A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Bern vs. Milan for Food, Nightlife, Old Town, and Attractions

Should you visit Bern or Milan?

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

Should I visit Bern or Milan? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Bern

Bern is a cultural, historic, and charming city. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Milan

Milan is a cultural, trendy, and chic city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. You'll find world class beauty here as well. It's also known for food, shopping, and museums.

Bern and Milan: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for food
  • Less popular for nightlife
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty


Is there more to do in Bern or Milan?

You'll generally find more things to do in Milan than Bern. Milan is bigger than Bern, and it also has more attractions and activities for travelers. Bern is well known for its well-preserved old town and its reputation as the home of the Lindt chocolate factory. Milan is well known for its grand squares, dramatic architecture, and its leadership in the fashion world. Also, Milan is famous for Piazza del Duomo.

How is Bern different from Milan?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Bern or Milan?

Bern
Milan

Both Bern and Milan have excellent landmarks and museums for visitors.

Bern offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. The city is filled with architecture and charming character. While you're in town make sure you visit the Einstein Museum, the Clock Tower, and the Bern Cathedral.

Many visitors head to Milan specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. The Milan Cathedral is the most famous landmark in the city, but other sights include Castello Sforzesco, Pinacoteca di Brera, and Sant'Ambrogio.


Is the Food Better in Bern or Milan? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for its local cuisine and restaurants. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its restaurants.

For foodies, Milan is an obvious choice, as it is one of the food capitals of the world. The city has a mix of traditional dishes combined with modernized, trendy restaurants. You can try a new dish by a groundbreaking chef, or sample a long running favorite like risotto alla Milanese.

Bern has a delicious restaurant scene that relies on local flavors. The city has cozy cafes, high end fine dining, traditional eateries, and modern venues.

Is Bern or Milan Better for Nightlife?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for nightlife. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for nightlife and partying.

Milan is a destination that you simply have to visit at least once for nightlife. The city has a huge number of students and young professionals, which make it a fun place with an active nightlife. There are cocktail bars, trendy clubs, and relaxed pubs that you can chose from.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Bern. There are bars, Irish pubs, and clubs around town.

Is Bern or Milan Better for Music?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for live music. However, Bern is not a live music destination.

Milan is a world class music destination. The diversity of music ranges from classical concerts to techno raves. Popular venues include Blue Note Milan, Santeria Social Club, and Spirit de Milan.

Bern is not a live music destination.


Is Bern or Milan Better for its Old Town?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for its historic old town. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its old town.

The old town of Milan is one of the most recognized in the world. Known as the Centro Storic, this area is the most popular with tourists. It's where you'll find the most historic buildings and beautiful sights in the city.

There is a nice variety of sights in the old town of Bern. The charming old town is filled with quaint alleys and sandstone buildings. It's a compact area that flows down a hill to the River Aare.

Is the Shopping Better in Bern or Milan?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for shopping. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its shopping opportunities.

Milan is a famous shopping destination with plenty of stores. Famous as the fashion capital of Italy, shopping is the thing to do here. There are many streets that are lined with the biggest designers in fashion. Make sure you check out Via Monte Napoleone, Via Della Spiga, and Corso Buenos Aires.

Bern is well-known for its shopping. The old town is filled with boutique shops and unique markets. The main shopping streets are Spitalgasse and Marktgasse and popular items to buy include jewelry, art, and watches.

Is Bern or Milan Better for Families?

Bern
Milan

Bern is great for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Milan is not as popular, but is still a nice city for its family-friendly activities.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Bern. This charming town has riverside parks and pools, a zoo, a waterpark, and kid-friendly museums that the whole family can enjoy. You can also visit nearby Gurten, a mountain with tobogganing, concerts, and a mini ski resort.

Milan is a family-friendly place to visit. The city has a science museum and a children's museum, MuBa, that is great for the kids. There are also a number of parks to explore as well as playgrounds where the kids and get out their energy.


Is Bern or Milan Better for Couples?

Bern
Milan

With fun activities for couples, both Bern and Milan make for a excellent place to visit.

Bern is a very popular place to visit for couples. With charming restaurants, a beautiful rose garden, and nice hotels and spas, this town makes a beautiful romantic getaway.

