A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Balaton Lake vs. Budva for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Balaton Lake or Budva?

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

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Balaton Lake and Budva can help you decide which place is right for you.

Where Should I go: Balaton Lake or Budva?

Balaton Lake

Balaton is a major freshwater lake in Hungary and the largest lake in Central Europe with a shoreline of 197 kilometers. The region around the lake is a popular holiday destination with a great number of resort towns and high-rise hotels to accommodate visitors seeking out lakeside activities, beaches, volcanic hills, and vineyards. Some of the towns are also very historic, offering examples from eighteenth-century art and architecture to castle ruins.


A coastal resort in Montenegro, Budva is probably the country's most popular tourist destination. Not only does it host a number of great beaches, but it is also home to a picturesque old town center located on a small peninsula. Some of its best features include narrow winding lanes, historic buildings, churches, and small squares.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best 10-Day Tours from Budapest, The Best 2-Week Tours from Budapest, Tours for Outdoor and Nature Lovers in Montenegro, and The Best Adventure Tours to Montenegro.

Which place is cheaper, Budva or Balaton Lake?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Balaton Lake is $85, while the average daily cost in Budva is $97. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Balaton Lake and Budva in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Balaton Lake $47
    Budva $39
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Balaton Lake $94
    Budva $78
Compare Hotels in Balaton Lake and Budva

Looking for a hotel in Balaton Lake or Budva? 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 Balaton Lake

Hotels in Budva

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: Budva Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Balaton Lake $12
    Budva $22

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Budva

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Budva are as follows:

  • Daily Car Rental

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Budva

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Budva:

  • Private Transfer Service in Montenegro: $29
  • Private Transfer from Budva to Podgorica Airport and city: $40
  • Private Transfer from Budva or Becici to Tivat airport: $60
  • Montenegro Airport Transfer: $65
  • Kotor to Budva one way transfer: $102
  • Tivat to Budva one way transfer: $102
  • Transfer from Podgorica Airport to Kotor: $139
  • Herceg Novi to Budva one way transfer: $144
  • Private Transfer from Sveti Stefan to Dubrovnik airport: $218
  • Private Transfer from Budva or Becici to Dubrovnik airport: $240
  • Private Transfer from Petrovac to Dubrovnik airport: $240
  • Private Transfer from Budva to Dubrovnik: $273

Is it cheaper to fly into Balaton Lake or Budva?

Prices for flights to both Budva and Balaton Lake 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 Meals for one day
    Balaton Lake $27
    Budva $33

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Balaton Lake $20
    Budva $24

Tours and Activities in Budva

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

  • 1-Hour Guided Lipa Cave Adventure in Montenegro: $16
  • Kotor and Budva walking city tour: $43
  • Night Lights Kayak and SUP Adventure: $43
  • 3-Hour Paddle Board or Kayak Tour to Coastal Caves: $43
  • Budva Bay SUP & Kayaking Tours to Coastal Caves: $44
  • Night Lights Kayak Adventure : $44
  • From Day Cruise to Boka Bay: $57
  • Great Cruise From Budva to Boka Bay in a Day: $58
  • Soul of Montenegro: Kotor, Lovcen and Cetinje Day Tour: $61
  • Private Boat Tour Adventure In Budva - Sightseeing & Snorkeling : $65
  • Great tour of coastal monasteries in Budva - Walking on the path of history!: $65
  • Budva 1 hour Private walking tour: $66

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Balaton Lake $8.66
    Budva $15

When comparing the travel costs between Balaton Lake and Budva, we can see that Budva 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.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Balaton Lake Expensive? and Is Budva Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Balaton Lake or Budva?

Budva has a larger population, and is about 2 times larger than the population of Balaton Lake. When comparing the sizes of Balaton Lake and Budva, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.