Should you visit San Pedro La Laguna or Guatemala City?
Should I visit San Pedro La Laguna or Guatemala City? 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.
Referred to by the locals as "Guate," Guatemala City is the largest and most modern city in Guatemala, as well as its capital. While the atmosphere of the place is big, dirty, and dangerous with city fumes and skyscrapers, it is the hub of the country. It is the place where travelers first step foot into Guatemala and, though it is a place of modern chaos, it does have some of the best galleries and museums as well as a selection of bars, cafes, and restaurants.
Which city is cheaper, Guatemala City 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 Guatemala City is $35. 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 Guatemala City 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.
If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $19. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Guatemala City the cost is $38 on average.
Hotel or hostel for one person
San Pedro La Laguna $6.61
Guatemala City $19
Typical double-occupancy room
San Pedro La Laguna
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.
On average, meal and food prices in Guatemala City cost around $12 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around $4.80.
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
Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Guatemala City
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Guatemala City.
Taste Antigua Guatemala Walking Food Tour:
Guatemala Food Tour from Guatemala City:
Small-Group Cooking Class in Antigua from Guatemala City:
Antigua Market, Cooking Class and Choco Museum from Guatemala City:
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.
The average price of local transportation around Guatemala City is $4.95 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.
Hired Cars and Shuttles in Guatemala City
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Guatemala City:
Transfer from Airport to Antigua:
Shared Departure Transfer: Guatemala City Hotels to Airport:
Shared Arrival Transfer: Guatemala City Airport to Hotels:
Shared Arrival Transfer: Guatemala City Airport to Antigua:
Private Transfer from La Aurora Airport to Antigua Guatemala:
Private Transfer from Guatemala City to Lake Atitlán:
Private Transfer from Guatemala City to Coban:
Private Airport Transfer: Guatemala to La Aurora International Airport (GUA):
Ground Transfer Guatemala City To Panajachel, Lake Atitlan:
Collective Transfer From Guatemala City to La Aurora Airport:
Airport transfer from Guatemala City airport to Antigua:
Is it cheaper to fly into San Pedro La Laguna or Guatemala City?
Prices for flights to both Guatemala City 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.
Guatemala City's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $0.97 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.
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:
Get fun with an Adventure Tour - Zip Line (Canopy):
Indian Nose Hiking Adventure (custom and private tour):
Horseback Riding Tour:
Chichicastenango Market Day Tour:
Camping, Short hike & Watch the sunrise on the top of Indian Nose (Private tour):
Lake Atitlan Village Tour - from Panajachel:
Tours and Activities in Guatemala City
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Guatemala City are as follows:
11-Day Mayan Ruins Tour: Guatemala and Copán:
2 Day Tour Share and Private to Copan and Quirigua:
2 Day Tour: Chichicastenango Market and Lake Atitlan from Guatemala City:
2-Day Chichicastenango and Lake Atitlan Tour from Guatemala City or Antigua:
2-Day Tour: Auto Safari Chapín Zoo and Monterrico Black Sand Beach from Guatemala City or Antigua:
3-Day Tour of Cobán and Semuc Champey from Guatemala City:
4-Day Tour: Guatemala City, Antigua, Chichicastenango Market and Lake Atitlan:
5-Day Tour from Antigua, Chichicastenango, Panajachel and Santiago Atitlán:
6-Day Tour: Traditional Guatemala Including Antigua, Chichicastenango Market, Lake Atitlan and Tikal:
8-Day Best of Guatemala Tour: Antigua, Pacaya Volcano, Lake Atitlan and Tikal Ruins:
Acatenango Volcano Overnight Adventure from Guatemala City:
Antigua City Tour from Guatemala City:
Typically, people visiting San Pedro La Laguna spend on average $4.48 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
The average person spends about $5.49 on alcoholic beverages in Guatemala City per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between San Pedro La Laguna and Guatemala City, we can see that Guatemala City 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 Guatemala City would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Guatemala City than you might in San Pedro La Laguna.
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