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

Should you visit Athens or Lyon?

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 Lyon. 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 historic, ancient, and vibrant 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. And you can't forget about the nightlife, food, and shopping.

Lyon

Lyon is a beautiful, cultural, and quaint city. As it's a big city, visitors will find plenty to do, too. Many visitors also come here because of it's amazing beauty. As it offers a special and quaint atmosphere, visitors come from all over to experience this destination. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Athens and Lyon: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • 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
  • Quaint atmosphere


How is Athens different from Lyon?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Athens or Lyon better for Museums and Historical Sights?

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

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Lyon that are not to be missed. There are many world class museums and historic landmarks in the city including Musée des Beaux Arts, Musée de la Civilisation Gallo-Romaine, and Basilique Notre-Dame de Fourvière.

Athens
Lyon


Is Athens or Lyon better for Food?

Dining out at restaurants in both Athens and Lyon can be an enjoyable experience.

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.

For foodies, Lyon is an obvious choice, as it is one of the food capitals of the world. Known as "the Gastronomic Capital of the World" this city stands above the rest when it comes to Michelin star restaurants (there are 17!), fresh ingredients, and unique local flavors. Favorite local dishes include pâté en croûte, rosette de Lyon, and saucisson brioché.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Nightlife?

The vibe at night is comparable in Athens and Lyon.

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.

Lyon has plenty to do after the sun goes down. The city has enough diverse neighborhoods that you'll find a scene that is great for everyone. There are dance clubs, cocktail bars, and wine bars that meet every personality and style.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Shopping?

If you're looking to go shopping, Athens and Lyon 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.

Lyon is an extremely popular place for shoppers. The city has many trendy markets, pedestrian shopping areas, and character-filled boutiques. From the charming shops in old town to the chic shopping streets, there are plenty of places to splurge around town.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Families?

Both Athens and Lyon 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.

Lyon is a very family-friendly place to visit. The city has many kid-friendly museums including Musée des Confluences and the Cinema and Miniature Museum. There are also playgrounds, patisseries, and river cruises that you can enjoy as a family. Puppet shows are also fun, but do note that they're usually in French. While the restaurants are amazing for adults, it can be tricky to find a kid-friendly option with early opening hours that are convenient for little ones.

Athens
Lyon


Is Athens or Lyon better for Couples?

Athens and Lyon 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.

Lyon is a very popular place to visit for couples. Couples can enjoy wandering the beautiful Old Town, taking a river cruise, and dining on some of the best food in France.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

For backpackers, both Athens and Lyon 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.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Lyon. The city has several hostels and a number of activities that are fun for budget travelers and backpackers.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Students?

For students, both Athens and Lyon 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 Lyon. It is a very livable city with many fun cultural activities for students. There are many different entertainment options during the day, and during the evening there are plenty of places to hang out.

Athens
Lyon

Is Athens or Lyon better for Public Transit?

Athens and Lyon 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.

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

Athens
Lyon


Is Athens or Lyon a more walkable city?

Athens and Lyon 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.

Lyon is very walkable. The old town is particularly walkable, but the hills can make things a bit challenging. There are also a number of pedestrian streets around town.

Athens
Lyon

Should I spend more time in Lyon or Athens?

How long in Athens or Lyon?

In either Athens or Lyon, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Athens than Lyon 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 Lyon is 2-5 days.


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

One day in Athens or Lyon?

Athens is a big city destination where you can fill many days. Take your pick from the many activities offered around the area. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.

Many travelers enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting the quaint big city of Lyon. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Athens or Lyon?

Athens is a fun place to experience. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring. The entire area has lots to do.

Lyon 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 Lyon?

Athens is a historic big city where you can fill many days. This city offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend five days here when traveling. Five days is often enough time to spend here.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Lyon. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. 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 Lyon?

Athens is a historic city where you can fill many days. Many people spend one week here. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. Because of this, one week is usually enough time for a trip here.

Travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the quaint big city of Lyon. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Which city is cheaper, Lyon 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 Lyon is €100. 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 Lyon in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Athens 51
    Lyon 42
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Athens 102
    Lyon 84
Compare Hotels in Athens and Lyon

Looking for a hotel in Athens or Lyon? 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 Lyon


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.


Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Athens 22
    Lyon 14
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:

  • Ultra - Private Transfer from Athens City Centre to Piraeus Cruise Port: $9.41
  • Ultra - Athens Private Airport Transfer from City Centre to Athens Airport ATH: $9.41
  • Mercedes Luxury Private Transfer Athens - Piraeus: $16
  • Athens Port Private Transfer: $16
  • Private Luxury Transfer from Athens - Piraeus: $17
  • Athens Private Transfer Service: Athens Hotel to Piraeus Port: $19
  • Athens Airport Shuttle Bus Transfer: $21
  • Athens Private Transfer: Piraeus Cruise Port to Central Athens: $22
  • Athens Private Transfer: Central Athens to Piraeus Cruise Port: $22
  • Athens hotels to Piraeus port Private departure transfer: $22
  • Piraeus port to Athens hotels Private arrival transfer: $22
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Hotel to Athens Airport: $24

Typical Local Transportation prices in Lyon

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


  • Funiculaire
    5.20
  • Hop-on Hop-off Tourist Bus
    19

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Lyon

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Lyon:

  • Private transfer: Lyon–Bron Airport (LYN) to Meribel: $765
  • Private transfer: Lyon–Bron Airport (LYN) to Les Deux Alpes: $744
  • Courchevel: Lyon Airport (LYS) Private Transfer: $728
  • Airport Lyon - private VIP transfer to Val-d Isere on Mercedes V-class: $702
  • Airport Lyon - private VIP transfer to Morzine on Mercedes V-class: $683
  • Airport Lyon - private VIP transfer to Tignes on Mercedes V-class: $683
  • Airport Lyon - private VIP transfer to Megève on Mercedes V-class: $649
  • Private Transfer: Lyon to Lyon–Bron Airport (LYN): $622
  • Private transfer: Lyon–Bron Airport (LYN) to Chamrousse: $532
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Grenoble-Isère Airport to Lyon City - One Way: $284
  • Superior Private Transfer From Lyon City to Geneva City: $156
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Lyon Hotel to Gare de Lyon Saint-Exupéry: $128

Is it cheaper to fly into Athens or Lyon?

Prices for flights to both Lyon 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
    Lyon 33
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 Lyon

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


  • Pastry
    1.70

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Lyon

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

  • Lyon Old Town Walking Guided Food Tour: $68
  • Lyon 2.5-Hour Dinner Cruise: $72
  • Lyon Old Town Half-Day Walking Food Tour with Local Specialties Tasting & Lunch: $93
  • Lyon Old Town Five Tasting Stops Walking Food Tour with Lunch: $108
  • Lyon Quais Saint Antoine Private Gastronomic Food Tour: $111
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Lyon: $137
  • Halles de Lyon Paul Bocuse Food Tour: $217
  • Food tour in Lyon: $258
  • Secret Food Tours Lyon w/ Private Tour Option: $296
  • Lyon Food Tour: $880
  • Lyon Food Tour: $880

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Athens 28
    Lyon 16

Tours and Activities in Athens

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

  • Athens virtual History, Philosophy and Democracy Tour: $6.22
  • Skip the Line: Frissiras Museum Entrance Ticket: $7.46
  • Skip the Line: War Museum of Athens Entrance Ticket: $7.46
  • Skip the Line: Temple of Olympian Zeus Entrance Ticket: $8.09
  • Skip the Line: Roman Agora of Athens Entrance Ticket: $8.71
  • Athens Museum of Cycladic Art Admission Ticket: $8.71
  • Skip the Line: Admission Ticket for Acropolis Museum: $9.33
  • Temple of Olympian Zeus: Self-Guided Audio Tour on your Phone (without ticket): $9.94
  • Skip the Line: Ancient Agora of Athens and Temple of Hephaestus Entrance Ticket: $11
  • Benaki Museum of Islamic Art Entrance Ticket: $11
  • Athens Museum of Illusions Ticket: $11
  • Self-Guided City Experience: $12

Typical Entertainment prices in Lyon

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


  • Lunch for 2
    45

Tours and Activities in Lyon

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

  • 1 or 2-Hour Pedicab tour of Lyon: $31
  • Beaujolais & Perouges Medieval Town - Full Day - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $134
  • Beaujolais & Perouges Medieval Town - Private Day Tour: $858
  • Beaujolais Crus Wines & Castles - Afternoon - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $114
  • Beaujolais Crus Wines & Castles - Morning - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $114
  • Beaujolais Wine Discovery - Morning - Small Group Tours from Lyon: $108
  • Beaujolais Wine Discovery - Private Tour - Half Day: $280
  • Beaujolais Wine Route Private Tour: $641
  • Beaujolais Wine Route Small-Group Tour with Tasting from Lyon: $123
  • Beaujolais Wines & Castles - Private Tour - Half Day: $299
  • Beaujolais half day private tour: $280
  • Best Intro Tour of Lyon with a Local: $61

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Athens 18
    Lyon 19

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

Typical Alcohol prices in Lyon

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Lyon from other travelers:


