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

Should you visit Brussels or Bratislava?

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 Brussels and Bratislava. 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.

Brussels

Brussels is a multicultural, historic, and cosmopolitan city. It's an amazing and huge city with tons of activities and things to do. It's also known for nightlife, food, and shopping.

Bratislava

Bratislava is a under-rated, genuine, and cultural city. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. With a quaint atmosphere, it also offers a unique feeling. It's also known for shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Brussels and Bratislava: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Good for shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Cons
  • Less popular for shopping


How is Brussels different from Bratislava?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Both Brussels and Bratislava have interesting landmarks and museums for visitors.

Visitors can fill many days exploring the museums and attractions around Brussels. Popular sights include Saint-Michel Cathedral, Place Royale, and the Belgian Royal Museum of Fine Arts.

Bratislava offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. Despite its small size, the city is packed with interesting sights and attractions. A highlight of a visit is exploring the Bratislava Castle. Other notable sights include Michael's Gate, the Slovak National Theatre, Grassalkovich Palace, and Primate's Palace & Hall of Mirrors.

Brussels
Bratislava


Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Food?

There are opportunities to sample the local cuisine at great restaurants in both Brussels and Bratislava.

With its innovative style combined with traditional elements, Brussels makes for a great culinary experience. While the city is most known for its waffles and fries, the diversity of dishes and international restaurant selection continues to grow. Other popular dishes include moules-frites, waterzooi (a stew), and stoemp (made with mashed potatoes and vegetables).

Bratislava has a delicious restaurant scene that relies on local flavors. Slovakian food is hearty and uses a few staple ingredients like cheese and dumplings. The dishes are warm and filling on a cool day, so it's nice to step into a cozy restaurant and rest after a day of exploring. Popular local dishes include bryndzové halušky (sheep's cheese gnocchi), kapustnica (cabbage soup), and goulash.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Nightlife?

Party-goers will find similar levels of energy in Brussels and Bratislava.

Brussels has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. The city's nightlife is quieter and more mellow than some other major cities around Europe. That doesn't mean there aren't plenty of dance clubs and bars where you can hang out. Keep your wits about you after the sun goes down as some areas are a bit rougher than others.

Many people head to Bratislava for the nightlife scene. The city has grown in popularity as a center for nightlife with many people visiting from nearby Vienna. There are a growing number of stag and hen parties around town, but you'll also find sophisticated wine bars and a refined social scene. Many of the city's clubs are found in old town around Michalská, Obchodná and Ventúrska streets as well as Hviezdoslavovo and SNP squares.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for its Old Town?

Visitors enjoy the old town areas in both Brussels and Bratislava.

There are many historical things to see in the old town of Brussels. The old town in the city center is where you'll find the greatest concentration of historic sights. The area is surrounded by tree-lined boulevards and is easy to explore.

Many visitors explore the old town while visiting Bratislava. The old town is filled with diverse architecture as well as traditional and upscale restaurants.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Shopping?

Brussels is generally considered to be a more popular shopping destination.

Brussels is a famous shopping destination with plenty of stores. Although it's famous for diamonds, the city also has many shopping streets where you can find designer brands, vintage shops, and other unique boutiques that are fun to explore.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Bratislava. Shopping has come to life here, with three large shopping malls and many shopping streets where you'll find local boutiques. The city has both global brands as well as more traditional shops where you can buy local items. Popular things to purchase while you're in town include traditional clothing, wooden crosses, corn husk dolls, and local alcohol such as slivovica.

Brussels
Bratislava


Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Families?

Both Brussels and Bratislava are family-friendly destinations.

Brussels is a very family-friendly place to visit. The city has a number of unique kid-friendly activities including a Mini-Europe Museum, a Comic Strip Museum, and Train World. The city is also a chocolate lover's dream with many factories and chocolate shops around town.

Bratislava offers lots of family activities. Kids and adults alike will appreciate the lack of tourist crowds when compared to other European cities, even during school holidays. You can explore the city and enjoy a laid back vibe without the chaos of navigating through tour groups and large crowds. There's also a nice old town as well as gardens, playgrounds, palaces, and the Bratislava Castle.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Couples?

Brussels and Bratislava both fun destinations for a couple.

Couples visit Brussels frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. From beautiful buildings and museums to shopping, dining, and chocolate shops, there are plenty of romantic spots around town.

