A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Salvador vs. Cartagena for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Salvador or Cartagena?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Salvador or Cartagena, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Where Should I go: Salvador or Cartagena?

Salvador

Salvador de Bahia was the first capital of Brazil, founded by the Portuguese in 1549. Also known as "Brazil's capital of happiness," Salvador is famous for its plentiful and spirited street festivals. The third most populous city in Brazil, Salvador is also well-known for its Afro-Brazilian culture and Portuguese colonial architecture.

Cartagena

The capital of the Bolivar Department of Colombia, Cartagena is one of the most visited cities in the country. It sits on Colombia's northern coast by the Caribbean Sea. It's a port city with a population of almost 900,000, making it the fifth largest city in Colombia. The city has a rich history and was the first Spanish colony on the American continent. It was also one of the first sanctuaries for freed African slaves in the Americas.

Which city is cheaper, Cartagena or Salvador?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Salvador is $35, while the average daily cost in Cartagena is $33. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Salvador and Cartagena in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Salvador $19
    Cartagena $19
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Salvador $38
    Cartagena $38

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Salvador $4.76
    Cartagena $5.20
Typical Local Transportation prices in Salvador

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


  • Bus from Airport
    $1.16

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Salvador

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Salvador:

  • Grand Palladium Imbassai Private Transfer 4 to 12 Pax: $114
  • Iberostar Praia do Forte or Bahia Private Transfer 4 to 12 Pax: $107
  • Ivan Bahia, Private Transfer Lençois (Chapada Diamantina) to / from Salvador BA: $280
  • Morro de São Paulo Shared Transfer From/To Salvador: $100
  • Praia do Forte Private Transfer From Salvador: $103
  • Praia do Forte Shared Transfer From Salvador: $43
  • Private Airport Round-Trip Transfer: Salvador de Bahia Airport to Salvador City: $62
  • Private Airport Transfer: Salvador Int. Airport (SSA) to Salvador de Bahia: $21
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Salvador de Bahia to Salvador Int. Airport (SSA): $21
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Salvador de Bahia Airport to Salvador City: $31
  • Private Departure Transfer from Salvador City to Salvador de Bahia Airport: $31
  • Private One Way Airport Transfer - Morro de São Paulo: $366

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cartagena

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cartagena:

  • Air Conditioning Bus transfer: $8.00
  • Cartagena Airport Transfer (in and out) - Touristic Area Hotels - Sedan: $34
  • Cartagena Airport: Private Arrival or Departure Transfer: $14
  • Cartagena Arrival or Departure Transfer: Airport / Cruise Ship Terminal: $13
  • Cartagena Private Transfer from Bocagrande to Rafael Núñez (CTG) Airport: $17
  • Cartagena Private Transfer from El Laguito to Rafael Núñez (CTG) Airport: $17
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by 2x4 Car: $72
  • Departure Private Transfer Cartagena City to Cartagena Airport CTG by Minivan: $96
  • Hotel to Airport Transportation in Cartagena (transfer service): $14
  • One way private water transfer between Cartagena and the Islands (6 ppl max): $530
  • PRIVATE Transfer from the AIRPORT to the hotel.: $19
  • PRIVATE Transfer from the cruise terminal.: $13

Is it cheaper to fly into Salvador or Cartagena?

Prices for flights to both Cartagena and Salvador 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
    Salvador $10
    Cartagena $6.82
Typical Food prices in Salvador

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


  • Dinner for 2
    $1.35

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Salvador

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

  • Pelourinho By Night - Dinner & Show: $70
  • Pelourinho By Night With Folkloric Show and Dinner: $80
  • Private Tour to Cultural Show and Dinner in Salvador: $80
  • Baiana Cooking Class with Market Visit & Lunch: $85
  • Private Cooking Experience in Salvador: $100
  • Bahia By Night: Dinner and Folkloric show: $114
  • Bahia By Night Dinner and Dance Show Ticket: $135

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cartagena

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

  • Cartagena Cuisine Cooking Experience: $30
  • BIKE & BITE food tour: $52
  • Cruise by the Bay with Dinner and Wine: $55
  • Street food tour with Julie: $64
  • Food Tour in Cartagena Walled City: $66
  • Street Food & Local Food Tour: $66
  • SkyKitchen 4 Course Cooking Class: $81
  • Bazurto Market Tour and Cooking Class in Cartagena: $92
  • Cartagena - Food Tour: $100
  • Caribbean Cuisine Cooking Class: $105
  • Shared Local Cooking Class and Lunch in Cartagena: $110
  • Bazurto Local Market Tour & Cooking Class: $115

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Salvador $4.49
    Cartagena $15

Tours and Activities in Salvador

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

  • Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova Guided Tour Including Entrance Ticket: $9.53
  • Discover the Ancient Deities of Brazil's Candomblé (Online Experience): $15
  • Salvador Panoramic City Tour: $21
  • Salvador Historical City Center Tour: $21
  • Panoramic Salvador Half Day City Tour: $25
  • Historical Salvador City Tour: $25
  • Shared Salvador City Tour: $27
  • Half Day Historical City Tour (Private): $28
  • Historic City Tour in Salvador: $33
  • Panoramic Sightseeing City Tour: $37
  • Schooner Tour to Ilha dos Frades and Itaparica from Salvador: $37
  • Half Day Panoramic City Tour in Salvador, Brazil: $40

