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

Should you visit Athens or Rome?

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 Rome. 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 vibrant, energetic, and historic city. As it's a big city, visitors will find plenty to do, too. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. Other popular activities here include shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Rome

Rome is a archeological, bustling, and fun-filled city. Visitors will also find so much to do here because it's a large city with many sights and attractions. Many visitors also come here because of it's amazing beauty. It's also popular because of the live music, food, and shopping.

How is Athens different from Rome?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Is Athens or Rome better for Museums and Historical Sights?

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

You'll find many recognizable landmarks that put Rome on the map. The historical sights around the city are among the most impressive in the world. Almost anywhere you look you'll find a notable landmark but some of the most famous include the Colosseum, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, the Vatican, and the Roman Forum.


Is Athens or Rome better for Food?

Dining out in both Athens and Rome 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.

Many restaurants in Rome have been singled out for their culinary prowess. Homemade pasta, fresh sauces, and fine wine all make the food scene among the best. Also make sure you try the gelato.

Is Athens or Rome better for Nightlife?

The vibe at night is comparable in Athens and Rome.

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.

The nightlife in Rome is well established with world renowned clubs and venues. You'll find a huge concentration of bars and clubs in the Testaccio area. There are late night clubs with salsa dancing, merengue, and live DJ's spinning every type of music.

Is Athens or Rome better for Shopping?

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

Many people travel to Rome specifically to go shopping. For the biggest brand names, head to Via del Corso, which is near the Spanish Steps. Popular items to buy include Italian ceramics, shoes, leather goods, and jewelry.

Many visitors go to Athens to go shopping. Most neighborhoods have a shopping street but head to Ermou Street for some of the city's best shopping.

Is Athens or Rome better for Families?

Both Athens and Rome 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.

Rome is known to be a very family-friendly place to visit. What kid wouldn't be thrilled to be surrounded by pizza and spaghetti restaurants? In addition to kid-friendly food options, there are also a number of great activities that the whole family can enjoy including exploring the Colosseum, taking a gladiator class, and eating gelato.


Is Athens or Rome better for Couples?

Athens and Rome 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.

Couples visit Rome frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. With many beautiful buildings, world class restaurants, and world renowned sights, this city makes a great romantic destination.

Is Athens or Rome better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

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

With so many budget-friendly offerings, Athens is extremely popular for backpackers. The city has long been established as a backpackers destination with budget friendly food and plenty of hostels around town.

Rome is a mecca for backpackers and budget travelers. Backpackers will find no shortage of hostels where they can stay, particularly near the main train station where accommodation is particularly cheap (but not always the best quality).

Is Athens or Rome better for Students?

For students, both Athens and Rome 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.

Rome is a very popular city for students. The city is a popular study abroad destination and you'll find plenty of international students here.

Is Athens or Rome better for Public Transit?

Athens and Rome 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.

Visitors in Rome can get around quickly with the extensive public transit system. There's a metro system, trams, and a comprehensive bus system that goes around the city.


Is Athens or Rome a more walkable city?

Athens and Rome 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.

Getting around Rome on foot is easy. You'll find many of the most popular sights in a compact area that's easily explored on foot. Do watch out for traffic, which can be a bit chaotic at times.

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


Should I spend more time in Rome or Athens?

How long in Athens or Rome?

Both Athens and Rome have a number of activities to choose from. You can spend a similar amount of time exploring either.

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


  • How many days in Athens or Rome? Ideal Length of Stay
    Athens 3-7 
    Rome 3-7

One day in Athens or Rome?

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

A weekend in Athens or Rome?

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.

Rome is a great place to explore. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Athens or Rome?

Athens is a energetic 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 Rome. 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 Rome?

Athens is a energetic 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.

Many travelers enjoy the nightlife and live music when visiting the bustling big city of Rome. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. If you have one week, this is a great place to go. This would be the perfect place to spend one week, as it has just the right amount of activities.

Which city is cheaper, Rome 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 Rome is €131. 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 Rome in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Athens 51
    Rome 67
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Athens 102
    Rome 134

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Athens 22
    Rome 17
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:

  • ATHENS AIRPORT to ATHENS or vice versa PRIVATE LUXURY TRANSFERS: $62
  • Airport Transfer: $77
  • Airport Transfer/ Athens Greece: $59
  • Airport pick up taxi and minivans transfers ,tours and trips: $60
  • Airport transfer: $156
  • Ancient Olympia Taxi Transfer from Athens: $539
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Athens Rafina Port to Athens City: $100
  • Athens & Sounio Taxi Multiple Destination Transfer: $311
  • Athens Airport Departure Private Transfer. Depart in Style!: $62
  • Athens Airport Departure Transfer (Athens Hotels to Athens Airport): $66
  • Athens Airport Departure Transfer: Athens Hotels to Athens Airport Shuttle Bus: $34
  • Athens Airport Private Departure Transfer: $28

