A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America South Lake Tahoe vs. Denver for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit South Lake Tahoe or Denver?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between South Lake Tahoe or Denver, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

South Lake Tahoe

South Lake Tahoe is the largest town on the famous Lake Tahoe that straddles the California-Nevada border in the Sierra Mountain Range. Located just south of Reno, Nevada and about 2 hours east of Sacramento, the Lake Tahoe area is easily accessible to many visitors.

Lake Tahoe is known for skiing and other winter sports, as well as plenty of warm weather activities such as hiking, swimming, boating, mountain biking, and more.

South Lake Tahoe has plenty of accommodations, restaurants, bars, and shopping. This is a good town to base yourself if you're looking to explore the area, as it has a large number of amenities.

Located on the Nevada side of South Lake Tahoe is the town of Stateline. Here you can find some casinos, as gambling is legal in Nevada.

If you're looking to go skiing or snowboarding, the Heavenly Ski Resort can be found on the southern edge of the town of South Lake Tahoe. Naturally, more ski resorts are located around the lake as well.

As swimming is also popular, several beach areas are on the southern section of the lake including the Regan Memorial City Beach, Lakeside Beach, Pope Beach, Emerald Bay State Park, and the Edgewood Resort area (on the Nevada side).

Denver

The capital of Colorado, Denver is commonly referred to as "The Mile-High City" because it is at an elevation of 5,280 feet (1,600 meters) above sea level. It also sits where the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains, giving a beautiful backdrop for this metropolitan city. The city is the largest in the Rocky Mountains with a population of more than 600,000 and nearly 3 million in the metropolitan area. Denver is a cosmopolitan city with cowboy roots. It's cultural scene is thriving, and the outdoor recreation in the area is superb. Denver is a rapidly growing city but with change comes challenges. Urban sprawl is a problem and the city's infrastructure has reached its limits. Still, efforts are in place to maintain the character and personality that Denver is known for.

Which city is cheaper, Denver or South Lake Tahoe?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in South Lake Tahoe is $94, while the average daily cost in Denver is $174. 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 South Lake Tahoe and Denver in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in South Lake Tahoe is about $86 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

A hotel room in Denver is about $138 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    South Lake Tahoe $43
    Denver $69
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    South Lake Tahoe $86
    Denver $138

Food

On average, meal and food prices in South Lake Tahoe cost around $30 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 $12.

The price of a meal in Denver can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $34 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $14 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
    South Lake Tahoe $30
    Denver $34

Typical Food prices in Denver

Some typical examples of dining costs in Denver are as follows:


  • Sushi Dinner (for 2)
    $61

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Denver

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Denver.

  • Small-Group Food Tour in Denver: $69
  • Haunted Denver Walking Food Tour: $73
  • The Dinner Detective Murder Mystery Dinner Show - Denver: $77
  • Walking Food Tour - Best of Union Station & LoDo: $79
  • Denver Cooking Classes-Local, seasonal, and hands on menus: $97

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around South Lake Tahoe is $20 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.

The average price of local transportation around Denver is $81 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    South Lake Tahoe $20
    Denver $81

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Denver

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Denver:

  • Private Departure Transfer to Denver Airport (DEN): $46
  • Private Arrival Transfer - from Denver Airport (DEN): $46
  • Private Departure Transfer from Denver City to DEN Denver Airport: $54
  • Private Arrival Transfer from DEN Denver Airport to Denver City: $58
  • Denver Airport (DEN) to Denver hotel or address - Arrival Private Transfer: $68
  • Denver hotel or address to Denver Airport (DEN) - Departure Private Transfer: $68
  • Transfer in Private Car from Denver International Airport (DEN) to Downtown: $72
  • Transfer in Private Car from Denver Downtown to International Airport (DEN): $72
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Denver to Denver International Airport (DEN): $81
  • Private Airport Transfer: Denver International Airport (DEN) to Denver: $81
  • Transfer in private minivan from Denver Downtown to International Airport (DEN): $86
  • Transfer in private minivan from Denver International Airport(DEN) to Downtown: $86

Is it cheaper to fly into South Lake Tahoe or Denver?

Prices for flights to both Denver and South Lake Tahoe 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

South Lake Tahoe's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $45 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.

Denver's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $42 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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    South Lake Tahoe $45
    Denver $42

Tours and Activities in South Lake Tahoe

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for South Lake Tahoe are as follows:

  • Lake Tahoe and Squaw Valley: Full-Day Narrated Bus Tour: $60
  • Full-Day Lake Tahoe Circle Tour including Squaw Valley: $62
  • Virginia City Day Tour From Lake Tahoe: $65
  • Wine and Harvest Tour to Gold country from Lake Tahoe: $80
  • Happy Hour Cruise: $90
  • Sightseeing Cruise of Emerald Bay: $90
  • Emerald Bay Helicopter Tour of Lake Tahoe: $94
  • 2 Hour Small Group Sailing Cruise Lake Tahoe: $99
  • Lake Tahoe: Half-Day Photographic Scenic Tour: $179
  • Lake Tahoe Ultimate Photography Scenic Half-Day Tour in Small-Group: $179
  • Zephyr Cove Helicopter Tour: $180
  • Yosemite National Park: Full-Day Tour from Lake Tahoe: $200

Tours and Activities in Denver

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Denver are as follows:

  • Spokes and Scoops: Explore Denver's top ice cream spots on an audio bicycle tour: $5.20
  • Denver Ghost Hunt: Mile High Ghost Tour: $12
  • Virtual Reality Experiences for Everyone: $21
  • Denver Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Haunted Walking Ghost Tour: $21
  • Twilight Ghost Tour: $22
  • Best of Denver Tour: $22
  • Capitol Hill History & Ghost Tour: $22
  • Denver Ghost Tour: $23
  • 1.5 Hour LoDo Walking Tour in Denver: $25
  • Customized Guided Tour: $30
  • Moscow Mule Experience: $32

Alcohol

The average person spends about $28 on alcoholic beverages in South Lake Tahoe per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

The average person spends about $4.25 on alcoholic beverages in Denver per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    South Lake Tahoe $28
    Denver $4.25

Sample the Local Flavors in Denver

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

  • Haunted Denver Ghost and Pub Walking Tour in Lower Downtown: $26
  • Haunted Denver Ghost and Pub Walking Tour - South Broadway (SoBo): $27
  • 3-Hour Brewery Walking Tour: $49
  • Craft Distillery Bus Tour: $71


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

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

Share This Page
Pin This Page
South Lake Tahoe vs. Denver Travel Comparison

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.