Bratislava makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. Couples that enjoy stepping away from tourist crowds will appreciate this relaxed city. There is the beautiful Janko Kráľ Park as well as the Bratislava Castle that you can explore. It's enjoyable to simply walk around the old town and soak up the atmosphere as well. There are also many great restaurants and wine bars where you can enjoy a night out.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Brussels and Bratislava are comparable places to visit for backpackers and budget travelers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Brussels. The city has an active nightlife and a number of hostels that are great for backpackers, but do take note that some areas can get a bit rough at night, so make sure you understand where you are.

Many backpackers visit Bratislava. The city offers an affordable and unique alternative to some of the larger and well known cities that are nearby. There are a couple of hostels and some affordable hotels that will help you keep your expenses down.

Brussels
Bratislava

Is Brussels or Bratislava better for Public Transit?

You'll find somewhat comparable public transit options in both Brussels and Bratislava.

Brussels has a great public transit system. Transit options include train, tram, metro, bus and waterbuses.

Public transit in Bratislava can get you to some places easily. There are trams, buses, and trolleybuses.

Brussels
Bratislava


Is Brussels or Bratislava a more walkable city?

Brussels and Bratislava both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Brussels is very walkable. If you stay in the historical area, it's easy to walk around and many boulevards are being converted to pedestrian areas.

Bratislava is a very easy city to get around on foot. One of the best ways to experience the city is to walk around. The old town is also a large pedestrian zone.

Brussels
Bratislava

Should I spend more time in Bratislava or Brussels?

How long in Brussels or Bratislava?

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

The ideal length of time for a trip to Brussels is 1-5 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Bratislava is 1-3 days.


  • How many days in Brussels or Bratislava? Ideal Length of Stay
    Brussels 1-5 
    Bratislava 1-3

One day in Brussels or Bratislava?

When visiting Brussels, people usually allow for lots of time. Anyone can find something fun to do here. One of the main draws to the area is the shopping. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Brussels, one day is sufficent for most.

The beautiful city of Bratislava offers food and shopping. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Brussels or Bratislava?

When visiting Brussels, people usually allow for lots of time. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. It offers something for everyone. Many people spend a weekend here. One of the main draws to the area is the shopping. In a weekend, you should have a good grasp of this city.

Bratislava is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this city makes for a great vacation. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Bratislava, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered around the area.

Five days in Brussels or Bratislava?

Brussels, a popular city, is full of activities for travelers. This is a popular place to visit for five days. Visiting the old town is also a must. In five days, you should have a good grasp of this city. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Bratislava is a popular choice for travelers. Five days 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. The entire area has lots to do.


A week in Brussels or Bratislava?

Brussels is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. One of the main draws to the area is the shopping. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Bratislava is a great place to explore. Visiting the old town is also a must. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This city offers something for everyone.

Which city is cheaper, Bratislava or Brussels?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Brussels is €109, while the average daily cost in Bratislava is €97. 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 Brussels and Bratislava in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Brussels 58
    Bratislava 39
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Brussels 116
    Bratislava 78
Compare Hotels in Brussels and Bratislava

Looking for a hotel in Brussels or Bratislava? 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 Brussels


Hotels in Bratislava


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.


Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Brussels 13
    Bratislava 21
Typical Local Transportation prices in Brussels

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


  • Subway Pass
    4.50
  • Atomium train ticket (2)
    8.00

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Brussels

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Brussels:

  • Private Airport Transfer: from Brussels to Brussels Airport (BRU): $25
  • Private Departure Transfer from Brussels City Center to Brussels Airport (BRU): $32
  • Private Airport Transfer to the City: $36
  • Private Departure Transfer: Brussels Hotel to Brussels Railway Station: $46
  • Private Business Transfer from Brussels Hotel to Brussels Airport (BRU): $49
  • Private Transfer to/from Brussels Airport (BRU): $50
  • Airport (BRU) Private Transfer: $53
  • Private Airport Transfer: Brussels to Charleroi Airport (CRL): $55
  • Private Airport Transfer: Brussels to Brussels Airport (BRU): $56
  • Departure Private Transfer from Brussels to Brussels Airport in Business Car: $57
  • Brussels City all area to Brussels Airport BRU - Private Airport transfer 1-7pax: $60
  • Brussels City all area to Brussels Airport BRU - Private Airport transfer 1-3pax: $60

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Bratislava

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Bratislava:

