A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Punta Arenas vs. Paracas for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Punta Arenas or Paracas?

Should I visit Punta Arenas or Paracas? 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.

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.

Paracas

Paracas, also known as El Chaco, is a resort town on the Southern coast of the country, about 150 miles south of Lima. The town in located in one of the oldest regions of Peru, with a history dating back to 900 BC and offers many pre-Inca cultural sites throughout the area. Paracas is possibly best known for being home to the Paracas National Reserve, a nature reserve boasting one of the most abundant and diverse ecosystems in the world.

Which city is cheaper, Paracas or Punta Arenas?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Punta Arenas is $61, while the average daily cost in Paracas is $45. 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 Punta Arenas and Paracas in more detail.



Accommodation

An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $62 in Punta Arenas For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.

Paracas's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $32. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $16.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Punta Arenas $31
    Paracas $16
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Punta Arenas $62
    Paracas $32

Food

While meal prices in Punta Arenas can vary, the average travelers spends about $20 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Punta Arenas should cost around $8.00 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Punta Arenas is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

Paracas food costs typically run travelers around $17 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Punta Arenas $20
    Paracas $17
Typical Food prices in Punta Arenas

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


  • Donut
    $1.27
  • Dinner
    $31

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Punta Arenas

For Punta Arenas, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Punta Arenas Small Group Sightseeing and food Tour with a Local Guide: $76

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Paracas

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

  • Dinner on Paracas Desert: $393

Local Transportation

Punta Arenas's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $1.74 per person, per day on transportation in Punta Arenas.

The average price of local transportation around Paracas is $13 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Punta Arenas $1.74
    Paracas $13

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Punta Arenas

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

  • Arrival Transfer: Punta Arenas Airport to Hotel: $33
  • Bus transfer from Punta Arenas to Ushuaia: $169
  • Private Airport Transfer: Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas: $29
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Ibanez Airport (PUQ): $29
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales: $250
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas Hotel to Punta Arenas Airport: $32

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Paracas

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Paracas:

  • Private transfer from Paracas to Lima Airport (price per vehicle): $490
  • Private transfer from Paracas to Lima (price per vehicle): $480
  • Transfer Paracas -Lima: $250
  • Private Transfer from Paracas to Ica: $110
  • Private Bus Station transfer in Paracas: $9.10

Is it cheaper to fly into Punta Arenas or Paracas?

Prices for flights to both Paracas 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.





Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Punta Arenas can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $6.24 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Paracas's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $18 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Punta Arenas $6.24
    Paracas $18

Tours and Activities in Punta Arenas

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

  • Half day traditional City Tour: $35
  • Punta Arenas Sightseeing Tour: $47
  • Punta Arenas Highlights Shared Tour: $67
  • Small Group Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: Fort Bulnes and City Tour: $71
  • Puntarenas City tour and Mangroove Tour: $87
  • Bus ticket from Punta Arenas (Chile) to Ushuaia (Argentina): $88
  • Full-Day Punta Arenas and Magellan Strait Tour: $95
  • Rainforest Skywalk & Tarcoles River Eco Cruise Tour Puntarenas Shore excursion: $99
  • Punta Arenas Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Tour: $101
  • Full day Punta Arenas (Regular tours): $103
  • Regular Tour of Andino Club Ski Mountain and Chairlift from Punta Arenas, Chile: $103
  • City Tour of Punta Arenas: $110

Tours and Activities in Paracas

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

  • ATV Tour in Paracas: $45
  • Ballestas Islands Group Tour from Paracas: $26
  • Ballestas Islands Private Group Tour: $440
  • Ballestas Islands Sightseeing Boat Ride from Paracas: $24
  • Ballestas Islands Sigthseeing Tour: $36
  • Ballestas Islands and Chandelier tour from Paracas: $36
  • Ballestas Islands and Paracas National Park from the Cruise pier San Martin: $124
  • Ballestas Islands for cruise ship passenger - Paracas Harbour: $32
  • Buggy & Sandboard Adventure in Paracas: $98
  • Desert Adventure: Luxury Picnic, Off-Road & Sandboarding: $629
  • From 2-Hour Private Ballestas Islands Tour: $405
  • From Ica Vineyard Private Tour Including Lunch and Tasting: $99

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Punta Arenas, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $4.70.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Paracas may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $8.02 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Punta Arenas $4.70
    Paracas $8.02
Typical Alcohol prices in Punta Arenas

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


  • Alcohol
    $8.88

Sample the Local Flavors in Punta Arenas

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Punta Arenas:

  • Punta Arenas Small Group Beers & Brewery Tour with a Local Guide: $68


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

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Punta Arenas vs. Paracas Travel Comparison

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