Milan makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. There are many beautiful buildings, excellent shopping, and romantic restaurants that make for a wonderful couple's getaway.

Is Bern or Milan Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Bern
Milan

Both Bern and Milan are excellent destinations for backpackers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Bern. Like most of Switzerland, prices are a bit high, but there are some hostels and free activities that backpackers and budget travelers can enjoy.

Many backpackers visit Milan. While not as popular with backpackers as some Italian city's, there are a number of hostels and great activities that are fun for visitors.

Is Bern or Milan Better for Students?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for students. However, Bern is not popular with students.

Many students frequent Milan. It is one of the more popular city's for international students in Italy. It is very livable with a lot of culture and a fun nightlife, so you're sure to have the experience of a lifetime.

Bern is not popular with students.


Is Bern or Milan Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for its public transit. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for times when you don't have a car.

Milan has a great public transit system. Options include metro, bus, tram, and train lines.

The public transit in Bern can get you around easily. There are trams and buses that run around town.

Is Bern or Milan a more walkable city?

Bern
Milan

Milan is renowned for its walkability. Also, Bern is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its high level of walkability.

It is easy to get around Milan on foot. In particular, the city center is walkable.

Bern is a very walkable city. It's fun to explore the old town on foot. It is compact enough to that you can see all of the highlights in a few hours.

For even more information, also check out Is Bern Worth Visiting? and Is Milan Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Milan or Bern?

How long in Bern or Milan?

In either Bern or Milan, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Milan than Bern because of the overall number of sights and activities. Usually, 1-3 days is a good amount of time for Bern, and 1-5 days is enough time in Milan.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Milan than Bern 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 Milan.


  • How many days in Bern or Milan? Ideal Length of Stay
    Bern 1-3 
    Milan 1-5

One day in Bern or Milan?

In Bern, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this cultural destination offers. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Because of this, one day is usually enough time for a trip here.

Milan is a big city destination where you can fill many days. Visiting the old town is also a must. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One day is usually enough time to experience most activities.


A weekend in Bern or Milan?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Bern. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Milan is a fun place to experience. If you have a weekend, this is a great place to go. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. A weekend is often enough time to do most activities. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Five days in Bern or Milan?

Bern is a fun place to experience. Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the destination of Bern. Visiting the old town is also a must. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

Milan is a trendy big city where you can fill many days. This city offers something for everyone. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. Five days is often enough time to do most activities.

A week in Bern or Milan?

You'll find food and shopping around the beautiful destination of Bern. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

The cultural city of Milan offers shopping and museums. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. 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.


Which place is cheaper, Milan or Bern?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Bern is $258, while the average daily cost in Milan is $180. 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 Bern and Milan in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Bern $167
    Milan $104
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Bern $334
    Milan $208
Compare Hotels in Bern and Milan

Looking for a hotel in Bern or Milan? 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 Bern


Hotels in Milan


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: Bern Hotel Prices and Milan Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Bern $34
    Milan $38

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Bern

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Bern:

  • Private Transfer From Bern to Zurich, English Speaking Driver: $230
  • Private Transfer From Bern To Basel With a 2 Hour Stop in Olten: $215
  • Private Direct Transfer From Bern to Basel: $171

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Milan

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Milan:


  • Train to Airport
    $7.57
  • Malpensa Airport Train (for Two)
    $24
  • Taxi From Airport
    $97
  • Public Transit Day Pass
    $4.87
  • Short Taxi Ride
    $7.72

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Milan

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

  • Linate Airport to/from Milan Central Station Transfer: $5.42
  • Bus Transfer from/to Bergamo Airport: $11
  • Bergamo Airport Transfer: $11
  • Bus Transfer from Malpensa Airport and Milan Central Station: $11
  • Direct Transfer between Malpensa Airport and Center: $11
  • Transfer from Malpensa Airport to Milan city center: $12
  • Transfer Milan city center - Malpensa airport: $12
  • Transfer Milan city center - Bergamo Airport: $12
  • Milan Malpensa Airport to Turin Bus Transfer: $24
  • Serravalle Designer Outlet Roundtrip Bus Transfer: $27
  • Linate Airport Milan (LIN) to Milan - Arrival Private Transfer: $29
  • Milan to Linate Airport Milan (LIN) - Departure Private Transfer: $29

Is it cheaper to fly into Bern or Milan?

