Should you visit San Pedro La Laguna or Bocas del Toro?
Should I visit San Pedro La Laguna or Bocas del Toro? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the data, which all comes from actual travelers.
San Pedro La Laguna
Located in the Western Highlands of Guatemala, Lake Atitlan is a beautiful volcanic lake ringed by small towns and villages that are highly frequented by backpackers. Panajachal is one of the best known of the towns, as well as the main entry point of the region, while others like San Pedro La Laguna are quieter and more off the beaten path. Lake Atitlan and its villages attract visitors for its scenic beauty, outdoor activities, and Mayan culture nearby.
Bocas del Toro
The capital of the Bocas del Toro province, this city of the same name sits in the Caribbean West region of Panama. Bocas del Toro, or Bocas Town, is in the district of Bocas del Toro, which also includes the towns of Bastimentos, Cauchero, Punta Laurel, and Tierra Oscura. The district has a population of about 17,000 and covers a total area of 433.2 square kilometers, and the town has a population of about 13,000. The area is a tourist destination for its beautiful beaches, excellent snorkeling and diving, and interesting culture.
Which city is cheaper, Bocas del Toro or San Pedro La Laguna?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in San Pedro La Laguna is $29, while the average daily cost in Bocas del Toro is $61. 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 La Laguna and Bocas del Toro in more detail.
An average hotel room with basic furnishings costs about $13 in San Pedro La Laguna For the most convenient locations and nicer amenities you can expect to pay a bit more.
The prices for places to stay in Bocas del Toro can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $27, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $54.
Hotel or hostel for one person
San Pedro La Laguna $6.61
Bocas del Toro $27
Typical double-occupancy room
San Pedro La Laguna
Bocas del Toro
In San Pedro La Laguna travelers spend around $8.80 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.
Food in Bocas del Toro costs travelers about $22 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.
Typical Food prices in San Pedro La Laguna
For San Pedro La Laguna, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:
Hot Cocoa & Banana Bread
Typical Food prices in Bocas del Toro
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Bocas del Toro:
San Pedro La Laguna'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 $11 per person, per day on transportation in San Pedro La Laguna.
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Bocas del Toro than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $8.21 on transportation in Bocas del Toro on average per day.
Typical Local Transportation prices in Bocas del Toro
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Bocas del Toro:
Is it cheaper to fly into San Pedro La Laguna or Bocas del Toro?
Prices for flights to both Bocas del Toro and San Pedro La Laguna 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 La Laguna can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $17 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.
Sightseeing expenses in Bocas del Toro, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $17 per day, per person.
Typical Entertainment prices in San Pedro La Laguna
Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for San Pedro La Laguna's activities, tours, and tickets:
Canopy Tour (for 2)
Kayaking (for 2)
Coffee Tour (for 2)
Tours and Activities in San Pedro La Laguna
For San Pedro La Laguna, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Camping, Short hike & Watch the sunrise on the top of Indian Nose (Private tour):
Chichicastenango Market Day Tour:
Get fun with an Adventure Tour - Zip Line (Canopy):
Horseback Riding Tour:
Indian Nose Hiking Adventure (custom and private tour):
Lake Atitlan Village Tour - from Panajachel:
Typical Entertainment prices in Bocas del Toro
For Bocas del Toro, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:
Tours and Activities in Bocas del Toro
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Bocas del Toro.
Small-Group Speed Boat and Snorkel Tour from Bocas del Toro:
Typically, people visiting San Pedro La Laguna spend on average $4.48 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Bocas del Toro, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $9.50.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between San Pedro La Laguna and Bocas del Toro, we can see that Bocas del Toro is more expensive. And not only is San Pedro La Laguna much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to San Pedro La Laguna would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in San Pedro La Laguna 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 Bocas del Toro would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Bocas del Toro than you might in San Pedro La Laguna.
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