A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Piriapolis vs. Cuenca for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Piriapolis or Cuenca?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

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

Where Should I go: Piriapolis or Cuenca?


Piriapolis is a small beach town between Montevideo and Punta del Este in Uruguay. It is a more laid back version of Punta del Este with fewer fancy restaurants and clubs but it has perhaps more charm, with its grand old hotel and beachfront promenade backed by small mountains. The rather old-school coastal resort is vaguely reminiscent of a Mediterranean beach town.


Cuenca is a vibrant colonial city in southern Ecuador, the third largest in the country, and the capital of Azuay Province. Cuenca is considered as Ecuador's most important and beautiful colonial city after Quito. Dating from the 16th century, Cuenca's historic center, a Unesco World Heritage Site with its trademark skyline of massive rotundas and soaring steeples, is a magical sight in which you will feel like you are moving back in time. Cuenca is the center of many craft traditions, including ceramics, metalwork and the internationally famous panama hat. The nearby villages also offer many other handicrafts. Tourists enjoy wandering the ancient streets discovering picturesque alleys and hidden corners, where nuns march along cobblestone streets and kids in Catholic-school uniforms skip past historic churches. Fascinating historic monuments and fabulous views are found at every turn. Cuenca also has outstanding art museums and festivals. For a rewarding cultural experience, visit during Easter to attend the Festival of Religious Music.

Which place is cheaper, Cuenca or Piriapolis?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Piriapolis is $66, while the average daily cost in Cuenca is $42. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Piriapolis and Cuenca in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Piriapolis $27
    Cuenca $13
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Piriapolis $54
    Cuenca $26
Compare Hotels in Piriapolis and Cuenca

Looking for a hotel in Piriapolis or Cuenca? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Piriapolis

Hotels in Cuenca

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Piriapolis Hotel Prices and Cuenca Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Piriapolis $31
    Cuenca $11

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Cuenca

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

  • Taxi Ride

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cuenca

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cuenca:

  • Arrival Private Transfer: Cuenca Airport CUE to Cuenca City by Minivan: $74
  • Cuenca Arrival Transfer: $34
  • Cuenca Departure Transfer: $34
  • Cuenca to Guayaquil Transfer in Fantasy Bus: $25
  • Departure Private Transfer: Cuenca City to Cuenca Airport CUE by Minivan: $74
  • Private Transfer from Cuenca to Guayaquil.: $104
  • Shared transfer from Cuenca Airport to Hotel: $47
  • Shared transfer from Hotel to Airport in Cuenca: $47

Is it cheaper to fly into Piriapolis or Cuenca?

Prices for flights to both Cuenca and Piriapolis 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.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Piriapolis $23
    Cuenca $15

Typical Food Prices in Cuenca

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

  • Lunch
  • Snacks
  • Empanada
  • Hot Dog

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cuenca

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

  • Street food Tour in Cuenca,Ecuador: $33
  • Cooking Class & Market Tour in Cuenca: $55
  • Cuenca City Tour & Cooking Class (PRIVATE Tour from Cuenca): $112
  • Private Cooking Class: $125

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Piriapolis $5.82
    Cuenca $16

Tours and Activities in Cuenca

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

  • Cuenca Excursion Panoramic City Tour SightSeeingTour in double-decker bus: $8.34
  • Cuenca, Ecuador Half-Day City Shared Tour: $19
  • Cuenca Half-Day City Tour Including Panama Hat Factory: $30
  • Cuenca-Ec- City Tour with Panama Hat factory Half Day: $30
  • Walking Tour Through The Historic Center Of Cuenca: $30
  • Cuenca electric scooter tour: $30
  • Half-Day Biking and Walking Tour in Cuenca: $30
  • Cuenca, Ecuador Half-Day City Tour: $35
  • Private Cuenca City Tour including Turi Viewpoint: $40
  • Cajas National Park Half Day Tour from Cuenca: $40
  • El Chorro waterfalls and Busa lake tour from Cuenca: $44
  • Biking Cuenca City Tour: $45

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Piriapolis $8.01
    Cuenca $14

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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Piriapolis Expensive? and Is Cuenca Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Piriapolis or Cuenca?