  • Arrival Private Transfer Bratislava Airport to Bratislava City by Business Car: $19
  • Arrival Private Transfer Bratislava Airport to Bratislava City by Luxury Car: $37
  • Arrival Private Transfer Bratislava Airport to Bratislava City by Luxury Van: $25
  • Bratislava - Budapest transfer: $180
  • Bratislava-Budapest One-Way Sightseeing Transfer: $105
  • Airport to Hotel Private Transfer Service: $25
  • Deluxe Private Transfer from Bratislava City to Vienna City: $50
  • Departure Private Transfer Bratislava City to Bratislava Airport by Business Car: $19
  • Departure Private Transfer Bratislava City to Bratislava Airport by Luxury Car: $37
  • Departure Private Transfer Bratislava City to Vienna Airport VIE by Luxury Van: $67
  • Direct one way transfer from Bratislava to Český Krumlov: $510
  • Krakow: Private Transfer to or from Bratislava: $351

Is it cheaper to fly into Brussels or Bratislava?

Prices for flights to both Bratislava and Brussels 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
    Brussels 31
    Bratislava 36
Typical Food prices in Brussels

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Brussels:


  • Ice Cream & Macaroons
    4.60
  • Dessert (Turkish Delights)
    4.75
  • Cheese
    5.60
  • Olives and Snacks
    6.98
  • Waffle
    3.00

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Brussels

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

  • Classic Belgian cooking class and lunch: $79
  • Your Private Tailored Belgian Food Tour with a Local: $93
  • Private Food Tour – 10 Tastings with Locals: $112
  • Cooking Lesson and Gourmet Belgian-Inspired Meal with a Local in Brussels: $115
  • Private Brussels Food Tour (walking lunch or dinner): $373

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Bratislava

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

  • Bratislava Traditional Food Tour: $102
  • Traditional Food Tour: $118
  • Vegan Bratislava Food Tour: $118
  • Local Beer & Food Tour: $128

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Brussels 18
    Bratislava 24

Tours and Activities in Brussels

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

  • Brussels Autoworld Museum Entrance Ticket: $15
  • Pick Up from your Hotel in Brussels to Departure point Brussels City Tours: $22
  • Beer Tour: $27
  • Brussels 2.5-Hour Belgian Beer Tasting Experience: $29
  • Highlights and Hidden Gems Guided Bike Tour: $34
  • Private Tour with a Local: $40
  • Kanal and Molenbeek Runnning Tour: $44
  • Running Tour of the Historical Center: $44
  • The Best Of Brussels Walking Tour: $54
  • Belgian Chocolate Tasting Tour: $62
  • Private Tour w/ Locals – Highlights & Hidden Gems: $66
  • Artistic Bruges on a Private Tour with a local: $75

Tours and Activities in Bratislava

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

  • Bratislava Self-Guided Audio Tour: $11
  • Old Town Cake Tasting Experience: $11
  • Bratislava by Sightseeing Bus: $14
  • Bratislava Nightlife Ticket: $14
  • Old Town Tour in Bratislava by Prešporáčik Oldtimer: $15
  • Nedbalka Gallery with Coffee and Cake Ticket: $16
  • 1-Hour Small Group Walking Tour: $18
  • City Sightseeing Afternoon Walking Tour: $18
  • City Highlights Running Tour: $18
  • Bratislava Classical Walking Tour: $21
  • Bratislava City Private Walking Tour: $22
  • Best customized walking tour with bonus: $25

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Brussels 10
    Bratislava 15
Typical Alcohol prices in Brussels

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


  • Bottle of Wine
    10
  • Beer
    6.00

Sample the Local Flavors in Brussels

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Brussels:

  • Brussels Pub Crawl: $14

Sample the Local Flavors in Bratislava

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Bratislava:

  • Modra: Private Wine Tasting at a Family-Operated Winery: $28
  • Burlesque show: $37
  • 3 Hours Bratislava Pub Crawl Walking Tour with Beers & Bites: $55
  • Bratislava Wine Tour: $75
  • Bratislava 3-Hour Wine Tasting: $93
  • Bratislava Food and Wine Tour: $100
  • Bratislava Half Day Hubert Sparkling Wine Tasting: $115
  • Private Wine Tour to Small Carpathians: $156
  • Devin Castle Tour With Currant Wine Tasting: $163
  • Private Small Carpathian Wine Tour: $214


When comparing the travel costs between Brussels and Bratislava, we can see that Brussels is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Europe, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.


