A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers San Carlos de Bariloche vs. La Paz for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit San Carlos de Bariloche or La Paz?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for San Carlos de Bariloche and La Paz. 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.

San Carlos de Bariloche

Set in the foothills of the Andes Mountains in Argentina, San Carlos de Bariloche is the biggest city in the Lake District. Bariloche is popular for skiing and snowboarding in the winter and trekking, swimming, fishing and horseback riding in the summertime.

No matter the time of year, there is something for everyone in Bariloche. Skiing season begins from June to October while fishing season is from November to April. Summer is from December to March, but visiting during low seasons (Spring in October to December and Autumn in late-April to mid-June) also has its benefits when it comes to saving cash and avoiding crowds.

Check out our ultimate guide to Hiking in Patagonia.

La Paz

La Paz, the administrative capital of Bolivia, has a breathtaking setting. The city is the highest national capital in the world, with an altitude ranging from about 4,058 m (13,313 ft) above sea level in El Alto, where the airport is located, to 3,100 m (10,170 ft) in the lower residential area. The dynamic and chaotic city was built in a canyon created by the Choqueyapu River. La Paz is now a fusion of architectural styles, cultures and beliefs, welcoming everyday new boutique hotels, modern shops, delicious restaurants and reinventing standing establishments. However, generally speaking, Bolivia remains more a backpacker hit than a mainstream tourist destination.

Which city is cheaper, La Paz or San Carlos de Bariloche?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in San Carlos de Bariloche is $52, while the average daily cost in La Paz is $36. 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 San Carlos de Bariloche and La Paz in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $38 for a double occupancy room in San Carlos de Bariloche.

Travelers usually pay around $26 for a double occupancy room in La Paz If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    San Carlos de Bariloche $19
    La Paz $13
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    San Carlos de Bariloche $38
    La Paz $26

Food

The average traveler spends about $20 per day in San Carlos de Bariloche 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 Paz food costs typically run travelers around $13 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
    San Carlos de Bariloche $20
    La Paz $13
Typical Food prices in San Carlos de Bariloche

Some typical examples of dining costs in San Carlos de Bariloche are as follows:


  • Pastries
    $0.12
  • Empanadas
    $0.28

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in San Carlos de Bariloche

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in San Carlos de Bariloche.

  • Night hiking in the woods with headlamps & Candlelit dinner: $70
  • Half-Day Bariloche Highlights with Cooking Class & Beer Tasting -Private Service: $274

Typical Food prices in La Paz

For La Paz, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Fruit
    $0.73

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around San Carlos de Bariloche is $16 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.

To get around in La Paz, the average visitor spends $7.59 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.
    San Carlos de Bariloche $16
    La Paz $7.59

Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Carlos de Bariloche

Some specific examples of transportation prices in San Carlos de Bariloche:

  • Shared Round-Trip Transfer: Bariloche Hotels to Cerro Catedral Ski Resort: $38
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Hotel to Bariloche Airport: $26
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Bariloche Airport to Hotel: $15
  • San Carlos de Bariloche Airport Roundtrip Transfer: $48
  • Private transfer: Bariloche Airport (BRC) to San Carlos de Bariloche: $149
  • Private Transfer: San Carlos de Bariloche to Bariloche Airport (BRC): $133
  • Private Transfer from Tom Wesley to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $62
  • Private Transfer from Puerto Pañuelo to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $83
  • Private Transfer from Playa Bonita to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $52
  • Private Transfer from Lago Moreno to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $52
  • Private Transfer from Hotel Llao Llao to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $83
  • Private Transfer from Hotel Catedral to Bariloche (BRC) Airport: $52

Typical Local Transportation prices in La Paz

Some typical examples of transportation costs in La Paz are as follows:


  • Taxi Ride
    $0.58

Hired Cars and Shuttles in La Paz

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

  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from La Paz City to La Paz El Alto Airport: $20
  • Day Transfer from Airport to Hotel and Cable Car: $20
  • Departure Private Transfer La Paz City to La Paz Airport LPB by Minibus: $25
  • Departure Private Transfer La Paz City to La Paz Airport LPB by S-Cross Sx4: $25
  • Departure Private Transfer La Paz City to La Paz Airport LPB by Minibus: $25
  • Airport Transfer In_ Day: $25
  • Airport Transfer In_night: $25
  • Airport Transfer Out_day: $25
  • Airport Transfer Out_night: $25
  • Bus Station Transfer Out_day: $25
  • Bus Station Transfer Out_night: $25
  • Bus Station Transfer In_day: $25

Is it cheaper to fly into San Carlos de Bariloche or La Paz?

Prices for flights to both La Paz and San Carlos de Bariloche 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

San Carlos de Bariloche's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $22 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.

In La Paz, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $13 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    San Carlos de Bariloche $22
    La Paz $13

Tours and Activities in San Carlos de Bariloche

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for San Carlos de Bariloche are as follows:

  • "Brazo Tristeza" Lake Experience - Shared Service: $158
  • 1.5-Hour Lago Gutierrez Paddle Boarding Tour from Bariloche: $80
  • 4-Day Bariloche & Lake district Classic Tour: $659
  • 4-day Bariloche Adventure - Trekking Cerro Llao Llao & Kayaking Lago Mascardi: $903
  • 5-Day Adventure Trip in Bariloche: $995
  • 6-Days Unique Experience Lake Crossing & Mountains Region!: $1,150
  • 7-Day Bariloche & Mendoza Adventure: Trekking, Kayaking, Horseback riding & Wine: $1,326
  • Bariloche 3 tours Classic package: $250
  • Bariloche 3 tours with adrenaline: $280
  • Bariloche 3 tours with adventure: $290
  • Bariloche Circuito Grande Sightseeing Tour: $96
  • Bariloche Civic Center Walking Tour: $5.00

Tours and Activities in La Paz

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

  • Virtual City Tour - La Paz: $4.00
  • La Paz City Walking Tour Including Historical Streets: $5.00
  • La Paz City Walking Tour: $5.00
  • La Paz Walking Tour: $5.00
  • Cable Car Tour of La Paz: $8.00
  • La Paz city, nomad bohemian tour: $10
  • Titicaca Lake - Bus Ticket - From La Paz City - Ow: $12
  • Cable Car, Cementery, Shaman and El Alto Adventure in La Paz: $17
  • Private Cable Car City Tour: $18
  • Full Day Tiwanaku Archeological Site Shared Tour: $20
  • Bus City Tour Sightseeing La Paz: $23
  • Tiwanaku and Puma Punku - Shared Tour -: $23

Alcohol

The average person spends about $13 on alcoholic beverages in San Carlos de Bariloche per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Typically, people visiting La Paz spend on average $8.59 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    San Carlos de Bariloche $13
    La Paz $8.59
Typical Alcohol prices in San Carlos de Bariloche

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in San Carlos de Bariloche from other travelers:


  • Beer
    $0.11

Sample the Local Flavors in San Carlos de Bariloche

Also in San Carlos de Bariloche, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • City Tour, Nature Hiking & visit to a Local Microbrewery in Bariloche: $281


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

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San Carlos de Bariloche vs. La Paz Travel Comparison

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