A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Belize City vs. Bocas del Toro for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Belize City or Bocas del Toro?

Should I visit Belize City or Bocas del Toro? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Belize City

Belize City is the largest city in Belize. It was once the capital of the country, but due to massive hurricane damage in 1961, the country decided to relocate it capital. With a population of 57,000 people, Belize City is located right at the mouth of the Haulover Creek.

This gorgeous tropical city experiences a monsoon climate meaning there are warm and humid conditions throughout the course of the year. There is a wet season from May to January, so plan for a little bit of rain in that time.

Bocas del Toro

The capital of the Bocas del Toro province, this city of the same name sits in the Caribbean West region of Panama. Bocas del Toro, or Bocas Town, is in the district of Bocas del Toro, which also includes the towns of Bastimentos, Cauchero, Punta Laurel, and Tierra Oscura. The district has a population of about 17,000 and covers a total area of 433.2 square kilometers, and the town has a population of about 13,000. The area is a tourist destination for its beautiful beaches, excellent snorkeling and diving, and interesting culture.

Which city is cheaper, Bocas del Toro or Belize City?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Belize City is $70, while the average daily cost in Bocas del Toro is $61. 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 city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Belize City and Bocas del Toro in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $78 in Belize City For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

The prices for places to stay in Bocas del Toro can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $27, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $54.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Belize City $39
    Bocas del Toro $27
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Belize City $78
    Bocas del Toro $54

Food

While meal prices in Belize City can vary, the average travelers spends about $22 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Belize City should cost around $8.80 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Belize City is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

Food in Bocas del Toro costs travelers about $22 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Belize City $22
    Bocas del Toro $22

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Belize City

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

  • Private Mayan Cooking and Tasting Experience in Cayo: $70
  • See and Taste Belize Cave Tubing and Food Tour: $77
  • Belize Cultural Food Tour Altun Ha Ruin Included: $95
  • Mestizo Food Tour (Rum & Ruin Included): $125

Typical Food prices in Bocas del Toro

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Bocas del Toro:


  • Lunch
    $15
  • Breakfast
    $14

Local Transportation

Belize City's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $4.64 per person, per day on transportation in Belize City.

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Bocas del Toro than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $8.20 on transportation in Bocas del Toro on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Belize City $4.64
    Bocas del Toro $8.20

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Belize City

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

  • Helicopter Transfer to Grand Caribe Heliport, Ambergris Caye: $1,493
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Belize International Airport to San Ignacio Hotels: $160
  • Tours&airport transfer: $128
  • Private Transfer: Belize Airports or Water Taxi Terminal to Hotel in San Ignacio: $96
  • Belize: Belize City to/from Placencia/Hopkins Transfer: $45
  • Belize Travelcation Airport Shuttle & Transfers: $28

Typical Local Transportation prices in Bocas del Toro

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Bocas del Toro:


  • Water Taxi
    $3.00

Is it cheaper to fly into Belize City or Bocas del Toro?

Prices for flights to both Bocas del Toro and Belize City 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.





Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Belize City can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $23 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Sightseeing expenses in Bocas del Toro, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $17 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Belize City $23
    Bocas del Toro $17

Tours and Activities in Belize City

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

  • 4-Day Aktun Tunichil Muknal and Lamanai City Tour: $560
  • 5-Day Belize Sea and Land Adventure: $799
  • 7-Night Tour Including The Orchid Garden Eco-Village Lodge and Ambergris Caye: $1,399
  • 9-Day Tour Including Tikal Islander and Ambergris Caye: $1,499
  • All Day Reef fishing tour with lunch from Belize City: $540
  • Altun Ha & Belize City Tour from Caye Caulker: $163
  • Altun Ha Cave Tubing and Zip line Tours from Belize City: $208
  • Altun Ha City v.i.v Tour: $79
  • Altun Ha Maya & Belize City Adventure: $85
  • Altun Ha Mayan Ruins and River Wallace and Manatee Watch Tour: $85
  • Altun Ha Mayan Site tour from Belize City: $70
  • Altun Ha and Belize City Tour from San Pedro: $180

Typical Entertainment prices in Bocas del Toro

For Bocas del Toro, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Island Boat Tour
    $25
  • Starfish Island Boat Trip
    $20
  • Yoga Class
    $5.00

Tours and Activities in Bocas del Toro

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Bocas del Toro.

  • Small-Group Speed Boat and Snorkel Tour from Bocas del Toro: $68

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Belize City spend on average $9.58 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Bocas del Toro, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $9.48.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Belize City $9.58
    Bocas del Toro $9.48


When comparing the travel costs between Belize City and Bocas del Toro, we can see that Belize City is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Central America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Belize City vs. Bocas del Toro Travel Comparison

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