A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Baltimore vs. Virginia Beach for Food, Nightlife, Families, and Couples

Should you visit Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

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 Virginia Beach can help you decide which place is right for you.

Baltimore

Baltimore is a historic, vibrant, and diverse city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. Visitors also love the museums, nightlife, and food.

Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is a bustling, fun-filled, and relaxing coastal city. It's a beautiful place to visit, too. And you can't forget about the nightlife and beaches.

Baltimore and Virginia Beach: Pros and Cons

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


Is there more to do in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

You'll generally find more things to do in Baltimore than Virginia Beach. Baltimore is bigger than Virginia Beach, and it also has more attractions and activities for travelers. Baltimore is better known for its museums, food, nightlife, shopping, and big city activities, while Virginia Beach is more popular for its resorts, beaches, and impressive beauty. Baltimore is more touristy than Virginia Beach and is popular for the Inner Harbor and its many water based activities. Also, Baltimore is famous for the National Aquarium. Virginia Beach is well known for its fun boardwalk, many seafood restaurants, and classic beach town vibe.

How is Baltimore different from Virginia Beach?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for its historical sights. However, Virginia Beach does not have museums and landmarks.

With a variety of museums, monuments, and historical sights, a trip to Baltimore can be an interesting and educational experience. 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.

Virginia Beach does not have museums and landmarks.


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

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for its local flavors and cuisine. However, Virginia Beach is not a good destination for its local cuisine and restaurants.

Baltimore has a huge number of terrific restaurants. 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.

Virginia Beach may not make the list for most foodies, but you'll find what you need while you're in town. Seafood is plentiful around town and there are all-you-can-eat buffets as well as high end, waterfront seafood restaurants. Make sure you try the She Crab Soup, soft shell crabs, and oysters.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Nightlife?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for nightlife and partying. Also, Virginia Beach is not as popular, but is still a nice coastal city for its evening party scene.

Many people head to Baltimore for the nightlife scene. 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.

There's a variety of activities in the evening in Virginia Beach. While it's a family-friendly beach, there's still a great nightlife scene with many bars and clubs in the area. Popular places to hang out at night include Omega Bar, Peabody's Nightclub, and Sky Bar.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Resorts?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is very good for its resorts. However, Baltimore is not a resort destination.

With a selection of resorts, Virginia Beach makes a nice vacation spot. Some of the best resorts in the area include the Historic Cavalier Hotel and Beach Club, the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront, and The Founders Inn and Spa.

Baltimore is not a resort destination.


Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Beaches?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is very good for the beache. However, Baltimore is not a beach destination.

Many people head to Virginia Beach to enjoy the beach. The beaches are long and sandy, but they can get crowded during the summer months. The waves are just the right size for playing in the surf and the water temperature is usually warm enough to swim well into the fall months.

Baltimore is not a beach destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for its shopping opportunities. However, Virginia Beach is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Baltimore is well-known for its shopping. 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.

Virginia Beach is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Families?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

You'll find excellent kid-friendly activities in either Baltimore or Virginia Beach.

Baltimore is a very kid-friendly city. 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 family-friendly things to do in Virginia Beach. This is a popular family-friendly beach with a nice boardwalk, a fun waterpark, aquarium, and nice beaches. It attracts families in the area for its long beaches and fun atmosphere. Most restaurants have kid's menus and there are ice cream shops and minigolf around.


Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Couples?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Both Baltimore and Virginia Beach are notable 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.

Virginia Beach is a good city for couples to visit. Couples will enjoy a nice escape to the beaches and boardwalk. There are many great seafood restaurants, some with waterfront settings. There's also a variety of activities ranging from many golf to dance clubs.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is a nice place to visit for backpackers and budget travelers. However, Virginia Beach is not a backpacker-friendly destination.

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

Virginia Beach is not a backpacker-friendly destination.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach Better for Students?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach is very good for students. However, Baltimore is not popular with students.

Virginia Beach is popular with students. It's not as popular as more southern beach towns, but you'll still find students heading here for the spring break holidays.

Baltimore is not popular with students.


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

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for times when you don't have a car. However, Virginia Beach is not a good destination for its public transit.

The public transit in Baltimore can get you around easily. 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 limited or non-existant in Virginia Beach. There is very limited public transit in the area so you'll need to have a car to get around.

Is Baltimore or Virginia Beach a more walkable city?

Baltimore
Virginia Beach

Baltimore is great for its high level of walkability. However, Virginia Beach is not a good destination for its ease of walking around.

