Should you visit Cafayate or El Chalten?
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 El Chalten 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.
El Chalten is probably one of the most beautiful areas of Patagonia, especially at the slightest ray of sunshine and one of your cheapest destination while you are travelling in Patagonia. Indeed, you will spend your days hiking and there are no park fees. There are restaurants, souvenir shops, and outdoor stores but most of them will not accept credit cards so before heading out, get cash in El Calafate or your previous stop. For the beginners, it will be long hikes in a magical setting and for the experts perhaps a week long expedition to the greatest glaciers of the world. To discover the way people live in the pampa, you may also decide to stay at an Estancia. In the stunning Estancia Santa Thelma, about 300km away from El Chalten, you will be able to explore the surroundings by horse, live a unique experience in the middle of the nature and its vast plains occupied by thousands of merino sheep and horses and of course eat a typical meal of the region.
Which city is cheaper, El Chalten or Cafayate?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Cafayate is $85, while the average daily cost in El Chalten is $72. 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 El Chalten in more detail.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $64 in Cafayate For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
The average price for accommodation for two people in El Chalten is $64. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.
While meal prices in Cafayate can vary, the average travelers spends about $35 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.
While meal prices in El Chalten can vary, the average travelers spends about $27 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in El Chalten should cost around $11 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in El Chalten is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.
Meals for one day
El Chalten $27
Typical Food prices in Cafayate
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Cafayate:
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 cost of a taxi ride in El Chalten is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $17 per person, per day, on local transportation in El Chalten.
Sightseeing expenses in Cafayate, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $38 per day, per person.
Entertainment and activities in El Chalten typically cost an average of $19 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.
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:
Tours and Activities in El Chalten
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for El Chalten are as follows:
2-Day Chalten Adventure tour: Laguna de los Tres, Mount Fitz Roy & Cerro Torre:
2-Day Hiking Tour of Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre from El Chalten:
3-Day Eco-Lodge Trekking Tour at Los Glaciares National Park from El Chalten:
El Chalten Rafting Experience:
El Chalten Rafting Experience:
Module Fitz Roy Adventure:
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 $35.
The average person spends about $8.83 on alcoholic beverages in El Chalten 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 El Chalten, we can see that Cafayate is more expensive. And not only is El Chalten much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to El Chalten would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in El Chalten 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 El Chalten.
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