Should you visit Puerto Madryn or Arica?
Should I visit Puerto Madryn or Arica? 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.
Puerto Madryn is mostly known as the gateway to Peninsula Valdes, welcoming tourists who come for whale watching. The Peninsula Valdes is a nature reserve designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site; 97 km long and 63 km wide, it is connected to the continent by an isthmus of 35 km from which we can see both gulfs, San Jose at north and the Nuevo at south.
A mixture of coastline, desert and high Andean plateau, Arica is a seaside resort town, known for its surfing beaches located at the tip of Northern Chile. Arica boasts that it is "the land of the eternal spring," but its temperate climate and beaches are not the only reason to visit this small city. Arica's tourism is still principally geared toward domestic visitors and those from southern Peru and La Paz, who flock to its beaches mid-December through February. It is very easy to spend a few days in Arica in the sand, or seeing the sights in town, at a slow pace but the city also offers plenty of fun activities and exciting day trips.
Which city is cheaper, Arica or Puerto Madryn?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Puerto Madryn is $99, while the average daily cost in Arica is $77. 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 Puerto Madryn and Arica in more detail.
If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $37. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Puerto Madryn the cost is $74 on average.
For a normal double-occupancy room in Arica, $68 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Arica, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $34, such as in a hostel.
Food in Puerto Madryn costs travelers about $40 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.
Food in Arica costs travelers about $27 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.
Meals for one day
Puerto Madryn $40
While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $23 per day to get around in Puerto Madryn.
To get around in Arica, the average visitor spends $17 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.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Puerto Madryn
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Puerto Madryn:
Puerto Madryn Trelew Airport Shuttle Transfer:
Puerto Madryn Airport Private Transfer:
Typical Local Transportation prices in Arica
Some typical examples of transportation costs in Arica are as follows:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Arica
Also for Arica, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Arica Airport Private Transfer:
Is it cheaper to fly into Puerto Madryn or Arica?
Prices for flights to both Arica and Puerto Madryn 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.
Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $41 per person, per day in Puerto Madryn. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.
In Arica, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $19 per person, per day.
Typical Entertainment prices in Puerto Madryn
Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Puerto Madryn are as follows:
Whale Watching for Two
Tours and Activities in Puerto Madryn
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Puerto Madryn are as follows:
3-Day Atlantic Patagonia Wild Nature Experience at Bahia Bustamante Lodge:
Chubut Welsh Colonies Tour:
City Tour and Sea Lions at Punta Loma from Puerto Madryn:
Cruise Shore excursion to Punta Tombo:
Cruise shore excursion to Peninsula Valdes:
Discover Valdes Peninsula Day Tour:
Excursion Sib Tour to the valley of the Chubut river:
Florentino Ameghino Dam Day Tour:
Full Day Tour to Florentino Ameghino Dam from Puerto Madryn:
Full Day Tour to Punta Ninfas from Puerto Madryn:
Patagonia Ranch and El Pedral Penguin Colony Tour from Puerto Madryn:
Peninsula Valdes & Estancia San Lorenzo Full Day Tour:
Tours and Activities in Arica
For Arica, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Half day Panoramic City Tour:
Arica Sightseeing Tour:
Full Day Tour to Tacna from Arica:
Arica Private Sightseeing Tour:
Archeological Sightseeing tour in Arica:
Private Tour to Tacna from Arica:
Arica Private City Tour:
Private Arica and Ancient Cultures Tour:
4-Days Unique Experience at the Chilean High Plateau:
The average person spends about $22 on alcoholic beverages in Puerto Madryn per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
Typically, people visiting Arica spend on average $19 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Puerto Madryn and Arica, we can see that Puerto Madryn is more expensive. And not only is Arica much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Arica would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Arica 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 Puerto Madryn would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Puerto Madryn than you might in Arica.
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