Should you visit Yangshuo or Shangri-La?
Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Yangshuo and Shangri-La can help you decide which place is right for you.
A county of the city, Guilin, Yangshuo is located in a region famous for its karst topography. Surrounded by jagged mountain peaks and bordered on one side by the Li River, Yangshuo has become a popular home base for tourists looking to explore the region's natural wonders. Backpackers and tourists, both foreign and domestic, come to Yangshuo every year making it a city of many cultures. Most locals are even able to speak English, which is fairly uncommon for Chinese cities.
The original Shangri-La existed in the fictional world of James Hilton's novel "The Lost Horizon." It was a hidden paradise, a place so beautiful that it couldn't possibly exist on earth. The Shangri-La that exists in Yunnan, China today was renamed from its former title Zhongdian in 2001 in order to associate the place with the mystical allure created in Hilton's novel. Visitors come to admire the traditional monasteries and temples set against a backdrop of mountain preserves and pristine lakes.
Which city is cheaper, Shangri-La or Yangshuo?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Yangshuo is $63, while the average daily cost in Shangri-La is $41. 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 Yangshuo and Shangri-La in more detail.
Double occupancy rooms typically run around $44 in Yangshuo For nicer amenities and a premiere location, 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 $16. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Shangri-La the cost is $32 on average.
Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Yangshuo than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend $37 on transportation in Yangshuo on average per day.
The average price of local transportation around Shangri-La is $9.11 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.
Is it cheaper to fly into Yangshuo or Shangri-La?
Prices for flights to both Shangri-La and Yangshuo 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.
On average, meal and food prices in Yangshuo cost around $16 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 $6.40.
The average traveler spends about $16 per day in Shangri-La for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.
Meals for one day
Sightseeing expenses in Yangshuo, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of $20 per day, per person.
Shangri-La's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $14 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.
Tours and Activities in Yangshuo
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Yangshuo.
Xingping Li River Fisherman Show and Sunset Private Tour:
Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Yangshuo, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $29.
The average person spends about $11 on alcoholic beverages in Shangri-La 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 Yangshuo and Shangri-La, we can see that Yangshuo is more expensive. And not only is Shangri-La much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Shangri-La would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Shangri-La 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 Yangshuo would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Yangshuo than you might in Shangri-La.
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