harbor of Phaselis. Wikimedia Commons

Phaselis

 Phaselis was an ancient Greek and Roman city, its history dates back as far as 700 BC. The remaining ruins lie just 16 kilometers south of Kemer. 

Once there, you can discover the ruins of three ancient ports, aqueducts and many more. You can also go for a swim on the beach located within the ancient city. Admission costs less than 40 Turkish Lira (6 EUR) per person, tickets can be purchased directly upon entrance.

Next: Olympos, 40 minutes

Olympus

The Ruins of Olympus are older and more popular among tourists. Located just minutes from Adrasan, this ancient city cannot be missed. 

Its history dates back to the second century BC and has been abandoned since the 15th century. These ruins are not preserved as well as Turkey’s most popular ones, such as Ephesus or Göbekli Tepe, though they are definitely worth at least a short visit. 

You can also enjoy the local beach. Admission costs less than 30 Turkish Lira (4.5 EUR) per person and can be bought directly at the entrance, just like in Phaselis.

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Adrasan, 15 minutes

Adrasan

adrasan sandy secluded beach calm sea large mountains turkey riviera

A beautiful beach in Adrasan surrounded by monumental mountains.

Adrasan Sahil

 Continue along the D400 from the Phaselis until you reach the small village of Adrasan. Drive down to Adrasan Sahil, an absolutely breathtaking pebble beach surrounded by the mountains. 

Go for a swim in the crystal-clear water, or sunbathe on one of many sunbeds, available for just a couple Turkish Lira (below 2 Euros).

Admission is free of charge, you can leave your car directly next to the beach for just a few Turkish Lira (less than 2 Euros) per day.

 Where to stay in Adrasan?

ADA Boutique Hotel

Rentalmoose recommends staying at the ADA Boutique Hotel, a boutique hotel just a minute away from the beach. The hotel features a pool and restaurant, as well as free parking for guests.

Arikanda River Garden Hotel

Another hotel worth considering in Adrasan is the Arikanda River Garden Hotel. This cozy hotel consists of just 10 rooms. The location is perfect, just steps away from the private hotel beach.

There is a beautiful restaurant atop the river that serves breakfast as well as traditional Turkish dishes, along with plenty of options for vegetarians.

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Fethiye, 4 hours

Fethiye

This is the longest non-stop driving segment of this trip. Leave Adrasan and head west on the D400 for around 4 hours, until you reach the picturesque Butterly Valley.

 If you wish to make a stop along the way, Rentalmoose recommends going to Kaş. Head into the heart of this village and step inside Natur-El, the best restaurant in town. Have a sip of Turkish coffee or a round of delicious Turkish breakfast.

Kelebekler Vadisi- a dreamy beach in Fethiye

kelebekler vadisi butterfly valley turkey aerial view secluded sandy beach boats turquoise sea turkey riviera
Wikipedia/Wikimedia Commons.

 The Butterfly Valley is a stunning valley near Fethiye. Don’t get confused by the name, as the butterflies have become a rare sight. 

Pay a visit to the Kelebekler Vadisi beach, where you will find turquoise water just like in the Maledives. Visit the beachside bar for a refreshing beverage or snack. 

This small spot can get crowded during peak season, it is definitely not the most secluded beach in Turkey. As Kelebekler Vadisi is a public beach, entry is free of charge. Sunbeds are available during the season for under 10 Turkish Lira.

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Blue Lagoon, 15 minutes

Blue Lagoon- The Mediterranean Maldives

oludeniz blue lagoon aerial view turkey turquoise sea sandy beach turkish riviera

Aerial view of the Oludeniz Blue Lagoon.

The Blue Lagoon is perhaps the most popular tourist hotspot in the Fethiye region and one of the most valuable gems in all of Turkey. 

The lagoon is famous for its sandy beaches and clear, turquoise waters. Rent a canoe and travel across the lagoon, or stay on dry land and sunbathe. 

