This work proposes an efficient actuator line – immersed boundary (AL-IB) method to predict the wake of multiple horizontal-axis tidal turbines (HATTs). A sharp IB method with a simple adaptive mesh refinement strategy is used to improve the computational efficiency. The velocity and other scalar fields adjacent to the solid surface are reconstructed by a moving least square (MLS) interpolation. A computationally efficient AL model is applied to represent the rotors by adding source term to the governing equation rather than resolving the fully geometry of the blade. To predict the turbulent wake, the AL-IB method is implemented with an unsteady Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes (URANS) solver. Performance of three types of turbulence models, k−ω−SST model, standard and corrected k−ω model are evaluated. An efficient wall function model is proposed for the MLS-IB approach. The accuracy of the present AL-IB method is validated by numerical tests of a single rotor and multiple tandem arranged IFREMER rotors. Wake interference of Manchester rotors with side by side arrangement is also investigated numerically. The predicted wake velocity and turbulence intensity (TI) are in reasonably good agreement with the experimental results.