Tours and Activities in Cartagena

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

  • Cartagena de Indias: India Catalina to Plaza Santo Domingo Audio Tour - VoiceMap: $5.34
  • Cartagena de Indias: Into the Walls of The City Walking Audio Tour by VoiceMap: $5.34
  • Ghost of Downtown: Fear in the streets. Cartagena Sensorial Tour: $6.99
  • Monasterio de la Popa, tickets de entrada: $7.00
  • Cartagena City Tour By Bicycle: $8.00
  • City Tour Cartagena With Bazurto Market: $8.00
  • Audio Guide - Walking Tour with Interactive (Cartagena de Indias): $10
  • Free walking tour Gethsemane old town & Forever colonial: $10
  • Cartagena Ryhtm & Sunset - Musical experience: $12
  • Virtual Cartagena LiteraTour through Nobel Garcia Marquez work: $15
  • City Sightseeing Cartagena Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour Shore Excursion: $18
  • Chiva Party Bus Tour in Cartagena: $18

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Salvador $6.01
    Cartagena $6.39
Typical Alcohol prices in Salvador

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


  • Beers for 2
    $1.35


When comparing the travel costs between Salvador and Cartagena, we can see that Salvador 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.


When is the best time to visit Salvador or Cartagena?

Salvador has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Cartagena experiences a tropical climate with fairly warm weather most of the year.

Should I visit Salvador or Cartagena in the Summer?

Both Cartagena and Salvador are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Cartagena attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate.

In January, Salvador is generally around the same temperature as Cartagenain July. Temperatures in Salvador average around 27°C (81°F), and Cartagena stays around 29°C (84°F).

It's quite sunny in Cartagena. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Salvador. Salvador usually receives more sunshine than Cartagena during summer. At this time of the year, Salvador gets 246 hours of sunny skies, while Cartagena receives 207 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Salvador. In January, Salvador usually receives more rain than Cartagenain July. At this time of the year, Salvador gets 138 mm (5.4 in) of rain, while Cartagena receives 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures January and July
    Salvador 27°C (81°F) 
    Cartagena 29°C (84°F)

Should I visit Salvador or Cartagena in the Autumn?

Both Cartagena and Salvador during the autumn are popular places to visit. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Cartagena throughout the year.

Salvador is around the same temperature as Cartagena in the autumn. The temperature in Salvador is usually 26°C (80°F) in April, and Cartagena stays around 27°C (81°F)in October.

In the autumn, Salvador often gets more sunshine than Cartagenain October. Salvador gets 190 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Cartagena receives 175 hours of full sun.

Cartagena gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Salvador. Salvador usually gets more rain in April than Cartagenain October. Salvador gets 310 mm (12.2 in) of rain, while Cartagena receives 150 mm (5.9 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures April and October
    Salvador 26°C (80°F) 
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F)

Should I visit Salvador or Cartagena in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Salvador and Cartagena. Plenty of visitors come to Cartagena because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year.

In the winter, Salvador is cooler than Cartagena. Typically, the winter temperatures in Salvador in July are around 24°C (75°F), and Cartagena is about 27°C (81°F)in January.

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Cartagena this time of the year. Salvador usually receives less sunshine than Cartagena during winter. At this time of the year, Salvador gets 181 hours of sunny skies, while Cartagena receives 278 hours of full sun.

Salvador gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Salvador usually receives more rain than Cartagenain January. At this time of the year, Salvador gets 175 mm (6.9 in) of rain, while Cartagena receives 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures July and January
    Salvador 24°C (75°F) 
    Cartagena 27°C (81°F)

Should I visit Salvador or Cartagena in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Salvador as well as Cartagena. Cartagena attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate.

In October, Salvador is generally around the same temperature as Cartagenain April. Temperatures in Salvador average around 26°C (78°F), and Cartagena stays around 28°C (82°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Cartagena. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Salvador this time of the year. In the spring, Salvador often gets more sunshine than Cartagenain April. Salvador gets 228 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Cartagena receives 209 hours of full sun.

Salvador receives a lot of rain in the spring. Salvador usually gets more rain in October than Cartagenain April. Salvador gets 115 mm (4.5 in) of rain, while Cartagena receives 10 mm (0.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures October and April
    Salvador 26°C (78°F) 
    Cartagena 28°C (82°F)

Typical Weather for Cartagena and Salvador

Salvador Cartagena
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 27°C (81°F) 138 mm (5.4 in) 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in)
Feb 27°C (81°F) 142 mm (5.6 in) 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in)
Mar 27°C (81°F) 152 mm (6 in) 27°C (81°F) 10 mm (0.4 in)
Apr 26°C (80°F) 310 mm (12.2 in) 28°C (82°F) 10 mm (0.4 in)
May 26°C (78°F) 360 mm (14.2 in) 29°C (84°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Jun 25°C (76°F) 244 mm (9.6 in) 29°C (84°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
Jul 24°C (75°F) 175 mm (6.9 in) 29°C (84°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)
Aug 24°C (75°F) 127 mm (5 in) 28°C (82°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Sep 25°C (77°F) 102 mm (4 in) 29°C (84°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Oct 26°C (78°F) 115 mm (4.5 in) 27°C (81°F) 150 mm (5.9 in)
Nov 26°C (79°F) 137 mm (5.4 in) 28°C (82°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)
Dec 26°C (80°F) 143 mm (5.6 in) 27°C (81°F) 30 mm (1.2 in)


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Salvador vs. Cartagena Travel Comparison

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