Head into the inner side of the lagoon, where you will find authentic Turkish restaurants, cafes, and bars. The water is full of wildlife and available attractions include snorkeling and paragliding. 

The Blue Lagoon is in a protected National Park, entrance costs below 10 Turkish Lira (less than 1.5 EUR) and can be paid in cash upon entrance. Parking costs around 30 Lira (4.5 EUR).

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Marmaris, 2 hours 10 minutes

Marmaris

marmaris town skyline panoramic view with sea in background turkish riviera

The city of Marmaris on the shore of the Mediterranean. Shot by Alpcem/Pixabay.com

 Drive along the D400 for about two hours until you reach the city of Marmaris.

What to do in Marmaris?

Marmaris Castle

Begin by exploring the center of the city. Park your car next to the Marmaris Castle and stroll around the area on foot. This castle is one of just a few in Turkey that has been turned into a fascinating museum.

History lovers can enjoy the interior daily from 8:30 AM to 7 PM, with admission tickets priced at 14TL that can be purchased upon entrance. 

Grand Bazaar

Shopping fans can walk across the center to the Grand Bazaar. This market is filled with shops where you can purchase all sorts of souvenirs, jewelry, leather goods, and clothing. 

Cleopatra Island

 Tourists can also take a day trip to the popular Cleopatra Island. Day trips by boats are operated by various carriers directly from the city, you can purchase tickets directly when boarding the boat. There are different durations of the trip, depending on which operator you choose. Pricing starts at 100TL per person.

What are the best hotels in Marmaris?

If you are planning to stay the night in Marmaris, which Rentalmoose highly recommends, consider staying in one of the hotels listed below.

Casa De Maris

 Casa De Maris is a luxury 5-star resort hotel meters away from the beach. It offers chic rooms, a big pool, unique architecture, and a complimentary carpark. Book your room here.

Uysal Beach Motel

Uysal Beach Motel is a cheaper alternative within the city. This hotel is directly on the seashore and includes air-conditioned rooms, free parking and a bar on the ground floor. Book your room here.

Next on your Turkey itinerary: Bodrum, 1 hour 20 minutes

Bodrum

bodrum whitewashed traditional buildings and blue sea boats turkish riviera

 The final leg of this journey goes from Marmaris to Bodrum. Take the D550 up north and then continue via the D330 until you reach the city.

What to see in Bodrum?

 Bodrum is the go-to tourist hotspot in the Turkish Riviera. Luxury hotels, incredibly fresh seafood, all-around shopping, and a vivid nightlife scene, you name it. Bodrum has it all.

Bodrum Castle

 Begin by strolling around the Bodrum Castle and port. This part of town is full of life, packed with cafes, shops, and restaurants.

You can take various day trips by boat straight from the port, going to secluded bays and islands. There are many operators to choose from, Rentalmoose recommends going with My Way Boat Trip.

Karafaki Restaurant

 For lunch or dinner, head down to the Karafaki Restaurant, just 30 minutes away from the heart of Bodrum. Dining with a panoramic view of the Aegean Sea is a truly mesmerizing experience.

Huqqa

If you fancy trying out Hookah, there are many shisha bars to choose from. Rentalmoose recommends Huqqa Bodrum, one of the best hookah cafe chains in the world.

There are tons of different flavors to choose from, along with colorful drinks and food.

Bodrum is filled with attractions and spots worth visiting, so Rentalmoose highly advises staying in town for a couple of days to experience what it has to offer.

Drop-off

Your rental car can be dropped off directly at the Milas-Bodrum Airport for maximum comfort. Rental companies that support drop-off in a different location can be found via Rentalmoose.

traditional walking street in gdansk medieval old town lined with restaurants on a summer day

The Best Things To Do in Poland During A Road Trip

A Summer Getaway in Poland- Road Trip Itinerary Through Northern and Central Poland.

