A Travel Price Comparison for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons Humahuaca vs. La Serena

Should you visit Humahuaca or La Serena?

Should I visit Humahuaca or La Serena? 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.

Humahuaca

Located in the northwest region of Argentina, Humahuaca is a town nearly 3000m high in elevation, found on the border of the rio Grande. It is the largest settlement with the biggest population along the famous quebrada de Humahuaca gorge, but it has managed to keep its authenticity with its cobblestoned streets, adobe houses, quaint plazas filled with inhabitants of Andean traits and handicraft shops. If you have the chance to visit Humahuaca in February, during the carnival, you will appreciate how traditions are kept alive in this part of Argentina. Humahuaca has become a popular tourist destination in Argentina because of its beautiful setting next to the spectacular Serranía de Hornocal (colored mountains). While most visitors rapidly make their way through Humahuaca before continuing to the other two main Quebrada towns, Pumamarca and Tilcara, some enjoy spending a night or two there. Indeed, the town offers a perfect starting point to visit the region and has a few interesting landmarks not to miss, such as the historic church and Soto Avendano's Independence Monument. If you decide to stay in Humahuaca, remember that nights get chilly and ask the tourist office for any information (in the Cabildo, on the main square, opened Monday to Friday from 7h to 21h and Saturday from 9h to 12h and 13h to 16h and only Sunday mornings).

La Serena

La Serena is a charming town in Northern Chile. It is Chile's second-oldest city and the thriving capital of Region IV. With its beautiful architecture, its long golden shoreline, dignified stone churches, tree-shaded avenues and pretty plazas, La Serena has everything you could ask for!

Chileans on holidays flood in the city in January and February, though it is fairly peaceful outside the summer rush. Some of the city's architecture is from the colonial era, but most is actually neocolonial thanks to president Gabriel Gonzalez Videla, born in La Serena, and her 'Plan Serena' of the late 1940s.

Which city is cheaper, La Serena or Humahuaca?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Humahuaca is $49, while the average daily cost in La Serena is $91. 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 Humahuaca and La Serena in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $36 in Humahuaca For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $88 in La Serena For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Humahuaca $18
    La Serena $44
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Humahuaca $36
    La Serena $88

Food

The price of a meal in Humahuaca can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $19 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $7.60 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

La Serena food costs typically run travelers around $28 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Humahuaca $19
    La Serena $28

Local Transportation

Humahuaca'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 $15 per person, per day on transportation in Humahuaca.

To get around in La Serena, the average visitor spends $21 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.
    Humahuaca $15
    La Serena $21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in La Serena

Also for La Serena, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Airport Transfer: La Florida Airport (LSC) to La Serena: $26
  • Private Airport Transfer: from La Serena to La Florida Airport (LSC): $26

Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Humahuaca can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $19 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

In La Serena, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $25 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Humahuaca $19
    La Serena $25

Tours and Activities in La Serena

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

  • Elqui Valley and Vicuña Private Tour Including Lunch: $263
  • La Serena and Coquimbo Private City Tour Including Lunch and Archeological Museum: $269
  • Full day Tour to Elqui Valley: $90
  • Valle de Elqui Fullday Tour: $58

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Humahuaca, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $8.50.

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


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Humahuaca $8.50
    La Serena $24


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

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Humahuaca vs. La Serena Travel Comparison

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