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

Should you visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas?

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 Punta Arenas can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Cartagena or Punta Arenas?

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.

Punta Arenas

Punta Arenas is in the far south of Chile and has a long history of maritime commerce, oil extraction, and sheep farming. It's the most populated city on the Strait of Magellan and has all the facilities you might need as a traveler, including banks, markets, drugstores and equipment shops. With a population of about 130,000, the city is a comfortable place to spend time. It serves as a base for Antarctic expeditions, although many expeditions also start in Ushuaia, Argentina, and Christchurch New Zealand.

Which city is cheaper, Punta Arenas 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 Punta Arenas is $51. 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 Punta Arenas in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cartagena $19
    Punta Arenas $26
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cartagena $38
    Punta Arenas $52
Compare Hotels in Cartagena and Punta Arenas

Looking for a hotel in Cartagena or Punta Arenas? 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 Punta Arenas


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
    Punta Arenas $1.45

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cartagena

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cartagena:

  • One way private water transfer between Cartagena and the Islands (6 ppl max): $530
  • Private Transfer from La Manga Club to Alicante–Elche (ALC) Airport: $259
  • Private Transfer from Cartagena to Alicante–Elche (ALC) Airport: $249
  • Private Transfer Cartagena to Palomino (or vice versa): $195
  • Private transfer to Barranquilla from Cartagena- Traslado privado a Barranquilla: $170
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by Minivan: $96
  • Transfer to Tayrona Park, Santa Marta or Barranquilla City from Cartagena: $84
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by 2x4 Car: $72
  • Private transfer Cartagena airport -Mamonal: $65
  • Transfer Cartagena: $50
  • Transfer service in Cartagena: $50
  • Private Transfer: Cartagena to Rafael Núñez International Airport (CTG): $40

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta Arenas

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

  • Arrival Transfer: Punta Arenas Airport to Hotel: $33
  • Bus transfer from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia: $169
  • Private Airport Transfer: Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas: $29
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ): $29
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales: $250
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas Hotel to Punta Arenas Airport: $32

Is it cheaper to fly into Cartagena or Punta Arenas?

Prices for flights to both Punta Arenas 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
    Punta Arenas $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

Typical Food prices in Punta Arenas

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Punta Arenas:


  • Donut
    $1.05
  • Dinner
    $25

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Punta Arenas

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

  • Punta Arenas Small Group Sightseeing and food Tour with a Local Guide: $76

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cartagena $15
    Punta Arenas $5.17

Tours and Activities in Cartagena

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

  • 2 Hour Panoramic tour for cruise ship passengers: $40
  • 4-Hour Fishing Experience with Locals Near Cartagena: $103
  • 6 Hr Cartagena Fishing Experience: $974
  • Accessible sightseeing tour of Cartagena: $140
  • Audio Guide - Walking Tour with Interactive (Cartagena de Indias): $10
  • Aviario National Park Shared Tour: $63
  • Bar Tour for Guys and Bachelor Parties: $20
  • Bazurto Market + La Popa Convent Cartagena City Tour 4H: $81
  • Bazurto Market Half day tour in Cartagena: $125
  • Biking Tour Cartagena: $19
  • Birdwatching & Photography experience at the National Aviary in Barú: $279
  • Bolivar Pirate Island Experience with Lunch: $75

Tours and Activities in Punta Arenas

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Punta Arenas.

  • Half day traditional City Tour: $35
  • Punta Arenas Sightseeing Tour: $47
  • Punta Arenas Highlights Shared Tour: $67
  • Small Group Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: Fort Bulnes and City Tour: $71
  • Puntarenas City tour and Mangroove Tour: $87
  • Bus ticket from Punta Arenas (Chile) to Ushuaia (Argentina): $88
  • Full-Day Punta Arenas and Magellan Strait Tour: $95
  • Rainforest Skywalk & Tarcoles River Eco Cruise Tour Puntarenas Shore excursion: $99
  • Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Tour: $101
  • Full day Punta Arenas (Regular tours): $103
  • Regular Tour of Andino Club Ski Mountain and Chairlift from Punta Arenas, Chile: $103
  • City Tour of Punta Arenas: $110

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cartagena $6.54
    Punta Arenas $3.90

Typical Alcohol prices in Punta Arenas

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Punta Arenas:


  • Alcohol
    $7.36

Sample the Local Flavors in Punta Arenas

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Punta Arenas:

  • Punta Arenas Small Group Beers & Brewery Tour with a Local Guide: $68


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Cartagena and Punta Arenas, we can see that Punta Arenas 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 Punta Arenas would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Punta Arenas than you might in Cartagena.