Click here for detailed directions

Summary (click the red pins for directions) :

Warsaw to Mikołajki- 220 kilometers (140 miles)📍  

Mikołajki to Malbork– 240 kilometers (150 miles)📍  

Malbork to Gdańsk– 60 kilometers (40 miles)📍  

Gdańsk to Toruń– 170 kilometers (100 miles)📍  30 PLN Highway toll (6.6 EUR)

Toruń to Łódź– 180 kilometers (110 miles)📍  

Łódź to Warsaw– 130 kilometers (80 miles)📍  

1000 kilometers (620 miles) in total

Tags: Travel guide, Poland, Summer

When planning a summer road trip in Europe, you probably don’t think of Poland. In reality, Poland is the perfect under-the-radar tourist destination in this part of Europe. 

Wander around the world’s biggest castle, admire the Leaning Tower in Torun or party till the morning in Lodz’s renovated factories. Discover the best of what Poland has to offer in this travel guide!

This travel guide takes you on a road trip through central and northern Poland. Your adventure begins in Warsaw, the country’s capital.

After spending a night in town, drive across the picturesque Masurian Lake District and relax in Mikołajki, a local resort town. Then, head to the Tricity, stopping at the world’s biggest castle in Malbork on the way.

After a memorable night in Tricity, drive south to the Medieval Town of Torun and explore the historical streets. Make an overnight stop in the trendy city of Lodz before returning to Warsaw.

How long does it take to complete this road trip?

The driving distance is nearly a thousand kilometers in total and the route is divided into shorter segments, each one takes around two hours to complete. Rentalmoose recommends dedicating at least four days for this road trip, with overnight stops in Mikołajki, Gdańsk, and Łódź. If you have the time, add extra nights in Gdańsk.

Road Trip Extensions

Berlin

Your journey in this part of Europe doesn’t have to end! Check out the Berlin to Warsaw travel guide that will take you through southern and western parts of Poland, before finishing off in the capital of Germany.

Discover the underground chambers of a fascinating salt mine, admire the medieval architecture in the Old Towns and find the best Kebap in Berlin. Click here for details.

Summer in the Baltics

Explore the Baltics even further during this perfect road trip around Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. Relax on sandy beaches, party your heart out in beach clubs, or wander around the old town of Riga. Click here for the travel guide.

When is the best time to visit Poland?

The weather is the hottest during the summer (late June-August), if you want to swim in the Baltic Sea it’s best to go during those months. However, keep in mind that it is also the peak of the tourist season.

The beaches around Gdańsk, as well as the Masurian Lake District, both get very crowded during the summer.

Go in the first weeks of June or the beginning of September, when you can still catch a glimpse of the summer weather without the hordes of tourists.

Why should I book a rental car in Poland?

As the points of interest are all scattered within driving distance of each other, getting a rental car is the most convenient way of getting around during this trip.

The roads in Poland are well-maintained (except for some B-Roads in remote parts of the country), and the route across the Masurian Lakes is quite scenic. What’s more, the ability to freely alter the itinerary on the go can only be achieved when traveling by car.

For extra peace of mind during your road trip, Rentalmoose recommends adding excess coverage when booking your rental car. Once you’ve picked up the car, don’t forget to take photos of the car to qualify for a 50% discount from the excess coverage fee.

Can tourists drive in Poland? 

Absolutely! If your driving license was issued in an EU country, you can drive in Poland without any limitations.

Driving licenses issued in countries that are mentioned in the 1968 Vienna Convention on Road Traffic (list here) are valid for 6 months, as long as the driver is over 18.

 If your driving license was issued in a different country, you will have to obtain an International Driving Permit before coming.

To learn more about International Driving Permits, check out this blog post.

Poland, is a member of the open-border Schengen zone, meaning crossing the borders is quick and hassle-free shall you extend the trip to other European nations.

Check out this blog post to read about tips that will definitely come in handy when driving in Poland, including information about speed limits, penalties for offenses and common roadside scams. You definitely want to read this post before going on a road trip to Poland.

Traffic in Poland is on the right-hand side of the road.

Are highways in Poland free?

