A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Barcelona vs. Reykjavik for Food, Nightlife, Backpackers, and Families

Should you visit Barcelona or Reykjavik?

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 Reykjavik 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 friendly, colorful, and laid-back 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.

Reykjavik

Reykjavik is a clean, green, and safe city. You'll find world class beauty here as well. It's also known for nightlife, hiking, and shopping.

How is Barcelona different from Reykjavik?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Food?

Most foodies will appreciate the options in Barcelona a bit more than Reykjavik.

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.

Reykjavik offers some easy restaurants to choose from. Traditional Icelandic food may not have the best reputation, but restaurants these days are pretty good with a variety of dishes to choose from. Popular foods in the area include fish, lamb, and Icelandic skyr (a type of yogurt).


Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Nightlife?

Party-goers will usually choose Barcelona over Reykjavik.

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.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Reykjavik. The city offers the best nightlife in Iceland and you'll be surprised at the number of clubs, bars, and craft breweries that you can choose from. Almost all of the popular nightlife spots are around Laugavegur, a major shopping street in town.

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Shopping?

While Reykjavik and Barcelona are both popular shopping destinations, overall Barcelona is considered to be better.

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.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Reykjavik. The city's main shopping street is Laugavegur, which is where you'll find the most activity around town as well as a bustling atmosphere.

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Families?

Both Barcelona and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is a very family-friendly destination. With its many outdoor activities and hands on museums, the city is great for kids. The cafes and restaurants are family-friendly and their are plenty of entertainment options for the whole family.

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

While Reykjavik and Barcelona are both good for backpackers, overall Barcelona is more popular.

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.

Plenty of backpackers visit Reykjavik. There are a number of hostels around town, but they can be pretty expensive. Transportation can also be pretty challenging for backpackers.


Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Students?

While Reykjavik and Barcelona are both good for students, overall Barcelona is genreally more popular.

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.

Plenty of students visit Reykjavik. Students will enjoy a unique experience in this city. There are good academic programs as well as beautiful outdoor settings that you can explore.

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik better for Public Transit?

While Reykjavik and Barcelona both provide public transit, overall the system in Barcelona is considered to be better.

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

Reykjavik has some public transit options. There is a fairly comprehensive bus system around town.

Is Barcelona or Reykjavik a more walkable city?

Barcelona and Reykjavik 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.

Reykjavik is very walkable. The city is small and compact, so it's easy to explore on foot.

Barcelona and Reykjavik: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Good nightlife
  • Good for shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Good public transit
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Family-friendly
  • Impressive beauty
Cons
  • Less popular for food
  • Less popular for nightlife
  • Less popular for shopping
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Less popular for students
  • Public transit not as usable


Should I spend more time in Reykjavik or Barcelona?

How long in Barcelona or Reykjavik?

In either Barcelona or Reykjavik, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Barcelona than Reykjavik because of the overall number of sights and activities.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Barcelona is 3-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Reykjavik is 1-5 days.


  • How many days in Barcelona or Reykjavik? Ideal Length of Stay
    Barcelona 3-7 
    Reykjavik 1-5

One day in Barcelona or Reykjavik?

People visit Barcelona because there is so much to do. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. 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 nightlife and shopping around the city of Reykjavik. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. One day is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Reykjavik has to offer. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.


A weekend in Barcelona or Reykjavik?

People visit Barcelona because there is so much to do. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. 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.

You'll find shopping and nightlife around the clean destination of Reykjavik. Hikers are also drawn to this area. 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 Barcelona or Reykjavik?

People visit Barcelona because there is so much to do. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this city makes for a great vacation. It's also a great beach destination, too. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer.

You'll find nightlife and shopping around the green city of Reykjavik. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this city makes for a great vacation. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. Most people head to the area for the hiking. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer.

A week in Barcelona or Reykjavik?

Barcelona is a popular choice for travelers. One week here is typical. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Barcelona, one week is sufficent for most. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Reykjavik is a popular choice for travelers. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. 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.

