A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Barcelona vs. New York City for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Music

Should you visit Barcelona or New York City?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Barcelona and New York City can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Barcelona

Barcelona is a laid-back, historic, and cultural city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. It's considered by many to be an absolutely beautiful destination, too. Other reasons to visit include beaches, shopping, and museums.

New York City

New York City is a cosmopolitan, one-of-a-kind, and vibrant city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. It's a gorgeous place to visit. It's also known for nightlife, live music, and food.

Barcelona and New York City: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities


How is Barcelona different from New York City?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City have interesting landmarks and museums for visitors.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Barcelona that are not to be missed. Architecture and history all contribute to the city's impressive sights and museums. Famous landmarks include the Basílica de la Sagrada Família, Casa Milà, and the Palace of Catalan Music.

The museums and tourist attractions in New York City are world-renowned. The sights and museums around the city are too numerous to list, but some of the most famous include the Statue of Liberty, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, Central Park, and the Empire State Building.


Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Food?

Barcelona
New York City

There are opportunities to sample the local cuisine at great restaurants in both Barcelona and New York City.

Many restaurants in Barcelona have been singled out for their culinary prowess. With easy access to fresh produce, there are many food markets around town. You'll also find great fresh local dishes at the many restaurants. Make sure you try the paella, croquettes, and Jamon Iberico.

Eat your way through New York City, as it has many local or world renowned restaurants to choose from. The city has a diverse variety of restaurants, from local dives to Michelin star options. Quintessential NYC dishes include NYC pizza, NYC hot dogs, bagels, and Chinese dim sum.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Nightlife?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City are comparable when it comes to partying.

Barcelona is a destination that you simply have to visit at least once for nightlife. The city offers an amazing nightlife at a much more affordable price than many places in Europe. There are beach parties, boat parties, and bars that stay packed late into the night. The city also hosts many street fiestas and music festivals.

New York City has a colorful and one-of-a-kind nightlife scene. Known as the city that never sleeps, you can be assured that NYC has some of the best nightlife in the world. Several famous clubs include Paul's Cocktail Lounge, Le Bain, and Avant Gardner.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Music?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City offer a variety of live music venues.

Barcelona is a world class music destination. Popular music venues include Tablao de Carmen, Razzmatazz, and Jamboree.

With so many music venues, you're guaranteed a show any night of the week in New York City. Popular music venues include Music Hall of Williamsburg, Radio City Music Hall, Beacon Theatre, and Forest Hills Stadium.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Shopping?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City are good shopping destinations.

Barcelona is a famous shopping destination with plenty of stores. Head to Portal De L’Angel, Rambla de Catalunya, or Passeig De Gracia for some of the city's best shopping districts.

Known for shopping, New York City draws large crowds to its stores. The shopping is as diverse as the city itself. Head for Fifth Avenue for high end shopping or check out any of the many street markets for local items.


Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Families?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City are fun to visit with kids.

Barcelona is a very family-friendly place to visit. Check out the Magic Fountains Show near Plaça d’Espanya, wander through the aquarium, or sample some chocolate at the Chocolate Museum. There are also many great parks and playgrounds around town.

Because of its large number of kid-friendly activities, New York City is very family-friendly. The city has many activities for kids of all ages including world class museums, beautifully designed playgrounds, and theater shows designed just for young ones.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City are popular destinations for backpackers.

Barcelona is a mecca for backpackers and budget travelers. There are many hostels around town, each with its own personality. Many of the hostels also organize activities or dinners for guests so it's easy to meet other travelers.

Many backpackers visit New York City. It isn't a particularly budget friendly destination, but it does get its share of backpackers, so you'll find a nice list of hostels and affordable hangouts that are perfect for the backpacker crowd.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Students?

Barcelona
New York City

Barcelona and New York City are both good destinations for students and younger travelers.

Barcelona is a very popular city for students. This is a popular study abroad destination and you'll find international students from around the world. It's a beautiful city with plenty to see and do.

New York City is a very popular place to visit for students. The city has a diverse population, and international students will feel right at home here exploring the city. There are also plenty of major universities including NYU, Columbia University, and Cornell University.

Is Barcelona or New York City Better for Public Transit?

Barcelona
New York City

Both Barcelona and New York City offer public transit options.

Barcelona has a great public transit system. There's a metro, bus, and tram system that navigates the city.

Public transit in New York City is top-notch. The city has one of the largest subway systems in the world. There's also an elaborate bus system, ferry system, and yellow taxis all around town.