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.

Virginia Beach is generally not very walkable. Most people prefer to have a car but do note that parking can be a nightmare, particularly during the summer season.

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

Should I spend more time in Virginia Beach or Baltimore?

How long in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

Both Baltimore and Virginia Beach have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Virginia Beach than in Baltimore. Usually, 2-3 days is a good amount of time for Baltimore, and 5-7 days is enough time in Virginia Beach.

Families should spend more time in Baltimore than Virginia Beach. 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 Virginia Beach. 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 Virginia Beach 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 Virginia Beach? Ideal Length of Stay
    Baltimore 2-3 
    Virginia Beach 5-7

One day in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

In Baltimore, you'll find museums and nightlife. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

You'll find nightlife around the coastal city of Virginia Beach. 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 Virginia Beach?

Baltimore is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Because of this, a weekend is usually enough time for a trip here.

You'll find nightlife around the bustling destination of Virginia Beach. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This coastal city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Five days in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Baltimore. It offers something for everyone. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

You'll find nightlife around the relaxing coastal city of Virginia Beach. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this coastal city makes for a great vacation. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this coastal city has to offer.

A week in Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

Travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the city of Baltimore. Your budget might influence how long you stay. 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.

Virginia Beach is a popular choice for travelers. One week here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Virginia Beach, one week is sufficent for most. 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, Virginia Beach 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 Virginia Beach is $126. 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 Virginia Beach in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Baltimore $93
    Virginia Beach $71
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Baltimore $186
    Virginia Beach $142
Compare Hotels in Baltimore and Virginia Beach

Looking for a hotel in Baltimore or Virginia Beach? 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 Virginia Beach


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 Virginia Beach Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Baltimore $21
    Virginia Beach $39

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Baltimore

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Baltimore:

  • Airport Transfer Baltimore/Washington International Airport BWI to Washington,DC: $240
  • Airport transfer to or from Silver Spring, MD & Reagan Airport(DCA): $200
  • Private transfer To or Form Bethesda and Ronald Reagan Airport: $174
  • Airport Transfer BWI Airport to Baltimore Downtown Area Only: $160
  • Private Transfer to BWI or Washington DC/Airports: $160
  • BWI Airport: Transfer to Baltimore or Washington DC: $150
  • Departure Private Transfer Baltimore to Baltimore Airport BWI - Business Vehicle: $111
  • Arrival Private Transfer Baltimore Airport BWI to Baltimore by Business Vehicle: $111
  • Baltimore Washington Airport (BWI) to Washington - Arrival Private Transfer: $93
  • One Way Airport Transfer Service: $74
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Baltimore Washington Airport BWI: $60
  • Oakland to San Francisco Airport (SFO)-Departure Private Transfer: $44

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Virginia Beach

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Virginia Beach:


  • Beach Parking
    $10

Is it cheaper to fly into Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

Prices for flights to both Virginia Beach 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
    Virginia Beach $30
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

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Baltimore $18
    Virginia Beach $21

Tours and Activities in Baltimore

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

  • Assateague Island Cruise Departs from Ocean Pines: $45
  • Baltimore Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $44
  • Baltimore Ghosts By US Ghost Adventures: $30
  • Baltimore Harbor Tour: $28
  • Baltimore Indoor Skydiving Experience with 2 Flights & Personalized Certificate: $92
  • Baltimore Monuments Walking Tour: $20
  • Baltimore Orioles Baseball Game Ticket at Oriole Park: $22
  • Baltimore Ravens Football Game Ticket at M&T Bank Stadium: $24
  • Baltimore Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Baltimore Signature Lunch Cruise: $67
  • Baltimore Walking Foodie Tour in Fells Point: $99
  • Baltimore's Cruise ship Tour-shuttle service: $25

Tours and Activities in Virginia Beach

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Virginia Beach.

  • Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Virginia Beach by Wacky Walks: $10
  • Neptune Ghosts: Ghosts of the Coast By US Ghost Adventures: $24
  • Neptune Ghosts Haunted Walking Tour: $26
  • Sunset Stand-Up Paddleboarding Tour: $45
  • Morning Stand-Up Paddleboarding Tour: $45
  • Ziplining and Climbing at The Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium: $59
  • Dolphin Stand-Up Paddleboard Tour: $60
  • Wetland Zip Tour: $65
  • Sunset Dolphin Kayak Tours: $68
  • Small Group Dolphin Kayak Eco-Tour: $68
  • Dolphin Kayak Tour in Virginia Beach Must know how to swim: $77
  • Kayak Dolphin Experience in Virginia Beach Must know how to swim: $77

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Baltimore $17
    Virginia Beach $11

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

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


Which is Bigger, Baltimore or Virginia Beach?

