A Travel Price Comparison for China Zhangye vs. Shangri-La for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Zhangye or Shangri-La?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Zhangye and Shangri-La. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.

Zhangye

Zhangye, China is a city in the Gansu Province in the central north part of the country, close to Mongolia. This ancient city has often been used as a military strong hold, having been the headquarters of General Huo among many others. Zhangye is a fabulous day trip city to visit when staying in larger nearby cities.

Zhangye is privy to beautiful summer weather, with lots of sunshine and temperatures in the high 70's Fahrenheit. The best times to visit are between July and September, when temperatures and sunshine are at their highest. Autumn, Winter, and Spring tend to be a little chillier and rainier.

Shangri-La

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 Zhangye?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Zhangye is $75, 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 Zhangye and Shangri-La in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $66 for a double occupancy room in Zhangye.

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.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Zhangye $33
    Shangri-La $16
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Zhangye $66
    Shangri-La $32

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Zhangye is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $34 per person, per day, on local transportation in Zhangye.

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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Zhangye $34
    Shangri-La $9.11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Zhangye

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Zhangye:

  • Private Airport Transfer: Zhangye Hotel to Zhangye Airport (YZY): $52
  • Private Airport Transfer: Zhangye Airport (YZY) to Zhangye Hotel: $52
  • Private One Way Transfer to Jiayuguan from Zhangye: $78

Is it cheaper to fly into Zhangye or Shangri-La?

Prices for flights to both Shangri-La and Zhangye 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.





Food

The average traveler spends about $22 per day in Zhangye 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.

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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Zhangye $22
    Shangri-La $16

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Zhangye

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

  • Private Zhangye Danxia Geopark Sunset Tour with Dinner: $258

Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Zhangye typically cost an average of $9.08 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Zhangye $9.08
    Shangri-La $14

Tours and Activities in Zhangye

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

  • Zhangye One Day City Tour: $75
  • Private day tour to Zhangye Danxia Landform the Rainbow Mountain: $114
  • Private day tour to Zhangye Mati temple & Giant Buddha Temple start from Zhangye: $151
  • Zhangye Danxia Half Day tour: $190
  • Full-Day Private Tour to Jiayuguan and Xuanbi from Zhangye: $208
  • Zhangye Rainbow Danxia Private Day Tour: $214
  • Private Hiking Tour: Pingshanhu Grand Canyon and the Horse Hoof Temple Grottoes: $235
  • Private Day Tour: Horse Hoof Temple Grottoes and Zhangye Danxia Landform: $235
  • Private Hiking Tour: Binggou Danxia and Zhangye Danxia Geopark from Zhangye: $255
  • Private Hiking Tour: Pingshanhu Grand Canyon and Zhangye Danxia Geopark From Zhangye: $255
  • Private Tour of Zhangye Danxia Geopark: $266
  • 2 Days Zhangye Mati Temple, Pingshan Lake Valley & Rainbow Mountain Tour: $340

Alcohol

The average person spends about $6.05 on alcoholic beverages in Zhangye per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

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.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Zhangye $6.05
    Shangri-La $11


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Zhangye and Shangri-La, we can see that Zhangye 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 Zhangye would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Zhangye than you might in Shangri-La.

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Zhangye vs. Shangri-La Travel Comparison

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