A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Cartagena vs. Paracas for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Cartagena or Paracas?

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

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 Cartagena and Paracas can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Cartagena or Paracas?

Cartagena

The capital of the Bolivar Department of Colombia, Cartagena is one of the most visited cities in the country. It sits on Colombia's northern coast by the Caribbean Sea. It's a port city with a population of almost 900,000, making it the fifth largest city in Colombia. The city has a rich history and was the first Spanish colony on the American continent. It was also one of the first sanctuaries for freed African slaves in the Americas.

Paracas

Paracas, also known as El Chaco, is a resort town on the Southern coast of the country, about 150 miles south of Lima. The town in located in one of the oldest regions of Peru, with a history dating back to 900 BC and offers many pre-Inca cultural sites throughout the area. Paracas is possibly best known for being home to the Paracas National Reserve, a nature reserve boasting one of the most abundant and diverse ecosystems in the world.

Which city is cheaper, Paracas or Cartagena?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cartagena is $34, while the average daily cost in Paracas is $47. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Cartagena and Paracas in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cartagena $19
    Paracas $17
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cartagena $38
    Paracas $34
Compare Hotels in Cartagena and Paracas

Looking for a hotel in Cartagena or Paracas? 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 Cartagena


Hotels in Paracas


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.


Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cartagena $5.32
    Paracas $14

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cartagena

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cartagena:

  • Air Conditioning Bus transfer: $8.00
  • Cartagena Airport Transfer (in and out) - Touristic Area Hotels - Sedan: $34
  • Cartagena Airport: Private Arrival or Departure Transfer: $14
  • Cartagena Arrival or Departure Transfer: Airport / Cruise Ship Terminal: $13
  • Cartagena Private Transfer from Bocagrande to Rafael Núñez (CTG) Airport: $17
  • Cartagena Private Transfer from El Laguito to Rafael Núñez (CTG) Airport: $17
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by 2x4 Car: $72
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by Minivan: $96
  • Hotel to Airport Transportation in Cartagena (transfer service): $14
  • One way private water transfer between Cartagena and the Islands (6 ppl max): $530
  • PRIVATE Transfer from the AIRPORT to the hotel.: $19
  • PRIVATE Transfer from the cruise terminal.: $13

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Paracas

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Paracas:

  • Private Bus Station transfer in Paracas: $9.10
  • Private Transfer from Paracas to Ica: $110
  • Private transfer from Paracas to Lima (price per vehicle): $480
  • Private transfer from Paracas to Lima Airport (price per vehicle): $490
  • Transfer Paracas -Lima: $250

Is it cheaper to fly into Cartagena or Paracas?

Prices for flights to both Paracas and Cartagena 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
    Cartagena $6.97
    Paracas $17

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cartagena

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Cartagena.

  • Cartagena Cuisine Cooking Experience: $30
  • BIKE & BITE food tour: $52
  • Cruise by the Bay with Dinner and Wine: $55
  • Street food tour with Julie: $64
  • Food Tour in Cartagena Walled City: $66
  • Street Food & Local Food Tour: $66
  • SkyKitchen 4 Course Cooking Class: $81
  • Bazurto Market Tour and Cooking Class in Cartagena: $92
  • Cartagena - Food Tour: $100
  • Caribbean Cuisine Cooking Class: $105
  • Shared Local Cooking Class and Lunch in Cartagena: $110
  • Bazurto Local Market Tour & Cooking Class: $115

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Paracas

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Paracas.

  • Dinner on Paracas Desert: $393

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cartagena $15
    Paracas $19

Tours and Activities in Cartagena

Here are a few actual costs in Cartagena for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Cartagena de Indias: India Catalina to Plaza Santo Domingo Audio Tour - VoiceMap: $5.34
  • Cartagena de Indias: Into the Walls of The City Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.34
  • Ghost of Downtown: Fear in the streets. Cartagena Sensorial Tour: $6.99
  • Monasterio de la Popa, tickets de entrada: $7.00
  • Cartagena City Tour By Bicycle: $8.00
  • City Tour Cartagena With Bazurto Market: $8.00
  • Audio Guide - Walking Tour with Interactive (Cartagena de Indias): $10
  • Free walking tour Gethsemane old town & Forever colonial: $10
  • Cartagena Ryhtm & Sunset - Musical experience: $12
  • Virtual Cartagena LiteraTour through Nobel Garcia Marquez work: $15
  • City Sightseeing Cartagena Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour Shore Excursion: $18
  • Chiva Party Bus Tour in Cartagena: $18

Tours and Activities in Paracas

Here are a few actual costs in Paracas for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Ballestas Islands Sightseeing Boat Ride from Paracas: $24
  • From Scenic Boat Tour to Ballestas Island: $25
  • Ballestas Islands Group Tour from Paracas: $26
  • Ballestas Islands for cruise ship passenger - Paracas Harbour: $32
  • Ballestas Islands and Chandelier tour from Paracas: $36
  • Ballestas Islands Sigthseeing Tour: $36
  • ATV Tour in Paracas: $45
  • From Paracas National Reserve Private Tour: $48
  • Tour to Ballestas Islands from Chaco Dock: $49
  • Half day Tour to the Paracas National Reserve from Puerto San Martín: $54
  • Paracas National Reserve Private Tour: $59
  • Tour to Paracas National Reserve: $65

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cartagena $6.54
    Paracas $8.42


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Cartagena and Paracas, we can see that Paracas is more expensive. And not only is Cartagena much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Cartagena would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Cartagena 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 Paracas would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Paracas than you might in Cartagena.

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

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Cartagena vs. Paracas Travel Comparison

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