A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Athens vs. Budapest for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Backpackers

Should you visit Athens or Budapest?

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 Athens and Budapest. 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.

Athens

Athens is a energetic, historic, and ancient city. Travelers will also find plenty of sights and attractions here, as it's a big city that attracts lots of visitors. It's a beautiful place to visit, too. Visitors also love the museums, nightlife, and food.

Budapest

Budapest is a authentic, bustling, and cultural city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and shopping.

Athens and Budapest: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
Cons
  • Less popular for food


How is Athens different from Budapest?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Athens
Budapest

You'll find a number of museums and attractions in both Budapest and Athens.

With plenty of landmarks, attractions, and museums, Athens has many famous sights for visitors. As a historical capital of the world, this city has countless museums and archeological sites including the famous Acropolis, the National Archaeology Museum, and the Ancient Agora.

Budapest offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. Famous sights include the Buda Castle and Castle Hill, the Hungarian Parliament Building, and St. Stephen's Basilica.


Is Athens or Budapest Better for Food?

Athens
Budapest

Foodies will appreciated the dining options available in Athens a bit more than Budapest.

Eat your way through Athens, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. Make sure you try the souvlaki, moussaka, and dolmades at any of the many local restaurants throughout the city.

Budapest offers some easy restaurants to choose from. Traditional dishes tend to be heavy on the meat and bread. They make good comfort food and are very filling meals. The city also has many great pastry shops. Make sure you check out the stuffed cabbage, goulash, and chimney cake.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Nightlife?

Athens
Budapest

The vibe at night is comparable in Athens and Budapest.

The nightlife in Athens is well established with world renowned clubs and venues. There are all-night dance clubs as well as local bars and chill live music venues.

Budapest has plenty to do after the sun goes down. The city's active nightlife includes dance clubs, local pubs, and cultural festivals throughout the year.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Shopping?

Athens
Budapest

If you're looking to go shopping, Athens and Budapest both offer plenty of spots.

Athens has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. Most neighborhoods have a shopping street but head to Ermou Street for some of the city's best shopping.

Budapest is an extremely popular place for shoppers. The city has a diverse shopping scene that you can experience by visiting the Central Market or Váci Street.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Families?

Athens
Budapest

Both Athens and Budapest are family-friendly destinations.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Athens. With its rich history, beautiful outdoor activities, and kid-friendly food, Athens is a fun place to explore with the whole family.

Budapest is a family-friendly place to visit. The city has the typical trampoline parks and playgrounds, but kids will also enjoy the baths and pools around town. Do take note that most of the museums are less hands on than kids prefer.


Is Athens or Budapest Better for Couples?

Athens
Budapest

Athens and Budapest both fun destinations for a couple.

Athens is a good city for couples to visit. The city is historical, fascinating, and romantic, making it a beautiful place to explore as a couple.

Budapest is a very popular place to visit for couples. With it's many beautiful neighborhoods, and unique entertainment options including the opera, this is a fun city for couples. The baths and spas also make for a great experience for couples.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Athens
Budapest

For backpackers, both Athens and Budapest are fairly comparable places to visit.

A large number of backpackers visit Athens, as it is a very popular city for budget travelers. The city has long been established as a backpackers destination with budget friendly food and plenty of hostels around town.

Budapest is a mecca for backpackers and budget travelers. The city is more affordable than many large cities and it has a number of fun hostels to choose from. There's a good backpacker vibe around town with many places to meet and hang out with other travelers.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Students?

Athens
Budapest

For students, both Athens and Budapest are fairly comparable places to visit.

Many students visit Athens. International students will appreciate the rich history, archaeological ruins, and unique opportunities that are available here.

Many students frequent Budapest. The city has a great international vibe with several good universities that are welcoming to international students that are studying abroad.

Is Athens or Budapest Better for Public Transit?

Athens
Budapest

Athens and Budapest both offer public transit to get you around.

Many visitors use the public transit system in Athens. The city's metro system has 3 lines that connect to bus, tram and commuter rail lines.

Budapest has a world-class public transit network to take passengers everywhere in the city. The metro, trams, and buses make it easy to get around town.


Is Athens or Budapest a more walkable city?

Athens
Budapest

Athens and Budapest are similar when it comes to walkability.

Athens is a very walkable destination. You'll find the city's most walkable area's in the historical heart, where there are many pedestrian only streets and shopping areas.