Typical Local Transportation prices in Rome

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


  • Metro Ride (for Two)
    2.00
  • Train to the Airport
    15
  • Taxi to Airport
    45
  • Bicycle Rental (Full Day)
    10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Rome

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Rome:

  • Private Transfer by Mercedes and private boat from Rome to Capri all included: $1,991
  • Private Transfer by Mercedes and private boat from Rome to Capri: $1,991
  • Private Transfer from Roma to Bologna (BLQ) Airport: $1,466
  • Transfer From Rome To Amalfi Coast Via Pompei: $1,365
  • Private Transfer from Roma to Rimini (RMI) Airport: $1,291
  • Assisi & Orvieto, one day, private transfer: $1,244
  • Direct Transfer from your Hotel in ROME to your Hotel in LUCCA: $1,138
  • Private Transfer from Roma to Firenze (FLR) Airport: $1,132
  • Private Transfer by luxury Mercedes and private boat from Rome to Capri: $1,120
  • Private Transfer from Rome to Florence: stops in Orvieto, Siena & Monteriggioni: $1,058
  • Private Transfer from Roma to Pisa (PSA) Airport: $1,043
  • Private Transfer From Rome Apt To Positano: $1,023

Is it cheaper to fly into Athens or Rome?

Prices for flights to both Rome 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
    Rome 37
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 Rome

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


  • Casual Lunch (for Two)
    14
  • 4 Ice Cream Sandwiches
    2.99
  • Cafe e doce
    4.00
  • Pizza (Fast Food)
    2.65
  • Sitdown Lunch (for Two)
    32
  • Cheese and bread
    10
  • Espresso
    2.00
  • Dinner
    58

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Rome

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

  • Tours from Home: Pizza Cooking Class with Italian Chefs: $15
  • Interactive Cooking Experiences with Renowned Chefs All Over the World (in EST): $22
  • Live from Tagliatelle & Chicken Fricassee Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Virtual Cooking Class: Carbonara, Amatriciana, Pesto & "pasta al dente": $40
  • Street Food Tour with Local Guide: $48
  • Private Italian dinner in Rome with a selection of local wines: $51
  • Bitemojo Self Guided Food Tour Artisian Rome: $55
  • Make Your Own Pizza Cooking Class & Dinner: $56
  • 1h Pizza Crash Course with a Chef in Rome: $61
  • 1-Hour Rome Pizza Cooking Class with Dinner: $61
  • Ravioli and Meatballs Cooking Class: $61
  • Pasta & Tiramisu Workshop with Dinner: $61

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Athens 28
    Rome 29

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 Rome

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


  • Rome Museum Vaticano (for 2)
    69
  • Coliseum Tickets (for Two)
    33
  • Roma Pass
    30
  • Hop on Hop Off Bus (All Day)
    20
  • Segway Tour
    75

Tours and Activities in Rome

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

  • 1 Day in 10 Iconic Sights, Luxury Car, Skip the line, Lunch, 100% Private: $785
  • 1 hour Little Ancient Tour of Rome by Mini Vintage Cabriolet with Cappuccino: $156
  • 10-Night Italy Tour: Rome, Florence, Venice and Sorrento: $1,661
  • 2 Days Full Train Tour in Florence and Venice: $1,358
  • 2 Hour Private Tour Rome by Night by Car with an English speaking driver: $299
  • 2 in 1 Entire Vatican Tour & Fast Track Colosseum Ticket: $144
  • 2-Day Best of Rome and Vatican - Luxury Private Tour: $964
  • 2-Day Rome Highlights and Tivoli Private Tour with Pick Up: $1,369
  • 2-Day Venice trip from Rome - private tour: $908
  • 2.5-Hour Private Rome Catacombs Family Tour: $333
  • 2.5-Hours Illuminated Rome by Night Private Walking Tour: $280
  • 3 Hours Rome E-Bike Tour with the entrance to the Baths of Caracalla: $47

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Athens 18
    Rome 15

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 Rome

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Rome:


  • Bottle of Wine
    6.50
  • Pint of Beer
    6.34
  • Beer
    10

Sample the Local Flavors in Rome

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

  • From Food & Wine Tasting in a Medieval Cellar: $51
  • E-Bike Night Tour with Food and Wine Tasting: $67
  • Private Rome Food & Wine Tour with Aperitif on Private Roof Top Terrance: $100
  • Wine Tour Experience from Rome factory Giglio: $123
  • Lunch, Diner and wine tasting in a shaby chic italian restaurant in Rome: $135
  • From Frascati 3-Hour Private Wine Tasting Tour: $147
  • Wine Tasting in Frascati from Rome: $160
  • Frascati 3-Hour Wine Tasting PrivateTour: $183
  • Rome Countryside Vineyards and Wine Tasting - Private Tour: $185
  • Rome Countryside Vineyards and Wine Tasting - Private Tour: $187
  • Private 3.5-Hour Castelli Romani Wine Tasting Tour from Rome: $191
  • Rome By Night & Wine Tasting: $195


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

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Athens vs. Rome Travel Comparison

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