A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Asheville vs. Charleston for Food, Old Town, Couples, and Nightlife

Should you visit Asheville or Charleston?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Asheville and Charleston. 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, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Asheville

Asheville is a eclectic, outdoorsy, and progressive mountain town. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. As this is a very quaint destination, you'll find it has a special atmosphere. Other popular activities here include shopping, nightlife, and live music.

Charleston

Charleston is a classic, picturesque, and charming coastal town. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. It also has a unique and quaint vibe that attracts lots of visitors. And you can't forget about the shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Asheville and Charleston: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Cons
  • Less popular for food
  • Less popular old town
  • Less popular for shopping
  • Less popular with couples
Pros
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Good music scene
  • Scenic old town
  • Good for shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Cons
  • Less popular with backpackers


How is Asheville different from Charleston?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Charleston and Asheville. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Food?

Charleston has a longer list of notable local restaurants than Asheville.

Eat your way through Charleston, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. Food lovers will enjoy the city's low country classics. Local favorites include she crab soup, shrimp and grits, cornbread, and fried green tomatoes.

Asheville is becoming an appealing option for foodies. Popular local dishes include North Carolina barbeque and country ham biscuits.

Asheville
Charleston


Is Asheville or Charleston better for Nightlife?

Party-goers will find similar levels of energy in Asheville and Charleston.

Asheville is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. The city has a fun and eclectic nightlife scene that centers around the city's breweries and live music venues.

If you're looking for night time activities Charleston has a few options to choose from. As a college town, there are plenty of bars and nightclubs around town. There's also a lively music scene.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Music?

Live music enthusiatsts will find something to enjoy in either Asheville or Charleston.

Music is a popular form of entertainment in Asheville. The city has grown into a world famous music destination that holds true to its mountain roots and independent artists.

The music scene in Charleston is active and vibrant. You can hear a number of local bands or enjoy a more widely known group at larger venues in the area.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Resorts?

There are resorts to choose from in both Asheville and Charleston.

With a selection of resorts, Asheville makes a nice vacation spot. The most famous resorts in the area are the Biltmore Estate and the Grove Park Inn.

You might not think of Charleston as a resort destination, but it has a few places. The town has mostly hotels and bed and breakfasts in the downtown area, but nearby Kiawah Island has a number of nice resorts to choose from.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for its Old Town?

Charleston has a more popular old town than Asheville.

With a famous historical old-town, Charleston offers plenty to see. Charleston's downtown is one of the most charming and well preserved Old Town's in the United States. It's easy to see why it's become a world class destination.

The old town area in Asheville is worth visiting. Downtown Asheville maintains much of its historic vibe, but it's smaller than some of the more notable old cities around the country.

Asheville
Charleston


Is Asheville or Charleston better for Shopping?

Charleston is generally considered to be a more popular shopping destination.

The abundance of shops in Charleston make it a world-class shopping destination. The city is famous for its historic market in the center of town. Local goods, foods, and crafts are sold daily here. There are also many clothing and local shops throughout town.

Asheville has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. The city has many local shops that sell local crafts and independent art.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Christmas?

The Christmas season is a nice time to visit both Asheville and Charleston.

Visitors come from all around to experience the Christmas activities in Asheville. Head to the Biltmore Estate to see it fully decorated for the Christmas season. It's also worth going to see the winning Gingerbread Houses on display at the Grove Park Inn.

Charleston is a very popular destination during Christmas. During the Christmas season there are a number of festivals, light shows, and even a boat parade that everyone can enjoy.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Christmas Markets?

Visitors can find Christmas markets in both Asheville and Charleston.

Asheville has some Christmas markets worth visiting during the holidays. There are a handful of local Christmas shops around town where you can buy personalized gifts.

Many visitors go to the Christmas markets in Charleston. Marion Square hosts Christmas Markets on weekends throughout the holiday season.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston better for Families?

Both Asheville and Charleston are family-friendly destinations.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Asheville. With its beautiful hiking, interesting nature centers, and outdoor adventure activities, this mountain town makes a great kid-friendly destination.

Charleston offers lots of family activities. The area has a number of family friendly activities like carriage rides and boat rides. The nearby beaches also make it a wonderful place to visit with kids.

Asheville
Charleston


Is Asheville or Charleston better for Couples?

Charleston offers a wider variety of romantic activities for couples than Asheville.

Charleston is fantastic couple's destination with fun and romantic activities. This beautiful city is one of the most popular wedding destinations in America. It's a very romantic setting with beautiful hotels and bed and breakfasts that are perfect for couples on their honeymoon or looking for a romantic setting.

Asheville is a good mountain town for couples to visit. Couples enjoy exploring the beautiful Biltmore Estates or visiting the spa at the Grove Park Inn. The quaint town makes a great honeymoon destination or a nice romantic getaway.

Asheville
Charleston

Is Asheville or Charleston a more walkable city?