Is Barcelona or New York City a more walkable city?

Barcelona
New York City

Barcelona and New York City both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Barcelona is very walkable. The city is more spread out than some other major European cities, but there are many plazas and outdoor areas that are fun to explore on foot. The city has designed "superilles," which are areas where car traffic has been directed around pedestrian-friendly plazas so visitors can explore, relax, or play.

It's very easy to get around on foot in New York City. The majority of the neighborhoods in Manhattan are very walkable and easy to explore on foot. Most people prefer not to drive here as it can be overwhelming and chaotic.

Should I spend more time in New York City or Barcelona?

How long in Barcelona or New York City?

Both Barcelona and New York City 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 Barcelona is 3-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to New York City is 3-7 days.


  • How many days in Barcelona or New York City? Ideal Length of Stay
    Barcelona 3-7 
    New York City 3-7

One day in Barcelona or New York City?

Barcelona is a bustling city that offers something for everyone. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. Your budget might influence how long you stay. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.

You'll find museums and theater around the city of New York City. 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 Barcelona or New York City?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Barcelona. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

You'll find theater and nightlife around the one-of-a-kind big city of New York City. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Five days in Barcelona or New York City?

Barcelona is a bustling city that offers something for everyone. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. If you have five days, this is a great place to go. Five days is usually enough time to experience most activities.

You'll find nightlife and live music around the vibrant city of New York City. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this city makes for a great vacation. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer.


A week in Barcelona or New York City?

Barcelona is a bustling city that offers something for everyone. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. Plenty of people spend one week in the area when traveling.So, one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

New York City is a popular choice for travelers. One week here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in New York City, one week is sufficent for most. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Which city is cheaper, New York City or Barcelona?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Barcelona is $128, while the average daily cost in New York City is $238. 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 Barcelona and New York City in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Barcelona $78
    New York City $137
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Barcelona $156
    New York City $274
Compare Hotels in Barcelona and New York City

Looking for a hotel in Barcelona or New York City? 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 Barcelona


Hotels in New York City


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: Barcelona Hotel Prices and New York City Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Barcelona $16
    New York City $39
Typical Local Transportation prices in Barcelona

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


  • 10 Trip Metro Ticket
    $8.12
  • Airport Bus
    $5.21
  • Metro
    $2.19

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Barcelona

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Barcelona:

  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Transfer from City Centre to Barcelona Cruise Port: $9.41
  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Transfer from Barcelona Cruise Port to City Centre: $9.41
  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Airport Transfer city centre to El Prat Airport BCN: $9.41
  • Transfers From Cruise Port to Barcelona Main Train Station( Sants Train Station): $30
  • Transfer to Montserrat Monastery from Barcelona: $33
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Barcelona El Prat Airport to Barcelona City: $39
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Barcelona City to Barcelona El Prat Airport: $39
  • Transfer in private minivan from Barcelona City to Barcelona el Prat Airport: $55
  • Transfer from Barcelona to Valencia or viceversa: $498
  • Transfer from Barcelona to Port Aventura Park: $435
  • Transfer from Barcelona Airport to Barcelona CITY - ROUND TRIP: $124
  • Transfer from Barcelona (any hotel or address) to Barcelona Airport (BCN): $61

Typical Local Transportation prices in New York City

Some typical examples of transportation costs in New York City are as follows:


  • Subway
    $4.50
  • Taxi Ride
    $8.00
  • Subway
    $2.50

Hired Cars and Shuttles in New York City

Also for New York City, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Departure Transfer Manhattan to NYC Airports JFK EWR LGA: $22
  • Private Departure Transfer Brooklyn to NYC Airports (JFK) (LGA) (EWR): $29
  • New York City Shared Shuttle Departure Transfer: Hotel to NYC Airports: $30
  • Private All Inclusive New York Transfer: Airport or Manhattan to Cruise Port: $71
  • Private New York airport transfer: New York airport to Manhattan and Brooklyn: $83
  • Private Transfer from New York City to LaGuardia Airport: $85
  • Private transfer: New York to New York Airport (LGA): $86
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Arrival Transfer: $90
  • Private All Inclusive New York City Airport Departure Transfer: $90
  • Manhattan Private Luxury Transfer to NYC Airports: $98
  • New York Airport Luxury Departure Transfer via Stretch Limousine, SUV, Sedan: $100
  • Private Transfer from Manhattan to John F Kennedy Airport JFK by Luxury Car: $111

Is it cheaper to fly into Barcelona or New York City?

