A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Pucon vs. Machu Picchu for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Pucon or Machu Picchu?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Pucon and Machu Picchu can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Pucon

A popular hub for adventure tourism, Pucon is a town in the Lake District of the South American nation of Chile. Located on Lake Villarirca with the snowcapped Villarrica volcano looming above and plenty of forested valleys below, the town has become a home base year-round for a full range of outdoor activities.

Check out our ultimate guide to Traveling in Patagonia.

Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu is a site of ancient Inca ruins located about 50 miles (80 km) northwest of Cuzco, Peru, in the Cordillera de Vilcabamba of the Andes Mountains. It is perched above the Urubamba River valley in a narrow saddle between two sharp peaks, Machu Picchu ("Old Peak") and Huayna Picchu ("New Peak"), at an elevation of 7,710 feet (2,350 metres). One of the few major pre-Columbian ruins found nearly intact, Machu Picchu was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1983. Thus, Machu Picchu is not only an impressive remnant of the Inca civilization, it is also one of the world's most important archaeological sites. A stop at Machu Picchu is an essential part of any traveler's itinerary in Peru, as it is one of the seven wonders of the world.

Which city is cheaper, Machu Picchu or Pucon?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Pucon is $97, while the average daily cost in Machu Picchu is $78. 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 Pucon and Machu Picchu in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Pucon is $84. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $60 in Machu Picchu For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Pucon $42
    Machu Picchu $30
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Pucon $84
    Machu Picchu $60

Food

Pucon food costs typically run travelers around $36 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.

While meal prices in Machu Picchu can vary, the average travelers spends about $18 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Machu Picchu should cost around $7.20 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Machu Picchu is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Pucon $36
    Machu Picchu $18

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Pucon

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

  • Learn to Cook Like a Local: Private Cooking Class in a Viña del Mar Home: $83

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Pucon is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $19 per person, per day, on local transportation in Pucon.

To get around in Machu Picchu, 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.
    Pucon $19
    Machu Picchu $21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Pucon

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Pucon:

  • Private Transfer from Pucon To Temuco Airport: $123
  • Pucon Temuco Airport Private Transfer: $82

Is it cheaper to fly into Pucon or Machu Picchu?

Prices for flights to both Machu Picchu and Pucon 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.





Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Pucon typically cost an average of $36 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

In Machu Picchu, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $55 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Pucon $36
    Machu Picchu $55

Tours and Activities in Pucon

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

  • Full Day Tour to Conguillio National Park from Pucon: $259
  • Half Day Tour to The Eyes Of Caburgua from Pucon: $110
  • Mapuche Reserve Horseback Riding Tour in Pucon: $134
  • Pucón Sightseeing City Tour: $72
  • Sightseeing Tour in Pucon with optional Villarica: $53
  • Villarrica Volcanic Caves Park Admission Ticket: $33

Typical Entertainment prices in Machu Picchu

For Machu Picchu, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Gardens of Mandor
    $2.44

Tours and Activities in Machu Picchu

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Machu Picchu.

  • Machu Picchu Admission Ticket: $31
  • Huaynapicchu mountain hike + Machu Picchu entrance ticket: $40
  • Machu Picchu official entrance ticket: $40
  • Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu Admission Ticket: $53
  • Admission Ticket to Machu Picchu Ruin and Mountain: $53
  • Machu Picchu Ticket: Official Entrance Ticket: $63
  • Machu Picchu Official Entrance Ticket: $68
  • Machu Picchu Official Ticket: $68
  • Machu Picchu And Huayna Picchu Morning Entrance Ticket: $88
  • Skip the Line: Entrance Ticket to Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu 2020: $89
  • Tickets to Machu Picchu with guided in Machu Picchu.: $99
  • Machu Picchu with Bus and Entrance Ticket: $123

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Pucon may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $26 per day on alcoholic beverages.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Machu Picchu, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $4.95.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Pucon $26
    Machu Picchu $4.95


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

Budget Your Trip

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Pucon vs. Machu Picchu Travel Comparison

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