Baltimore has a larger population, and is about 44% larger than the population of Virginia Beach. When comparing the sizes of Baltimore and Virginia Beach, 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 Virginia Beach?

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 Virginia Beach in the Summer?

Both Virginia Beach and Baltimore during the summer are popular places to visit. The city activities and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Baltimore this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Virginia Beach for the beaches and the family-friendly experiences.

Baltimore is around the same temperature as Virginia Beach in the summer. The daily temperature in Baltimore averages around 78°F (25°C) in July, and Virginia Beach fluctuates around 79°F (26°C).

In Virginia Beach, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Baltimore. In the summer, Baltimore often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 283 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Virginia Beach receives 279 hours of full sun.

Virginia Beach gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Baltimore. Baltimore usually gets less rain in July than Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 4.1 inches (103 mm) of rain, while Virginia Beach receives 5.7 inches (145 mm) of rain this time of the year.


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

Should I visit Baltimore or Virginia Beach in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Baltimore and Virginia Beach. Many travelers come to Baltimore for the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, many visitors come to Virginia Beach in the autumn for the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Baltimore is cooler than Virginia Beach. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Baltimore in October average around 57°F (14°C), and Virginia Beach averages at about 62°F (16°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Virginia Beach this time of the year. Baltimore usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Virginia Beach during autumn. Baltimore gets 196 hours of sunny skies, while Virginia Beach receives 211 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Baltimore usually receives less rain than Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 2.8 inches (71 mm) of rain, while Virginia Beach receives 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Baltimore 57°F (14°C) 
    Virginia Beach 62°F (16°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Virginia Beach in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Baltimore as well as Virginia Beach. Many visitors come to Baltimore in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, most visitors come to Virginia Beach for the cuisine during these months.

Virginia Beach can be very cold during winter. Baltimore can get quite cold in the winter. In January, Baltimore is generally much colder than Virginia Beach. Daily temperatures in Baltimore average around 32°F (0°C), and Virginia Beach fluctuates around 39°F (4°C).

In the winter, Baltimore often gets less sunshine than Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 153 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Virginia Beach receives 168 hours of full sun.

Baltimore usually gets less rain in January than Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain, while Virginia Beach receives 3.3 inches (85 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Baltimore 32°F (0°C) 
    Virginia Beach 39°F (4°C)

Should I visit Baltimore or Virginia Beach in the Spring?

Both Virginia Beach and Baltimore are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Baltimore for the activities around the city during these months. Also, the spring months attract visitors to Virginia Beach because of the beaches and the natural beauty.

Baltimore is cooler than Virginia Beach in the spring. The daily temperature in Baltimore averages around 54°F (12°C) in April, and Virginia Beach fluctuates around 58°F (14°C).

It's quite sunny in Virginia Beach. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Baltimore. Baltimore usually receives less sunshine than Virginia Beach during spring. Baltimore gets 225 hours of sunny skies, while Virginia Beach receives 253 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Baltimore usually receives more rain than Virginia Beach. Baltimore gets 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain, while Virginia Beach receives 2.7 inches (69 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Baltimore 54°F (12°C) 
    Virginia Beach 58°F (14°C)

Typical Weather for Virginia Beach and Baltimore

Baltimore Virginia Beach
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 32°F (0°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 39°F (4°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Feb 35°F (2°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 41°F (5°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Mar 45°F (7°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm) 49°F (10°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm)
Apr 54°F (12°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm) 58°F (14°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm)
May 64°F (18°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm) 67°F (19°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Jun 73°F (23°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 74°F (24°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm)
Jul 78°F (25°C) 4.1 inches (103 mm) 79°F (26°C) 5.7 inches (145 mm)
Aug 76°F (25°C) 4.2 inches (107 mm) 78°F (25°C) 5.9 inches (150 mm)
Sep 69°F (21°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 72°F (22°C) 4.2 inches (107 mm)
Oct 57°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 62°F (16°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)
Nov 47°F (9°C) 3.1 inches (80 mm) 53°F (12°C) 3 inches (75 mm)
Dec 37°F (3°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 44°F (7°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm)