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

Should you visit Cartagena or Valdivia?

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 Valdivia can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Cartagena or Valdivia?


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.


Valdivia is a vibrant university city situated in southern Chile. It sits at the meeting point of three rivers in the aptly named Region de Los Rios (The Rivers Region) and is approximately 200 kilometers from both Temuco and Puerto Montt. Due to a large student population, Valdivia boasts a youthful and energetic vibe that is visible in its many bars, cafes and restaurants. The city is also known for having one of Chile's best craft beer cultures, which had its early beginnings when German settlers arrived in the 1840s. The rivers, nearby Pacific coastline and wetlands offer plenty for lovers of the outdoors, too.

Which place is cheaper, Valdivia or Cartagena?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cartagena is $47, while the average daily cost in Valdivia is $74. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Cartagena and Valdivia in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cartagena $27
    Valdivia $43
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cartagena $54
    Valdivia $86
Compare Hotels in Cartagena and Valdivia

Looking for a hotel in Cartagena or Valdivia? 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 Valdivia

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.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Cartagena Hotel Prices and Valdivia Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cartagena $7.44
    Valdivia $8.72

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) : $565
  • 10. ARACATACA Transfer from Cartagena-private: $340
  • 16. Transfer to Valledupar from Cartagena Private or vice versa.: $298
  • Private Transfer Cartagena to Palomino (or vice versa): $275
  • Private transfer from Cartagena to Santa Marta: $230
  • 19. Transfer to Tolú/ Coveñas from Cartagena or vice versa.: $220
  • 15. Transfer to SANTA MARTA from Cartagena Private or vice versa.: $220
  • Cartagena to Santa Marta (or vice versa) Private Transfer : $186
  • Private Transfer from Cartagena to Barranquilla: $165
  • San Diego to Long Beach Airport (LGB) - Departure Private Transfer: $155
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by Minibus: $145
  • Arrival Private Transfer Cartagena Airport CTG to Cartagena City by Minibus: $145

Is it cheaper to fly into Cartagena or Valdivia?

Prices for flights to both Valdivia 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 Meals for one day
    Cartagena $9.75
    Valdivia $23

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cartagena

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

  • Featured in NYTimes > Arepas and Dancing: Danceable Cooking Class in Cartagena: $32
  • Cooking Class In A Real Restaurant At Old City: $38
  • Local Flavors Food Tour with Native Chef: $38
  • Taste Cartagena Food tour: $40
  • Street Food Tour in Cartagena: $42
  • Shared Street Food Tour: $42
  • Flavors of Colombia - Cartagena Street Food Tour: $45
  • Bazurto Market Food Tour by Anthony Bourdain: $49
  • Getsemaní District at Night (with dinner included): $53
  • Cruise by the Bay with Dinner and Wine: $55
  • Cartagena Food Tour: $57
  • Dinner on a boat at Cartagena Bay: $58

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cartagena $21
    Valdivia $14

Tours and Activities in Cartagena

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

  • Accessible sightseeing tour of Cartagena: $165
  • Beach Buggy ATV Adventure Tour CARTAGENA: $125
  • Eco cultural Historical Tour beyond Old City! + Pool: $98
  • Exciting Beach Buggy ATV Tour in Cartagena : $150
  • Freedom Tour de Palenque: $110
  • Playa Blanca Private tour : $162
  • Playa Morena Beach Club Whith Lunch And Walking tour of fort San Fernando: $39
  • Private Tour & the best coffee of the world in Cartagena (Also for cruisers): $250
  • Private city tour: $100
  • Rosario Islands Full Day Tour: $138
  • Tour around the Rosario Islands 4 islands: $60
  • Walking Tour of Cartagena and a colombian cup of colombian coffee and snacks., : $95

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cartagena $9.14
    Valdivia $5.17

Sample the Local Flavors in Cartagena

Also in Cartagena, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Getsemaní Pub Crawl with Complimentary Drinks: $19
  • Pub Crawl: $70

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

Which is Bigger, Cartagena or Valdivia?

Cartagena is bigger, and its population is about 7.1 times larger than the population of Valdivia. When comparing the population of Cartagena vs. Valdivia, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit and the activities that interest you.