  • Drinks for 2
    6.80
  • Bottle of Wine
    15

Sample the Local Flavors in Lyon

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

  • Northern Rhône Valley Cheese & Wine Tasting Half Day Tour from Lyon: $111
  • Lyon Old Town Food & Wine Tasting Tour including a Bouchon Lyonnais: $112
  • The Original Syrah Wine Tour - Afternoon - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $114
  • The Original Syrah Wine Tour - Morning - Small Group Tours from Lyon: $114
  • Beaujolais Gourmet Wine Tour with Tastings from Lyon: $123
  • Macon & Beaujolais Wine Tour - Full Day - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $147
  • Cotes du Rhone Wine Tour - Full Day - Small Group Tour from Lyon: $153
  • Northern Rhône Valley Day Tour with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Burgundy South of Region Small Group Day Tour with Local Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Beaujolais Region Vineyard Day Tour with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $160
  • Côte-Rôtie & Vienne Region Roman History with Wine Tasting from Lyon: $243
  • Rhône Valley Terroir Private Tour with Local Cheese & Wine Tasting from Lyon: $280


When comparing the travel costs between Athens and Lyon, we can see that Athens is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Europe, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.


When is the best time to visit Athens or Lyon?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Athens or Lyon in the Summer?

Both Lyon and Athens during the summer are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Athens in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Furthermore, most visitors come to Lyon for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Athens is generally a little warmer than Lyon. Temperatures in Athens average around 27°C (81°F), and Lyon stays around 22°C (71°F).

In Lyon, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Athens. In the summer, Athens often gets more sunshine than Lyon. Athens gets 357 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Lyon receives 285 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets less rain in July than Lyon. Athens gets 6 mm (0.2 in) of rain, while Lyon receives 61 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Athens 27°C (81°F) 
    Lyon 22°C (71°F)

Should I visit Athens or Lyon in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Athens and Lyon. Most visitors come to Athens for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months. Furthermore, the autumn months attract visitors to Lyon because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

Athens is a little warmer than Lyon in the autumn. The temperature in Athens is usually 19°C (67°F) in October, and Lyon stays around 14°C (56°F).

In Athens, it's very sunny this time of the year. Athens usually receives more sunshine than Lyon during autumn. At this time of the year, Athens gets 206 hours of sunny skies, while Lyon receives 127 hours of full sun.

In October, Athens usually receives less rain than Lyon. At this time of the year, Athens gets 48 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Lyon receives 78 mm (3.1 in) of rain.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Athens 19°C (67°F) 
    Lyon 14°C (56°F)

Should I visit Athens or Lyon in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Athens as well as Lyon. The winter months attract visitors to Athens because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Additionally, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Lyon this time of year.

It's quite cold in Lyon in the winter. In the winter, Athens is much warmer than Lyon. Typically, the winter temperatures in Athens in January are around 10°C (51°F), and Lyon is about 4°C (39°F).

In the winter, Athens often gets more sunshine than Lyon. Athens gets 143 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Lyon receives 62 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets less rain in January than Lyon. Athens gets 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain, while Lyon receives 55 mm (2.1 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Athens 10°C (51°F) 
    Lyon 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Athens or Lyon in the Spring?

Both Lyon and Athens are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Athens this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Lyon for the activities around the city and the natural beauty.

In April, Athens is generally a little warmer than Lyon. Temperatures in Athens average around 16°C (60°F), and Lyon stays around 11°C (53°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Athens. Athens usually receives more sunshine than Lyon during spring. At this time of the year, Athens gets 226 hours of sunny skies, while Lyon receives 174 hours of full sun.

In April, Athens usually receives less rain than Lyon. At this time of the year, Athens gets 25 mm (1 in) of rain, while Lyon receives 65 mm (2.6 in) of rain.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Athens 16°C (60°F) 
    Lyon 11°C (53°F)

Typical Weather for Lyon and Athens

Athens Lyon
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 10°C (51°F) 45 mm (1.8 in) 4°C (39°F) 55 mm (2.1 in)
Feb 11°C (51°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 6°C (42°F) 54 mm (2.1 in)
Mar 12°C (54°F) 44 mm (1.7 in) 8°C (47°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Apr 16°C (60°F) 25 mm (1 in) 11°C (53°F) 65 mm (2.6 in)
May 20°C (68°F) 14 mm (0.6 in) 15°C (60°F) 85 mm (3.4 in)
Jun 24°C (76°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 19°C (66°F) 75 mm (3 in)
Jul 27°C (81°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 22°C (71°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Aug 27°C (81°F) 8 mm (0.3 in) 21°C (70°F) 75 mm (3 in)
Sep 24°C (76°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 18°C (65°F) 75 mm (3 in)
Oct 19°C (67°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 14°C (56°F) 78 mm (3.1 in)
Nov 16°C (60°F) 51 mm (2 in) 8°C (46°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
Dec 12°C (54°F) 66 mm (2.6 in) 4°C (40°F) 57 mm (2.3 in)


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Athens vs. Lyon Travel Comparison

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