A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Hangzhou vs. Shangri-La

Should you visit Hangzhou or Shangri-La?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Hangzhou and Shangri-La. 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.

Hangzhou

Hangzhou is a city in Eastern China, about an hour by train from Shanghai, renowned for its historic relics and natural beauty. Each year it attracts more than 20 million tourists who come to see what the city has to offer. Set amongst the natural scenery of lakes and mountains, Hangzhou is modern city that coexists with the old. Historic pagodas and cultural sites built around the central lake sit like they belong amidst the skyscrapers and bustling markets of today.

Shangri-La

The original Shangri-La existed in the fictional world of James Hilton's novel "The Lost Horizon." It was a hidden paradise, a place so beautiful that it couldn't possibly exist on earth. The Shangri-La that exists in Yunnan, China today was renamed from its former title Zhongdian in 2001 in order to associate the place with the mystical allure created in Hilton's novel. Visitors come to admire the traditional monasteries and temples set against a backdrop of mountain preserves and pristine lakes.

Which city is cheaper, Shangri-La or Hangzhou?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Hangzhou is $34, while the average daily cost in Shangri-La is $17. 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 Hangzhou and Shangri-La in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $30 for a double occupancy room in Hangzhou.

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $3.95. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Shangri-La the cost is $7.90 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Hangzhou $15
    Shangri-La $3.95
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Hangzhou $30
    Shangri-La $7.90

Food

While meal prices in Hangzhou can vary, the average travelers spends about $5.50 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Hangzhou should cost around $2.20 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Hangzhou is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

The average traveler spends about $11 per day in Shangri-La 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
    Hangzhou $5.50
    Shangri-La $11
Typical Food prices in Hangzhou

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


  • Breakfast Pastries
    $2.67
  • Pizza Hut Lunch
    $12

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Hangzhou

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

  • Hangzhou Night Tour: Dinner and Romance of the Song Dynasty Show: $52
  • All Inclusive Night Tour with Impression West Lake Show VIP Ticket and Dinner: $117
  • Eat Like A Local - Hangzhou Night Food Tour: $117
  • VIP Seated Enduring Memories of Hangzhou Show Tour with Authentic Dinner: $127
  • Hangzhou Cooking Class and Local Market Tour: $148
  • Private Amazing Hangzhou Airport Layover Tour with Lunch or Dinner Option: $161
  • Half Day Westlake Highlights Tour with Optional Lunch or Dinner: $163
  • Wuzhen Ancient Water Town Private Night Tour from Hangzhou with Dinner Option: $185
  • Enduring Memories of Hangzhou West Lake Show VIP Ticket with Authentic Dinner: $191
  • Xitang Water Town Private Night Tour from Hangzhou with Dinner: $191
  • Hangzhou Night Tour With Food Street For Dinner and Beer Tasting: $196
  • Hangzhou Private Tour to Wuzhen Water Town with Lunch or Dinner: $213

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Hangzhou is $0.39 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 Shangri-La is $0.16 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.
    Hangzhou $0.39
    Shangri-La $0.16
Typical Local Transportation prices in Hangzhou

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Hangzhou:


  • Local Bus for Two
    $0.63

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Hangzhou

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Hangzhou:

  • Private Transfer between Hangzhou Songcheng Park and City Area: $22
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Hangzhou to Hangzhou Xiaoshan Int. Airport (HGH): $24
  • Private Airport Transfer: Hangzhou Xiaoshan Int. Airport (HGH) to Hangzhou: $24
  • Private Transfer to Impression West Lake show in Hangzhou: $25
  • Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport Private Arrival Transfer to City Area: $28
  • Hangzhou Xiaoshan Int'l Airport Private Departure Transfer from City Area: $28
  • Hangzhou Railway Station Private Departure Transfer from City Area: $28
  • Hangzhou Private Transfer: City Hotels to Railway Station: $28
  • Private airport transfer to or from Hangzhou International Airport Max 5: $29
  • Hangzhou Private Departure Transfer:City Hotel to Railway Station: $32
  • Hangzhou Downtown Transfer To Hangzhou East Railway Station: $32
  • Hangzhou Downtown transfer to Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport: $35

Entertainment

Shangri-La's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $9.03 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.
    Hangzhou -
    Shangri-La $9.03

Tours and Activities in Hangzhou

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

  • Hangzhou Lingyin Temple Tour: $28
  • Hangzhou Private Half–Day Tea and Gardens Tour: $43
  • Full-Day Culture Tour / Leifeng Pagoda: $47
  • Hangzhou Longjing Tea Plantation Culture Experience Tour: $50
  • Hangzhou Tea Culture Experience Tour: $53
  • Best Price: Impression West Lake Show Ticket: $58
  • Hangzhou Tea Culture Day Tour: $59
  • Songcheng Park & Lengend of Song Dynasty Show Ticket: $60
  • Hangzhou City Tour: West Lake Cruise and Lingyin Temple: $62
  • Skip the Line: Impression West Lake Show Ticket: $63
  • Skip the Line: Impression West Lake VIP Seat Ticket: $63
  • The most beautiful temple in China--Yongfu Temple tour with vegetarian lunch: $64

Alcohol

The average person spends about $15 on alcoholic beverages in Shangri-La per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Hangzhou -
    Shangri-La $15


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

Budget Your Trip

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Hangzhou vs. Shangri-La Travel Comparison

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