Some of the highway segments in Poland are paid. The total toll cost for this trip doesn’t surpass 30 PLN or 6.6 Euros. Fees can be paid directly at the toll gates scattered along the A1 highway, either in Polish Zloty, Euro or US Dollars. Click here for the current fee calculator on the A1.

Warsaw

Warsaw illuminated castle and zygmunt stary column, castle square and Warsaw's Old Town medieval buildings in the distance. Sunset on a summer day in Poland's capital.

This road trip begins in the capital of Poland, welcome to fascinating Warsaw! This history-rich city is an up-and-coming tourist hotspot in this part of Europe. For maximum convenience, pick up your car directly from the Warsaw Chopin Airport and head into the city.

What is there to do in Warsaw?

Warsaw is a fascinating city with unique art galleries, museums, and trendy nightlife spots. It is the biggest city in Poland, it is most certainly worth a visit! Although not as popular among tourists as Kraków.

Wilanów Palace

Visiting the Wilanów Palace is a must when in Warsaw. The monumental structure is surrounded by a colorful park which is perfect for an afternoon stroll. Travelers can step inside and admire the glamorous interior while learning about local history at a selection of exhibitions.

Purchase your tickets here. Prices vary depending on the exhibition you decide to visit.

Warsaw Rising Museum

Don’t miss the Warsaw Rising Museum, where you can discover the most devastating parts of the nation’s history. The interactive exhibition showcases all aspects of life during the uprising, including day-to-day life during the war.

Admission tickets can be purchased either online via the official website or directly upon entrance. Entry tickets cost under 30 PLN per person (6.5 EUR). 

Rental Moose mascot posing with thumbs up at the market square in Warsaw's old town tourist district. Rental Moose is the local guide for road trip itineraries in Poland.

Where to eat out in Warsaw?

Na Lato

Once you get hungry, consider going to Na Lato for lunch. The restaurant offers a wide selection of delicious dishes, including pizza, fish and chips or burgers. Enjoy your meal at the seasonal outdoor terrace.

What’s more, the trendy restaurant transforms into a club on weekend nights. Open until midnight on weekdays and up to 5 AM on weekend nights.

Rentalmoose order tip: Try Na Lato’s delicious pizzas. Though not a regional dish, it is truly delicious!

The Christmas Market

Are you in Warsaw around Christmas? Be sure to head to the Old Town and attend the charming Christmas Market. Wander around the stalls selling Christmas decorations, mulled wine, juicy grilled sausages, and accessories of all sorts.

Christmas at the Wilanów Palace

Alternatively, go to the garden by the Wilanów Palace to see a magical light display. Admission to the Warsaw Christmas Market is free, meanwhile the Royal Garden of Light at the Wilanów Palace costs around 20zł per person (4.4 EUR).

Warsaw is packed with adventures and things to do, including a vibrant nightlife scene, that’s why Rentalmoose highly recommends spending at least one night in town before departing further.

What are the best hotels in Warsaw?

Bristol Hotel

Luxury seekers should consider checking into the Bristol Hotel, a member of Marriott’s Luxury Collection. The historic 5-star hotel features elegant rooms and suites, an indoor pool, a spa and wellness center and a perfect location along Krakowskie Przedmieście, just a short walk away from the Old Town.

Hampton by Hilton

Traveling on a tighter budget? Spend the night at the Hampton by Hilton near the center of Warsaw. The 3-star hotel offers well-equipped rooms, a complimentary breakfast, and a convenient location near the heart of Warsaw all at a reasonable price tag.

Looking for more fun attractions in Warsaw? Check out the Berlin to Warsaw travel guide, where you can find more things to see in town, such as the wonderful medieval Old Town or a trendy eatery in the heart of the city.

Next on your Poland road trip: Mikołajki, 3 hours

Mikołajki

masurian lake district and forest at sunset aerial view poland nature

Photography by Marcin Lewicki.

