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

Should you visit Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales?

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

Should I visit Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales? 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 Puerto Natales?

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.

Puerto Natales

Puerto Natales is a beautiful town located in the Chilean Patagonia on the Senoret Channel. The city is often used as a base camp for trips to the surrounding national parks due to their plentiful restaurant options and access to internet. Puerto Natales is also known for being the base city to the Torres del Paine National Park, which was named the 5th most beautiful place in the world by National Geographic.

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, Puerto Natales or Punta Arenas?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Punta Arenas is $63, while the average daily cost in Puerto Natales is $84. 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 Puerto Natales in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Punta Arenas $32
    Puerto Natales $38
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Punta Arenas $64
    Puerto Natales $76
Compare Hotels in Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales

Looking for a hotel in Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales? 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 Puerto Natales


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 Puerto Natales Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Punta Arenas $1.80
    Puerto Natales $19

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: $33
  • Punta Arenas Airport (PUQ) to Punta Arenas - Arrival Transfer: $49
  • Punta Arenas to Punta Arenas Airport (PUQ) - Departure Transfer: $49
  • Transfer from Punta Arenas (city or airport) to Puerto Natales: $267

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Puerto Natales

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Puerto Natales:

  • From Torres del Paine Tour with Transfer: $80
  • Puerto Natales Airport Private Transfer: $18

Is it cheaper to fly into Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales?

Prices for flights to both Puerto Natales 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
  • Food Meals for one day
    Punta Arenas $21
    Puerto Natales $28
Typical Food Prices in Punta Arenas

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


  • Donut
    $1.05
  • Dinner
    $25

Typical Food Prices in Puerto Natales

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Puerto Natales:


  • Cake
    $1.05
  • Dinner
    $18
  • Coke
    $1.05

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Punta Arenas $6.44
    Puerto Natales $29

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
  • Fort Bulnes cruises: $70
  • Bike Tour in Punta Arenas, 100% local tour.: $70
  • Punta Arenas Sightseeing Tour: $72
  • King Penguin & Tierra del Fuego Tour: $138
  • 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
  • Full day Torres del Paine from Punta Arenas ,Regular tours: $180
  • Mountain Bike Adventure in Punta Arenas: $192

Tours and Activities in Puerto Natales

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

  • 2 Imperdible Tours Torres del Paine and Perito Moreno: $300
  • Balmaceda & Serrano Glaciers Boat Tour and traditional lunch.: $199
  • Balmaceda and Serrano Glaciers Sightseeing Cruise from Puerto Natales: $224
  • City Bike Tour in Puerto Natales: $58
  • From Torres del Paine National Park Day Tour: $80
  • Full Day Patagonia Tour from Puerto Natales: $100
  • Full Day Torres del Paine Tour: $99
  • Full Day Tour to Torres del Paine National Park: $92
  • Full day Torres del Paine Shared Tour From Puerto Natales only: $199
  • Full day tour Torres del Paine + Milodon cave: $88
  • Full-Day Hiking Tour to the Base of Paine Towers at Torres del Paine National Park: $189
  • Full-Day Tour of Torres del Paine National Park from Puerto Natales: $143

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Punta Arenas $4.86
    Puerto Natales $17
Typical Alcohol Prices in Punta Arenas

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


  • Alcohol
    $7.34

Typical Alcohol Prices in Puerto Natales

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Puerto Natales:


  • Alcohol
    $13


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales, we can see that Puerto Natales 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 Puerto Natales would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Puerto Natales 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 Puerto Natales Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales?

Punta Arenas has a larger population, and is about 6 times larger than the population of Puerto Natales. When comparing the sizes of Punta Arenas and Puerto Natales, 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.