Prices for flights to both New York City and Barcelona 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
    Barcelona $28
    New York City $37
Typical Food prices in Barcelona

Some typical examples of dining costs in Barcelona are as follows:


  • Hot Cocoa & Churro
    $4.32
  • Sandwich
    $1.77
  • Baguette & Horchata
    $3.96
  • Tapas on the beach
    $8.63
  • Gelatto
    $2.60

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Barcelona

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

  • Live from Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Live from Barcelona to China: Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Barcelona organic dinner in a beautiful rooftop garden: $35
  • Paella Cooking Experience + Boqueria Market Tour: $48
  • Interactive Spanish Cooking Experience in Barcelona: $49
  • Hands-on Brunch Cooking Class with Bottomless Mimosas!: $50
  • Born district food tour and tasting in Barcelona: $51
  • Street Food Tour & Gothic Quater Sightseeing with Local Expert: $52
  • Barcelona Street Food Tour: Local Market & Gothic Quarter with Expert Guide: $52
  • Tasty Barcelona Street Food Tour With Local Market Visit: $59
  • Skip the Line: Flamenco Show and Dinner Ticket: $62
  • 2-Hour Bites & Flavors Private Food Tour: $66

Typical Food prices in New York City

For New York City, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Gelato
    $7.50
  • Snacks for Two at Yankees Game
    $34
  • Coffee
    $6.53
  • Smoothie
    $6.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in New York City

For New York City, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • New York Pizza, Beer, and History Tour: $69
  • Greenwich Village History, Culture, and Food Tour with Local Expert: $129
  • Private New York City Food Tour of East Village and Greenwich Village: $147
  • JAPANESE guided tour! Bateaux Dinner Cruise tour with hotel transportation. The best way to enjoy the Manhattan night view from the river & sea. Full course French dinner, live band music included.: $333
  • Limo trip Hotel to Dinner round trip in NEW MKT Limousine: $481

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Barcelona $28
    New York City $77
Typical Entertainment prices in Barcelona

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Barcelona are as follows:


  • Picasso Walking Tour and Museum Pass
    $44
  • Souvenir Gaudi Book
    $8.90
  • Admission to Museo Picasso
    $6.25

Tours and Activities in Barcelona

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Barcelona are as follows:

  • #1dayBarcelona. 6-Hour Action Packed Private City Discovery Tour: $549
  • 'Game Of Thrones' Small Group Tour in Girona from Barcelona: $125
  • 1 hour private sailing tour: $158
  • 1,5 hour Vermut & Sailing Experience Barcelona with drinks and snacks!: $41
  • 1-hour Private Speedboat Cruise from Barcelona: $372
  • 1.5-Hour Sights of Barcelona E-Bike Tour Led by a Local Guide: $34
  • 2 Hours Private Sailing Tour for Family and Friends: $316
  • 2 Hours Running Tour in Barcelona with Local Guide: $35
  • 2 hour Private Sunset Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $372
  • 2 hour Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $47
  • 2 hour Sunset Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $47
  • 2 hours Exclusive Sunrise Sailing Experience from Port Vell: $335

Typical Entertainment prices in New York City

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for New York City's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Comedy Show Tickets
    $56
  • City Map
    $8.00
  • Broadway Musical
    $111
  • Broadway Show Program
    $10
  • Magazine
    $6.99

Tours and Activities in New York City

For New York City, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • New York: Brooklyn Heights & DUMBO Self-Guided Walking Tour: $6.00
  • 9/11 Tribute Museum Admission Ticket: $12
  • Central Park Zoo General Admission Ticket: $14
  • New York Self-Guided Audio Tour: $14
  • Brooklyn Museum General Admission Ticket: $14
  • New York: The Rubin Museum of Art Admission Ticket: $19
  • New York Aquarium Admission Tickets: $20
  • Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island Ticket: $21
  • American Dream: TiLT Interactive Museum Admission Ticket: $21
  • American Museum of Natural History Ticket: $23
  • New York Botanical Garden Admission Ticket: $23
  • American Museum of Natural History Admission Ticket: $23

For more ideas for your next trip, check out The Best Things to do in New York City with Kids, Things to Do in Central Park in NYC, and The Best Museums in New York City.


Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Barcelona $14
    New York City $23

Sample the Local Flavors in Barcelona

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Barcelona:

  • Estrella Damm Brewery Guided Tour with Tasting: $9.08
  • Generation Pub Crawl in Barcelona: $19
  • Barcelona Pub Crawl: $20
  • Wine Tasting Experience in Barcelona: $22
  • Opera Samfaina: Food and Wine Tasting Interactive Experience in Barcelona: $26
  • Wine tasting & tapas: $39
  • Barcelona Guided Local Wine Tasting Tour: $44
  • Wine Tasting near Sagrada Familia: $47
  • Home Food and Wine Tasting with Wine Lover: $51
  • Fun Wine Tasting in Barcelona with a Sommelier!: $53
  • Spanish wine tasting in a historic building with a Sommelier: $54
  • Food Tasting Tapas and Wine Tour: $62

Sample the Local Flavors in New York City

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in New York City:

  • Pub Crawl Tour of Historic Stone Street: $40


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Barcelona and New York City, we can see that New York City is more expensive. And not only is Barcelona much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. Since Barcelona is in Europe and New York City is in North America, this is one of the main reasons why the costs are so different, as different regions of the world tend to have overall different travel costs. So, traveling to Barcelona would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Barcelona 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 New York City would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in New York City than you might in Barcelona.


When is the best time to visit Barcelona or New York City?

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 Barcelona or New York City in the Summer?

Both New York City and Barcelona during the summer are popular places to visit. The beaches, the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Barcelona this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to New York City for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.

Barcelona is around the same temperature as New York City in the summer. The temperature in Barcelona is usually 23°C (73°F) in July, and New York City stays around 77°F (25°C).

New York City gets a good bit of rain this time of year. Barcelona usually gets less rain in July than New York City. Barcelona gets 22 mm (0.9 in) of rain, while New York City receives 4.5 inches (114 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Barcelona 23°C (73°F) 
    New York City 77°F (25°C)

Should I visit Barcelona or New York City in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Barcelona and New York City. Many travelers come to Barcelona for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Furthermore, many visitors come to New York City in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Barcelona is a little warmer than New York City. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Barcelona in October are around 17°C (63°F), and New York City is about 57°F (14°C).

In October, Barcelona usually receives more rain than New York City. Barcelona gets 94 mm (3.7 in) of rain, while New York City receives 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Barcelona 17°C (63°F) 
    New York City 57°F (14°C)

Should I visit Barcelona or New York City in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Barcelona as well as New York City. Many visitors come to Barcelona in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Additionally, most visitors come to New York City for the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine during these months.

New York City can be very cold during winter. In January, Barcelona is generally much warmer than New York City. Temperatures in Barcelona average around 9°C (48°F), and New York City stays around 31°F (-1°C).

Barcelona usually gets less rain in January than New York City. Barcelona gets 44 mm (1.7 in) of rain, while New York City receives 3.4 inches (86 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Barcelona 9°C (48°F) 
    New York City 31°F (-1°C)

Should I visit Barcelona or New York City in the Spring?

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

Barcelona is a little warmer than New York City in the spring. The temperature in Barcelona is usually 13°C (55°F) in April, and New York City stays around 52°F (11°C).

In April, Barcelona usually receives less rain than New York City. Barcelona gets 51 mm (2 in) of rain, while New York City receives 3.8 inches (98 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Barcelona 13°C (55°F) 
    New York City 52°F (11°C)

Typical Weather for New York City and Barcelona

Barcelona New York City
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 9°C (48°F) 44 mm (1.7 in) 31°F (-1°C) 3.4 inches (86 mm)
Feb 10°C (50°F) 36 mm (1.4 in) 33°F (1°C) 3 inches (77 mm)
Mar 11°C (52°F) 48 mm (1.9 in) 42°F (6°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Apr 13°C (55°F) 51 mm (2 in) 52°F (11°C) 3.8 inches (98 mm)
May 16°C (61°F) 57 mm (2.2 in) 63°F (17°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm)
Jun 20°C (67°F) 38 mm (1.5 in) 72°F (22°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Jul 23°C (73°F) 22 mm (0.9 in) 77°F (25°C) 4.5 inches (114 mm)
Aug 23°C (74°F) 66 mm (2.6 in) 76°F (24°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Sep 21°C (70°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 68°F (20°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm)
Oct 17°C (63°F) 94 mm (3.7 in) 57°F (14°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)
Nov 13°C (55°F) 74 mm (2.9 in) 47°F (8°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Dec 10°C (49°F) 50 mm (2 in) 36°F (2°C) 3.4 inches (88 mm)


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Barcelona vs. New York City Travel Comparison

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