A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Copacabana vs. El Chalten for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Copacabana or El Chalten?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Copacabana and El Chalten. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

Copacabana

Copacabana, Bolivia, is a small, bright and enchanting town located on the Bolivian shore of Lake Titicaca, the world's highest navigable lake. Situated relatively close to the capital of La Paz, it is a popular resort mostly destination for foreign travellers, meaning that you may feel like there are more Argentinians and Americans than locals. Copacabana is the perfect jump-off point for visiting Isla del Sol and Isla de la Luna and makes a pleasant stopover between La Paz and Puno or Cusco. Featuring beautiful nature walks, ancient sites, stunning sunsets and quaint little restaurants, Copacabana is a travelers' favorite destination to soak in the panoramic views, savor freshly caught trucha, and explore what the Incas believed to be the birthplace of their empire.

El Chalten

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 Copacabana?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Copacabana is $34, while the average daily cost in El Chalten is $70. 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 Copacabana and El Chalten in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $18 for a double occupancy room in Copacabana.

The average price for accommodation for two people in El Chalten is $62. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Copacabana $8.84
    El Chalten $31
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Copacabana $18
    El Chalten $62

Food

The price of a meal in Copacabana can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $14 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $5.60 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

While meal prices in El Chalten can vary, the average travelers spends about $26 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in El Chalten should cost around $10 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Copacabana $14
    El Chalten $26
Typical Food prices in Copacabana

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Copacabana:


  • Lunch
    $3.63
  • Sandwich
    $1.16

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Copacabana is $11 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.

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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Copacabana $11
    El Chalten $17

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Copacabana

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Copacabana:

  • Private Transfer from La Paz to Uyuni.: $249

Is it cheaper to fly into Copacabana or El Chalten?

Prices for flights to both El Chalten and Copacabana 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.





Entertainment

Copacabana's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $15 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.

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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Copacabana $15
    El Chalten $19

Tours and Activities in Copacabana

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

  • Titicaca Touristic Bus from Copacabana to La Paz_Everyday_1:00 pm: $12
  • La Paz and Moon Valley Half-Day Tour: $55
  • Private Tour: La Paz City Sightseeing and Moon Valley: $66
  • 2-Day Moon & Sun Island Tour from La Paz: $147
  • La Paz City Tour - Fullday (FD): $163
  • Private Tour: Lake Titicaca, Copacabana and Sun Island from La Paz: $311
  • 2-Day Private Tour from La Paz: Lake Titicaca, Copacabana and Sun Island: $553

Tours and Activities in El Chalten

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for El Chalten are as follows:

  • El Chalten Rafting Experience: $149
  • El Chalten Rafting Experience: $225
  • Module Fitz Roy Adventure: $305
  • 2-Day Chalten Adventure tour: Laguna de los Tres, Mount Fitz Roy & Cerro Torre: $333
  • 2-Day Hiking Tour of Fitz Roy and Cerro Torre from El Chalten: $553
  • 3-Day Eco-Lodge Trekking Tour at Los Glaciares National Park from El Chalten: $789

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Copacabana may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $9.34 per day on alcoholic beverages.

The average person spends about $8.59 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.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Copacabana $9.34
    El Chalten $8.59
Typical Alcohol prices in Copacabana

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Copacabana from other travelers:


  • Wine
    $2.90


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

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Copacabana vs. El Chalten Travel Comparison

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