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

Should you visit Piriapolis or Cusco?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Piriapolis or Cusco, 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 Cusco?

Piriapolis

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.

Cusco

Cusco is most famous as the historic capital of the Inca Empire. It is in the southern Sierras and is one of the most popular travel destinations within Peru. The city is located at 3,400 meters above sea level so it is best to acclimate yourself slowly to avoid altitude sickness.

Cusco is the starting point for many travelers making their way to the famed Machu Picchu or other Inca sites in the surrounding area.

The city is very beautiful and has impressive architecture throughout. The history is obvious as you walk around town and there are impressive ruins nearby, with the most impressive being Sacsayhuaman. The city also has a significant indigenous population that is obvious from their traditional clothing and style.

Cusco has a subtropical highland climate with a pleasant daytime temperature year around. There are two distinct seasons with the dry season being between May and August and the wet season between December and March. During the dry season there is plenty of sun with occasional nighttime freezes. Frost is less common in the wet season.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Adventure Tours to Uruguay, The Best Cultural Tours in Uruguay, The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Cusco, and The Best 3-Day Tours from Cusco.


Which place is cheaper, Cusco or Piriapolis?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Piriapolis is $67, while the average daily cost in Cusco is $51. 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 Cusco in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Piriapolis $27
    Cusco $23
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Piriapolis $54
    Cusco $46
Compare Hotels in Piriapolis and Cusco

Looking for a hotel in Piriapolis or Cusco? 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 Cusco


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 Cusco Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Piriapolis $31
    Cusco $10

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Cusco

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


  • Taxi Ride
    $1.09

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cusco

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cusco:

  • Airport Cusco Transfers: $69
  • Arrival Transfer & Cusco City Tour (Private Service): $80
  • Cusco – Puno Direct Transfers: $24
  • Cusco Airport Arrival Transfer: $9.67
  • Cusco Airport Arrival or Departure Transfer : $13
  • Cusco Airport Departure Transfer: $15
  • Cusco Airport Departure Transfer: $9.67
  • Cusco Airport Pickup and Private Transfer: $15
  • Cusco Airport Private Departure Transfer: $14
  • Cusco Airport Private Transfer with large Van: $45
  • Cusco Airport Transfers: $8.00
  • Cusco Airport: Private 1-Way Transfer: $15

Is it cheaper to fly into Piriapolis or Cusco?

Prices for flights to both Cusco 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
  • Food Meals for one day
    Piriapolis $23
    Cusco $13

Typical Food Prices in Cusco

Some typical examples of dining costs in Cusco are as follows:


  • Sandwich
    $2.17
  • Mango
    $0.54

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cusco

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

  • Folkloric Andean Show & 3-Course Dinner at Tunupa: $15
  • Small-Group Virtual Peruvian Cooking Experience: $25
  • 3-Hour Peruvian Cooking Class: $49
  • Cusco Tunupa Restaurant Folk Show with Dinner : $49
  • Cusco Cooking Class by ChocoMuseo in Cusco: $50
  • Market Tour & Traditional Peruvian Cooking Class in Cusco: $53
  • Fully hands-on High End Peruvian Cooking Class & San Pedro Market Guided Visit: $55
  • Vegetarian Cooking Class, Local Market Tour in Cusco: $59
  • Peruvian Cooking Class and Local Market in Cusco: $59
  • Cusco Cooking Classes and San Pedro Market Tour: $59
  • Peruvian Cooking Class and Local Market Tour: $63
  • Peruvian Cooking Class & Market Tour: $65

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Piriapolis $5.89
    Cusco $29

Typical Entertainment Prices in Cusco

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Cusco are as follows:


  • Salsa Class
    $2.71

Tours and Activities in Cusco

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

  • Free Walking Tour of Cusco: $2.00
  • Guided Walking Tour in English with Local Guide: $5.00
  • Cusco : Half Day City Tour: $9.00
  • Combined city tour cusco: $10
  • Cochahuasi Animal Sanctuary Admission Ticket: $10
  • Cusco City Tour: $10
  • Cusco City Tour including Sacsayhuaman Koricancha and Tambomachay: $10
  • CUSCO CITY TOUR 2024 Half Day Tour in Cuzco: $10
  • Cusco City Half-Day Tour: $12
  • City tours Cusco: $12
  • Open-Top Bus City Tour: $12
  • Open Bus Tour of the City’s Wonder’s: $12

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Piriapolis $8.11
    Cusco $9.56

Sample the Local Flavors in Cusco

Also in Cusco, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Cusco Pub Crawl - Bar Tour Cusco : $18
  • Cusco Pub Crawl: Cusco Bar Hopping Experience : $18
  • Exclusive Pub Crawl with 10+ benefits: $18
  • Pub Crawl with Skip-the-Line Access and Drinks: $18
  • Exclusive Pub Crawl with more than 10 Benefits: $25


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

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


Which is Bigger, Piriapolis or Cusco?

Cusco has a larger population, and is about 40 times larger than the population of Piriapolis. When comparing the sizes of Piriapolis and Cusco, 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.