A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Boston vs. Seattle for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Music

Should you visit Boston or Seattle?

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

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Boston and Seattle. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Boston

Boston is a classic, historic, and traditional classic. As it's a big city, visitors will find plenty to do, too. It offers plenty of beauty for visitors. As this is a very quaint destination, you'll find it has a special atmosphere. Other popular activities here include food, shopping, and museums.

Seattle

Seattle is a bustling, progressive, and cultural city. It's a large city with plenty of activites for visitors as well. It's a gorgeous place to visit. It's also known for hiking, shopping, and museums.

Boston and Seattle: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
  • Big city activities
Cons
  • Less attractive beach
Pros
  • Good music scene
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
Cons
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable


How is Boston different from Seattle?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Boston
Seattle

Interesting museums and landmarks can be found in both Seattle and Boston, but many consider Boston to be a step above.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Boston that are not to be missed. The city itself feels like a living museum. It is famous for Faneuil Hall, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Isabelle Stewart Gardner Museum, the USS Constitution, as well as the many sites along the Freedom Trail. There are also many museums on the campuses of the world renowned universities in the city.

Seattle offers a variety of museums and landmarks to choose from. The city's most famous landmark is the Space Needle. There's also a zoo, aquarium, and a handful of nice museums.


Is Boston or Seattle Better for Theater?

Boston
Seattle

Both Boston and Seattle offer theater options for visitors.

Boston offers many theater and performance venues for visitors. The city has many historic, beautifully restored theaters where you can enjoy a show. Head to the theater district for some of the most famous venues.

You'll find a nice selection of shows in Seattle. There are a handful of theaters where you can enjoy traveling Broadway shows or smaller productions.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Food?

Boston
Seattle

Dining out at restaurants in both Boston and Seattle can be an enjoyable experience.

With its innovative style combined with traditional elements, Boston makes for a great culinary experience. Famous local foods include New England Clam Chowder, lobster rolls, and baked beans.

Seattle has a huge number of terrific restaurants. The city is famous for its seafood. Salmon, oysters, and Starbucks coffee are favorites here. Also check out the donuts at Pike's Place Market.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Nightlife?

Boston
Seattle

Evening events are similar in both Boston and Seattle.

Boston has plenty to do after the sun goes down. The city is known for its breweries, craft beer, and vibrant university neighborhoods. It also hosts regular outdoor movies and world class sporting events.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Seattle. The city is known for its breweries and eclectic nightlife scene. The best neighborhoods for nightlife include Capitol Hill, Belltown, and Downtown.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Music?

Boston
Seattle

Both Boston and Seattle offer a variety of live music venues.

You don't have to look far to find a unique music venue in Boston. Popular music venues include Lizard Lounge, Blue Hills Bank Pavilion, and The Middle East.

Whether you like big venues or smaller artists, Seattle has diverse options. The city has developed its own music culture around several genres including alternative rock and grunge.


Is Boston or Seattle Better for Beaches?

Boston
Seattle

Boston and Seattle both offer beautiful beaches.

Boston is a good spot to see the beach. There are a few urban beaches in the greater Boston area that you can explore on a nice day.

Seattle is a good option for a beach vacation. The city is surrounded by water so there are a number of rocky and sandy beaches nearby. Some beaches are more popular with locals while others attract a large amount of tourists.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Shopping?

Boston
Seattle

Both Boston and Seattle are good shopping destinations.

Boston is a great destination for shopping. Head to Back Bay for some of the best high end shops.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Seattle. Shopping in town has an eclectic mix of high end brands, local vendors, and vintage shops.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Families?

Boston
Seattle

Both Boston and Seattle are family-friendly destinations.

Boston is a very family-friendly place to visit. Popular activities for all ages include the Museum of Science, the New England Aquarium, and exploring the history, gardens, and parks around town.

Seattle is a family-friendly classic. There are several good museums as well as outdoor activities, parks, and a zoo. Make sure you check out the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, Volunteer Park, and Artists at Play Playground.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Couples?

Boston
Seattle

Boston and Seattle both fun destinations for a couple.

Boston is a nice destination for couples. Couples who enjoy history will enjoy exploring the city. Take a swan boat ride in the Public Garden and wander the unique route along the Freedom Trail.

Seattle makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. The city has a laid back vibe, a nice downtown area, and plenty of outdoor activities.


Is Boston or Seattle Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Boston
Seattle

Both Boston and Seattle are popular destinations for backpackers.