When is the best time to visit Brussels or Bratislava?

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 Brussels or Bratislava in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Brussels and Bratislava. The city activities and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Brussels this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Bratislava for the family-friendly experiences.

Brussels is cooler than Bratislava in the summer. The temperature in Brussels is usually 18°C (65°F) in July, and Bratislava stays around 23°C (73°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Bratislava this time of the year. Brussels usually receives less sunshine than Bratislava during summer. At this time of the year, Brussels gets 186 hours of sunny skies, while Bratislava receives 255 hours of full sun.

In July, Brussels usually receives more rain than Bratislava. At this time of the year, Brussels gets 75 mm (3 in) of rain, while Bratislava receives 63 mm (2.5 in) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Brussels 18°C (65°F) 
    Bratislava 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Brussels or Bratislava in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Brussels as well as Bratislava. Many travelers come to Brussels for the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, many visitors come to Bratislava in the autumn for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Brussels is around the same temperature as Bratislava. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Brussels in October are around 12°C (54°F), and Bratislava is about 12°C (54°F).

In the autumn, Brussels often gets less sunshine than Bratislava. Brussels gets 114 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Bratislava receives 140 hours of full sun.

Brussels usually gets more rain in October than Bratislava. Brussels gets 70 mm (2.8 in) of rain, while Bratislava receives 41 mm (1.6 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Brussels 12°C (54°F) 
    Bratislava 12°C (54°F)

Should I visit Brussels or Bratislava in the Winter?

Both Bratislava and Brussels are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Many visitors come to Brussels in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, most visitors come to Bratislava for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

Bratislava can be very cold during winter. Brussels can get quite cold in the winter. In January, Brussels is generally much warmer than Bratislava. Temperatures in Brussels average around 3°C (38°F), and Bratislava stays around 2°C (36°F).

Brussels usually receives less sunshine than Bratislava during winter. At this time of the year, Brussels gets 49 hours of sunny skies, while Bratislava receives 65 hours of full sun.

In January, Brussels usually receives more rain than Bratislava. At this time of the year, Brussels gets 67 mm (2.6 in) of rain, while Bratislava receives 38 mm (1.5 in) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Brussels 3°C (38°F) 
    Bratislava 2°C (36°F)

Should I visit Brussels or Bratislava in the Spring?

Both Bratislava and Brussels during the spring are popular places to visit. Most visitors come to Brussels for the activities around the city during these months. Furthermore, the spring months attract visitors to Bratislava because of the natural beauty.

Brussels is cooler than Bratislava in the spring. The temperature in Brussels is usually 10°C (49°F) in April, and Bratislava stays around 13°C (55°F).

In Bratislava, it's very sunny this time of the year. In the spring, Brussels often gets less sunshine than Bratislava. Brussels gets 147 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Bratislava receives 202 hours of full sun.

Brussels usually gets more rain in April than Bratislava. Brussels gets 57 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Bratislava receives 51 mm (2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Brussels 10°C (49°F) 
    Bratislava 13°C (55°F)

Typical Weather for Bratislava and Brussels

Brussels Bratislava
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 3°C (38°F) 67 mm (2.6 in) 2°C (36°F) 38 mm (1.5 in)
Feb 4°C (39°F) 53 mm (2.1 in) 4°C (38°F) 42 mm (1.7 in)
Mar 6°C (43°F) 72 mm (2.8 in) 8°C (46°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
Apr 10°C (49°F) 57 mm (2.2 in) 13°C (55°F) 51 mm (2 in)
May 14°C (57°F) 71 mm (2.8 in) 17°C (63°F) 61 mm (2.4 in)
Jun 17°C (62°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 20°C (69°F) 74 mm (2.9 in)
Jul 18°C (65°F) 75 mm (3 in) 23°C (73°F) 63 mm (2.5 in)
Aug 18°C (65°F) 63 mm (2.5 in) 22°C (72°F) 58 mm (2.3 in)
Sep 16°C (60°F) 59 mm (2.3 in) 18°C (64°F) 45 mm (1.8 in)
Oct 12°C (54°F) 70 mm (2.8 in) 12°C (54°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
Nov 7°C (45°F) 76 mm (3 in) 7°C (45°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Dec 4°C (40°F) 76 mm (3 in) 3°C (37°F) 43 mm (1.7 in)


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Brussels vs. Bratislava Travel Comparison

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