A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Rosario Islands vs. La Serena for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Rosario Islands or La Serena?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Rosario Islands and La Serena can help you decide which place is right for you.

Rosario Islands

The Rosario Islands, also referred to as Coral Islands of Rosario, is an archipelago located off the coast of Colombia, approximately 100 kilometres (62 miles) from Cartagena. The Rosario Islands are integrated by 28 islands and all of them form one of the 46 Natural National Parks of Colombia, created to protect one of the most important coral reefs in the Colombian Caribbean Coast. Only three of these islands are property of the Colombian state. Before establishing the national park in 1977, wealthy families used this natural paradise to build their summer houses, but then the government allowed them to keep their properties, only if they paid annual rent and taxes to be there, and complied with certain rules to preserve the ecosystem of the islands. People can visit the national park area of the islands, and tours are available. Isla Rosario has an aquarium and open-sea oceanarium that people can visit. Activities on the Rosario Islands include swimming, snorkeling and fishing, among others. The best time to visit Colombia in general, and especially the Rosario Islands is the dry-season months from December to March. These uninterrupted sunny days are just perfect for a Caribbean coastal experience and to enjoy all the activities it has to offer.

La Serena

La Serena is a charming town in Northern Chile. It is Chile's second-oldest city and the thriving capital of Region IV. With its beautiful architecture, its long golden shoreline, dignified stone churches, tree-shaded avenues and pretty plazas, La Serena has everything you could ask for!

Chileans on holidays flood in the city in January and February, though it is fairly peaceful outside the summer rush. Some of the city's architecture is from the colonial era, but most is actually neocolonial thanks to president Gabriel Gonzalez Videla, born in La Serena, and her 'Plan Serena' of the late 1940s.

Which city is cheaper, La Serena or Rosario Islands?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Rosario Islands is $71, while the average daily cost in La Serena 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 city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Rosario Islands and La Serena in more detail.



Accommodation

Rosario Islands's average price for two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room is $54. A typical place to stay for one person, per day is $27.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $82 in La Serena For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Rosario Islands $27
    La Serena $41
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Rosario Islands $54
    La Serena $82

Food

The average traveler spends about $23 per day in Rosario Islands 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.

La Serena food costs typically run travelers around $26 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
    Rosario Islands $23
    La Serena $26

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $37 per day to get around in Rosario Islands.

To get around in La Serena, the average visitor spends $20 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Rosario Islands $37
    La Serena $20

Hired Cars and Shuttles in La Serena

Also for La Serena, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Airport Transfer: La Florida Airport (LSC) to La Serena: $26
  • Private Airport Transfer: from La Serena to La Florida Airport (LSC): $26

Is it cheaper to fly into Rosario Islands or La Serena?

Prices for flights to both La Serena and Rosario Islands 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

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $11 per person, per day in Rosario Islands. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

In La Serena, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $23 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Rosario Islands $11
    La Serena $23

Tours and Activities in La Serena

For La Serena, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Valle de Elqui Fullday Tour: $58
  • Full day Tour to Elqui Valley: $90
  • Elqui Valley and Vicuña Private Tour Including Lunch: $263
  • La Serena and Coquimbo Private City Tour Including Lunch and Archeological Museum: $269

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Rosario Islands may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $4.88 per day on alcoholic beverages.

Typically, people visiting La Serena spend on average $22 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Rosario Islands $4.88
    La Serena $22


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

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Rosario Islands vs. La Serena Travel Comparison

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