A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Baltimore vs. Arlington for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Families

Should you visit Baltimore or Arlington?

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 Baltimore and Arlington can help you decide which place is right for you.

Baltimore

Baltimore is a diverse, colorful, and historic city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. It's also popular because of the food, shopping, and museums.

Arlington

Arlington is a historical, educational, and international city. And you can't forget about the shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Baltimore and Arlington: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Home to Arlington National Cemetery


Is there more to do in Baltimore or Arlington?

Travelers will usually find more to do in Baltimore than Arlington, as it is bigger with more sights, attractions, and activities for visitors. Baltimore is popular for the Inner Harbor and its many water based activities. It is also home to the National Aquarium. Arlington is popular for its international connections, its biking and walking trails, and being the location of the Pentagon.

How is Baltimore different from Arlington?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Baltimore or Arlington?

Baltimore
Arlington

Plenty of people visit the excellent sights and museums in both Baltimore and Arlington.

Many visitors head to Baltimore specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. The city is known for its historic ships that are found in the Inner Harbor. There are many other museums around town as well like the American Visionary Art Museum, the Reginald F. Lewis Museum, and the Baltimore Museum of Art. Many days can be filled exploring the many art, history, or science museums in the area.

With a variety of museums, monuments, and historical sights, a trip to Arlington can be an interesting and educational experience. Arlington National Cemetery is where you'll find the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier as well as the tomb of John F. Kennedy Jr. There are many memorials around town, with the most famous being the U.S. Marine Corps Memorial. There are also several museums like the DEA Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art.


Is the Food Better in Baltimore or Arlington? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Baltimore
Arlington

Foodies will find both Baltimore and Arlington both to be excellent destinations.

Eating is part of the travel experience when you visit Baltimore. The city's location near the Chesapeake Bay means that there are many great local seafood dishes. Blue crab is a regional favorite and is often served as crab soup, crab dip, or crab cakes. You'll find many famous restaurants in the Inner Harbor, but if you want something more local you should check out Little Italy or Fells Point.

Arlington has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. It's a global city, and the restaurants reflect that. You'll find amazing Thai, Japanese, and Mexican restaurants. There are also less common cuisines to choose from such as Ethiopian, Moroccan, and Peruvian.

Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Nightlife?

Baltimore
Arlington

Party-goers will find similar levels of energy in Baltimore and Arlington.

Baltimore is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. It's a vibrant city with many night time activities like breweries, night clubs, and cocktail bars. There's even outside the box activities like ballroom dancing or arcade bars.

Many people head to Arlington for the nightlife scene. The city has a huge young population that drives the nightlife scene. There are clubs, bars, and lounges in many neighborhoods. There are also comedy clubs and plenty of live music.

Is the Shopping Better in Baltimore or Arlington?

Baltimore
Arlington

Baltimore is an excellent place to visit for its shopping areas. Also, Arlington is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for shopping.

Many visitors explore the shopping areas in Baltimore. Shopping is a great way to experience the different neighborhoods around town. For high end shopping head to Harbor East. For a bit more history check out Federal Hill. Hampden is known for its quirky style and Fell's Point is particularly popular with tourists.

Arlington is a great destination for shopping. Many neighborhoods have local shops or farmer's markets. There are also shopping centers and malls such as Ballston Quarter, The Crossing Clarendon, and The Village at Shirlington.


Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Families?

Baltimore
Arlington

Baltimore is an excellent place to visit for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Arlington is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its family-friendly activities.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Baltimore. The National Aquarium is a highlight for many families. It's an impressive aquarium with dolphins, sharks, puffins, and fish. Also in town is the Port Discovery Children’s Museum which has many interactive exhibits. The Maryland Science Center, the Maryland Zoo, and the many historic ships in the harbor also offer educational opportunities for kids. For something a bit different, check out Urban Pirates in the Inner Harbor.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Arlington. Kids will enjoy seeing the planes talk off from Gravelly Point park. There are also plenty of outdoor spaces and educational opportunities in the area, including world class museums.

Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Couples?

Baltimore
Arlington

Both Baltimore and Arlington are good destinations to visit as a couple.

Baltimore makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. Most visitors spend the majority of their time around the Inner Harbor. There are restaurants and romantic hotels that are perfect for couples. The city also has many entertainment options and other activities that make for a great date night.

Arlington is a good city for couples to visit. There's a vibrant cultural scene and many international restaurants that couples can enjoy. It's also a great place to take in a show or concert.

Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Baltimore
Arlington

Arlington is well known for backpackers. Also, Baltimore is still popular, but not quite as popular for backpackers and budget travelers.

Arlington is a great city to visit for backpackers. There are a couple of hostels and many free activities nearby. There's also great public transportation that makes for a convenient backpacker destination.

It's common for backpackers to visit Baltimore. There are a couple of hostels around town, but most international travelers overlook this city.


Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Students?

Baltimore
Arlington

Arlington is well known for students. However, Baltimore is not popular with students.

Arlington is very popular with students. There are a huge number of colleges and museums in the area as well as many great internship and educational opportunities.

Baltimore is not popular with students.

Is Baltimore or Arlington Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Baltimore
Arlington

Arlington is a world-class destination for its public transit. Also, Baltimore is still popular, but not quite as popular for times when you don't have a car.

With a huge network, the transit system in Arlington can get you around easily. There is a reliable bus system around town as well as many metro connections.

Many visitors use the public transit system in Baltimore. There are water taxis and a free downtown bus service that's called the Charm City Circulator. MTA also operates a metro and a light rail system.

Is Baltimore or Arlington a more walkable city?

Baltimore
Arlington

Baltimore and Arlington both are excellent when exploring on foot.

Baltimore is a very walkable city. The downtown area is the most walkable part of the city. In particular, the Inner Harbor and Fells Point are particularly walkable.

Arlington is a very walkable destination. There are many pedestrian-friendly areas around town, particularly in the neighborhoods that are concentrated around metro stations.


For even more information, also check out Is Baltimore Worth Visiting? and Is Arlington Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Arlington or Baltimore?

How long in Baltimore or Arlington?

It's fun to spend time in either Baltimore or Arlington. Generally, people tend to spend more time in Arlington due to the larger number of activities and things to do. Usually, 2-3 days is a good amount of time for Baltimore, and 2-4 days is enough time in Arlington.

Families should spend more time in Baltimore than Arlington. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Baltimore, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Arlington than Baltimore if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Arlington.


  • How many days in Baltimore or Arlington? Ideal Length of Stay
    Baltimore 2-3 
    Arlington 2-4

One day in Baltimore or Arlington?

You'll find shopping and museums around the city of Baltimore. 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.

You'll find shopping and museums around the city of Arlington. 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.

A weekend in Baltimore or Arlington?

You'll find museums and nightlife around the colorful destination of Baltimore. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

You'll find museums and nightlife around the historical destination of Arlington. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Five days in Baltimore or Arlington?

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the vibrant city of Baltimore. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the international city of Arlington. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.


A week in Baltimore or Arlington?

Baltimore is a popular choice for travelers. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Arlington is a popular choice for travelers. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Los Angeles, The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from New York City, The Best 2-Week Tours from New York City, and The Best 2-Week Tours from Anchorage.


Which place is cheaper, Arlington or Baltimore?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Baltimore is $184, while the average daily cost in Arlington is $264. 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 Baltimore and Arlington in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Baltimore $93
    Arlington $131
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Baltimore $186
    Arlington $262
Compare Hotels in Baltimore and Arlington

Looking for a hotel in Baltimore or Arlington? 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 Baltimore


Hotels in Arlington


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: Baltimore Hotel Prices and Arlington Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Baltimore $21
    Arlington $49

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Baltimore

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Baltimore:

  • Private transfer To or Form Bethesda and Dulles International Airport: $209
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Baltimore Washington Airport BWI: $60
  • Oakland to San Francisco Airport (SFO)-Departure Private Transfer: $44
  • Departure Private Transfer Baltimore to Baltimore Airport BWI - Business Vehicle: $111
  • Private Transfer to BWI or Washington DC/Airports: $160
  • Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) to Washington - Arrival Private Transfer: $92
  • Baltimore City to Washington City - Private Car Transfer: $62
  • BWI Airport: Transfer to Baltimore or Washington DC: $150
  • Airport Transfer Baltimore/Washington International Airport BWI to Washington,DC: $240
  • Airport Transfer BWI Airport to Baltimore Downtown Area Only: $160

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Arlington

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

  • Ronald Reagan DCA Airport Transfers: $160

Is it cheaper to fly into Baltimore or Arlington?

Prices for flights to both Arlington and Baltimore 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
    Baltimore $46
    Arlington $81
Typical Food Prices in Baltimore

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


  • Seafood Dinner (for 2) in Fells Point
    $76

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Baltimore

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

  • Federal Hill Food Tour: $71
  • Little Italy and Jonestown Food Tour: $73
  • Fells Point Food Tour in Baltimore: $74
  • Inner Harbor Buffet Brunch, Lunch, or Dinner: $76
  • Christmas Eve Gourmet Brunch or Dinner Cruise: $84
  • Christmas Day Gourmet Brunch or Dinner Cruise: $84
  • Baltimore Signature Dinner Cruise: $101
  • Baltimore Buffet Dinner/Dance Cruise of the Inner Harbor: $119
  • Baltimore Father's Day Buffet Dinner Cruise : $126
  • Baltimore 4th of July Buffet Dinner Cruise: $194
  • Baltimore New Year's Eve Buffet Dinner Cruise: $251