It is easy to get around Budapest on foot. Pest is very flat, making for an easy stroll, while Buda is more hilly.

Should I spend more time in Budapest or Athens?

How long in Athens or Budapest?

In either Athens or Budapest, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Athens than Budapest because of the overall number of sights and activities.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Athens is 3-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Budapest is 2-5 days.


  • How many days in Athens or Budapest? Ideal Length of Stay
    Athens 3-7 
    Budapest 2-5

One day in Athens or Budapest?

Athens is a big city with plenty to do. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Many travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the big city destination of Budapest. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Athens or Budapest?

Athens is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Budapest is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. With all of its activities, you can easily fill a weekend here. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Athens or Budapest?

Athens is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Athens, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Budapest. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. With all of its activities, you can easily fill five days here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.


A week in Athens or Budapest?

Athens is a great place to explore. It is common to spend one week here. One week is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Athens has to offer. This city offers something for everyone.

Travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the historic big city of Budapest. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Which city is cheaper, Budapest or Athens?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Athens is €103, while the average daily cost in Budapest is €68. 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 Athens and Budapest in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Athens 51
    Budapest 37
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Athens 102
    Budapest 74
Compare Hotels in Athens and Budapest

Looking for a hotel in Athens or Budapest? 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 Athens


Hotels in Budapest


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Athens Hotel Prices and Budapest Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Athens 22
    Budapest 7.99
Typical Local Transportation prices in Athens

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Athens:


  • Airport Bus for Two
    6.40
  • Metro
    1.50
  • Metro
    2.00
  • Metro from Airport to City Center
    8.00
  • Taxi from Airport
    35

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Athens

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

  • Private Transfer from Αthens City to Igoumenitsa Port: $1,763
  • Private Transfer from Athens City to Syvota: $1,203
  • Private City Transfer From Athens To Pilos: $970
  • Private City Transfer From Athens to Kranidi: $970
  • Transfer to Corfu from Athens including visit to Delphi: $964
  • Athens to Corfu Luxury Private Transfer: $890
  • Private Transfer to/ from Lefkada Marina to/ from Athens Airport or City Centre: $759
  • Transfer From Athens To Lefkada: $678
  • Private Transfer from Athens to Nafplio: $666
  • Transfer to Lefkada - The Safest and most Convinient way: $605
  • Delphi Private Full Day Luxury Transfers From Athens: $597
  • Private Transfer from Athens-Pireaus-ATH to Igoumenitsa-Parga-Sivota-Ioannina: $592

Typical Local Transportation prices in Budapest

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Budapest:


  • Short Taxi Ride
    6.53
  • Metro Pass
    3.58

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Budapest

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

  • Luxury transfer from Budapest to Zagreb with 5+ stops along the way: $1,081
  • Private transfer from Budapest to Prague: $987
  • Private Budapest-Ljubljana(Ljubljana- Budapest)Transfer with a comfortable car: $871
  • Private Transfer to Bucharest from Budapest (Hungary): $809
  • Budapest -Belgrade(Belgrade-Budapest)private transfer with a comfortable car/van: $809
  • Budapest-Prague (Prague-Budapest) private transfer with a comfortable car / van: $759
  • From Budapest to Frankfurt Airport Private Transfer - punctual & friendly Driver: $705
  • One-way Transfer from Budapest Airport to Prague City Centre: $695
  • Private transfer from Budapest to Vienna: $683
  • Budapest - Kraków(Kraków -Budapest) private transfer with a comfortable car /van: $666
  • Private transfer from airport Budapest (BUD) to Ljubljana: $664
  • Private Transfer from Budapest to Prague: $664

Is it cheaper to fly into Athens or Budapest?

Prices for flights to both Budapest and Athens 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
    Athens 30
    Budapest 17
Typical Food prices in Athens

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Athens:


  • Ice cream
    3.00
  • Souvlaki
    2.20

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Athens

For Athens, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Online 1hr Cooking Class: Santorini Tomato Fritters: $6.22
  • Greek Meatballs Private Online Cooking Class: $27
  • Withlocals the 10 Tastings: Athens Private Food Tour with a Local: $42
  • Online Cooking Class: Greek mini cheese pies: $45
  • Street Culture & Food Tour: $56
  • Afternoon Food Tour: $56
  • Athens walking and tasting food tour.: $60
  • 4-Hour Cooking Class with Market Visit: $69
  • Homemade Gyros cooking class and dinner in Athens for private groups: $75
  • The Classic Food Tour: $76
  • Taste of Half-Day Small Group Food Tour: $77
  • Greek Phyllo and Pie Cooking Class in Athens: $77

Typical Food prices in Budapest

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Budapest:


  • Lunch
    3.19

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Budapest

For Budapest, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Lángos (hungarian streetfood) cooking class: $19
  • Dinner & Cruise on the Danube in Budapest: $23
  • Traveling Spoon Hungarian Goulash Private Online Cooking Class: $27
  • 3-Hour Dinner Cruise and Piano Battle Show: $31
  • Vegan Food Tour / Local delights: $36
  • Private Budapest Food Tour with a Local Foodie: $37
  • Live from Hungarian Online Cooking class: $39
  • Bitemojo Self Guided Food Tour Night & The City Budapest: $47
  • Food Tour in Budapest: $50
  • Bitemojo Self Guided Food Tour of Trendy Budapest: $51
  • BBQ dinner and a Quiz Night - welcome shots (hungaricums) and 88 craft beers: $52
  • 2-Hours Strudel Cooking Class and Wine Tasting in Central Budapest: $53

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Athens 28
    Budapest 17

Tours and Activities in Athens

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Athens.

  • "A Must-See" Anc. Epidaurus, Mycenae & Nafplion Premium Full Day Tour By Locals: $411
  • "Athens city tour": $270
  • "Private tour in Athens": $243
  • ''Tour in Athens'': $118
  • 1 Day Private Tour Corinth, Cave of Lakes at Kalavrita & Journey by Cog Railway: $264
  • 1 Day Private tour to Meteora, visit the Monasteries are lying on the cliffs.: $317
  • 1 Day Saronic Islands Cruise: $168
  • 10 Day Greek Island Tour: Mykonos, Santorini-Volcano, Crete, Delos, Knossos,: $2,457
  • 10 Day Ultimate Ancient Greece Tours Experience: $2,411
  • 10 Day to Explore the Best Historical Gems in Greece and tour in Santorini: $1,798
  • 10 Days Private Tour: North Greece: $2,706
  • 10 Days Private Tour: Peloponnese: $2,706

Typical Entertainment prices in Budapest

For Budapest, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Entrance to the Baths for Two
    6.40

Tours and Activities in Budapest

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Budapest.

  • "This is the Way!" - Budapest Photo Tour by Birta Photo: $124
  • 'Best of Pest' 3.5 Hour Private Photography Tour: $112
  • 1 Hour 30 Minutes Downtown Budapest Guided Segway Tour: $93
  • 1. Downtown Pest Side Segway Tour Budapest: $54
  • 10 days private sightseeing tour from Budapest to Prague: $3,109
  • 101 things you have to see in Budapest - Full Day Private Tour: $203
  • 2 Hour Budapest Market and Tasting Tour: $54
  • 2 Hours Cultural and Food Experiences in Budapest: $60
  • 2 Hours Walking Tour in Budapest: $11
  • 2 days Vienna - Bratislava PRIVATE guided tour package from Budapest with lunch: $1,070
  • 2 days Vienna - Wachau Valley PRIVATE guided tour package from Budapest: $1,070
  • 2 hours long private orientation tour in Budapest: $101

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Athens 18
    Budapest 12

Sample the Local Flavors in Athens

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

  • Athens Walking Tour with Food and Wine Tasting: $37
  • Virtual Greek Wine Tasting: $87
  • Athens Food and Wine Tasting Tour: $96
  • Wine tasting tour: $131
  • Wine Tasting and Athens Trikke Combo Tour: $133
  • The Best Winery & Tasting Tour in Nemea.Enjoy a unique all day wine tasting tour: $140
  • Private Wine Tasting Experience of Greek Awarded Wines in Athens: $148
  • Premium Wine Tour in Peloponnese -Ancient Corinthos, Nemea - the Land of Myth: $148
  • Athens Private Wine Tasting Tour - Dionysian Grapes: $149
  • Ancient Corinth & Nemea Wine Tasting (up to 15 in a Luxurious Mercedes Minibus): $151
  • Greek Private Wine Tasting: $166
  • Mercedes Private Full-Day Tour, Nafplio, Corinth Canal and Wine Tasting: $168

Sample the Local Flavors in Budapest

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

  • Bingo Bar Crawl: $15
  • Bingo Bar Crawl: $15
  • Original Budapest Pub Crawl and VIP Club Entrance: $16
  • Ultimate Ruin Pub Crawl: $18
  • Generation Pub Crawl Budapest: $19
  • Ruin Pub Crawl - Your Keys to the Nightlife of Budapest: $21
  • Budapest Pub Crawl: $24
  • Pest side Pub Crawl - Unlimited drinks for an hour, discover hidden ruin pubs: $25
  • Re-opening Pub Crawls 2020 Summer-Autumn: $25
  • Budapest Pub Crawl with Skip-the-Line Access: $26
  • Epic Local Insider Pub Crawl in Budapest - Every weekend: $30
  • Party Cruise with Pub Crawl option: $37


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


When is the best time to visit Athens or Budapest?

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 Athens or Budapest in the Summer?

Both Budapest and Athens are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Many travelers come to Athens for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Also, many visitors come to Budapest in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Athens is generally a little warmer than Budapest. Temperatures in Athens average around 27°C (81°F), and Budapest stays around 21°C (70°F).

It's quite sunny in Budapest. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Athens. Athens usually receives more sunshine than Budapest during summer. Athens gets 357 hours of sunny skies, while Budapest receives 278 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Athens usually receives less rain than Budapest. Athens gets 6 mm (0.2 in) of rain, while Budapest receives 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Athens 27°C (81°F) 
    Budapest 21°C (70°F)

Should I visit Athens or Budapest in the Autumn?

Both Budapest and Athens during the autumn are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Athens in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Also, most visitors come to Budapest for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

Athens is much warmer than Budapest in the autumn. The temperature in Athens is usually 19°C (67°F) in October, and Budapest stays around 12°C (53°F).

It's quite sunny in Athens. In the autumn, Athens often gets more sunshine than Budapest. Athens gets 206 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Budapest receives 152 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets more rain in October than Budapest. Athens gets 48 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Budapest receives 34 mm (1.3 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Athens 19°C (67°F) 
    Budapest 12°C (53°F)

Should I visit Athens or Budapest in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Athens and Budapest. Most visitors come to Athens for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Budapest because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

The weather in Budapest can be very cold. In the winter, Athens is much warmer than Budapest. Typically, the winter temperatures in Athens in January are around 10°C (51°F), and Budapest is about -1°C (31°F).

Athens usually receives more sunshine than Budapest during winter. Athens gets 143 hours of sunny skies, while Budapest receives 61 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Athens usually receives around the same amount of rain as Budapest. Athens gets 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain, while Budapest receives 42 mm (1.7 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Athens 10°C (51°F) 
    Budapest -1°C (31°F)

Should I visit Athens or Budapest in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Athens as well as Budapest. The spring months attract visitors to Athens because of the activities around the city and the natural beauty. Also, the activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Budapest this time of year.

In April, Athens is generally a little warmer than Budapest. Temperatures in Athens average around 16°C (60°F), and Budapest stays around 12°C (53°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Athens this time of the year. In the spring, Athens often gets more sunshine than Budapest. Athens gets 226 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Budapest receives 178 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets less rain in April than Budapest. Athens gets 25 mm (1 in) of rain, while Budapest receives 42 mm (1.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Athens 16°C (60°F) 
    Budapest 12°C (53°F)

Typical Weather for Budapest and Athens

Athens Budapest
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 10°C (51°F) 45 mm (1.8 in) -1°C (31°F) 42 mm (1.7 in)
Feb 11°C (51°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 2°C (35°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Mar 12°C (54°F) 44 mm (1.7 in) 7°C (44°F) 35 mm (1.4 in)
Apr 16°C (60°F) 25 mm (1 in) 12°C (53°F) 42 mm (1.7 in)
May 20°C (68°F) 14 mm (0.6 in) 16°C (62°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Jun 24°C (76°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 20°C (67°F) 69 mm (2.7 in)
Jul 27°C (81°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 21°C (70°F) 45 mm (1.8 in)
Aug 27°C (81°F) 8 mm (0.3 in) 21°C (69°F) 56 mm (2.2 in)
Sep 24°C (76°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 17°C (63°F) 39 mm (1.5 in)
Oct 19°C (67°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 12°C (53°F) 34 mm (1.3 in)
Nov 16°C (60°F) 51 mm (2 in) 6°C (42°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Dec 12°C (54°F) 66 mm (2.6 in) 1°C (34°F) 48 mm (1.9 in)


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Athens vs. Budapest Travel Comparison

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