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

Should you visit Baltimore or Raleigh?

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 Raleigh can help you decide which place is right for you.

Baltimore

Baltimore is a colorful, historic, and vibrant city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. Other popular activities here include shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Raleigh

Raleigh is a southern, student-friendly, and suburban-style city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. And you can't forget about the food, museums, and nightlife.

Baltimore and Raleigh: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for students
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with couples
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable


Is there more to do in Baltimore or Raleigh?

Travelers will usually find more to do in Baltimore than Raleigh, as it is bigger with more sights, attractions, and activities for visitors. Baltimore is more touristy than Raleigh and is known for the Inner Harbor and its many water based activities. It is also home to the National Aquarium. Raleigh is popular for its many museums and being the home to North Carolina State University.

How is Baltimore different from Raleigh?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Raleigh 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 Raleigh?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its museums and landmarks. Also, Raleigh is still popular, but not quite as popular for its historical sights.

Baltimore offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. 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.

Raleigh is a good place to visit if you're interested in museums or other recognizable sights. As the state capital, there are a number of free museums in the area. There are also some kid-friendly options and other activities that are affiliated with the colleges and universities. Popular options include the NC Museum of Natural Sciences (free), the NC Museum of History (free), the NC Museum of Art (free), and Marbles Kids Museum.


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

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its restaurant scene. Also, Raleigh is still popular, but not quite as popular for its local flavors and cuisine.

Dining out in Baltimore is an experience not to be missed. 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.

There are plenty of up and coming restaurants around Raleigh. In addition to the standard chain restaurants, you'll find a number of local eateries with great southern dishes. Try some southern classics like barbecue, pimento cheese, and fried chicken and waffles. There are also good international options including Nepalese, Laotian, and Ethiopian flavors.

Is Baltimore or Raleigh Better for Nightlife?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its evening party scene. Also, Raleigh is still popular, but not quite as popular for nightlife.

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.

If you're looking for night time activities Raleigh has a few options to choose from. Head to downtown Raleigh or the areas around NC State University for some of the best nightlife. Trivia nights and happy hours are popular and you'll find breweries popping up in many places.

Is the Shopping Better in Baltimore or Raleigh?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its shopping areas. However, Raleigh is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity 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.

Raleigh is not a noteworthy shopping destination.


Is Baltimore or Raleigh Better for Families?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its family-friendly activities. Also, Raleigh is still popular, but not quite as popular for its kid-friendly activities.

Baltimore is known to be a very family-friendly place to visit. 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.

Raleigh offers lots of family activities. For such a small city, Raleigh has a number of unique kid-friendly activities like the popular Pullen Park and Marbles Kids' Museum. Pullen Park has small rides and a playground that are perfect for young kids. There's also the NC Museum of Natural History which is free and fun to explore with kids.

Is Baltimore or Raleigh Better for Couples?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is a popular place for couples. However, Raleigh is not particularly known for romance.

Baltimore is a good city for couples to visit. 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.

Raleigh is not the best destination for a couple to visit. While it's often overlooked by couples who want a weekend away, there are a number of museums and some nice restaurants to explore.

Is Baltimore or Raleigh Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is a popular place for backpackers. However, Raleigh is not a backpacker-friendly destination.

Plenty of budget travelers visit Baltimore. There are a couple of hostels around town, but most international travelers overlook this city.

Raleigh is not a backpacker-friendly destination.


Is Baltimore or Raleigh Better for Students?

Baltimore
Raleigh

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

Raleigh is very popular with students. The city has a diverse student population with many nearby universities and colleges.

Baltimore is not popular with students.

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

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its public transit. However, Raleigh is not particularly known for times when you don't have a car.

Baltimore offers a very effecient public transportation network. 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.

Public transit is quite limited in Raleigh. The city's public transportation options are limited to a few bus lines that are mostly used by students.

Is Baltimore or Raleigh a more walkable city?

Baltimore
Raleigh

Baltimore is well known for its ease of walking around. However, Raleigh is not particularly known for its walkability.

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

Raleigh is generally not a very walkable city. The city is somewhat walkable in the downtown area, but everywhere else you'll need a car.


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

Should I spend more time in Raleigh or Baltimore?

How long in Baltimore or Raleigh?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Baltimore and Raleigh. In our opinion, Baltimore has more to see and do, so we recommend that you spend more time in Baltimore than Raleigh. However, 2-3 days is a good amount of time to spend in either destination.

Families should spend more time in Baltimore than Raleigh. 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.

Couples should spend more time in Baltimore than Raleigh. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Baltimore that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Baltimore than Raleigh 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 Baltimore.


