Grenada - Is a rental car necessary?

Overall, my visit to Grenada was not the best experience. My plan was to arrive from St. Vincent and rent a car for the four-day trip to Grenada and see the island.  The beaches were stunning and the scenery was impressive even in comparison to other Caribbean countries. 

However, the difficulty I had in finding a rental car really hindered my ability to explore the island fully. 

So the real challenge began when I arrived in Grenada. I found out that having a rental car was essential, and not having one disrupted my entire plan. 

Originally I already had organized everything for my trip to Grenada, including the rental car. But the rental car company called me the day before my arrival to inform me that the car I had reserved was involved in an accident, and they had no other car available.

I contacted 12 different rental car companies, but none of them had any cars available during my trip.

Why a rental car in Grenada is important?

Taxis and tour buses are three to four times more expensive than renting a car, and without a car, it's challenging to go anywhere beyond the beach. Well even going to the beach requires a long walk from most neighborhoods. Additionally, the lack of public transportation made it challenging to get around. And those minibus group trips are not an option at all for me.

Although driving in Grenada is relatively easy, and the roads along the coast offer breathtaking views, it's also possible to drive across the island and see the rainforest. The "Welcome Stone" in the north offers the best viewpoint on the island, but it's impossible or very expensive to get there without a rental car. There are also many beautiful beaches to see, and getting a taxi to stop and go to the next location can be challenging and frustrating.

Arriving in Grenada without a rental car

The flight from St. Vincent to Grenada was only 40 minutes with Inter Caribbean, and contrary to the 1.5-star rating on TripAdvisor, my experience was not bad. I had the last three or four international flights in the Caribbean with this airline and in fact, all my flights arrived earlier than planned.

I had no choice but to take a taxi from the airport to my accommodation, which cost me 25 USD for a 10-minute ride.

Grenada is not a cheap country for traveling around in taxis, so I was determined to find a rental car.

No cars available on the whole island?

Near my accommodation, there was a rental car company that told me that a car would be available later in the day, but unfortunately, it was still not available the next morning. It was frustrating, and all the promises made by the rental car company were of no use. 

To make matters worse, I also needed to obtain a temporary driver's license from the police station, which was two kilometers away, and the rental car company refused to drive me there. Walking there and back was not an option either, so I gave up on renting a car, at least for the moment.

At least the view from the car rental property was nice.

Day 2 - Grenada will become the same as Barbados?

No rental car, no bus. So I went to see the Grand Anse area on foot. There isn't much going on in Grenada, and the roads are long and located next to the main traffic.

However, sandy beaches are fantastic Caribbean beaches.

It didn't take long to realize that these three countries Bahamas, Barbados and Greanda are probably experiencing a similar fate in regard to hordes of tourists.

Grenada is somehow still far away from the crowded condition the others are facing, but it's obvious and easy to see how they do everything to lure foreign workers and tourists in.

It's being reflected by all the new apartments and houses built along the shores. Also, the supermarkets are built and equipped for foreigners' needs. And the prices in supermarkets and restaurants reflect it too.

The Grand Anse beach was spectacular, and I continued my walk towards the BBC beach, which was even more beautiful than Grand Anse.

On my way back, I came across a car parts company that also rented cars. They had a car available for 50 USD, and I signed all the necessary documents and started the car. However, I noticed that the left side window was not working, and it made me feel very uneasy about the safety of the car.

I didn't want to explain to the police why my rental car was stolen or have to empty the car every time I left it, so I returned the car on the spot, and I was back to where I started. Continue walking the long roads.

Day 3 - To the capital St. George

I gave up entirely on renting a car and decided to take the bus to St. Georges. I got off the bus a little way from the city and walked towards the harbor.

The harbor was well-made, and the city looked like it was from northern Europe, similar to Iceland, Holland, or Norway.

The city itself is small, and the walk takes you along the waterfront. I walked up a hill to the fort, which provides an excellent view of the city. 

There's a tunnel through the hill, and when cruise ships are in port, there's a train for tourists that takes them through St. George's.

The roads in St. George's are relatively quiet, especially for a city in the Caribbean. There were no cruise ships in port on the day I visited, so it was relatively uncrowded.

Day 4 - Departure to Trinidad

I had an early morning flight from Grenada to Trinidad, so I left my hotel and headed to the airport. 

The airport was small. The flight went smoothly, on time and uneventfully.

Despite the lack of renal cars, I still was able to arrange my time in Grenada. However, for a future visit (and as far as I can tell for now will never happen) I would definitely make sure to have a proper rental car lined up ahead of time to avoid the stress and frustration I experienced on this trip and make sure you have the necessary transportation to explore the island fully.

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