Leave Warsaw and hop on the S8 expressway up north to the scenic Masurian Lake District. After around three hours, you will reach the cute resort town of Mikołajki.

The Sailing Village

As Mikołajki is the Polish hotspot for sailing, you should definitely check out the Sailing Village in the harbor. Stroll down the picturesque promenade lined with shops and eateries, step inside one of the restaurants and enjoy fresh fish as you observe sailing boats pulling in and out of the busy harbor.

The public beach

Cross the bridge and go for a dip in the lake at the public beach. Your rental car can be left at the designated on-street parking spots along Michała Kajki street. Alternatively, try this car park.

Watersport and yacht charters

Adrenaline junkies will be happy to hear that there are plenty of jetski, boat and paddleboat rentals available in the Sailing Village.

Experienced sailors can also charter a sailing yacht in advance and sail out on the beautiful lake. Most boats can be rented directly from the jetty, though some may require an upfront reservation. 

Stare Sady- Peaceful Chillout by the lake

Relax at Stare Sady, a calm lakeshore resort a few kilometers north of the busy center of Mikołajki. Go for a swim at the sandy beach, grab lunch at the local restaurant or head out onto the lake and try flyboarding or waterskiing.

Where to eat in Mikołajki?

For lunch, consider heading to the New Island across next to Mikołajki’s Public Beach. The restaurant is a part of the 5-star Hotel Mikołajki and offers a delicious, upscale dining experience with unbeatable views of the lake.

During the summer, guests can dine in the seasonal outdoor area. The New Island is open daily from 1 PM to 11 PM.

masurian lake district poland rural b-road colorful fields and large trees

What are the best hotels in Mikołajki?

Hotel Mikołajki

Looking for the best luxury accommodation in Mikołajki? Check-in at Hotel Mikołajki, an elegant hotel next to the heart of town. The 5-star property features well-equipped rooms with lake views, 2 pools, a spa and wellness center and onsite restaurants, as well as a bar with a pool table and bowling alleys.

Hotel Santa Monica

Hotel Santa Monica is a budget-friendly alternative to some of the more expensive hotels in the area. The 3-star hotel offers spacious rooms and an outdoor pool at an affordable price. A car park is available at an extra cost.

Next on your Poland road trip: Malbork, 2 hours 40 minutes

Malbork

malbork castle surrounded by water large palace poland

Photography by Jan Nijman.

Depart Mikołajki and drive west along the twists and turns towards Malbork, a city that is home to the largest castle in the world measured by land area.

The largest castle in the world

The Malbork Castle and fortress is considered the largest in the world measured by land area. Its history dates back to the 13th century when it was constructed by the Teutons. Today, the castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and welcomes curious visitors and tourists.

Admire the castle’s massive facade and the well-preserved fortress. Then, experience a trip back in time as you step inside the authentic medieval interior. Visit tens of historic rooms and magnificent chambers, learn about the castle’s history at various exhibitions or wander around the terraces.

The self-guided walking tour of the castle takes around 3 hours to complete.

Admission costs below 50 PLN per person (11 EUR), with reduced prices in winter and a 10 PLN discount (2.2 EUR) when entering after 5.15 PM.

During the high season between July and August, travelers can attend a guided tour in English every day at 11:30 AM. Click here for more info about tickets.

Next on your Poland road trip: Gdańsk, 40 minutes

Gdańsk

gdansk old town in summer colorful medieval buildings cobblestone road people restaurants poland

Photography by Makalu.

Head north from Malbork for around 45 minutes until you reach the port city of Gdańsk. The two neighboring cities (Sopot and Gdynia), along with Gdańsk make up the Tri-City, one of the main tourist hotspots in the country.

Is Gdańsk worth visiting?

Gdansk is certainly worth visiting! Wander down the cobblestone streets in the Old Town, sunbathe on one of the public beaches or explore some of the other attractions throughout Gdańsk as well as the rest of the Tri-City.