Boston is a good classic to visit for backpackers. Like most larger American cities, the city has a handful of hostels to choose from.

Plenty of backpackers visit Seattle. Although it's not the most popular city for backpackers in America, the city's chill vibe, fun breweries, and lively setting make it a great spot for young backpackers.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Students?

Boston
Seattle

Boston and Seattle are both good destinations for students and younger travelers.

Boston is a very popular place to visit for students. It is a city of students, with a number of world renowned universities located here including Harvard University, Boston College, and MIT.

Seattle is a very popular classic for students and younger travelers. It is a major IT center with a large university, so international students will have plenty of opportunities here.

Is Boston or Seattle Better for Public Transit?

Boston
Seattle

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

Visitors in Boston can get around quickly with the extensive public transit system. There's the T, which is the subway, as well as a trolley, bus, and water transportation system.

Seattle has some public transit options. There is a light rail system, a monorail, a street car, and buses.

Is Boston or Seattle a more walkable city?

Boston
Seattle

Boston is generally more walkable than Seattle.

It is easy to get around Boston on foot. The many parks and compact neighborhoods are best explored on foot.

Seattle is a somewhat walkable place. Many neighborhoods are very walkable, particularly in the downtown and major tourist areas.


Should I spend more time in Seattle or Boston?

How long in Boston or Seattle?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Boston and Seattle. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Boston than Seattle.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Boston is 3-5 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Seattle is 2-3 days.


  • How many days in Boston or Seattle? Ideal Length of Stay
    Boston 3-5 
    Seattle 2-3

One day in Boston or Seattle?

Because Boston is a large city, there are a variety of ways to spend your time. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. One reason most visitors come is for the museums. This classic offers something for everyone. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

Many travelers enjoy the live music and food when visiting the big city destination of Seattle. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Boston or Seattle?

Because Boston is a large city, there are a variety of ways to spend your time. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. Visiting the old town is also a must. One reason most visitors come is for the museums. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

Seattle is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. With all of its activities, you can easily fill a weekend here. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Boston or Seattle?

Boston is a great place to explore. It is common to spend five days here. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Five days is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Boston has to offer. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Seattle. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

A week in Boston or Seattle?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Boston. Many people enjoy the theater and nightlife when visiting Boston. One reason most visitors come is for the museums. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Travelers enjoy the museums and theater when visiting the bustling big city of Seattle. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Which city is cheaper, Seattle or Boston?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Boston is $203, while the average daily cost in Seattle is $156. 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 Boston and Seattle in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Boston $132
    Seattle $94
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Boston $264
    Seattle $188
Compare Hotels in Boston and Seattle

Looking for a hotel in Boston or Seattle? 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 Boston


Hotels in Seattle


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: Boston Hotel Prices and Seattle Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Boston $28
    Seattle $18
Typical Local Transportation prices in Boston

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


  • Taxi
    $35
  • Subway Daily Pass
    $9.00

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Boston

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Boston:

  • Private Arrival Transfer from Boston Airport BOS: $28
  • Private Departure Transfer to Boston Airport BOS: $28
  • Shared Arrival Transfer: Boston Airport to Hotel: $30
  • Shared Departure Transfer: Hotel to Boston Airport: $30
  • Airport Transfer by Private Car Service: $55
  • Private Arrival Transfer Boston Airport to Boston City: $60
  • Private Departure Transfer from Boston City to Boston Airport: $60
  • Private Airport Transfer: Logan International Airport (BOS) to Boston: $64
  • Arrival Private Transfer Boston Airport BOS to Boston Business or Luxury Vehicle: $67
  • Departure Private Transfer Boston to Boston Airport BOS Business-Luxury Vehicle: $67
  • Boston Logan International Airport Private Transfer: $68
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Boston Airport (BOS) to City Downtown: $69

Typical Local Transportation prices in Seattle

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


  • Lightrail from Airport (for 2)
    $5.50
  • Roundtrip Ferry to Bainbridge Island (for 2)
    $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Seattle

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Seattle:

  • Private Airport Transfer: Seattle to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA): $40
  • Private Departure Transfer from Seattle City to SEA Seattle Airport: $46
  • Seattle Departure Chauffeur Driven Airport Transfer: $50
  • Seattle Departure Chauffeur Driven Airport Transfer by Executive Sedan: $50
  • Seattle Arrival Chauffeur Driven Airport Transfer: $50
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Seattle Tacoma Airport to Seattle Downtown: $60
  • Transfer in Private Vehicle from Seattle Downtown to Tacoma Airport: $60
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Seattle Tacoma International Airport to Kent City - One Way: $62
  • Private Departure Transfer to Seattle Tacoma Airport SEA: $64
  • Seattle Departure Chauffeur Driven Airport Transfer by Executive SUV: $65
  • Seattle Tacoma Airport (SEA) to Cruise Port - Arrival Private Transfer: $71
  • Cruise Port to Seattle Tacoma Airport (SEA) - Departure Private Transfer: $71

Is it cheaper to fly into Boston or Seattle?

