A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Guatemala City vs. Tamarindo

Should you visit Guatemala City or Tamarindo?

Should I visit Guatemala City or Tamarindo? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Guatemala City

Referred to by the locals as "Guate," Guatemala City is the largest and most modern city in Guatemala, as well as its capital. While the atmosphere of the place is big, dirty, and dangerous with city fumes and skyscrapers, it is the hub of the country. It is the place where travelers first step foot into Guatemala and, though it is a place of modern chaos, it does have some of the best galleries and museums as well as a selection of bars, cafes, and restaurants.

Tamarindo

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 Guatemala City?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Guatemala City is $35, 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 Guatemala City and Tamarindo in more detail.



Accommodation

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $19. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Guatemala City the cost is $38 on average.

A hotel room in Tamarindo is about $66 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Guatemala City $19
    Tamarindo $33
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Guatemala City $38
    Tamarindo $66

Food

On average, meal and food prices in Guatemala City cost around $12 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 $4.80.

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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Guatemala City $12
    Tamarindo $21

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Guatemala City

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

  • Taste Antigua Guatemala Walking Food Tour: $70
  • Guatemala Food Tour from Guatemala City: $117
  • Small-Group Cooking Class in Antigua from Guatemala City: $118
  • Antigua Market, Cooking Class and Choco Museum from Guatemala City: $178

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Guatemala City is $4.95 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 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Guatemala City $4.95
    Tamarindo $45

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Guatemala City

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Guatemala City:

  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Guatemala City Airport to Hotels: $14
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Guatemala City Hotels to Airport: $14
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Guatemala City Airport to Antigua: $16
  • Collective Transfer From Guatemala City to La Aurora Airport: $20
  • Airport transfer from Guatemala City airport to Antigua: $26
  • Private Transfer from La Aurora Airport to Antigua Guatemala: $28
  • Private Airport Transfer: Guatemala to La Aurora International Airport (GUA): $38
  • Transfer from Airport to Antigua: $70
  • Private Transfer from Guatemala City to Lake Atitl├ín: $120
  • Ground Transfer Guatemala City To Panajachel, Lake Atitlan: $128
  • Private Transfer from Guatemala City to Coban: $155

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Tamarindo

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Tamarindo:

  • Private Premium Transfer: From Tamarindo Zone: $85
  • Liberia Airport Private Transfer To Or From Tamarindo: $86
  • Private Round-Trip Transfer: Liberia Airport to Tamarindo with Free Drinks: $89
  • Transfer Liberia to Tamarindo: $90
  • Private Transfer to Tamarindo Beach from Liberia Airport: $100
  • Volcano Adventure Sisisi Transfers & Tours Costa Rica: $155
  • Private transfer from Tamarindo to Hotels in San Jose or the Airport: $265
  • Transfer TO or FROM Tamarindo Area to SJO Airport: $325

Entertainment

Guatemala City's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $0.97 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.

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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Guatemala City $0.97
    Tamarindo $11

Tours and Activities in Guatemala City

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

  • Walking tour Guatemala City Downtown: $15
  • Half Day Antigua Guatemala Tour: $17
  • La Aurora Zoo Admission Ticket: $18
  • Half Day Guatemala City Tour: $27
  • Half Day Experience in Guatemala City: $30
  • Guatemala City Tour: $32
  • Guatemala City Afternoon Sightseeing Tour: $34
  • Private Tour: Antigua Guatemala Walking Tour from Antigua Guatemala: $35
  • Guatemala city walking tour: $37
  • UNESCO JEWELS: Antigua Half Day Tour from Guatemala City: $38
  • Crafted BEER Tour , Guatemala City.: $50
  • Full Day Experience in Guatemala City: $50

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: $27
  • Kayak Tour: $45
  • Turtle Watching Tour: $45
  • Turtle Nesting Tour: $46
  • Night Turtle Nesting Tour from Tamarindo: $46
  • Tamarindo River Boat Tour: $50
  • Canopy Tour Costa Rica: $55
  • Tamarindo Kayak Estuary Mangrove Tour: $56
  • Tamarindo Kayaking Tour with Snorkeling at Captain Island: $60
  • Premium Tour: Turtle Nesting Tour: $62
  • Private Buggy/ATV Sunset Tour at Tamarindo: $65
  • Early Bird Watching Tour: $65

Alcohol

The average person spends about $5.49 on alcoholic beverages in Guatemala City per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

The average person spends about $9.14 on alcoholic beverages in Tamarindo per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Guatemala City $5.49
    Tamarindo $9.14


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Guatemala City and Tamarindo, we can see that Tamarindo is more expensive. And not only is Guatemala City much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Guatemala City would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Guatemala City 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 Guatemala City.

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Guatemala City vs. Tamarindo Travel Comparison

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