Should you visit David or Tamarindo?
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 David and Tamarindo can help you decide which place is right for you.
In the Pacific West of Panama, David is the capital city of Chiriqui province. The city's population of almost 150,000 is among the wealthiest in the country. There is a well established middle class and unemployment remains low in the area. The area has grown rapidly in recent years with growing commercial and banking sectors. The city is well connected to the rest of the country by the Pan American Highway.
Tamarindo is a small beach town in the Guanacaste province of Costa Rica on the Pacific Coast. This town is usually sought out by surfers, fishers, couples, and families. There are delicious restaurants, beautiful beaches, and friendly Tico's and Tica's (local Costa Rican nicknames) everywhere.
Which city is cheaper, Tamarindo or David?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in David is $25, while the average daily cost in Tamarindo is $79. 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 David and Tamarindo in more detail.
David's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $20. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $9.86.
A hotel room in Tamarindo is about $64 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.
In David travelers spend around $8.07 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.
On average, meal and food prices in Tamarindo cost around $21 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $8.40.
Meals for one day
While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $9.63 per day to get around in David.
The average price of local transportation around Tamarindo is $45 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.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Tamarindo
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Tamarindo:
Private Premium Transfer: From Tamarindo Zone:
Liberia Airport Private Transfer To Or From Tamarindo:
Private Round-Trip Transfer: Liberia Airport to Tamarindo with Free Drinks:
Transfer Liberia to Tamarindo:
Private Transfer to Tamarindo Beach from Liberia Airport:
Volcano Adventure Sisisi Transfers & Tours Costa Rica:
Private transfer from Tamarindo to Hotels in San Jose or the Airport:
Transfer TO or FROM Tamarindo Area to SJO Airport:
Is it cheaper to fly into David or Tamarindo?
Prices for flights to both Tamarindo and David 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.
Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $3.50 per person, per day in David. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.
Tamarindo's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $11 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.
Tours and Activities in Tamarindo
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Tamarindo are as follows:
Skip the Line: Monkey Park Admission Ticket:
Turtle Watching Tour:
Turtle Nesting Tour:
Night Turtle Nesting Tour from Tamarindo:
Tamarindo River Boat Tour:
Canopy Tour Costa Rica:
Tamarindo Kayak Estuary Mangrove Tour:
Tamarindo Kayaking Tour with Snorkeling at Captain Island:
Premium Tour: Turtle Nesting Tour:
Private Buggy/ATV Sunset Tour at Tamarindo:
Early Bird Watching Tour:
The average person spends about $9.04 on alcoholic beverages in Tamarindo 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 David and Tamarindo, we can see that Tamarindo is more expensive. And not only is David much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to David would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in David 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 Tamarindo would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Tamarindo than you might in David.
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