Asheville and Charleston both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Asheville is a somewhat walkable place. If you stay downtown and don't plan to explore the outlying areas, then it's possible to walk around town. Otherwise, you'll need a car.

Charleston is a very walkable destination. The downtown area is very walkable, but once you leave the historic heart, it's best to have a car.

Asheville
Charleston

Should I spend more time in Charleston or Asheville?

How long in Asheville or Charleston?

Both Asheville and Charleston have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Charleston than Asheville.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Asheville is 2-3 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Charleston is 2-7 days.


  • How many days in Asheville or Charleston? Ideal Length of Stay
    Asheville 2-3 
    Charleston 2-7

One day in Asheville or Charleston?

With shopping and nightlife around the open-minded mountain town of Asheville, there's plenty to do. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

You'll find nightlife and live music around the quaint coastal town of Charleston. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

A weekend in Asheville or Charleston?

With nightlife and live music around the destination of Asheville, there's plenty to do. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. It offers something for everyone. Many people spend a weekend here. In a weekend, you should have a good grasp of this mountain town.

You'll find live music and food around the historic destination of Charleston. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this coastal town has to offer. This coastal town offers a variety of activities to choose from.


Five days in Asheville or Charleston?

Asheville, a popular mountain town, is full of activities for travelers. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

You'll find food and shopping around the picturesque coastal town of Charleston. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this coastal town makes for a great vacation. It's also a great beach destination, too. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this coastal town has to offer.

A week in Asheville or Charleston?

Asheville is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Charleston is a popular choice for travelers. One week here is typical. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Charleston, one week is sufficent for most. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Which city is cheaper, Charleston or Asheville?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Asheville is $106, while the average daily cost in Charleston is $136. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Asheville and Charleston in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Asheville $71
    Charleston $72
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Asheville $142
    Charleston $144
Compare Hotels in Asheville and Charleston

Looking for a hotel in Asheville or Charleston? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Asheville


Hotels in Charleston


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Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Asheville $11
    Charleston $26

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charleston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Charleston:

  • Charleston city to Charleston Airport (CHS) - Departure Private Transfer: $124
  • Private Departure Transfer to Charleston Airport (CHS): $52
  • Private transfer: Charleston to Charleston Airport (CHS): $622

Is it cheaper to fly into Asheville or Charleston?

Prices for flights to both Charleston and Asheville 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
  • Food Meals for one day
    Asheville $26
    Charleston $46
Typical Food prices in Asheville

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Asheville:


  • Biltmore Estate Entrance Fee
    $60

Typical Food prices in Charleston

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


  • Lunch in downtown Charleston for two
    $21
  • Breakfast
    $26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Charleston

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

  • Downtown Charleston Culinary Walking Food Tour: $73
  • Savor the Flavors of Charleston Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston's Savor the Flavors of Upper King Street Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston Chef's Kitchen Guided Walking Food Tour: $75
  • Charleston Harbor: Luxury Dinner Cruise: $77
  • Savor the Flavors Upper King Street Food Tour: $95
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Charleston: $129
  • Undiscovered 1/2 Day Food, Wine & History Tour with Cooking Class: $154
  • 3-Hour Secret Food Tour in Charleston w/ Private Tour Option: $277

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Asheville $13
    Charleston $17
Typical Entertainment prices in Asheville

Here are a few typical costs in Asheville for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Massage
    $40

Tours and Activities in Asheville

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

  • Asheville tip-based sightseeing Walking Tour with Donut & Spirits/Beer Tastings: $5.00
  • Asheville Scavenger Hunt: Downtown Asheville Adventure: $12
  • Asheville Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Asheville Night-Time Walking Ghost Tour: $21
  • Asheville Night-Time Guided Walking Ghost Tour (1 or 1.5-Hour Options Available): $21
  • 1-Hour Haunted Walking Ghost Tour: $22
  • Asheville Literary Tour: $30
  • Asheville Insider Guided Walking Tour: $30
  • Asheville Private Guided Bird Watching Tour: $41
  • North Carolina Arboretum Running Tour in Asheville: $45
  • French Broad River Kayak Tour in Asheville: $55
  • 2-Hour Guided Segway Tour of Asheville: $68

Typical Entertainment prices in Charleston

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Charleston are as follows:


  • Patriots Point (for 2)
    $60

Tours and Activities in Charleston

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

  • Charleston's Haunted Ghost Tour - Smart Phone Guided Tour: $5.00
  • Charleston Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $16
  • Charleston's Pleasing Terrors Night-Time Walking Ghost Tour: $21
  • Downtown Charleston Walking Tour with Certified Local Guide: $21
  • Historic Charleston Guided Sightseeing Walking Tour: $21
  • Highlights of Charleston Guided Walking Tour: $22
  • Charleston French Quarter Historic Guided Walking Tour: $22
  • Drayton Hall Plantation Admission Ticket in Charleston: $22
  • Small-Group Tour: Charleston Old Walled City Historical Walking Tour: $23
  • Charleston Terrors Walking Ghost Tour: $23
  • Charleston Ghosts of Liberty Guided Walking Tour: $25
  • 90-Minute Historic Walking Tour of Charleston: $25

