A Travel Price Comparison for Argentina Rosario vs. El Calafate for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Rosario or El Calafate?

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

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 and El Calafate can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Rosario or El Calafate?

Rosario

Rosario is the third largest city in Argentina. Located at the Parana river and known for its rich architectural heritage and beautiful riverside scenery, Rosario is the birthplace of the Argentinian flag as well as two of the nation's most famous icons, Che Guevara and Lionel Messi. Rosario is still an important river port but has done a great job of regenerating its center, which now has a vibrant cultural and night life. The abandoned buildings of the long riverbank have been converted into galleries, restaurants, skateparks and river beaches, which buzz with life in summer. Dynamic and confident without being showy, culturally rich and the best urban location to cool off in the boiling summers, Rosario is easily overlooked but not to be missed.

El Calafate

Located in Patagonia, El Calafate has become a popular tourist destination in Argentina because of its beautiful setting on the stunningly blue Lago Argentina. The town sits on the southern border of the lake in the southwestern part of the Santa Cruz Province. It's about 320 kilometers from Rio Gallegos.

The rise in popularity of Patagonia as a tourist destination has truly put this small town on the map. You'll find no shortage of trekkers in the town and it makes an excellent base to explore different parts of the Los Glaciares National Park. Popular places to visit include Perito Moreno Glacier, Cerro Chalten, and Cerro Torre.

El Calafate has a cold semi-arid climate. The summers are cool to warm and very dry while the winters are cold and damp. Lago Argentino has a significant influence over the town's climate. The shallow bay where the town is located is usually frozen during the winter months.

Check out our ultimate guide to Hiking in Patagonia.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Hiking & Trekking Tours in Argentina, The Best Adventure Tours to Argentina, The Best Family-Friendly Tours to Argentina, and The Best Wildlife Tours to Argentina.


Which place is cheaper, El Calafate or Rosario?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Rosario is $9.05, while the average daily cost in El Calafate is $10. 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 Rosario and El Calafate in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Rosario $3.11
    El Calafate $3.42
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Rosario $6.22
    El Calafate $6.84
Compare Hotels in Rosario and El Calafate

Looking for a hotel in Rosario or El Calafate? 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 Rosario


Hotels in El Calafate


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: Rosario Hotel Prices and El Calafate Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Rosario $2.66
    El Calafate $3.53

Typical Local Transportation Prices in El Calafate

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in El Calafate:


  • Taxi
    $1.39

Hired Cars and Shuttles in El Calafate

Also for El Calafate, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Perito Moreno Glacier Mini Trek with Transfer: $456
  • Laguna de Los Tres Transfer & Self-Guided Hike: $101
  • Shared transfer to El Calafate -El Chaltén: $75
  • Private Airport Transfer: $64
  • Excursion to the Perito Moreno Glacier, with guide and transfer to / from the hotel: $60
  • Roundtrip transfer in Private Car from Calafate Airport (FTE)- Calafate City: $49
  • Private Transfer Hotel-Bus Station or Bus Station-Hotel (Calafate): $35
  • Shared Transfer Airport-Hotel-Airport (Calafate): $32
  • Shared Transfer from El Calafate Airport to downtown Hotel: $15
  • Transfer from the airport to your hotel in El Calafate: $12
  • Transfers Between Airport and Hotels: $12

Is it cheaper to fly into Rosario or El Calafate?

Prices for flights to both El Calafate and Rosario 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
    Rosario $3.84
    El Calafate $3.71

Typical Food Prices in El Calafate

For El Calafate, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Dessert
    $0.01
  • Dinner
    $1.81
  • Dinner
    $1.07

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in El Calafate

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

  • Argentine Dinner with Live Music Folklore -Estancia 25 de Mayo: $48
  • Estancia 25 de Mayo Tour with Dinner & Transfer: $126
  • Lakes and Caves Tour with Dinner: $143
  • Estancia 25 de Mayo Experience with Dinner from Calafate: $155
  • Estancia 25 de Mayo in El Calafate - PM visit with dinner: $186

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Rosario $3.08
    El Calafate $3.71

Typical Entertainment Prices in El Calafate

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for El Calafate's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Glacerium Museum
    $1.39

Tours and Activities in El Calafate

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

  • Argentine Cuisine Experience in El Calafate: $65
  • CALAFATE: Panoramic tour: The best balconies of Calafate: $190
  • Cañadón Experience: $189
  • Calafate City Tour with Walichu Caves: $78
  • Chalten Full Day Trekking Experience - Laguna de los Tres: $180
  • Darwin Experience: $274
  • Darwin Experience - kayaks & adventure: $230
  • El Calafate Balconies Experience - Tour in FWD vehicle: $164
  • El Calafate Balconies Experience - Tour in FWD vehicle: $192
  • El Calafate Balconies Experience: 3-Hour 4WD Tour: $117
  • El Calafate Balcony in 4WD Experience: $169
  • El Calafate Balcony in 4WD Experience with Optional Quads: $169

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Rosario $1.77
    El Calafate $1.86

Typical Alcohol Prices in El Calafate

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in El Calafate:


  • Beer
    $0.01
  • Alcohol
    $0.37


When comparing the travel costs between Rosario and El Calafate, we can see that El Calafate is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in South America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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


Which is Bigger, Rosario or El Calafate?

Rosario has a larger population, and is about 150 times larger than the population of El Calafate. When comparing the sizes of Rosario and El Calafate, 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.