Should you visit Denver or Santa Fe?
If you're trying to decide where to visit between Denver or Santa Fe, 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.
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.
Santa Fe is the state capital of New Mexico as well as the oldest state capital in the United States, founded in 1607. It has become a popular travel destination due to the surrounding scenic beauty, its long history, cultural diversity especially with its proximity to American Indian pueblos and culture, and a rich concentration of arts, music, and food.
Which city is cheaper, Santa Fe 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 Santa Fe is $127. 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 Santa Fe in more detail.
A hotel room in Denver is about $138 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $128 in Santa Fe For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.
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.
In Santa Fe travelers spend around $35 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.
Meals for one day
Santa Fe $35
Typical Food prices in Denver
Some typical examples of dining costs in Denver are as follows:
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:
Haunted Denver Walking Food Tour:
The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Dinner Show - Denver:
Walking Food Tour - Best of Union Station & LoDo:
Denver Cooking Classes-Local, seasonal, and hands on menus:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santa Fe
For Santa Fe, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Dinner at the Coffee Farm:
Santa Fe Railyard Arts District Food Tour:
New Mexican Flavors Food Tour of the Santa Fe Plaza:
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.
Santa Fe's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $49 per person, per day on transportation in Santa Fe.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Denver
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Denver:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Aspen hotel or address - Round-Trip Private Transfer:
Private Transfer: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Aspen:
Aspen: Private Transfer to or from Denver Airport:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Avon/Vail Valley - Round-Trip Private Transfer:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Breckenridge - Round-Trip Private Transfer:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Aspen hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Keystone resort - Round-Trip Private Transfer:
Round trip transfer in private minivan from-to Denver Airport (DEN) to Vail city:
Private Transfer: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Vail:
Vail: Private Transfer to or from Denver Airport:
Private Denver International Airport Transfer to Vail or Beaver Creek:
Denver Airport (DEN) to Avon/Vail Valley - Arrival Private Transfer:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santa Fe
Also for Santa Fe, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Private Arrival Transfer from Santa Fe Airport (SAF):
Private Departure Transfer to Santa Fe Airport SAF:
Is it cheaper to fly into Denver or Santa Fe?
Prices for flights to both Santa Fe 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.
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.
Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Santa Fe can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $13 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
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:
Astrophotography Experience in the Colorado Rockies:
Best of Denver Tour:
Best of Denver Tour:
Bike and Brew Tour:
Breckenridge Ultimate Full Day Mountain Tour from Denver:
Capitol Hill History & Ghost Tour:
Craft Beer Tour in Lower Downtown Denver:
Denver Ghost Hunt: Mile High Ghost Tour:
Denver Ghost Tour:
Denver Guided Sightseeing Tour on Motor Scooters:
Denver History and Highlights Small Group Tour:
Tours and Activities in Santa Fe
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Santa Fe.
Santa Fe Scavenger Hunt Adventure:
Small-Group Canyon Road Art Tour:
Beer and Art Tour:
Land Tour | Bantayan Island - Sightseeing - Guided Tour:
Walk Granada's Skyline Tour:
Search for The Story-Documentary Film School Scavenger Hunt Adventure:
Santa Fe Architectural Walking Tour:
Small-Group E-Bike Adventure Tour through Hidden Santa Fe:
Lonely Planet Experiences: Private Walking Tour of Santa Fe:
Bantayan Island Day Tour From Cebu:
The Best of Santa Fe Walking Tour:
Guided Tour: 'Love Stories of Santa Fe":
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.
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Santa Fe, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $7.74.
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:
Haunted Denver Ghost and Pub Walking Tour - South Broadway (SoBo):
3-Hour Brewery Walking Tour:
Craft Distillery Bus Tour:
Sample the Local Flavors in Santa Fe
Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Santa Fe:
Join-In Wine Tours:
White Water Rafting and Wine Tour:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Denver and Santa Fe, we can see that Denver is more expensive. And not only is Santa Fe much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Santa Fe would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Santa Fe 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 Santa Fe.
Related Articles for Denver
Related Articles for Santa Fe