A Travel Price Comparison for United Kingdom Cardiff vs. Belfast for Nightlife, Families, Food, and Couples

Should you visit Cardiff or Belfast?

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

Should I visit Cardiff or Belfast? 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.

Cardiff

Cardiff is a green, industrial, and up-and-coming city. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. It's a gorgeous place to visit. It's also known for nightlife, shopping, and museums.

Belfast

Belfast is a under-rated, authentic, and affordable city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. And you can't forget about the nightlife and shopping.

Cardiff and Belfast: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Family-friendly
Cons
  • Less popular with couples
Pros
  • Family-friendly
Cons
  • Less popular with couples


How is Cardiff different from Belfast?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Food?

Both Cardiff and Belfast offer a number of unique restaurants to choose from.

You'll find the standard options when it comes to food in Cardiff. Welsh cuisine is known for its stews and hearty vegetable dishes. The national dish is cawl, which is a stew made with lamb and vegetables. Other local favorites include Welsh rarebit, which is a type of cheese toast, and Glamorgan Sausage, which is actually made with vegetables.

Belfast may not make the list for most foodies, but you'll find what you need while you're in town. While many restaurants have moved towards more modern cuisines, there are still places that hold tight to the traditions of the area. Traditional dishes include pasties, full Irish breakfasts, and oysters.

Cardiff
Belfast


Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Nightlife?

It's hard to distinguish whether Cardiff or Belfast has a better nightlife scene.

Cardiff has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. The nightlife scene is all about fun and most of the activities are driven by the large and diverse student population.

If you're looking for night time activities Belfast has a few options to choose from. The city has a number of bars and clubs with local DJs or musicians.

Cardiff
Belfast

Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Shopping?

Shopping is a popular activity in both Belfast and Cardiff.

Cardiff offers some nice shopping areas. Shopping options include shopping malls and boutique lined streets. There is a nice mix of independent shops and major chains to choose between.

Belfast has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. The main shopping areas in the city are Victoria Square Shopping Centre and CastleCourt.

Cardiff
Belfast

Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Families?

Kids will enjoy a visit to either Cardiff or Belfast.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Cardiff. The city has a number of climbing and play areas, museums, and playgrounds that can keep the little ones entertained. There are also plenty of outdoor parks and trails to wander around.

Belfast offers lots of family activities. The city has several great kid-friendly museums, a zoo, and a few indoor or outdoor activity centers where you can let kids play and explore.

Cardiff
Belfast

Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Couples?

Most people don't think of either Cardiff or Belfast as a couple's destination.

Most people don't think of Cardiff as a couple's destination. The most romantic experiences involve a night out dining at nice restaurants, enjoying a cocktail at a classy bar, and strolling through neighborhoods and soaking up the atmosphere.

Belfast is not always the best place to visit for a couple. There are gardens and parks to explore, several nice hotels with spas, and an Observatory on the 23rd floor of the Grand Central Hotel.

Cardiff
Belfast


Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Students?

Cardiff and Belfast are comparable places to visit for students.

Cardiff is popular with students. Most students come to study at Cardiff University, which is a leading university in Great Britain.

It's common for students to visit Belfast. The city's affordability has made it a popular option for international students headed to the area.

Cardiff
Belfast

Is Cardiff or Belfast better for Public Transit?

You'll find somewhat comparable public transit options in both Cardiff and Belfast.

Public transit is generally limited in Cardiff. There is a bus system that you can use to get around.

Public transit is mostly limited in Belfast. There is a bus service in the city.

Cardiff
Belfast

Is Cardiff or Belfast a more walkable city?

Cardiff and Belfast both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Cardiff is a somewhat walkable place. There are pedestrianized areas and the waterfront is nice to walk around but there is still room for improvement when it comes to walkability.

Belfast is a somewhat walkable city.

Cardiff
Belfast

Should I spend more time in Belfast or Cardiff?

How long in Cardiff or Belfast?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Cardiff and Belfast. You can spend similar amounts of time exploring each one.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Cardiff is 1-3 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Belfast is 1-3 days.


  • How many days in Cardiff or Belfast? Ideal Length of Stay
    Cardiff 1-3 
    Belfast 1-3

One day in Cardiff or Belfast?

In Cardiff, you'll find museums and nightlife. This city offers something for everyone. This would be the perfect place to spend one day, as it has just the right amount of activities.

In Belfast, you'll find nightlife and shopping. This city offers something for everyone. This would be the perfect place to spend one day, as it has just the right amount of activities.


A weekend in Cardiff or Belfast?

In Cardiff, you'll find nightlife and shopping. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. A weekend here is typical. A weekend is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Cardiff has to offer.

