A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Asuncion vs. Santa Marta for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Asuncion or Santa Marta?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Asuncion or Santa Marta, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Where Should I go: Asuncion or Santa Marta?

Asuncion

Asuncion is a vastly underrated city. It is the capital but also the administrative economic and cultural center of Paraguay. It is located in the south central part of the country, near the border with Argentina and it is one of the oldest cities in South America, with people living here since almost 500 years. The city has a beautiful and simple center, with a few unique colonial and beaux arts buildings, international cuisine, shady plazas and friendly people. Its handful of historic buildings around the Plaza de los Heroes, Plaza Uruguaya and Manzana de la Ribera, two or three small museums, old bars and cafes, but also smart suburbs, ritzy shopping malls and fashionable nightclubs will keep you entertained for a day or two. It is a very charming city for travellers and apart from the sights, the city boasts a good tourist infrastructure with hotels and restaurants.

Santa Marta

Santa Marta is a city in the Magdalena Department of Colombia's Costa Norte. Over the last decade, security has steadily been replacing the shadow of the Colombia's violent past. One destination in Colombia's northeast region is now attracting more international visitors: the coastal Caribbean area of Santa Marta. Established in 1525 by the Spanish as a base of conquest, Santa Marta sits at the foot of the world's highest coastal mountain range, the towering Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. It is South America's oldest European-founded town and the second most important colonial city on Colombia's Caribbean coast. While many travelers complain about Santa Marta's horrible traffic and unsightly urban sprawl, the city holds a numerous amounts of great hotels, bars and restaurants and holds a few fantastic destinations nearby to which you can go during the daytime.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Eco Tours in Colombia, and The Best Food and Culinary Tours in Colombia.


Which place is cheaper, Santa Marta or Asuncion?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Asuncion is $67, while the average daily cost in Santa Marta is $30. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Asuncion and Santa Marta in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Asuncion $22
    Santa Marta $13
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Asuncion $44
    Santa Marta $26
Compare Hotels in Asuncion and Santa Marta

Looking for a hotel in Asuncion or Santa Marta? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Asuncion


Hotels in Santa Marta


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Asuncion Hotel Prices and Santa Marta Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Asuncion $8.62
    Santa Marta $4.86

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Asuncion

Also for Asuncion, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Transfer in private minivan from Asuncion Airport (ASU) - Asuncion City: $23
  • Transfer in private minivan Asuncion City - Silvio Pettirosi Airport (ASU): $23
  • Transfer in private car from Asuncion City - Asuncion Airport (ASU): $17
  • Transfer in Private Car from Asuncion Airport (ASU) - Asuncion City: $17
  • RoundTrip Transfer in Private Minivan Asuncion Airport (ASU) - Asuncion City: $46
  • RoundTrip Private Transfer Asuncion Airport (ASU) - Asuncion City: $33

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Santa Marta

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Santa Marta:


  • Gas
    $4.84

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santa Marta

Also for Santa Marta, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Transfers to Palomino, Tayrona Park, Buritaca Guachaca from Santa Marta: $23
  • Transfers SANTA MARTA AIRPORT TO HOTEL IN SANTA MARTA: $31
  • Transfer in private minivan from Santa Marta city to Santa Marta Airport (SMR): $21
  • Transfer in private minivan from Santa Marta Airport (SMR) to Santa Marta city: $21
  • Transfer in Private Car from Santa Marta city to Santa Marta Airport (SMR): $14
  • Transfer in Private Car from Santa Marta Airport (SMR) to Santa Marta city: $14
  • Tayrona / Santa Marta Transfer: $80
  • Santa Marta to or from Tayrona Park Private Transfer: $38
  • Santa Marta to or from Tayrona Park Private Transfer: $35
  • Santa Marta to or from Barranquilla Private Transfer: $67
  • Santa Marta to Santa Marta Airport - Departure Private Transfer: $32
  • Santa Marta to Mompox (or vice versa) Private Transfer: $268

Is it cheaper to fly into Asuncion or Santa Marta?

Prices for flights to both Santa Marta and Asuncion change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Asuncion $17
    Santa Marta $9.24

Typical Food Prices in Santa Marta

For Santa Marta, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Breakfast
    $2.90

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santa Marta

For Santa Marta, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Food Tour in Santa Marta Old City Half-Day : $66
  • Food Tour in Santa Marta Old City: $71
  • Santa Marta Street Food Tour: $93

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Asuncion $16
    Santa Marta $13

Tours and Activities in Asuncion

For Asuncion, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Asunción Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $35
  • Asuncion : Custom Walking Tour with A Guide (Private Tour): $34
  • Asuncion Birding Tour: $70
  • Birding and Nature Chaco Tour: $140
  • Crystal Fall - day tour in a reduced group: $85
  • Day Tour “Cerrito”: $231
  • Day tour “Circuito San Bernardino”: $214
  • Day tour “Circuito Sapucai”: $221
  • Day tour “Pai Pukú”: $230
  • Day tour to “National Park Ybycuí”: $265
  • Full day Paraguay River Nature and Wildlife Boat Tour: $230
  • Golden Triangle Tour: $110

Tours and Activities in Santa Marta

For Santa Marta, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • "Chocoserrano" Chocolate Tour 1 day - Santa Marta: $115
  • 2 Day Minca Tour with Bird Watching: $80
  • 2 days 1 night tour - in Trompito, I meet indigenous community Kogui Uldezhaxa.: $191
  • 2-Day Tour to Ancestral Heritage from Santa Marta: $190
  • 4 Days Adventure; Medellin to Santa Marta- Beach of the Dead: $318
  • 4 Days Adventure; Medellin to Santa Marta- Beach of the Dead: $317
  • 7-Hour Tour to Playa Blanca in Santa Marta: $9.44
  • Amazing full day tour to Minca with a private guide: $178
  • Ancestral Thought Tour: $180
  • Ancestral Thought Tour (Indigenous life in Kogui people) Santa Marta: $192
  • Ancestral Thought Tour two days and one night: $200
  • Aracataca And Ciénaga - Gabriel García Márquez Tour: $54

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Asuncion $10
    Santa Marta $6.19
Typical Alcohol Prices in Asuncion

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Asuncion are as follows:


  • Beer
    $1.20

Typical Alcohol Prices in Santa Marta

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Santa Marta from other travelers:


  • Beer
    $0.53
  • Beer
    $2.18


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Asuncion and Santa Marta, we can see that Asuncion is more expensive. And not only is Santa Marta much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Santa Marta would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Santa Marta and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Asuncion would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Asuncion than you might in Santa Marta.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Asuncion Expensive? and Is Santa Marta Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Asuncion or Santa Marta?

Asuncion has a larger population, and is about 3 times larger than the population of Santa Marta. When comparing the sizes of Asuncion and Santa Marta, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.