The Old Town

You can’t skip the historical Old Town, the very heart of Gdańsk. Your rental car can be dropped off nearby at one of the designated on-street spots. On busier days, try this car park instead for around 5 PLN (1.2 EUR) per hour.

Stroll around the vibrant streets lined with colorful medieval buildings, make your way down to the Długi Targ (Long Market), the main walking street in the Old Town. Get a photo with the popular Neptune Fountain, then continue along the marina and admire the historical crane.

Remember to post your photos online using #Rentalmoose for a chance to win a Rentalmoose discount or even a rental car free of charge.

The Pier in Sopot

Drive north along the Tri-City until you reach the famous Pier in Sopot. Stroll down the longest pier in the Baltic Sea (over 500 meters long) and feel the refreshing sea breeze.

Watch the street performers or step inside one of the fish bars, where you can find locally-caught grilled fish. If the weather allows it, you can head to the public beach right by the pier and go for a dip in the sea.

Admission to the pier costs below 10 PLN per person (2.2 EUR).

poland baltic sea sandy beach calm water cruise ship in background
Photo by Aleksander Filip

Bohaterów Monte Cassino Walking Street

You will find the heart of Sopot right opposite the Pier. Walk down the Bohaterów Monte Cassino walking street, lined with vivid pubs, clubs, and restaurants of all sorts. Step inside some of the top attractions, such as the Sopot Wax Museum and the picturesque Crooked House.

Visit the area during the evening to experience the best of the local nightlife, it really is the place to be.

Your rental car can be dropped off at designated on-street parking spots. Beware of the “private car parks” in the area, as they might try to scam tourists and ask for crazy amounts of money.

On a busy day, drop your car off at Sheraton’s underground car park (around 10 PLN per hour, 2.2 EUR).

Where can you find the best food in the Tri-City?

Eliksir

When you get hungry, go for dinner at the Eliksir restaurant and cocktail bar in Gdańsk. The award-winning restaurant is known for food-pairing its unique dishes with creative cocktails, and is considered one of the best places to dine in the entire Tri-City.

Choose from a tasting menu and pick your favorite from a wide selection of beverages. Open from 4 PM onwards on weekdays and 2 PM and 1 PM on Saturdays and Sundays respectively.

The Tri-City is filled with fun activities and spots worth seeing, that’s why Rentalmoose highly recommends spending the night in town.

Luxury travelers should check-in to one of the beachfront hotels in Sopot. My personal favorite is the 5-star Sheraton, located in the very heart of Sopot directly by the pier. Admire the sea views from the hotel’s modern rooms and suites, relax at the indoor pool, book a treatment at the serene spa and wellness center or dine at the restaurant. A private car park is available at an extra cost.

Traveling on a tighter budget? The Smart Hotel in Gdańsk might just be the perfect choice for you. The affordable property features modern rooms, complimentary Wi-Fi and a restaurant. A car park is available at an extra cost.

Next on your Poland road trip: Toruń, 1 hour 40 minutes 30 PLN Highway toll (6.6 EUR)

Toruń

torun old town colorful medieval buildings on a sunny day vistula river in background

E-Gabi/Pixabay.com

Hop on the A1 highway and drive south, leaving the Tricity behind. Keep in mind that on Summer weekends there can be extremely heavy traffic on the highway, resulting in long queues by the toll points. Drive on weekdays to avoid the traffic.

What is Toruń famous for?

Toruń was the hometown of Copernicus, a famous Polish astronomer who lived in the 1400s. Today, the medieval heart of the city is perfect for a trip back in time, and the historical buildings are often home to museums that showcase local history and culture.

The charming city is often overlooked by international tourists, though it is most certainly worth a visit!

The Medieval Town

When in Toruń, you can’t skip the Medieval Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The historical buildings are very well-preserved and the cobblestone streets are perfect to get lost in.

Wander around until you reach the monumental Old Town Hall, which has been turned into a museum after the Second World War. Step inside and walk through the exhibitions located within the wonderful historical interiors.