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Baltimore $18
    Arlington $11

Tours and Activities in Baltimore

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

  • Antietam National Battlefield Self-Guided Driving Tour: $15
  • Assateague Island Cruise Departs from Ocean Pines: $45
  • Baltimore Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $44
  • Baltimore Father's Day Buffet Brunch Cruise Tour: $105
  • Baltimore Ghosts By US Ghost Adventures: $24
  • Baltimore Harbor Tour: $31
  • Baltimore Indoor Skydiving Experience with 2 Flights & Personalized Certificate: $92
  • Baltimore Orioles Baseball Game Ticket at Oriole Park: $12
  • Baltimore Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Baltimore Signature Lunch Cruise: $76
  • Baltimore Walking Foodie Tour in Fells Point: $99
  • Baltimore's Cruise ship Tour-shuttle service: $25

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Baltimore $17
    Arlington $17

Sample the Local Flavors in Baltimore

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

  • Original Fells Point Haunted Pub Tour by Baltimore Ghost Tours: $33
  • Boos and Booze Haunted Pub Crawl: $35
  • From Patapsco Region Wine Tour with Lunch: $175


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

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


Which is Bigger, Baltimore or Arlington?

Baltimore has a larger population, and is about 3 times larger than the population of Arlington. When comparing the sizes of Baltimore and Arlington, 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.


When is the best time to visit Baltimore or Arlington?

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 Baltimore or Arlington in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Baltimore as well as Arlington. The city activities and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Baltimore this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Arlington for the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Baltimore is around the same temperature as Arlington. Typically, the summer temperatures in Baltimore in July average around 78°F (25°C), and Arlington averages at about 79°F (26°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Arlington. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Baltimore this time of the year. In the summer, Baltimore often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Arlington. Baltimore gets 283 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arlington receives 278 hours of full sun.

Baltimore receives a lot of rain in the summer. Baltimore usually gets more rain in July than Arlington. Baltimore gets 4.1 inches (103 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 3.5 inches (88 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Baltimore 78°F (25°C) 
    Arlington 79°F (26°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Arlington in the Autumn?

Both Arlington and Baltimore are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Many travelers come to Baltimore for the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, many visitors come to Arlington in the autumn for the shopping scene.

In October, Baltimore is generally around the same temperature as Arlington. Daily temperatures in Baltimore average around 57°F (14°C), and Arlington fluctuates around 60°F (15°C).

Baltimore usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Arlington during autumn. Baltimore gets 196 hours of sunny skies, while Arlington receives 197 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Baltimore usually receives around the same amount of rain as Arlington. Baltimore gets 2.8 inches (71 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Baltimore 57°F (14°C) 
    Arlington 60°F (15°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Arlington in the Winter?

Both Arlington and Baltimore during the winter are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Baltimore in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Furthermore, most visitors come to Arlington for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

Arlington can be very cold during winter. Baltimore can get quite cold in the winter. Baltimore is much colder than Arlington in the winter. The daily temperature in Baltimore averages around 32°F (0°C) in January, and Arlington fluctuates around 35°F (1°C).

In the winter, Baltimore often gets more sunshine than Arlington. Baltimore gets 153 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arlington receives 139 hours of full sun.

Baltimore usually gets more rain in January than Arlington. Baltimore gets 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.7 inches (68 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Baltimore 32°F (0°C) 
    Arlington 35°F (1°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Arlington in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Baltimore and Arlington. Most visitors come to Baltimore for the activities around the city during these months.

In the spring, Baltimore is cooler than Arlington. Typically, the spring temperatures in Baltimore in April average around 54°F (12°C), and Arlington averages at about 56°F (14°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Arlington this time of the year. In Baltimore, it's very sunny this time of the year. Baltimore usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Arlington during spring. Baltimore gets 225 hours of sunny skies, while Arlington receives 228 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Baltimore usually receives more rain than Arlington. Baltimore gets 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.8 inches (72 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Baltimore 54°F (12°C) 
    Arlington 56°F (14°C)

Typical Weather for Arlington and Baltimore

Baltimore Arlington
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 32°F (0°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 35°F (1°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm)
Feb 35°F (2°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 37°F (3°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm)
Mar 45°F (7°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm) 47°F (8°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Apr 54°F (12°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 56°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm)
May 64°F (18°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm) 66°F (19°C) 3.5 inches (89 mm)
Jun 73°F (23°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 75°F (24°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm)
Jul 78°F (25°C) 4.1 inches (103 mm) 79°F (26°C) 3.5 inches (88 mm)
Aug 76°F (25°C) 4.2 inches (107 mm) 78°F (26°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Sep 69°F (21°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 71°F (22°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Oct 57°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 60°F (15°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
Nov 47°F (9°C) 3.1 inches (80 mm) 50°F (10°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Dec 37°F (3°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 39°F (4°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)