A Travel Price Comparison for Chile Punta Arenas vs. Castro for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Punta Arenas or Castro?

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

Should I visit Punta Arenas or Castro? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Where Should I go: Punta Arenas or Castro?

Punta Arenas

Punta Arenas is in the far south of Chile and has a long history of maritime commerce, oil extraction, and sheep farming. It's the most populated city on the Strait of Magellan and has all the facilities you might need as a traveler, including banks, markets, drugstores and equipment shops. With a population of about 130,000, the city is a comfortable place to spend time. It serves as a base for Antarctic expeditions, although many expeditions also start in Ushuaia, Argentina, and Christchurch New Zealand.


The capital of Chiloe, modern and dynamic, has succeeded in keeping its authenticity even though it now has many gigantic supermarkets, hotels and other touristic infrastructures. It is located on the island's eastern coast, halfway between Ancud in the north and Quellon in the south, and is a convenient base for exploring the stunning sites in the region of Chiloe Island. The tourist information is located on the town square in front of the church.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Santiago, The Best Family-Friendly Tours to Chile, The Best Wildlife Tours to Chile, and The Best Hiking & Trekking Tours in Chile.

Which place is cheaper, Castro or Punta Arenas?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Punta Arenas is $67, while the average daily cost in Castro is $92. 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 Punta Arenas and Castro in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Punta Arenas $34
    Castro $39
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Punta Arenas $68
    Castro $78
Compare Hotels in Punta Arenas and Castro

Looking for a hotel in Punta Arenas or Castro? 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 Punta Arenas

Hotels in Castro

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: Punta Arenas Hotel Prices and Castro Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Punta Arenas $1.89
    Castro $21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta Arenas

Also for Punta Arenas, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer Punta Arenas Airport to/from Punta Arenas: $34
  • Private Transfer from Punta Arenas Port to Punta Arenas hotels: $65
  • Punta Arenas Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas - Arrival Transfer: $50
  • Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Airport (PUQ) - Departure Transfer: $50
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales: $267

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Castro

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Castro:

  • Chiloe Airport Private Transfer: $43

Is it cheaper to fly into Punta Arenas or Castro?

Prices for flights to both Castro and Punta Arenas 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
    Punta Arenas $22
    Castro $38
Typical Food Prices in Punta Arenas

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Punta Arenas:

  • Donut
  • Dinner

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Punta Arenas $6.76
    Castro $22

Tours and Activities in Punta Arenas

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Punta Arenas.

  • City Sightseeing and Monuments Guided Tour: $52
  • Regular city cruise tour: $65
  • Bike Tour in Punta Arenas, 100% local tour.: $70
  • Fort Bulnes cruises: $70
  • Punta Arenas Sightseeing Tour: $72
  • King Penguin & Tierra del Fuego Tour: $145
  • King Penguin & Tierra del Fuego Tour: $145
  • Magdalena Island Penguin Tour by Boat from Punta Arenas: $153
  • Punta Arenas Private City Tour Shore Excursion: $155
  • Magallanes Reserva and City Tour. Private Shore Excursion.: $158
  • Magdalena Island Penguin Tour by Boat from Punta Arenas: $160
  • Full day Torres del Paine from Punta Arenas ,Regular tours: $180

Tours and Activities in Castro

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

  • Bosque Piedra Reserve Tour: $106
  • Castro Sightseeing Tour in Chiloe: $57
  • Dalcahue and Quinchao Island Full Day Tour in Chiloe: $118
  • Dock of Souls Trekking in Chiloe Private Tour: $188
  • From Puerto Varas: Chiloe Island Full-day Tour: $65
  • Full Day Private Chiloe National Park Tour Following "The Darwin´s Route" : $179
  • Lemuy Island Tour from Castro: $178
  • Lemuy Island in Chiloe Full Day Private Tour: $181
  • Pier of Light Full Day Tour in Chiloe: $142
  • Private Half Day Tour in Patrimonial Castro: $30

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Punta Arenas $5.10
    Castro $18
Typical Alcohol Prices in Punta Arenas

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Punta Arenas:

  • Alcohol

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

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

Which is Bigger, Punta Arenas or Castro?

Punta Arenas has a larger population, and is about 4 times larger than the population of Castro. When comparing the sizes of Punta Arenas and Castro, 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.