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

Should you visit Athens or Reykjavik?

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 Reykjavik. 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 ancient, vibrant, and energetic city. It's a large city with plenty of activites for visitors as well. It's a gorgeous place to visit. Other reasons to visit include food, shopping, and museums.

Reykjavik

Reykjavik is a friendly, clean, and green city. Many visitors also come here because of it's amazing beauty. It's also popular because of the shopping, nightlife, and hiking.

Athens and Reykjavik: Pros and Cons

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


How is Athens different from Reykjavik?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Food?

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

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.

Reykjavik offers some easy restaurants to choose from. Traditional Icelandic food may not have the best reputation, but restaurants these days are pretty good with a variety of dishes to choose from. Popular foods in the area include fish, lamb, and Icelandic skyr (a type of yogurt).

Athens
Reykjavik


Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Nightlife?

Most visitors prefer the nightlife in Athens.

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.

There's a variety of activities in the evening in Reykjavik. The city offers the best nightlife in Iceland and you'll be surprised at the number of clubs, bars, and craft breweries that you can choose from. Almost all of the popular nightlife spots are around Laugavegur, a major shopping street in town.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Shopping?

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

Reykjavik is a great destination for shopping. The city's main shopping street is Laugavegur, which is where you'll find the most activity around town as well as a bustling atmosphere.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Families?

Both Athens and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is a very family-friendly place to visit. With its many outdoor activities and hands on museums, the city is great for kids. The cafes and restaurants are family-friendly and their are plenty of entertainment options for the whole family.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Couples?

Athens and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is a very popular place to visit for couples. There are museums, outdoor activities, and even the northern lights that make this city very romantic. The cafes are laid-back and the atmosphere is friendly.

Athens
Reykjavik


Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Travelers usually think of Athens as a better destination for backpackers than Reykjavik.

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.

Reykjavik is a good city to visit for backpackers. There are a number of hostels around town, but they can be pretty expensive. Transportation can also be pretty challenging for backpackers.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Students?

For students, both Athens and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is a good city to visit for students. Students will enjoy a unique experience in this city. There are good academic programs as well as beautiful outdoor settings that you can explore.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik better for Public Transit?

Athens and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik has a few public transit options. There is a fairly comprehensive bus system around town.

Athens
Reykjavik

Is Athens or Reykjavik a more walkable city?

Athens and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is very walkable. The city is small and compact, so it's easy to explore on foot.

Athens
Reykjavik


Should I spend more time in Reykjavik or Athens?

How long in Athens or Reykjavik?

In either Athens or Reykjavik, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Athens than Reykjavik 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 Reykjavik is 1-5 days.


  • How many days in Athens or Reykjavik? Ideal Length of Stay
    Athens 3-7 
    Reykjavik 1-5

One day in Athens or Reykjavik?

People visit Athens because there is so much to do. 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.

Many travelers enjoy the shopping and nightlife when visiting the destination of Reykjavik. Hikers are also drawn to this area. One day is often enough time to spend here.

A weekend in Athens or Reykjavik?

People visit Athens because there is so much to do. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Reykjavik is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. Don't miss the hiking, as that's what most people do. 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 Reykjavik?

People visit Athens because there is so much to do. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this city makes for a great vacation. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Reykjavik. Don't miss the hiking, as that's what most people do. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. 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 Reykjavik?

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

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and shopping when visiting the clean destination of Reykjavik. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Which city is cheaper, Reykjavik 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 Reykjavik is €198. 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 Reykjavik in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Athens 51
    Reykjavik 112
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Athens 102
    Reykjavik 224
Compare Hotels in Athens and Reykjavik

Looking for a hotel in Athens or Reykjavik? 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 Reykjavik


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
    Reykjavik 37
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:

