Should you visit San Pedro de Atacama or Pucon?
Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for San Pedro de Atacama and Pucon. 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 Pedro de Atacama
San Pedro de Atacama is a gateway to northern Chile. It is a good jumping off point for exploring the area's impressive landscape, most of which is included in the Los Flamencos National Reserve. It is popular with both Chilean and international tourists, and because of its popularity, it is a relatively expensive destination, with many prices comparable to what you might pay in Santiago.
A popular hub for adventure tourism, Pucon is a town in the Lake District of the South American nation of Chile. Located on Lake Villarirca with the snowcapped Villarrica volcano looming above and plenty of forested valleys below, the town has become a home base year-round for a full range of outdoor activities.
Check out our ultimate guide to Traveling in Patagonia.
Which city is cheaper, Pucon or San Pedro de Atacama?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in San Pedro de Atacama is $56, while the average daily cost in Pucon is $97. 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 Pedro de Atacama and Pucon in more detail.
For a normal double-occupancy room in San Pedro de Atacama, $60 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in San Pedro de Atacama, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $30, such as in a hostel.
The average price for accommodation for two people in Pucon is $84. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.
Food in San Pedro de Atacama costs travelers about $14 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.
Pucon food costs typically run travelers around $36 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.
Meals for one day
San Pedro de Atacama $14
Typical Food prices in San Pedro de Atacama
For San Pedro de Atacama, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Pucon
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Pucon.
Learn to Cook Like a Local: Private Cooking Class in a Viña del Mar Home:
San Pedro de Atacama's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $8.86 per person, per day on transportation in San Pedro de Atacama.
The cost of a taxi ride in Pucon is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $19 per person, per day, on local transportation in Pucon.
Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
San Pedro de Atacama $8.86
Hired Cars and Shuttles in San Pedro de Atacama
Also for San Pedro de Atacama, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Atacama Airport Private Transfer:
Atacama Airport Shuttle Transfer:
Private transfer from San Pedro de Atacama to Calama City:
Shared Transfer from San Pedro de Atacama to Calama Airport:
Transfer San Pedro de Atacama Hotels to El Loa Airport Shared Service:
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Pucon
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Pucon:
Pucon Temuco Airport Private Transfer:
Private Transfer from Pucon To Temuco Airport:
Is it cheaper to fly into San Pedro de Atacama or Pucon?
Prices for flights to both Pucon and San Pedro de Atacama 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.
Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in San Pedro de Atacama can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $20 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Entertainment and activities in Pucon typically cost an average of $36 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.
Typical Entertainment prices in San Pedro de Atacama
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for San Pedro de Atacama's activities, tours, and tickets:
Tours and Activities in San Pedro de Atacama
For San Pedro de Atacama, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Half day Valle de la Luna, Afternoon Tour:
Sandboarding Adventure in Death Valley:
Moon Valley & Death Valley Tour from San Pedro de Atacama:
Geysers del Tatio Tour:
Valle del Arcoiris Tour:
Floating experience in the Hidden Lagoons (Lagunas Escondidas):
Small-Group Tour to Moon Valley from San Pedro de Atacama:
Puritama Springs - Half Day Tour - San Pedro de Atacama - Typical Tour:
Atacama Desert Stargazing Tour:
Moon Valley Tour - Half Day Tour:
Small-Group tour to Laguna Cejar, Ojos del Salar and Laguna Tebinquinche:
Tours and Activities in Pucon
Here are a few actual costs in Pucon for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:
Full Day Tour to Conguillio National Park from Pucon:
Half Day Tour to The Eyes Of Caburgua from Pucon:
Mapuche Reserve Horseback Riding Tour in Pucon:
Pucón Sightseeing City Tour:
Sightseeing Tour in Pucon with optional Villarica:
Villarrica Volcanic Caves Park Admission Ticket:
Typically, people visiting San Pedro de Atacama spend on average $4.78 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Pucon may vary from person to person, on average a person spends $26 per day on alcoholic beverages.
Typical Alcohol prices in San Pedro de Atacama
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in San Pedro de Atacama:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between San Pedro de Atacama and Pucon, we can see that Pucon is more expensive. And not only is San Pedro de Atacama much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to San Pedro de Atacama would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in San Pedro de Atacama 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 Pucon would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Pucon than you might in San Pedro de Atacama.
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