Prices for flights to both Seattle and Boston 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
    Boston $40
    Seattle $38

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Boston

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

  • Boston's North End "Little Italy" Pizza, Cannoli, and Freedom Trail Walking Tour: $49
  • Boston's North End Small-Group Walking Food Tour: $71
  • Fenway Neighborhood Food Tour (Boston): $79
  • Buffet Lunch or Dinner Cruise on Boston Harbor: $81
  • Private Tour: Secret Food Tours Boston North End: $103
  • Spirit of Boston Sunset Dinner Cruise with Buffet: $105
  • Boston Odyssey Dinner Cruise: $118
  • Lunch or Dinner Cruise on the Odyssey: $122
  • North End Neighborhood Food Tour: $150

Typical Food prices in Seattle

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


  • Expresso & cookie at Pier 70
    $7.00
  • Cashews at Pike Place Market
    $6.00
  • 6 Mini Donuts at Pike Place Market
    $3.25
  • Chinese Lunch in International District (for 2)
    $21
  • Breakfast at Lowel's in Pike Place Market (for 2)
    $32
  • Breakfast at French Cafe (for 2)
    $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Seattle

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

  • Chef Guided Food Tour of Pike Place Market- 1 Hour: $34
  • Chef Guided Food Tour of Pike Place Market- 2 Hours: $58
  • Pacific Northwest-Style Dinner and Pairing in Seattle: $61
  • Exclusive: Early-Access Food Tour of Pike Place Market: $73
  • Street Theater and Dinner in Seattle's Fremont District: $86
  • Seattle Dinner Cruise: $115

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Boston $26
    Seattle $12
Typical Entertainment prices in Boston

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


  • Two Tickets to Celtics Game
    $101
  • Duck Tour
    $32

Tours and Activities in Boston

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

  • Self-Guided Smartphone Ghost Walking Tour in Boston: $3.95
  • Self-Guided Boston Christmas Tour: $4.50
  • The Great Cannoli Tour: $5.00
  • Boston Harborwalk & Tea Party Self-Guided Audio Tour: $5.00
  • Boston's Freedom Trail - Smart Phone guided (GPS) walking tour - go anytime: $5.00
  • The Ghosts of Boston's Past Haunted Self-guided Tour: $5.00
  • Boston's Freedom Trail, 3 tours in 1, Smart Phone Guided Tour (GPS) - go anytime: $7.99
  • Freedom Trail Best Tour (Boston Common to Faneuil Hall): $15
  • Boston Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • Freedom Trail Walking Tours: $16
  • Tour of The Freedom Trail: $16
  • Downtown Freedom Trail Walking Tour in Boston: $20

Tours and Activities in Seattle

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

  • Private Auto-guided Tour of Seattle: $4.96
  • Historic Ballard audio tour: A slice of Seattle's quirky history: $5.00
  • Skip the Line: Sky View Observatory Admission Tickets: $10
  • Smith Tower Straight Up Observatory Access Ticket: $12
  • Seattle Self-Guided Audio Tour: $14
  • Seattle Self-Guided Audio Tour: $15
  • Seattle Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $21
  • Seattle Walking Ghost Tour: $23
  • The Museum of Flight Admission Ticket: $25
  • Underground Walking Tour: $29
  • Beneath The Streets Underground History Tour: $29
  • Seattle Harbor Cruise: $36

For more ideas for your next trip, check out Free Things to Do in Boston, Must-See Monuments and Memorials In Boston, and The Best Things To Do in Boston with Kids.


Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Boston $22
    Seattle $13

Sample the Local Flavors in Boston

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Boston:

  • Haunted Boston Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $27
  • Historic Pub Crawl Tour along the Freedom Trail: $56
  • Sip of Boston Guided Brewery Tour: $90

Sample the Local Flavors in Seattle

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

  • Seattle Bar Hunt: Sleepless in Seattle Bar Crawl: $12
  • Haunted Seattle Ghost and Pub Walking Tour: $27
  • Georgetown Brewery Tour: $72
  • Bon Vivant Woodinville Wine Tasting Tour: $98
  • Seattle Coffee, Chocolate and Wine Tour: $112
  • Seattle Wine Tour (Hourly): $135


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


When is the best time to visit Boston or Seattle?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Boston or Seattle in the Summer?

