A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Te Anau vs. Lake Tekapo for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Te Anau or Lake Tekapo?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Te Anau and Lake Tekapo can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Te Anau

Te Anau is a town on the South Island of New Zealand, best-known as a gateway to Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound. The region is a major destination for ecotourism as it is home to rare species like the endangered flightless takahe bird and natural features like caves, waterfalls, forests, lakes, glacial valleys, and mountains.

Lake Tekapo

Tekapo is a lakeside town on the South Island of New Zealand, and it is part of the Mackenzie District of Canterbury. This is one of the bluest lakes in the country and is surrounded by the mighty mountains of the Southern Alps.

Which city is cheaper, Lake Tekapo or Te Anau?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Te Anau is $90, while the average daily cost in Lake Tekapo is $69. 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 Te Anau and Lake Tekapo in more detail.



Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $80 for a double occupancy room in Te Anau If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $108 for a double occupancy room in Lake Tekapo.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Te Anau $40
    Lake Tekapo $54
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Te Anau $80
    Lake Tekapo $108

Food

The price of a meal in Te Anau can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $25 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $10 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

Food in Lake Tekapo costs travelers about $12 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Te Anau $25
    Lake Tekapo $12

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Te Anau than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $25 on transportation in Te Anau on average per day.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Te Anau $25
    Lake Tekapo -

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Te Anau

Also for Te Anau, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Te Anau to Queenstown Transfer: $41

Is it cheaper to fly into Te Anau or Lake Tekapo?

Prices for flights to both Lake Tekapo and Te Anau 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 Te Anau, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $43 per day, per person.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Te Anau $43
    Lake Tekapo -

Tours and Activities in Te Anau

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

  • Te Anau Glow Worm Caves Tour: $73
  • Morning Tea Cruise on Historic Motor Yacht from Te Anau: $94
  • Afternoon Te Anau Cruise on Historic Motor Yacht: $94
  • Champagne Sightseeing Cruise on Lake Te Anau: $94
  • Milford Sound Full-Day Tour from Te Anau: $96
  • Milford Sound Coach and Nature Cruise with Picnic Lunch from Te Anau: $103
  • Full-Day Milford Sound Hiking Tour with Cruise: $103
  • Milford Sound Coach and Scenic Cruise from Te Anau with Picnic Lunch: $103
  • Lord of the Rings and Te Anau Highlights Small Group Tour from Te Anau: $111
  • VIP Milford Sound All Inclusive Tour: $117
  • Milford Sound Experience Full Day from Te Anau: $124
  • Full-Day Milford Sound Extraordinaire Tour from Te Anau: $132

Tours and Activities in Lake Tekapo

Here are a few actual costs in Lake Tekapo for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Crater Experience at Cowan's Observatory: $96
  • Dark Sky Experience: $33
  • Summit Experience - University of Canterbury Mt John Observatory: $133

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Te Anau spend on average $13 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Te Anau $13
    Lake Tekapo -


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

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Te Anau vs. Lake Tekapo Travel Comparison

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