Travelers can climb the Town Hall tower to get the best view of the city.

Admission tickets cost 15 PLN (3.3 EUR) per person, entry is free of charge on Wednesdays. Tickets to the tower cost an additional 15PLN per person.

The Leaning Tower… Of Toruń

Did you know that Poland has its own equivalent of the Leaning Tower of Pisa? It may not be as large or as famous as the one in Italy, though the Leaning Tower of Toruń is a landmark worth visiting nonetheless.

Admire the medieval tower from the outside, sadly the interior is not accessible to the public. From the tower, you can follow the large defensive walls that protected the city in medieval times.

The Planetarium

Travelers who wish to learn more about astronomy should pay a visit to the Planetarium. The attraction offers astronomical shows along with two interactive exhibitions.

Check the official website for the daily show schedule. An admission ticket costs below 15 PLN (3.3 EUR) per person.

Next on your Poland road trip: Łódź,1 hour 50 minutes

Łódź

lodz piotrkowska walking street in the summer shops city center poland

Photography by Marcin Polak.

Hop back on the A1 highway and continue south. In around 2 hours, you will reach the city of Łódź (or Lodz in English), the last stop on the journey before making your way back to Warsaw.

What can you do in Lodz?

Łódź isn’t a popular tourist destination in Poland, despite being one of the largest cities in the country and just an hour and a half west of Warsaw. The times when Łódź was just an industrial town are long gone, and the city’s countless trendy hangouts and cultural venues prove it.

Piotrkowska Street

When in Łódź, you should definitely stroll down Piotrkowska Street, the longest commercial street in the entire country and the cultural heart of the city.

Some travelers may not be willing to walk down the whole street, as it is over four kilometers long. In that case, be sure to at least visit the northern part of the street as that’s where all the busy bars, restaurants and shops are situated.

Visit the street after dusk falls and experience Lodz’s vibrant nightlife in one of the numerous clubs or bars.

Off Piotrkowska Center

When you’re exploring Piotrkowska, be sure to turn into the Off Piotrkowska Center. The trendy venue is home to unique shops and exotic restaurants all located in and around a renovated industrial factory. Even if you’re not in the mood for dining, the spot is worth visiting solely for its cool industrial vibe.

Manufaktura

Be sure to drop by Manufaktura, another factory-turned-cultural spot in Łódź. Guests can satisfy their shopping needs at the local shopping gallery, dine at one of the restaurants, learn about the city’s history in the museums or wander around the outdoor area and simply enjoy the architecture.

Your rental car can be dropped off at the car park off Drewnowska Street, there are over 3500 complimentary parking spots.

What is the best restaurant in Łódź?

Anatewka

For dinner, consider going to Anatewka. The unique restaurant just off Piotrkowska Street serves traditional Jewish cuisine. Łódź has historically been a melting pot of four cultures, and the eatery focuses on the Jewish culture and its delicious dishes. Open daily between 11 AM and 11 PM.

Which hotel should you pick in Łódź?

Vienna House Andel’s

Spend the night at the Vienna House Andel’s Lodz, an elegant 4-star hotel near the heart of the city. The property features modern rooms, an indoor pool, a fitness center, a spa and wellness center, and a stylish interior design. A private underground car park is available at an extra cost.

Boss Hotel

A good budget-friendly alternative in Łódź is the Boss Hotel. The hotel features well-equipped rooms, complimentary Wi-Fi and a bar and restaurant. Guests can relax at the seasonal outdoor terrace. A car park is available at no extra cost.

Next on your Poland road trip: Warsaw, 1 hour 30 minutes

Drop-off

Your Polish adventure doesn’t have to end here! Click here for our travel guide that will take you through Kraków, Wrocław, and Poznań before finishing in Berlin.

If you choose to end the trip here, drop off your rental car directly at Warsaw Chopin Airport before leaving. Car rental companies that support airport drop-off can be found via Rentalmoose.

Don’t have a car you can take on one of the best road trip in Poland? No problem!

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