Prices for flights to both Milan and Bern 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
    Bern $62
    Milan $42

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Bern

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

  • Bern Food Market: Brunch & Local Food Tour: $65

Typical Food Prices in Milan

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Milan:


  • Snack at Train Station
    $9.31
  • Restaurant Pizza
    $7.14
  • Casual Cafe Lunch (for Two)
    $30
  • Three Course Dinner (for Two)
    $70
  • Cappuccino
    $1.76

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Milan

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

  • PYT Milano Dinner Show with Live Music and DJ Set: $22
  • Hard Rock Cafe with Set Menu for Lunch or Dinner: $30
  • Milan Gourmet Food Tour and Sightseeing with Local Guide: $39
  • Gourmet Street Food Tour with Sightseeing and Tasting: $46
  • Eating Milan Street Food Tour with Guided Tasting and Sightseeing: $46
  • Tasty Milan Street Food Tour with Local Guide: $46
  • Delicious Milan Street Food Tour Tasting and Sightseeing with Local Guide: $46
  • Devour Milan Street Food Tour and Sightseeing: $46
  • NO DIET CLUB - Best Food Tour in Milan !: $60
  • NO DIET CLUB - Best Food Tour in Milan !: $61
  • 2-Hour Cooking Course of Delicious Desserts for Families in Milan: $65
  • Local Cuisine Cooking Class with Wine: $65

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Bern $35
    Milan $33

Tours and Activities in Bern

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

  • 007 Elegance:Exclusive Private Tour to Schilthorn from Bern: $649
  • Alpine Heights: Small Group Tour to Jungfraujoch from Bern: $613
  • Bern Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and Walking Tour: $7.05
  • Bern Highlights Small-Group Walking Tour with a Local: $161
  • Bern Historical UNESCO Old Town Private Tour: $166
  • Bern Historical UNESCO Old Town Private Tour: $170
  • Bern Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $61
  • Bern Old City Walking Tour: $476
  • Bern Old Town - Private Historic Walking Tour: $541
  • Bern Private Walking Tour: $339
  • Bern Scavenger Hunt and Best Landmarks Self-Guided Tour: $4.42
  • Bern Scavenger Hunt and Sights Self-Guided Tour: $16

Typical Entertainment Prices in Milan

For Milan, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Stairs to Duomo Rooftop
    $7.57

Tours and Activities in Milan

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

  • First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.25
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Exploring the Famous Five Days: $4.66
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Discovering Roman Heritage: $4.66
  • Essential Self-Guided Audio Tour in 10 Stops: $4.66
  • Giuseppe Verdi in Self-Guided Audio Tour: $4.66
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Exploring Age-Old Plants: $4.66
  • Unique Self-Guided Audio Tour on Alessandro Manzoni: $4.66
  • From Italy eSIM Tourist Roaming Data Plan: $4.88
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Essential Milan with 10 Stops: $5.40
  • Stories of the Fashion Capital: A Self-Guided Audio Tour of Milan: $5.49
  • Private Audio Guided Walking Tour in Milan: $5.50
  • The Best of A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $5.99

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Bern $27
    Milan $26

Typical Alcohol Prices in Milan

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Milan:


  • Cocktail at a Bar
    $9.09
  • Beer
    $3.63

Sample the Local Flavors in Milan

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Milan:

  • From Lake Como or Serravalle VIP shopping and Wine Tasting: $11
  • Wine Tasting Experience in the City Centre: $43
  • Wine Tasting Experience in Milan city centre: $44
  • Milan Wine Tasting Experience: $53
  • Italian Wine Tasting in Milan: $54
  • Milan Wine Tasting Aperitivo: $56
  • Wine Tasting with an Italian Sommelier: $80
  • Milan Wine Tasting with Italian Sommelier: $87
  • Private Food and Wine Tasting Experience in the Center of Milan: $88
  • Best of Guided Tour with Duomo, Food & Wine Tasting: $161
  • Food and Wine Tasting enjoying the New Milan: $165
  • Brescia and Franciacorta winery area. Cultural and wine tasting small group tour: $175


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

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


Which is Bigger, Bern or Milan?