  • iMove Transfers Services Athens: $75
  • VIP VAN Piraeus Port Transfer 1 - 8 persons or Alimos Kalamaki Marina to Athens: $61
  • VIP VAN Athens Airport Transfer 1 - 4 persons: $101
  • VIP VAN Airport Transfer 5 - 8 persons: $105
  • VIP Ferry Ticket from Piraeus Port To Mykonos & Private Transfer included: $167
  • VIP Ferry Ticket From Piraeus Port To Santorini & Private Transfer Included: $174
  • VAN Piraeus Port Transfer 1 - 8 persons or Alimos Kalamaki Marina to Athens: $39
  • 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
  • Transfers around Athens and city tours: $373
  • Transfers and Guided Tours in all over Greece, sightseeing and Private hire!!: $106
  • Transfer to Loutraki/Corinth from Athens: $166

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Reykjavik

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

  • Luxurious Private Airport Transfer and Blue Lagoon | Included Premium Admission: $1,354
  • Private airport transfer with Blue lagoon stopover and lunar landscapes: $804
  • Luxury Private Transfers Reykjavik - Blue Lagoon - Keflavik Airport: $683
  • Private Blue Lagoon & Airport Transfer: $646
  • Luxury Private Transfers Keflavik Airport - Blue Lagoon - Reykjavik: $641
  • Private Transfer Blue Lagoon - Reykjavik city (with waiting time): $560
  • Airport transfer to or from Reykjavik with up to 3 hours stop in Blue Lagoon: $485
  • Golden Circle Private Tour & Blue Lagoon Private Transfer: $438
  • Private Reykjavík Round Trip Airport Transfer: $429
  • Private One-Way Airport Transfer To or From Keflavik Airport: $352
  • Luxury Private Transfers Reykjavik to Keflavik airport: $343
  • Iceland Private Airport Transfer: $316

Is it cheaper to fly into Athens or Reykjavik?

Prices for flights to both Reykjavik 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
    Reykjavik 24
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 Reykjavik

For Reykjavik, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Dinner (Fish Market)
    179

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Reykjavik

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

  • Exclusive dinner with a local family: $112
  • Weekend Reykjavik Food Tour with a stop at the Reykjavik Flea Market: $123
  • Dinner with an Icelandic Artist in Reykjavik Home: $151
  • Secret Lagoon, Buffet Dinner, and Northern Lights Tour from Reykjavik: $159
  • South Coast: Volcanoes, waterfalls & Viking dinner at the Viking house: $179
  • Private Reykjavik Food Tour: $198
  • South Coast: Small group glacier hike, fire & ice with dinner at Viking lodge: $199
  • Cook and Dine Icelandic Cooking Class Gourmet Lunch or Dinner: $204
  • Kopar Fine Dining Dinner and Northern Lights Cruise from Reykjavik: $229
  • West Iceland Private Food Tour from Reykjavik: $723

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Athens 28
    Reykjavik 58

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 Reykjavik

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Reykjavik's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Art Museum
    11
  • Wine and Spa
    29

Tours and Activities in Reykjavik

For Reykjavik, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 'Game of Thrones' Filming Locations Tour From Reykjavik: $126
  • (Private tour) 4 Days South Coast, Golden Circle & Snæfellsnes: $3,388
  • 1.5 Hour Midnight Sun Buggy Tour From Reykjavik: $160
  • 10-day Private tour of Iceland: Geysers & Glaciers: $13,561
  • 1hr ATV & Golden Circle Adventure from Reykjavik: $276
  • 1hr ATV Adventure & Caving from Reykjavik: $254
  • 1hr ATV Adventure & Helicopter Adventure Combination Tour from Reykjavik: $403
  • 1hr ATV Adventure & Rafting Tour from Reykjavik: $287
  • 1hr ATV Adventure & Whale Watching Combination Tour from Reykjavik: $248
  • 1hr ATV Reykjavik Peak Adventure: $143
  • 1hr ATV adventure & Northern lights Hunt from Reykjavik: $238
  • 1hr Buggy & Lava Caving Combination Tour from Reykjavik: $283

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Athens 18
    Reykjavik 23

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 Reykjavik

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Reykjavik are as follows:


  • Beer
    8.84

Sample the Local Flavors in Reykjavik

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Reykjavik:

  • Eimverk Distillery Tour with Tasting: $34
  • Private Reykjavik Pub Crawl: $181
  • Reykjavik Food & Wine Tour: $249


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


When is the best time to visit Athens or Reykjavik?