When is the best time to visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas?

Punta Arenas has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Cartagena experiences a tropical climate with fairly warm weather most of the year.

Should I visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas in the Summer?

Both Punta Arenas and Cartagena during the summer are popular places to visit. Plenty of visitors come to Cartagena because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year.

In the summer, Cartagena is much warmer than Punta Arenas. Typically, the summer temperatures in Cartagena in July are around 29°C (84°F), and Punta Arenas is about 11°C (52°F)in January.

In Punta Arenas, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Cartagena. In the summer, Cartagena often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Punta Arenasin January. Cartagena gets 207 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Punta Arenas receives 208 hours of full sun.

Cartagena usually gets more rain in July than Punta Arenasin January. Cartagena gets 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Punta Arenas receives 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July and January
    Cartagena 29°C (84°F) 
    Punta Arenas 11°C (52°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Cartagena and Punta Arenas. Cartagena attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate.

In October, Cartagena is generally much warmer than Punta Arenasin April. Temperatures in Cartagena average around 27°C (81°F), and Punta Arenas stays around 7°C (44°F).

Cartagena usually receives more sunshine than Punta Arenas during autumn. At this time of the year, Cartagena gets 175 hours of sunny skies, while Punta Arenas receives 119 hours of full sun.

Cartagena gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In October, Cartagena usually receives more rain than Punta Arenasin April. At this time of the year, Cartagena gets 150 mm (5.9 in) of rain, while Punta Arenas receives 36 mm (1.4 in) of rain.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October and April
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F) 
    Punta Arenas 7°C (44°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Cartagena as well as Punta Arenas. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Cartagena throughout the year.

Be prepared for some very cold days in Punta Arenas. Cartagena is much warmer than Punta Arenas in the winter. The temperature in Cartagena is usually 27°C (81°F) in January, and Punta Arenas stays around 1°C (35°F)in July.

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Cartagena this time of the year. In the winter, Cartagena often gets more sunshine than Punta Arenasin July. Cartagena gets 278 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Punta Arenas receives 70 hours of full sun.

Cartagena usually gets less rain in January than Punta Arenasin July. Cartagena gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Punta Arenas receives 30 mm (1.2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January and July
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F) 
    Punta Arenas 1°C (35°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Punta Arenas in the Spring?

Both Punta Arenas and Cartagena are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. Plenty of visitors come to Cartagena because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year.

In the spring, Cartagena is much warmer than Punta Arenas. Typically, the spring temperatures in Cartagena in April are around 28°C (82°F), and Punta Arenas is about 7°C (44°F)in October.

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Cartagena. Cartagena usually receives more sunshine than Punta Arenas during spring. At this time of the year, Cartagena gets 209 hours of sunny skies, while Punta Arenas receives 183 hours of full sun.

In April, Cartagena usually receives less rain than Punta Arenasin October. At this time of the year, Cartagena gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Punta Arenas receives 29 mm (1.1 in) of rain.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April and October
    Cartagena 28°C (82°F) 
    Punta Arenas 7°C (44°F)

Typical Weather for Punta Arenas and Cartagena

Cartagena Punta Arenas
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 11°C (52°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Feb 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 11°C (52°F) 28 mm (1.1 in)
Mar 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 9°C (48°F) 30 mm (1.2 in)
Apr 28°C (82°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 7°C (44°F) 36 mm (1.4 in)
May 29°C (84°F) 50 mm (2 in) 4°C (39°F) 42 mm (1.7 in)
Jun 29°C (84°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 2°C (35°F) 28 mm (1.1 in)
Jul 29°C (84°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 1°C (35°F) 30 mm (1.2 in)
Aug 28°C (82°F) 80 mm (3.1 in) 3°C (37°F) 30 mm (1.2 in)
Sep 29°C (84°F) 80 mm (3.1 in) 5°C (40°F) 24 mm (0.9 in)
Oct 27°C (81°F) 150 mm (5.9 in) 7°C (44°F) 29 mm (1.1 in)
Nov 28°C (82°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 9°C (48°F) 32 mm (1.3 in)
Dec 27°C (81°F) 30 mm (1.2 in) 11°C (51°F) 29 mm (1.1 in)


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Cartagena vs. Punta Arenas Travel Comparison

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