When is the best time to visit Cartagena or Valdivia?

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

Should I visit Cartagena or Valdivia in the Summer?

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

In July, Cartagena is generally much warmer than Valdiviain January. Daily temperatures in Cartagena average around 29°C (84°F), and Valdivia fluctuates around 16°C (61°F).

In Valdivia, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Cartagena. In the summer, Cartagena often gets less sunshine than Valdiviain January. Cartagena gets 207 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Valdivia receives 296 hours of full sun.

Cartagena usually gets more rain in July than Valdiviain January. Cartagena gets 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Valdivia receives 54 mm (2.1 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Summer Average Temperatures July and January
    Cartagena 29°C (84°F) 
    Valdivia 16°C (61°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Valdivia in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Cartagena and Valdivia. Warm weather and sunshine bring visitors to Cartagena year-round.

Cartagena is much warmer than Valdivia in the autumn. The daily temperature in Cartagena averages around 27°C (81°F) in October, and Valdivia fluctuates around 11°C (52°F)in April.

Cartagena usually receives more sunshine than Valdivia during autumn. Cartagena gets 175 hours of sunny skies, while Valdivia receives 132 hours of full sun in the autumn.

Valdivia receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Cartagena gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In October, Cartagena usually receives more rain than Valdiviain April. Cartagena gets 150 mm (5.9 in) of rain, while Valdivia receives 133 mm (5.2 in) of rain each month for the autumn.

  • Autumn Average Temperatures October and April
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F) 
    Valdivia 11°C (52°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Valdivia in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Cartagena as well as Valdivia. Cartagena attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and sunny climate.

In the winter, Cartagena is much warmer than Valdivia. Typically, the winter temperatures in Cartagena in January average around 27°C (81°F), and Valdivia averages at about 7°C (45°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 Valdiviain July. Cartagena gets 278 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Valdivia receives 66 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Valdivia. Cartagena usually gets less rain in January than Valdiviain July. Cartagena gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Valdivia receives 312 mm (12.3 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Winter Average Temperatures January and July
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F) 
    Valdivia 7°C (45°F)

Should I visit Cartagena or Valdivia in the Spring?

Both Valdivia and Cartagena are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The warm climate attracts visitors to Cartagena throughout the year.

In April, Cartagena is generally much warmer than Valdiviain October. Daily temperatures in Cartagena average around 28°C (82°F), and Valdivia fluctuates around 11°C (52°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Cartagena. Cartagena usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Valdivia during spring. Cartagena gets 209 hours of sunny skies, while Valdivia receives 198 hours of full sun in the spring.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Valdivia. In April, Cartagena usually receives less rain than Valdiviain October. Cartagena gets 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain, while Valdivia receives 109 mm (4.3 in) of rain each month for the spring.

  • Spring Average Temperatures April and October
    Cartagena 28°C (82°F) 
    Valdivia 11°C (52°F)

Typical Weather for Valdivia and Cartagena

Cartagena Valdivia
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 16°C (61°F) 54 mm (2.1 in)
Feb 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 17°C (62°F) 55 mm (2.2 in)
Mar 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 14°C (57°F) 71 mm (2.8 in)
Apr 28°C (82°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 11°C (52°F) 133 mm (5.2 in)
May 29°C (84°F) 50 mm (2 in) 9°C (48°F) 295 mm (11.6 in)
Jun 29°C (84°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 8°C (46°F) 297 mm (11.7 in)
Jul 29°C (84°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 7°C (45°F) 312 mm (12.3 in)
Aug 28°C (82°F) 80 mm (3.1 in) 8°C (46°F) 247 mm (9.7 in)
Sep 29°C (84°F) 80 mm (3.1 in) 9°C (48°F) 162 mm (6.4 in)
Oct 27°C (81°F) 150 mm (5.9 in) 11°C (52°F) 109 mm (4.3 in)
Nov 28°C (82°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 13°C (55°F) 73 mm (2.9 in)
Dec 27°C (81°F) 30 mm (1.2 in) 16°C (60°F) 63 mm (2.5 in)

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.
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Cartagena vs. Valdivia Travel Comparison

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