About Guyana (GY)
Guyana (GY) is situated between Suriname and Venezuela in northeastern South America, and features 459 km (285 mi) of Atlantic Ocean coastline, where vast majority of its small population reside. It’s still considered somewhat of an obscure destination for mainstream tourism, but Guyana is exceedingly popular for ecotourism and wildlife adventure.
The country’s interior is thick rainforest and dense jungle, with a number of wide rivers and waterfalls, and home to Guyana’s increasingly recognized biodiversity of plant and animal life. Due to its low profile on the South American tourism scene, Guyana may feel like an undiscovered gem to first-time visitors.
However, it’s a leading nation on the cutting edge of sustainable tourism and environmental conservation, and fiercely protective of its ecosystems and cultural heritage. Visitors will be encouraged to adopt low impact travel habits and adhere to the established guidelines for reaching all attractions and destinations.
The best way to explore the coastline is to rent a car in Guyana.
For reaching the interior, self-driving is not advisable, but if you do you will need a 4x4 or an SUV.
The capital city of Georgetown is the gateway to Guyana car rentals, and generally easy to navigate in. But here’s where things start to get…involved.
First of all, you need to obtain a local 30-Day Driver's Permit at Cheddi Jagan International Airport for free in the arrivals area (it can’t be done online, prior to arrival by way).
Next, you’ll need to get familiar with driving on mostly unpaved roads outside of Georgetown. And finally, you’ll want to be an experienced wilderness traveler to drive anywhere 10-20 km south of the coastline. All-wheel drive vehicles are a necessity for almost all types of driving. On the bright side, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and hassle by having your own wheels.
Guyana is a beautiful, mostly unspoiled paradise, but it’s a place that requires a certain amount of common sense to navigate effectively, and more importantly, safely.
Choosing your car
All the big names are providing cheap car rentals in Guyana. Rent a car from Sixt, Europcar, Hertz, Dollar, and Budget. Select from the vehicle class that best suits your travel budget. Choose from minicars, compact sedans, economy 3-door hatchbacks, estate wagons, premium and luxury vehicles, SUVs and 7-12 seater minivans.
Tips and advice
Your Guyana car rental must be equipped with GPS.
Due to road conditions, travel times are much longer than you may anticipate. Veteran travelers say it’s almost impossible to know how long it will take to reach a destination until you get there.
It’s illegal for one driver to spend more than 5.5 continuous hours behind the wheel, and the maximum amount of driving time is 11 hours in a 24-hour period.
Inform your Guyana car hire provider if you plan to take the car into Suriname. You’ll need their permission and pay a fee. There are no roads leading into Venezuela, so that option is off the table anyway.
Having roadside assistance doesn’t completely protect you from dangerous conditions. Keep in mind that the further you head south, the longer it’s going to take for help to arrive.
In addition to common sense, you’ll need to have as much insurance coverage on your Guyana car rental as you can possibly afford.