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 Reykjavik in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Athens and Reykjavik. Many visitors come to Athens in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Reykjavik for the hiking and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In the summer, Athens is much warmer than Reykjavik. Typically, the summer temperatures in Athens in July are around 27°C (81°F), and Reykjavik is about 11°C (52°F).

In Athens, it's very sunny this time of the year. Athens usually receives more sunshine than Reykjavik during summer. At this time of the year, Athens gets 357 hours of sunny skies, while Reykjavik receives 171 hours of full sun.

In July, Athens usually receives less rain than Reykjavik. At this time of the year, Athens gets 6 mm (0.2 in) of rain, while Reykjavik receives 52 mm (2 in) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Athens 27°C (81°F) 
    Reykjavik 11°C (52°F)

Should I visit Athens or Reykjavik in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Athens as well as Reykjavik. 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. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Reykjavik because of the hiking trails, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

The weather in Reykjavik can be very cold. In October, Athens is generally much warmer than Reykjavik. Temperatures in Athens average around 19°C (67°F), and Reykjavik stays around 5°C (41°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Athens this time of the year. In the autumn, Athens often gets more sunshine than Reykjavik. Athens gets 206 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Reykjavik receives 83 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets less rain in October than Reykjavik. Athens gets 48 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Reykjavik receives 86 mm (3.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Athens 19°C (67°F) 
    Reykjavik 5°C (41°F)

Should I visit Athens or Reykjavik in the Winter?

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

It's quite cold in Reykjavik in the winter. Athens is much warmer than Reykjavik in the winter. The temperature in Athens is usually 10°C (51°F) in January, and Reykjavik stays around -0°C (32°F).

Athens usually receives more sunshine than Reykjavik during winter. At this time of the year, Athens gets 143 hours of sunny skies, while Reykjavik receives 27 hours of full sun.

In January, Athens usually receives less rain than Reykjavik. At this time of the year, Athens gets 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain, while Reykjavik receives 76 mm (3 in) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Athens 10°C (51°F) 
    Reykjavik -0°C (32°F)

Should I visit Athens or Reykjavik in the Spring?

Both Reykjavik and Athens during the spring are popular places to visit. The activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Athens this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Reykjavik for the natural beauty.

Be prepared for some very cold days in Reykjavik. In the spring, Athens is much warmer than Reykjavik. Typically, the spring temperatures in Athens in April are around 16°C (60°F), and Reykjavik is about 3°C (38°F).

It's quite sunny in Athens. In the spring, Athens often gets more sunshine than Reykjavik. Athens gets 226 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Reykjavik receives 140 hours of full sun.

Athens usually gets less rain in April than Reykjavik. Athens gets 25 mm (1 in) of rain, while Reykjavik receives 58 mm (2.3 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Athens 16°C (60°F) 
    Reykjavik 3°C (38°F)

Typical Weather for Reykjavik and Athens

Athens Reykjavik
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 10°C (51°F) 45 mm (1.8 in) -0°C (32°F) 76 mm (3 in)
Feb 11°C (51°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 1°C (33°F) 72 mm (2.8 in)
Mar 12°C (54°F) 44 mm (1.7 in) 1°C (34°F) 82 mm (3.2 in)
Apr 16°C (60°F) 25 mm (1 in) 3°C (38°F) 58 mm (2.3 in)
May 20°C (68°F) 14 mm (0.6 in) 7°C (44°F) 44 mm (1.7 in)
Jun 24°C (76°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 10°C (49°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Jul 27°C (81°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 11°C (52°F) 52 mm (2 in)
Aug 27°C (81°F) 8 mm (0.3 in) 11°C (52°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Sep 24°C (76°F) 10 mm (0.4 in) 8°C (46°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Oct 19°C (67°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 5°C (41°F) 86 mm (3.4 in)
Nov 16°C (60°F) 51 mm (2 in) 1°C (35°F) 73 mm (2.9 in)
Dec 12°C (54°F) 66 mm (2.6 in) 0°C (32°F) 79 mm (3.1 in)


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Athens vs. Reykjavik Travel Comparison

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