A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Santa Marta vs. Torres del Paine National Park for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Santa Marta or Torres del Paine National Park?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Santa Marta and Torres del Paine National Park can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Santa Marta

Santa Marta is a city in the Magdalena Department of Colombia's Costa Norte. Over the last decade, security has steadily been replacing the shadow of the Colombia's violent past. One destination in Colombia's northeast region is now attracting more international visitors: the coastal Caribbean area of Santa Marta. Established in 1525 by the Spanish as a base of conquest, Santa Marta sits at the foot of the world's highest coastal mountain range, the towering Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. It is South America's oldest European-founded town and the second most important colonial city on Colombia's Caribbean coast. While many travelers complain about Santa Marta's horrible traffic and unsightly urban sprawl, the city holds a numerous amounts of great hotels, bars and restaurants and holds a few fantastic destinations nearby to which you can go during the daytime.

Torres del Paine National Park

The Torres del Paine National Park is located in the extreme south of Patagonian Chile. Situated in the southern part of the Andes, the National Park is full of stunning mountains, lakes, rock formations, and glaciers, making it a hiker's paradise. The best time to visit is between November and April, which is their spring and summer. Be prepared though, as weather can change dramatically when traveling through the park, no matter the season!

Which city is cheaper, Torres del Paine National Park or Santa Marta?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Santa Marta is $26, while the average daily cost in Torres del Paine National Park is $76. 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 Santa Marta and Torres del Paine National Park in more detail.



Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $22 for a double occupancy room in Santa Marta If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.

For a normal double-occupancy room in Torres del Paine National Park, $60 is the average cost for a hotel room. Also in Torres del Paine National Park, the typical price for a place to stay for one person is $30, such as in a hostel.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Santa Marta $11
    Torres del Paine National Park $30
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Santa Marta $22
    Torres del Paine National Park $60

Food

Santa Marta food costs typically run travelers around $7.98 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.

The price of a meal in Torres del Paine National Park can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $23 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $9.20 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Santa Marta $7.98
    Torres del Paine National Park $23
Typical Food prices in Santa Marta

For Santa Marta, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Breakfast
    $3.13

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santa Marta

For Santa Marta, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Food Tour in Santa Marta Old City Half-Day: $60
  • Santa Marta 2-hour Street Food Tour: $75

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Santa Marta than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $4.20 on transportation in Santa Marta on average per day.

Torres del Paine National Park'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 $31 per person, per day on transportation in Torres del Paine National Park.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Santa Marta $4.20
    Torres del Paine National Park $31
Typical Local Transportation prices in Santa Marta

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Santa Marta:


  • Gas
    $5.22

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santa Marta

Also for Santa Marta, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Transfer in private minivan from Santa Marta city to Santa Marta Airport (SMR): $21
  • Transfer in private minivan from Santa Marta Airport (SMR) to Santa Marta city: $21
  • Transfer in Private Car from Santa Marta city to Santa Marta Airport (SMR): $14
  • Transfer in Private Car from Santa Marta Airport (SMR) to Santa Marta city: $14
  • Transfer Round Trip Airport - Hotel (santa Marta): $10
  • Santa Marta Arrival or Departure Transfer: Airport / Cruise Ship Terminal: $12
  • Round trip transfer in private minivan from-to Santa Marta Airport (SMR) to city: $43
  • Round trip transfer in Private Car from-to Santa Marta Airport(SMR) to City: $28
  • Private transfer between Santa Marta and Cartagena (or vice versa): $194
  • Private Transfer to Cartagena or Barranquilla City from Santa Marta: $84
  • Private Transfer to / from Palomino, Tayrona Park or Minca from Santa Marta: $35
  • Private Transfer Santa Marta to Palomino (or vice versa): $96

Is it cheaper to fly into Santa Marta or Torres del Paine National Park?

Prices for flights to both Torres del Paine National Park and Santa Marta 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

Sightseeing expenses in Santa Marta, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $11 per day, per person.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Torres del Paine National Park can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $30 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Santa Marta $11
    Torres del Paine National Park $30

Tours and Activities in Santa Marta

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

  • "Gabo Márquez" Tour - Aracataca and Cienaga: $205
  • 2 Day Coastal Motorcycle Tour: $333
  • 4-Day Lost City Small-Group Tour in Santa Marta: $380
  • 5-Day Private Guided Hiking Experience to The Lost City: $699
  • Aracataca And Ciénaga - Gabriel García Márquez Tour: $53
  • Archeological Tour in Taironaka with River Tubing and a small Lost City: $177
  • Arrecife and Cañaveral tour from Santa Marta: $74
  • BE RELAX TOUR - Bahia Concha: $22
  • BE TROPICAL TOUR - Buritaca & Playa Los Angeles: $51
  • Cartagena - City Tour: $128
  • City Tour Santa Marta: $51
  • Coffee Tour La Victoria: $125

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Santa Marta spend on average $5.34 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

Typically, people visiting Torres del Paine National Park spend on average $5.22 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Santa Marta $5.34
    Torres del Paine National Park $5.22
Typical Alcohol prices in Santa Marta

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Santa Marta from other travelers:


  • Beer
    $0.57
  • Beer
    $2.35

Sample the Local Flavors in Santa Marta

Also in Santa Marta, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Nicks 1892 Coffee farm & Brewery: $55


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

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Santa Marta vs. Torres del Paine National Park Travel Comparison

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