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Asheville $13
    Charleston $28

Sample the Local Flavors in Asheville

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

  • Downtown Asheville Guided Brewery Walking Tour: $38
  • Private Adventure Brews Cruise Brewery Tours in Asheville (Up To 5 Breweries): $1,013

Sample the Local Flavors in Charleston

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Charleston:

  • Charleston Bar Hunt: Charleston Chase Bar Crawl: $12
  • Ghost Walking Tour and Pub Crawl in Haunted Charleston: $27
  • Haunted Pub Crawl of the Market: $37


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


When is the best time to visit Asheville or Charleston?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Asheville or Charleston in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Asheville and Charleston. Many visitors come to Asheville in the summer for the hiking, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Charleston for the beaches, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In the summer, Asheville is around the same temperature as Charleston. Typically, the summer temperatures in Asheville in July are around 82°F (28°C), and Charleston is about 82°F (28°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Charleston this time of the year. In Asheville, it's very sunny this time of the year. Asheville usually receives less sunshine than Charleston during summer. At this time of the year, Asheville gets 268 hours of sunny skies, while Charleston receives 293 hours of full sun.

Charleston receives a lot of rain in the summer. Asheville gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Asheville usually receives less rain than Charleston. At this time of the year, Asheville gets 5.4 inches (137 mm) of rain, while Charleston receives 6.9 inches (176 mm) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Asheville 82°F (28°C) 
    Charleston 82°F (28°C)

Should I visit Asheville or Charleston in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Asheville as well as Charleston. Most visitors come to Asheville for the hiking trails, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Charleston because of the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

In October, Asheville is generally around the same temperature as Charleston. Temperatures in Asheville average around 64°F (18°C), and Charleston stays around 67°F (19°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Asheville this time of the year. In the autumn, Asheville often gets more sunshine than Charleston. Asheville gets 229 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Charleston receives 197 hours of full sun.

Asheville usually gets more rain in October than Charleston. Asheville gets 3.4 inches (86 mm) of rain, while Charleston receives 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Asheville 64°F (18°C) 
    Charleston 67°F (19°C)

Should I visit Asheville or Charleston in the Winter?

Both Charleston and Asheville are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. The winter months attract visitors to Asheville because of the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Charleston this time of year.

Asheville is cooler than Charleston in the winter. The temperature in Asheville is usually 44°F (7°C) in January, and Charleston stays around 47°F (9°C).

Asheville usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Charleston during winter. At this time of the year, Asheville gets 176 hours of sunny skies, while Charleston receives 188 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Asheville. In January, Asheville usually receives more rain than Charleston. At this time of the year, Asheville gets 3.9 inches (100 mm) of rain, while Charleston receives 3.3 inches (85 mm) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Asheville 44°F (7°C) 
    Charleston 47°F (9°C)

Should I visit Asheville or Charleston in the Spring?

Both Charleston and Asheville during the spring are popular places to visit. The natural beauty are the main draw to Asheville this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Charleston for the beaches and the natural beauty.

In the spring, Asheville is around the same temperature as Charleston. Typically, the spring temperatures in Asheville in April are around 64°F (18°C), and Charleston is about 64°F (18°C).

In Charleston, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Asheville. In the spring, Asheville often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Charleston. Asheville gets 266 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Charleston receives 275 hours of full sun.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Asheville. Asheville usually gets more rain in April than Charleston. Asheville gets 4.4 inches (112 mm) of rain, while Charleston receives 2.7 inches (69 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Asheville 64°F (18°C) 
    Charleston 64°F (18°C)

Typical Weather for Charleston and Asheville

Asheville Charleston
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 44°F (7°C) 3.9 inches (100 mm) 47°F (9°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Feb 47°F (8°C) 4.3 inches (109 mm) 50°F (10°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Mar 55°F (13°C) 5.4 inches (137 mm) 58°F (14°C) 4.3 inches (110 mm)
Apr 64°F (18°C) 4.4 inches (112 mm) 64°F (18°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm)
May 71°F (22°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 72°F (22°C) 4.2 inches (106 mm)
Jun 79°F (26°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 78°F (26°C) 6.4 inches (163 mm)
Jul 82°F (28°C) 5.4 inches (137 mm) 82°F (28°C) 6.9 inches (176 mm)
Aug 81°F (27°C) 4.6 inches (118 mm) 81°F (27°C) 7.1 inches (181 mm)
Sep 75°F (24°C) 4 inches (101 mm) 76°F (25°C) 4.8 inches (121 mm)
Oct 64°F (18°C) 3.4 inches (86 mm) 67°F (19°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm)
Nov 55°F (13°C) 3.2 inches (81 mm) 58°F (15°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm)
Dec 47°F (8°C) 4.1 inches (103 mm) 51°F (10°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)


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Asheville vs. Charleston Travel Comparison

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