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

One day in Baltimore or Raleigh?

In Baltimore, you'll find nightlife and food. This city offers something for everyone. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

You'll find food and museums around the city of Raleigh. 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 Raleigh?

In Baltimore, you'll find food and shopping. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. A weekend here is typical. A weekend is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Baltimore has to offer.

You'll find museums and nightlife around the student-friendly destination of Raleigh. 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 Raleigh?

Baltimore is a great place to explore. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the friendly city of Raleigh. 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 Raleigh?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Baltimore. Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Baltimore. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Raleigh 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 Hiking & Trekking Tours in United States of America, The Best Historical Tours in United States of America, The Best 10-Day Tours in United States of America, and The Best One Week (7-Day) Tours in United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Raleigh 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 Raleigh is $189. 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 Raleigh in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Baltimore $93
    Raleigh $104
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Baltimore $186
    Raleigh $208
Compare Hotels in Baltimore and Raleigh

Looking for a hotel in Baltimore or Raleigh? 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 Raleigh


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 Raleigh Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Baltimore $21
    Raleigh $37

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Baltimore

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Baltimore:

  • Airport Transfer BWI Airport to Baltimore Downtown Area Only: $160
  • Airport Transfer Baltimore/Washington International Airport BWI to Washington,DC: $240
  • Airport transfer to or from Silver Spring, MD & Reagan Airport(DCA): $200
  • Arrival Private Transfer Baltimore Airport BWI to Baltimore by Business Vehicle: $111
  • BWI Airport: Transfer to Baltimore or Washington DC: $150
  • Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) to Washington - Arrival Private Transfer: $93
  • Private Transfer to BWI or Washington DC/Airports: $160
  • Departure Private Transfer Baltimore to Baltimore Airport BWI - Business Vehicle: $111
  • Oakland to San Francisco Airport (SFO)-Departure Private Transfer: $44
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Baltimore Washington Airport BWI: $60
  • Private transfer To or Form Bethesda and Ronald Reagan Airport: $174

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Raleigh

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Raleigh:

  • Durham to Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) - Departure Private Transfer: $62
  • Raleigh to Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) - Departure Private Transfer: $69
  • Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) to Durham - Arrival Private Transfer: $62
  • Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) to Durham - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $124
  • Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) to Raleigh - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $137
  • Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) to Raleigh Arrival Private Transfer: $69

Is it cheaper to fly into Baltimore or Raleigh?

Prices for flights to both Raleigh 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
    Raleigh $57
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.

  • Inner Harbor Buffet Brunch, Lunch, or Dinner: $67
  • Federal Hill Food Tour: $71
  • Little Italy and Jonestown Food Tour: $73
  • Fells Point Food Tour in Baltimore: $74
  • Christmas Eve Gourmet Brunch or Dinner Cruise: $84
  • Christmas Day Gourmet Brunch or Dinner Cruise: $84
  • Baltimore Signature Dinner Cruise: $88
  • Cross Street Market Small Group Food Tour: $99
  • Baltimore Buffet Dinner/Dance Cruise of the Inner Harbor: $119
  • Baltimore New Year's Eve Buffet Dinner Cruise: $251

Typical Food Prices in Raleigh

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


  • The Pit Authentic BBQ (for 3)
    $84

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Raleigh

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

  • Private Cooking Class in Durham with an Expert Home Cook: $104

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Baltimore $18
    Raleigh $37

Tours and Activities in Baltimore

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

  • Downtown Baltimore In-App Audio Tour: $9.00
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Baltimore Discovery: $13
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Baltimore's Hidden Gems: $13
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Baltimore Treasures: $13
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Discover Baltimore's Best: $13
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Charm City Quest: $13
  • Historic & Cultural Baltimore Self-Driving Audio Guided Tour: $14
  • Historical Baltimore Self-Driving Sightseeing Audio Tour: $17
  • Baltimore Monuments Walking Tour: $20
  • Baltimore Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Baltimore Orioles Baseball Game Ticket at Oriole Park: $22
  • The Original Fells Point Ghost Walk by Baltimore Ghost Tours: $24

Tours and Activities in Raleigh

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

  • Scavenger Hunt Adventure Self-Guided City Game: $10
  • Scavenger Hunt Adventure in Durham by Wacky Walks: $10
  • Self-guided adventure hunt: Discover Raleigh Secrets: $13
  • Raleigh Downtown: Historic Walking Tours: $13
  • Raleigh African American History Tour: $13
  • Murder Mystery Detective Experience in Chapel Hill NC: $15
  • True Crime History Guided Walking Tour: $16
  • Guided Walking Historian Tour in Downtown Durham: $16
  • Raleigh Historian-Guided Downtown Walking Tour: $16
  • Dix Hill Asylum: Dark History Tour: $16
  • Raleigh Ghost and Urban Legend Tour: $16
  • Downtown Cary Historic Tour: $18