Cuenca has a larger population, and is about 30 times larger than the population of Piriapolis. When comparing the sizes of Piriapolis and Cuenca, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.

When is the best time to visit Piriapolis or Cuenca?

Piriapolis has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Cuenca experiences a warm climate with fairly sunny weather most of the year.

Should I visit Piriapolis or Cuenca in the Summer?

Both Cuenca and Piriapolis are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Plenty of visitors come to Cuenca because of the warm climate and sunshine that lasts throughout the year.

In January, Piriapolis is generally around the same temperature as Cuencain July. Daily temperatures in Piriapolis average around 23°C (73°F), and Cuenca fluctuates around 22°C (72°F).

In January, Piriapolis usually receives more rain than Cuencain July. Piriapolis gets 75 mm (3 in) of rain, while Cuenca receives 17 mm (0.7 in) of rain each month for the summer.

  • Summer Average Temperatures January and July
    Piriapolis 23°C (73°F) 
    Cuenca 22°C (72°F)

Should I visit Piriapolis or Cuenca in the Autumn?

Both Cuenca and Piriapolis during the autumn are popular places to visit. Warm weather and sunshine bring visitors to Cuenca year-round.

Piriapolis is a little warmer than Cuenca in the autumn. The daily temperature in Piriapolis averages around 17°C (63°F) in April, and Cuenca fluctuates around 12°C (54°F)in October.

Piriapolis usually gets more rain in April than Cuencain October. Piriapolis gets 84 mm (3.3 in) of rain, while Cuenca receives 42 mm (1.7 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Autumn Average Temperatures April and October
    Piriapolis 17°C (63°F) 
    Cuenca 12°C (54°F)

Should I visit Piriapolis or Cuenca in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Piriapolis and Cuenca. Cuenca attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and sunny climate.

The weather in Cuenca can be very cold. In the winter, Piriapolis is much warmer than Cuenca. Typically, the winter temperatures in Piriapolis in July average around 10°C (50°F), and Cuenca averages at about 4°C (39°F)in January.

In July, Piriapolis usually receives more rain than Cuencain January. Piriapolis gets 90 mm (3.5 in) of rain, while Cuenca receives 14 mm (0.6 in) of rain each month for the winter.

  • Winter Average Temperatures July and January
    Piriapolis 10°C (50°F) 
    Cuenca 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Piriapolis or Cuenca in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Piriapolis as well as Cuenca. The warm climate attracts visitors to Cuenca throughout the year.

In October, Piriapolis is generally much warmer than Cuencain April. Daily temperatures in Piriapolis average around 16°C (61°F), and Cuenca fluctuates around 10°C (50°F).

Piriapolis usually gets more rain in October than Cuencain April. Piriapolis gets 85 mm (3.3 in) of rain, while Cuenca receives 35 mm (1.4 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Spring Average Temperatures October and April
    Piriapolis 16°C (61°F) 
    Cuenca 10°C (50°F)

Typical Weather for Cuenca and Piriapolis

Piriapolis Cuenca
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 23°C (73°F) 75 mm (3 in) 4°C (39°F) 14 mm (0.6 in)
Feb 22°C (72°F) 85 mm (3.3 in) 6°C (43°F) 22 mm (0.9 in)
Mar 20°C (68°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 8°C (46°F) 15 mm (0.6 in)
Apr 17°C (63°F) 84 mm (3.3 in) 10°C (50°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)
May 14°C (57°F) 91 mm (3.6 in) 14°C (57°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
Jun 11°C (52°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 19°C (66°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)
Jul 10°C (50°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 22°C (72°F) 17 mm (0.7 in)
Aug 11°C (52°F) 94 mm (3.7 in) 22°C (72°F) 23 mm (0.9 in)
Sep 13°C (55°F) 93 mm (3.7 in) 17°C (63°F) 20 mm (0.8 in)
Oct 16°C (61°F) 85 mm (3.3 in) 12°C (54°F) 42 mm (1.7 in)
Nov 19°C (66°F) 87 mm (3.4 in) 7°C (45°F) 33 mm (1.3 in)
Dec 21°C (70°F) 67 mm (2.6 in) 5°C (41°F) 15 mm (0.6 in)