Which city is cheaper, Reykjavik or Barcelona?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Barcelona is €123, while the average daily cost in Reykjavik is €198. 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 Reykjavik in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Barcelona 75
    Reykjavik 112
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Barcelona 150
    Reykjavik 224

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Barcelona 15
    Reykjavik 37
Typical Local Transportation prices in Barcelona

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


  • 10 Trip Metro Ticket
    7.80
  • Airport Bus
    5.00
  • Metro
    2.10

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

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Reykjavik

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

  • Ultra - Reykjavik Private Airport Transfer from Cruise Port to Keflavík Airport: $8.71
  • Keflavik Airport & Reykjavik Hotels: Economy Bus Transfer: $23
  • Shuttle Bus Transfer to/from Keflavik Airport: $26
  • Airport Express Shared Departure transfer from Reykjavik City to Keflavik Airport: $28
  • Airport Transfer in Iceland from Reykjavik City to Keflavik Airport One Way: $31
  • Blue Lagoon Return Bus Transfer from Reykjavik: $33
  • Airport Express Shared Departure Transfer from Reykjavik Hotels to Keflavik Airport: $37
  • Airport Transfer in Iceland from Reykjavik City to Keflavik Airport with Hotel Pick Up: $43
  • Direct Bus Transfer between Keflavik Airport & Hotels: $50
  • Door to Door Premium Airport transfer from Reykjavik Hotels to Keflavik International Airport: $63
  • Return Economy Airport Transfer between Keflavik International Airport and Reykjavik City: $66
  • Transfer to & from Blue Lagoon: $78

Is it cheaper to fly into Barcelona or Reykjavik?

Prices for flights to both Reykjavik 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 27
    Reykjavik 24
Typical Food prices in Barcelona

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


  • Hot Cocoa & Churro
    4.15
  • Sandwich
    1.70
  • Baguette & Horchata
    3.80
  • Tapas on the beach
    8.28
  • Gelatto
    2.50

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 Reykjavik

For Reykjavik, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Dinner (Fish Market)
    179

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Reykjavik

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

  • Exclusive dinner with a local family: $112
  • Weekend Reykjavik Food Tour with a stop at the Reykjavik Flea Market: $123
  • Dinner with an Icelandic Artist in Reykjavik Home: $151
  • Secret Lagoon, Buffet Dinner, and Northern Lights Tour from Reykjavik: $159
  • South Coast: Volcanoes, waterfalls & Viking dinner at the Viking house: $179
  • Private Reykjavik Food Tour: $198
  • South Coast: Small group glacier hike, fire & ice with dinner at Viking lodge: $199
  • Cook and Dine Icelandic Cooking Class Gourmet Lunch or Dinner: $204
  • Kopar Fine Dining Dinner and Northern Lights Cruise from Reykjavik: $229
  • West Iceland Private Food Tour from Reykjavik: $723

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Barcelona 27
    Reykjavik 58
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
    42
  • Souvenir Gaudi Book
    8.55
  • Admission to Museo Picasso
    6.00

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 Reykjavik

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


  • Art Museum
    11
  • Wine and Spa
    29

Tours and Activities in Reykjavik

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

  • Admission Ticket to Viking World Museum: $14
  • Aurora Reykjavík, The Northern Lights Center Entrance Ticket: $16
  • Skip the Line: Volcano House Admission Ticket: $17
  • Tales from Iceland Admission Ticket: $18
  • Skip the Line: Admission Ticket - The Culture House Reykjavik: $19
  • Skip the Line: The National Museum of Iceland Ticket: $20
  • Whales of Iceland Exhibition Entrance Ticket: $22
  • Whales Of Iceland Admission Ticket: $26
  • Bryggjan Brugghús Craft Beer Tour: $27
  • Reykjavik Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Reykjavik Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $32
  • Perlan - Wonders of Iceland Tour: $33
  • Perlan Wonders of Iceland - Ice cave & Nature Exhibition Ticket: $36

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Barcelona 14
    Reykjavik 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

Typical Alcohol prices in Reykjavik

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Reykjavik are as follows:


  • Beer
    8.86

Sample the Local Flavors in Reykjavik

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Reykjavik:

  • Eimverk Distillery Tour with Tasting: $34
  • Private Reykjavik Pub Crawl: $181
  • Reykjavik Food & Wine Tour: $249


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

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Barcelona vs. Reykjavik Travel Comparison

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