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Baltimore $17
    Raleigh $27

Sample the Local Flavors in Baltimore

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

  • Boos and Booze Haunted Pub Crawl: $30
  • Original Fells Point Haunted Pub Tour by Baltimore Ghost Tours: $33
  • From Patapsco Region Wine Tour with Lunch: $175


When comparing the travel costs between Baltimore and Raleigh, we can see that Raleigh 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 North America, 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 Baltimore Expensive? and Is Raleigh Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Baltimore or Raleigh?

Baltimore has a larger population, and is about 2 times larger than the population of Raleigh. When comparing the sizes of Baltimore and Raleigh, 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 Raleigh?

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 Baltimore or Raleigh in the Summer?

Both Raleigh and Baltimore are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Baltimore for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences during these months. Also, the summer months attract visitors to Raleigh because of the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

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

It's quite sunny in Raleigh. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Baltimore. Baltimore usually receives more sunshine than Raleigh during summer. Baltimore gets 283 hours of sunny skies, while Raleigh receives 259 hours of full sun in the summer.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Raleigh. It's quite rainy in Baltimore. In July, Baltimore usually receives less rain than Raleigh. Baltimore gets 4.1 inches (103 mm) of rain, while Raleigh receives 5.1 inches (129 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


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

Should I visit Baltimore or Raleigh in the Autumn?

Both Raleigh and Baltimore during the autumn are popular places to visit. The autumn months attract visitors to Baltimore because of the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, the city's sights and attractions are the main draw to Raleigh this time of year.

In October, Baltimore is generally cooler than Raleigh. Daily temperatures in Baltimore average around 57°F (14°C), and Raleigh fluctuates around 61°F (16°C).

In Raleigh, it's very sunny this time of the year. In the autumn, Baltimore often gets less sunshine than Raleigh. Baltimore gets 196 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Raleigh receives 211 hours of full sun.

Baltimore usually gets around the same amount of rain in October as Raleigh. Baltimore gets 2.8 inches (71 mm) of rain, while Raleigh receives 2.8 inches (71 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Baltimore 57°F (14°C) 
    Raleigh 61°F (16°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Raleigh in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Baltimore and Raleigh. The museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Baltimore this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Raleigh for the museums and the cuisine.

Be prepared for some very cold days in Raleigh. It's quite cold in Baltimore in the winter. Baltimore is much colder than Raleigh in the winter. The daily temperature in Baltimore averages around 32°F (0°C) in January, and Raleigh fluctuates around 40°F (5°C).

Baltimore usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Raleigh during winter. Baltimore gets 153 hours of sunny skies, while Raleigh receives 162 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Baltimore usually receives less rain than Raleigh. Baltimore gets 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain, while Raleigh receives 3.2 inches (82 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Baltimore 32°F (0°C) 
    Raleigh 40°F (5°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Raleigh in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Baltimore as well as Raleigh. Many travelers come to Baltimore for the activities around the city. Also, many visitors come to Raleigh in the spring for the activities around the city.

In the spring, Baltimore is cooler than Raleigh. Typically, the spring temperatures in Baltimore in April average around 54°F (12°C), and Raleigh averages at about 60°F (16°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Raleigh. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Baltimore this time of the year. In the spring, Baltimore often gets less sunshine than Raleigh. Baltimore gets 225 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Raleigh receives 251 hours of full sun.

Baltimore usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Raleigh. Baltimore gets 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain, while Raleigh receives 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Baltimore 54°F (12°C) 
    Raleigh 60°F (16°C)

Typical Weather for Raleigh and Baltimore

Baltimore Raleigh
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 32°F (0°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 40°F (5°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Feb 35°F (2°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 43°F (6°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Mar 45°F (7°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm) 52°F (11°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm)
Apr 54°F (12°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 60°F (16°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)
May 64°F (18°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm) 68°F (20°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Jun 73°F (23°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 76°F (24°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm)
Jul 78°F (25°C) 4.1 inches (103 mm) 79°F (26°C) 5.1 inches (129 mm)
Aug 76°F (25°C) 4.2 inches (107 mm) 78°F (26°C) 4.9 inches (125 mm)
Sep 69°F (21°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 73°F (23°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm)
Oct 57°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 61°F (16°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm)
Nov 47°F (9°C) 3.1 inches (80 mm) 53°F (11°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm)
Dec 37°F (3°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 44°F (7°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)