Milan has a larger population, and is about 10 times larger than the population of Bern. When comparing the sizes of Bern and Milan, 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 Bern or Milan?

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 Bern or Milan in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Bern as well as Milan. Many visitors come to Bern in the summer for the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Milan for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Bern is generally around the same temperature as Milan. Daily temperatures in Bern average around 21°C (70°F), and Milan fluctuates around 23°C (73°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Milan. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Bern this time of the year. In the summer, Bern often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Milan. Bern gets 250 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Milan receives 250 hours of full sun.

Bern usually gets around the same amount of rain in July as Milan. Bern gets 63 mm (2.5 in) of rain, while Milan receives 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Bern 21°C (70°F) 
    Milan 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Bern or Milan in the Autumn?

Both Milan and Bern are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Bern for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area during these months. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Milan because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

Bern is cooler than Milan in the autumn. The daily temperature in Bern averages around 13°C (55°F) in October, and Milan fluctuates around 15°C (58°F).

Bern usually receives less sunshine than Milan during autumn. Bern gets 126 hours of sunny skies, while Milan receives 152 hours of full sun in the autumn.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Milan. In October, Bern usually receives less rain than Milan. Bern gets 49 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Milan receives 103 mm (4 in) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Bern 13°C (55°F) 
    Milan 15°C (58°F)

Should I visit Bern or Milan in the Winter?

Both Milan and Bern during the winter are popular places to visit. The winter months attract visitors to Bern because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Furthermore, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Milan this time of year.

It's quite cold in Milan in the winter. The weather in Bern can be very cold. In the winter, Bern is much colder than Milan. Typically, the winter temperatures in Bern in January average around 3°C (37°F), and Milan averages at about 5°C (41°F).

In the winter, Bern often gets less sunshine than Milan. Bern gets 65 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Milan receives 119 hours of full sun.

Bern usually gets less rain in January than Milan. Bern gets 54 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Milan receives 68 mm (2.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Bern 3°C (37°F) 
    Milan 5°C (41°F)

Should I visit Bern or Milan in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Bern and Milan. The natural beauty are the main draw to Bern this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Milan for the activities around the city and the natural beauty.

In April, Bern is generally cooler than Milan. Daily temperatures in Bern average around 11°C (52°F), and Milan fluctuates around 13°C (55°F).

Bern usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Milan during spring. Bern gets 164 hours of sunny skies, while Milan receives 176 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Bern usually receives less rain than Milan. Bern gets 59 mm (2.3 in) of rain, while Milan receives 76 mm (3 in) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Bern 11°C (52°F) 
    Milan 13°C (55°F)

Typical Weather for Milan and Bern

Bern Milan
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 3°C (37°F) 54 mm (2.1 in) 5°C (41°F) 68 mm (2.7 in)
Feb 4°C (40°F) 51 mm (2 in) 6°C (44°F) 60 mm (2.3 in)
Mar 8°C (46°F) 50 mm (2 in) 10°C (49°F) 85 mm (3.4 in)
Apr 11°C (52°F) 59 mm (2.3 in) 13°C (55°F) 76 mm (3 in)
May 15°C (60°F) 76 mm (3 in) 17°C (62°F) 102 mm (4 in)
Jun 19°C (65°F) 74 mm (2.9 in) 20°C (69°F) 78 mm (3.1 in)
Jul 21°C (70°F) 63 mm (2.5 in) 23°C (73°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)
Aug 20°C (69°F) 80 mm (3.1 in) 22°C (72°F) 94 mm (3.7 in)
Sep 18°C (64°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 19°C (67°F) 74 mm (2.9 in)
Oct 13°C (55°F) 49 mm (1.9 in) 15°C (58°F) 103 mm (4 in)
Nov 7°C (45°F) 58 mm (2.3 in) 9°C (49°F) 102 mm (4 in)
Dec 4°C (38°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 6°C (42°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)