A Travel Price Comparison for Colorado Denver vs. Durango for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Denver or Durango?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Denver or Durango, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Denver

The capital of Colorado, Denver is commonly referred to as "The Mile-High City" because it is at an elevation of 5,280 feet (1,600 meters) above sea level. It also sits where the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains, giving a beautiful backdrop for this metropolitan city. The city is the largest in the Rocky Mountains with a population of more than 600,000 and nearly 3 million in the metropolitan area. Denver is a cosmopolitan city with cowboy roots. It's cultural scene is thriving, and the outdoor recreation in the area is superb. Denver is a rapidly growing city but with change comes challenges. Urban sprawl is a problem and the city's infrastructure has reached its limits. Still, efforts are in place to maintain the character and personality that Denver is known for.

Durango

Located in the State of Colorado, in the Rocky Mountains, Durango is on the tourist maps because of its historic narrow gauge railroad that connects the city to the town of Silverton. Durango has a population of just over 16,000 and it is only a short distance from the "four corners" area where New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado all meet. The landscape surrounding Durango is quite impressive and includes the Animas River Valley, the San Juan Mountains, and some beautiful red sandstone bluffs.

Which city is cheaper, Durango or Denver?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Denver is $174, while the average daily cost in Durango is $123. 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 Denver and Durango in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in Denver is about $138 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Durango, $126 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Durango, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $63, such as in a hostel.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Denver $69
    Durango $63
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Denver $138
    Durango $126

Food

The price of a meal in Denver can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $34 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $14 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

The average traveler spends about $40 per day in Durango for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Denver $34
    Durango $40
Typical Food prices in Denver

Some typical examples of dining costs in Denver are as follows:


  • Sushi Dinner (for 2)
    $61

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Denver

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

  • Small-Group Food Tour in Denver: $69
  • Haunted Denver Walking Food Tour: $73
  • The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Dinner Show - Denver: $77
  • Walking Food Tour - Best of Union Station & LoDo: $79
  • Denver Cooking Classes-Local, seasonal, and hands on menus: $97

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Denver is $81 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.

To get around in Durango, the average visitor spends $22 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Denver $81
    Durango $22

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Denver

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Denver:

  • Vail: Private Transfer to or from Denver Airport: $557
  • Transfer in private minivan from Denver International Airport(DEN) to Downtown: $86
  • Transfer in private minivan from Denver International Airport (DEN) to Vail city: $291
  • Transfer in private minivan from Denver Downtown to International Airport (DEN): $86
  • Transfer in Private Car from Denver International Airport (DEN) to Downtown: $72
  • Transfer in Private Car from Denver Downtown to International Airport (DEN): $72
  • Round trip transfer in private minivan from-to Denver Intl. Airport to Downtown: $173
  • Round trip transfer in private minivan from-to Denver Airport (DEN) to Vail city: $582
  • Round trip transfer in Private Car from-to Denver Int. Airport (DEN) to Downtown: $144
  • Private Transfer: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Vail: $576
  • Private Transfer: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Aspen: $1,321
  • Private Transfer from Denver City to Denver (DEN) Airport: $109

Is it cheaper to fly into Denver or Durango?

Prices for flights to both Durango and Denver 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

Denver's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $42 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.

In Durango, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $37 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Denver $42
    Durango $37

Tours and Activities in Denver

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

  • 1.5 Hour LoDo Walking Tour in Denver: $25
  • Astrophotography Experience in the Colorado Rockies: $200
  • Best of Denver Tour: $64
  • Best of Denver Tour: $22
  • Bike and Brew Tour: $60
  • Breckenridge Ultimate Full Day Mountain Tour from Denver: $115
  • Capitol Hill History & Ghost Tour: $22
  • Craft Beer Tour in Lower Downtown Denver: $53
  • Denver Ghost Hunt: Mile High Ghost Tour: $12
  • Denver Ghost Tour: $23
  • Denver Guided Sightseeing Tour on Motor Scooters: $112
  • Denver History and Highlights Small Group Tour: $35

Typical Entertainment prices in Durango

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Durango's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Hot Springs (for 2)
    $50
  • Tubing (for 2)
    $40

Tours and Activities in Durango

For Durango, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Private Guided Tour by tuk tuk of Durango and Atxondo: $93
  • Private Tour in Durango and Mendiola by Tuk Tuk: $93
  • Fun Tour by Tuk Tuk around Durango Old Town, Garai and Goiuria: $93
  • Private Guided Tour by Tuk Tuk of Durango and Elorrio: $93
  • 12-Zipline Adventure in the San Juan Mountains near Durango: $141
  • Province of Vizcaya Half-Day Private Guided Tuk Tuk Tour: $218
  • Private Full-Day Fishing Experience in San Juan River: $400

Alcohol

The average person spends about $4.25 on alcoholic beverages in Denver per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Typically, people visiting Durango spend on average $24 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Denver $4.25
    Durango $24

Sample the Local Flavors in Denver

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

  • Haunted Denver Ghost and Pub Walking Tour in Lower Downtown: $26
  • Haunted Denver Ghost and Pub Walking Tour - South Broadway (SoBo): $27
  • 3-Hour Brewery Walking Tour: $49
  • Craft Distillery Bus Tour: $71


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

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Denver vs. Durango Travel Comparison

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