Should you visit Cafayate or Cusco?
Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Cafayate and Cusco can help you decide which place is right for you.
Cafayate is located in the province of Salta, in the central zone of the Valles Calchaquies. The small town has about 12,000 residents and is 1,329 kilometers from Buenos Aires.
People head to the small town of Cafayate to explore its vineyards and unique rock formations. It has become an important tourist destination in the area and there is a large golf course under construction just outside of town.
Cafayate is an important wine production center. The wines in the area thrive from the low humidity mild weather of the valleys. The town receives less than 250 millimeters of precipitation a year.
Cusco is most famous as the historic capital of the Inca Empire. It is in the southern Sierras and is one of the most popular travel destinations within Peru. The city is located at 3,400 meters above sea level so it is best to acclimate yourself slowly to avoid altitude sickness. (Read this advice about managing the altitude in Cusco and Machu Picchu.)
Which city is cheaper, Cusco or Cafayate?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Cafayate is $83, while the average daily cost in Cusco is $38. 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 Cafayate and Cusco in more detail.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $62 in Cafayate For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
A hotel room in Cusco is about $34 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.
While meal prices in Cafayate can vary, the average travelers spends about $34 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Cafayate should cost around $14 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Cafayate is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.
Cusco food costs typically run travelers around $9.59 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.
Meals for one day
Typical Food prices in Cafayate
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Cafayate:
Typical Food prices in Cusco
Some typical examples of dining costs in Cusco are as follows:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cusco
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Cusco.
Small-Group Virtual Peruvian Cooking Experience:
Small-Group Virtual Ceviche Cooking Experience:
Tunupa Cusco Restaurant: Dinner with Show:
CUSCO COOKING CLASS LUNCH 12:00PM TO 1:30PM (Available only in English):
Peruvian Cooking Class and Local Market in Cusco:
Dinner at Calle del Medio restaurant:
Dinner at Pachapapa restaurant.:
Peruvian Cooking Classes:
Dinner at Tunupa restaurant with folkloric show.:
Dinner at Inca Grill Restaurant:
Curious Monkey- The Gordito, Walking Food Tour:
Fully hands-on High End Peruvian Cooking Class & San Pedro Market Guided Visit:
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Cafayate than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $17 on transportation in Cafayate on average per day.
The average price of local transportation around Cusco is $8.69 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Cusco
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Cusco:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cusco
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cusco:
Private Transfer from Cusco to Puno:
CUSCO MAGICAL 4D Transfer, Hotel, City Tour, Sacred Valley and Machu picchu:
Airport Transfer, City Tour, Sacred Valley & Machupicchu (All Included):
Private Transfer from Cusco City to Ollantaytambo Train Station by Minibus:
Private Transfer from Alejandro Velasco Astete (CUZ) Airport to Valle Sagrado:
Private Transfer from Alejandro Velasco Astete (CUZ) Airport to Ollantaytambo:
San Sebastián Private Transfer from San Sebastián Airport to City centre:
One-Way Scenic Bus Transfer to Puno from Cusco:
Scenic Journey from Cusco to Puno by Bus Including Hotel Transfers:
Private Transfer from Cusco City to Ollantaytambo Train Station by Minivan:
Cuzco city or airport to Ollantaytambo train station -Departure Private Transfer:
Private Transfer from Cusco City to Ollantaytambo Train Station by Sedan Car:
Is it cheaper to fly into Cafayate or Cusco?
Prices for flights to both Cusco and Cafayate 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.
Sightseeing expenses in Cafayate, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $37 per day, per person.
Cusco's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $20 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.
Tours and Activities in Cafayate
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Cafayate.
Tour Quebrada De Las Conchas - Cafayate - Salta:
Cafayate and Calchaqui Valley Winery Tour:
From Salta: Full-Day Wine and Valley Tour to Cafayate:
Cachi Full-Day Tour:
Half-Day Wine Road Premium Tour From Cafayate:
Quebrada De Las Conchas Bike Tour from Cafayate:
Typical Entertainment prices in Cusco
Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Cusco are as follows:
Tours and Activities in Cusco
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Cusco are as follows:
"Waqrapukara" Great Canyon Full Day Tour:
(H) Cusco 04 Days: City Tour - Sacred Valley - MachuPicchu (Group Tour):
(H) Inka Jungle Trail 04 Days (Group Tour):
01 Day Tour to Machu Picchu The Inca City:
07 Day Andean Experience Through the Living Culture of the Incas:
07 Day: Inca Jungle Adventure with Mountain Bike, Rafting, Zipline & Trek:
1 Day Hike on the Inca Trail + 1 Day in Machupicchu: Private 2 days Tour:
1 Day Luxury Tour to Machu Picchu:
1 Day Tour to Palcoyo Mountain and 4 Lagoons - private service:
1 Day tour to Machupicchu:
1-Day Machu Picchu Tour by Vistadome Train:
1-Day Machu Picchu Tour from Cusco, Peru:
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Cafayate, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $34.
The average person spends about $6.81 on alcoholic beverages in Cusco per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Cafayate and Cusco, we can see that Cafayate is more expensive. And not only is Cusco much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Cusco would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Cusco 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 Cafayate would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Cafayate than you might in Cusco.
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