A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Roatan vs. San Juan del Sur for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Roatan or San Juan del Sur?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Roatan and San Juan del Sur. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

Roatan

Your next great vacation lies just thirty miles off the north coast of Honduras. Right above the world's largest coral reef is the island of Roatan. As a popular tourist attraction and standard cruise destination, it's not uncommon to see tons of Americans during your trip. In fact, the cruising industry has had huge impact on the island's culture. While ships are in port, traffic will be heavier and prices may go up. Because of the growth of tourism, most locals speak both Spanish and English.

San Juan del Sur

San Juan del Sur is a popular port destination on the Pacific coast of southwest Nicaragua. The town was once a quaint fishing village but has grown into a tourist town with activities for visitors that include surfing, fishing, and, of course, partying. The town has a population of just over 15,000, most of whom are either fishermen or involved in the tourism industry. There is also a large expat community from the United States, Canada, and Europe.

Which city is cheaper, San Juan del Sur or Roatan?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Roatan is $31, while the average daily cost in San Juan del Sur is $44. 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 Roatan and San Juan del Sur in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $18 for a double occupancy room in Roatan.

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $34 for a double occupancy room in San Juan del Sur.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Roatan $9.18
    San Juan del Sur $17
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Roatan $18
    San Juan del Sur $34

Food

Food in Roatan costs travelers about $7.72 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.

The average traveler spends about $15 per day in San Juan del Sur for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Roatan $7.72
    San Juan del Sur $15

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in San Juan del Sur

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in San Juan del Sur.

  • Food Tour - Nicaragua Gastronomy: $102

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Roatan is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $15 per person, per day, on local transportation in Roatan.

The average price of local transportation around San Juan del Sur is $15 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.
    Roatan $15
    San Juan del Sur $15
Typical Local Transportation prices in Roatan

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Roatan are as follows:


  • Water Taxi
    $4.37

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Roatan

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Roatan:

  • bus & Taxi Uber Roatan transfer to the beach customize your tour: $26

Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Juan del Sur

Some specific examples of transportation prices in San Juan del Sur:

  • One-Way Private Transfer from San Juan del Sur to Managua: $146

Is it cheaper to fly into Roatan or San Juan del Sur?

Prices for flights to both San Juan del Sur and Roatan 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 Roatan typically cost an average of $22 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

San Juan del Sur's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $13 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.
    Roatan $22
    San Juan del Sur $13

Tours and Activities in Roatan

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Roatan are as follows:

  • Do It Your Way Roatán Free Style Tour.: $32
  • Shore Excursion: Roatan 360 Panoramic City Tour: $35
  • Shore Excursion: Roatan Private VIP Customizable Island Tour: $35
  • Shore Excursion: Roatan Half Day Private City Tour: $45
  • Shore Excursion: Roatan Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour and Beach: $45
  • Roatan Island Tour: $45
  • Roatan animal sanctuary and island adventures: $47
  • Private Roatan Island Tour: $47
  • Island tour in Roatan: $49
  • Roatan Stewart Tours:best Of Roatan Tour '': $49
  • Roatan Shore Excursion: Hanging Bridges Eco Tour and Beach Break: $50
  • Good Samaritan Tour: $51

Tours and Activities in San Juan del Sur

Here are a few actual costs in San Juan del Sur for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Open Bar Sunset Cruise in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua: $30
  • SJDS PORT EXCURSION: Zipline and Adventure Park: $100
  • ATV Tour: $103
  • Mombacho Volcano Hike and Ziplining Adventure from San Juan del Sur: $159
  • San Juan del Sur Shore Excursion: Private Masaya Volcano and Catarina Tour: $201

Alcohol

The average person spends about $5.79 on alcoholic beverages in Roatan per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting San Juan del Sur may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $11 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Roatan $5.79
    San Juan del Sur $11


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

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Roatan vs. San Juan del Sur Travel Comparison

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