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

Should you visit Salvador or Galapagos Islands?

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

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.

Galapagos Islands

The Galapagos Islands are a small archipelago of islands belonging to Ecuador in the eastern Pacific Ocean. The Galapagos archipelago is world-renowned for its unique and fearless wildlife, much of which was inspiration for Charles Darwin's Theory of Natural Selection. Thanks to a lack of natural predators, friendly wildlife such as sea lions and gigantic sea tortoises let visitors get up close. This archipelago of about 19 islands and many smaller islets found over 620 miles off Ecuador's coast in the Pacific Ocean is a double World Heritage site, where both land and sea are protected. Each island boasts its own unique landscape, ranging from black, volcanic rocks to white sand beaches and gemstone-blue waters. There is no bad time to visit the Galapagos Islands but the busiest months for tourism tend to be June, July and August, as well as mid-December to mid-January. This is when prices are at their highest.

Which city is cheaper, Galapagos Islands or Salvador?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Salvador is $34, while the average daily cost in Galapagos Islands is $111. 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 Salvador and Galapagos Islands in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in Salvador is about $38 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

The prices for places to stay in Galapagos Islands can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $52, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $104.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Salvador $19
    Galapagos Islands $52
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Salvador $38
    Galapagos Islands $104

Food

In Salvador travelers spend around $10 a day on food. You can save money by choosing casual restaurants or food stalls, or you can spend plenty more by dining in nicer restaurants at every meal.

The average traveler spends about $27 per day in Galapagos 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Salvador $10
    Galapagos Islands $27
Typical Food prices in Salvador

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


  • Dinner for 2
    $1.33

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
  • Private Cooking Experience in Salvador: $100
  • Salvador by Night: Cultural Dinner and Show: $110
  • Bahia By Night: Dinner and Folkloric show: $114
  • Cooking Class with a Local and Spice Gift: $125
  • Bahia By Night Dinner and Dance Show Ticket: $135

Local Transportation

While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $4.68 per day to get around in Salvador.

To get around in Galapagos Islands, the average visitor spends $43 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.
    Salvador $4.68
    Galapagos Islands $43
Typical Local Transportation prices in Salvador

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


  • Bus from Airport
    $1.14

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Salvador

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Salvador:

  • Private One Way Airport Transfer - Morro de São Paulo: $366
  • Ivan Bahia, Private Transfer Lençois (Chapada Diamantina) to / from Salvador BA: $280
  • Transfer Salvador to Barra Grande Round Trip: $200
  • Private Transfer from Salvador to Boipeba Round Trip: $170
  • Private Transfer to/from Salvador Airport to/from Praia do Forte: $140
  • Private Transfer from/to Salvador Airport From/to Grand Palladium Imbassai: $115
  • Grand Palladium Imbassai Private Transfer 4 to 12 Pax: $114
  • Iberostar Praia do Forte or Bahia Private Transfer 4 to 12 Pax: $107
  • Praia do Forte Private Transfer From Salvador: $103
  • Morro de São Paulo Shared Transfer From/To Salvador: $100
  • Round Trip Transfer Salvador Airport to Hotels: $95
  • Transfer From Salvador to Morro de São Paulo Round Trip Semi Terrestre: $95

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Galapagos Islands

Also for Galapagos Islands, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfer In from Baltra Airport to Hotels in Santa Cruz Island: $115

Is it cheaper to fly into Salvador or Galapagos Islands?

Prices for flights to both Galapagos Islands 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.





Entertainment

Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $4.42 per person, per day in Salvador. This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.

In Galapagos Islands, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $28 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Salvador $4.42
    Galapagos Islands $28

Tours and Activities in Salvador

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

  • 4-Days Experience at Salvador de Bahia, Savour the cultural fusion - Brasil: $690
  • 8h City Tour of Salvador da Bahia: $80
  • African historical walking tour 03 hours: $90
  • Beaches North Coast 2 tours with overnight hotel Coconut Coast experience: $509
  • Best Value Full Day Sightseeing Tour Salvador the first Capital of Brazil: $104
  • Cachoeira Countryside Flavor Private Tour from Salvador: $110
  • Candomble Religion Mysteries Private Tour in Salvador: $80
  • Candomblé Ceremony Private Tour from Salvador: $70
  • Chapada Diamantina Adventure: $2,898
  • Costa de Camaçari 3 days 2 night, beach, tour, hotel, meals, guide: $477
  • Cruise Ship Special Private Tour Salvador da Bahia Historic Old Town Bonfim and Barra: $136
  • Discover the Ancient Deities of Brazil's Candomblé (Online Experience): $15

Tours and Activities in Galapagos Islands

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Galapagos Islands.

  • 4-Day Galapagos Islands Express Tour: $714
  • 4-Day Galapagos Land Tour Visiting Isabela and Santa Cruz: $876
  • 4-day Galapagos on a Budget Experience: $1,090
  • 4-Day Budget Isabela Tour: $1,106
  • Galapagos Discovery Tour 4 Days / 3 Nights: $1,126
  • 5-day Galapagos on a Budget Experience: $1,195
  • 4-Day Galapagos Tour: Santa Cruz & 2 Uninhabited Islands: $1,239
  • 5-Day Galapagos Diving Tour: Accommodation and Full-Day Diving Excursions: $1,286
  • 5-Day Guided Galapagos & Los Tuneles Tour: $1,289
  • 6-day Galapagos on a Budget Experience: $1,320
  • 6-Day Galapagos Land Tour: Los Tuneles Program: $1,412
  • 7-day Galapagos on a Budget Experience: $1,530

Alcohol

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Salvador may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $5.91 per day on alcoholic beverages.

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Galapagos Islands, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $12.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Salvador $5.91
    Galapagos Islands $12
Typical Alcohol prices in Salvador

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


  • Beers for 2
    $1.33


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

Budget Your Trip

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Salvador vs. Galapagos Islands Travel Comparison

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