Both Seattle and Boston are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Many visitors come to Boston in the summer for the beaches, the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Seattle for the beaches, the hiking, the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Boston is generally a little warmer than Seattle. Temperatures in Boston average around 73°F (23°C), and Seattle stays around 67°F (19°C).

It's quite sunny in Seattle. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Boston. Boston usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Seattle during summer. Boston gets 304 hours of sunny skies, while Seattle receives 313 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Boston usually receives more rain than Seattle. Boston gets 2.9 inches (74 mm) of rain, while Seattle receives 0.9 inches (22 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Boston 73°F (23°C) 
    Seattle 67°F (19°C)

Should I visit Boston or Seattle in the Autumn?

Both Seattle and Boston during the autumn are popular places to visit. Most visitors come to Boston for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Seattle because of the hiking trails, the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

Boston is around the same temperature as Seattle in the autumn. The temperature in Boston is usually 54°F (12°C) in October, and Seattle stays around 54°F (12°C).

In the autumn, Boston often gets more sunshine than Seattle. Boston gets 194 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Seattle receives 143 hours of full sun.

Boston usually gets around the same amount of rain in October as Seattle. Boston gets 3.3 inches (84 mm) of rain, while Seattle receives 3.3 inches (83 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Boston 54°F (12°C) 
    Seattle 54°F (12°C)

Should I visit Boston or Seattle in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Boston and Seattle. The winter months attract visitors to Boston because of the museums, the Christmas ambience, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine. Also, the museums, the shopping scene, the theater shows, and the cuisine are the main draw to Seattle this time of year.

The weather in Boston can be very cold. In the winter, Boston is much colder than Seattle. Typically, the winter temperatures in Boston in January are around 29°F (-2°C), and Seattle is about 42°F (5°C).

Boston usually receives more sunshine than Seattle during winter. Boston gets 153 hours of sunny skies, while Seattle receives 67 hours of full sun in the winter.

Seattle receives a lot of rain in the winter. In January, Boston usually receives less rain than Seattle. Boston gets 3.4 inches (87 mm) of rain, while Seattle receives 5.4 inches (136 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Boston 29°F (-2°C) 
    Seattle 42°F (5°C)

Should I visit Boston or Seattle in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Boston as well as Seattle. The beaches, the activities around the city, and the natural beauty are the main draw to Boston this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Seattle for the beaches, the activities around the city, and the natural beauty.

In April, Boston is generally cooler than Seattle. Temperatures in Boston average around 48°F (9°C), and Seattle stays around 51°F (11°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Seattle. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Boston this time of the year. In the spring, Boston often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Seattle. Boston gets 225 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Seattle receives 212 hours of full sun.

Boston usually gets more rain in April than Seattle. Boston gets 3.5 inches (89 mm) of rain, while Seattle receives 2.5 inches (64 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Boston 48°F (9°C) 
    Seattle 51°F (11°C)

Typical Weather for Seattle and Boston

Boston Seattle
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 29°F (-2°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm) 42°F (5°C) 5.4 inches (136 mm)
Feb 30°F (-1°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm) 45°F (7°C) 4 inches (102 mm)
Mar 38°F (4°C) 3.7 inches (95 mm) 47°F (9°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm)
Apr 48°F (9°C) 3.5 inches (89 mm) 51°F (11°C) 2.5 inches (64 mm)
May 58°F (15°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 57°F (14°C) 1.9 inches (47 mm)
Jun 68°F (20°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 62°F (17°C) 1.6 inches (40 mm)
Jul 73°F (23°C) 2.9 inches (74 mm) 67°F (19°C) 0.9 inches (22 mm)
Aug 72°F (22°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 67°F (19°C) 1.2 inches (31 mm)
Sep 64°F (18°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm) 62°F (17°C) 1.9 inches (49 mm)
Oct 54°F (12°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm) 54°F (12°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm)
Nov 45°F (7°C) 4.3 inches (108 mm) 47°F (8°C) 5.7 inches (144 mm)
Dec 33°F (1°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm) 42°F (6°C) 6 inches (152 mm)


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Boston vs. Seattle Travel Comparison

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