In Belfast, you'll find shopping and nightlife. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. A weekend here is typical. A weekend is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Belfast has to offer.

Five days in Cardiff or Belfast?

Cardiff is a great place to explore. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

Belfast is a great place to explore. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

A week in Cardiff or Belfast?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Cardiff. One week may feel like too much time here unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Belfast. One week may feel like too much time here unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Which city is cheaper, Belfast or Cardiff?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cardiff is £122, while the average daily cost in Belfast is £106. 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 Cardiff and Belfast in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cardiff £72
    Belfast £55
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cardiff £144
    Belfast £110
Compare Hotels in Cardiff and Belfast

Looking for a hotel in Cardiff or Belfast? 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 Cardiff


Hotels in Belfast


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Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cardiff £17
    Belfast £11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cardiff

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cardiff:

  • Private Airport Transfer: from Cardiff to Cardiff Airport (CWL): $31
  • Private Cardiff Departure Transfer - Hotel / Accommodation to Airport: $45
  • Departure Private Transfer Cardiff to Cardiff Airport CWL by Luxury Vehicle: $58
  • Private Transfer to Cardiff (CWL) Airport from Cardiff: $58
  • City Center to Airport Private Transfer: $87
  • Cardiff Private Transfer from central Cardiff to Cardiff Airport: $90
  • Low Cost Private Arrival Transfer from Cardiff International Airport to Cardiff: $123
  • Low Cost Private Arrival Transfer From Cardiff International Airport to Bristol: $209
  • Cardiff to Heathrow Airport private taxi transfers: $344
  • Private transfer: Cardiff to Cardiff Airport (CWL): $622

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Belfast

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Belfast:

  • Arrival Private Transfer Belfast Airport BHD or BFS to Belfast by Business Car: $56
  • Arrival Private Transfer Belfast Airport BHD or BFS to Belfast by Luxury Car: $64
  • Arrival Private Transfer Belfast Airport BHD or BFS to Belfast by Luxury Van: $64
  • Arrival Private Transfer Belfast Airport BHD or BFS to Belfast by Minibus: $114
  • Belfast Accommodation to Belfast City Airport (BHD) - Departure Private Transfer: $81
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Bangor Accommodation - Arrival Private Transfer: $51
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Bangor Accommodation - Roundtrip Private Transfer: $102
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Belfast Accommodation - Arrival Private Transfer: $81
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Belfast Accommodation - Roundtrip Private Transfer: $162
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Holywood Accommodation - Arrival Private Transfer: $81
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Holywood City - Roundtrip Private Transfer: $162
  • Belfast City Airport (BHD) to Lisburn Accommodation - Arrival Private Transfer: $101

Is it cheaper to fly into Cardiff or Belfast?

Prices for flights to both Belfast and Cardiff 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
    Cardiff £34
    Belfast £40

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Belfast

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

  • Artisan Bakery Tour and Causeway Coast Lunch Northern Ireland Food Tour: $69

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cardiff £20
    Belfast £15

Tours and Activities in Cardiff

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

  • The Ghosts of Llandaff: Stalk the grounds of Llandaff Cathedral on an audio tour: $5.00
  • Cardiff's Civic Centre: An audio tour of the city's most historical buildings: $5.00
  • A Journey in time: An audio tour through the lively Tudor city of Cardiff: $5.00
  • Personally guided walking tours of Penarth.: $7.08
  • Cardiff Bay Boat Tour: $11
  • 24-Hour Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour: $19
  • City Sightseeing Cardiff Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $19
  • Doctor Who Cardiff Walking Tour: $21
  • Cardiff Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $38
  • Withlocals Your Way: Cardiff 100% Personalised City Tour with a Local: $50
  • Cardiff Tasting Tour -the best way to see Cardiff!: $62
  • Walking Tour in the Iconic Four Waterfalls Valley: $74

Typical Entertainment prices in Belfast

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


  • Movie Tickets
    £8.00

Tours and Activities in Belfast

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

  • Welcome to Explore the iconic city centre sites on this audio tour: $5.99
  • Museum Ticket: $6.90
  • Self-Guided Tour of Crumlin Road Gaol in Belfast: $11
  • Hillsborough Castle Gardens Entrance Ticket: $13
  • Guided Game of Thrones Walking Tour: $14
  • 3-Day - Hop-on Hop-off City Bus Tour with Castle: $16
  • Belfast Sightseeing Cruise: Titanic Quarter and River Lagan: $17
  • If Buildings Could Talk Tour: $17
  • 1 or 2-Day Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour: $18
  • Hidden Belfast Walking Tour: $19
  • City Sightseeing Belfast Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $19
  • Belfast Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $19

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cardiff £10
    Belfast £6.29

Sample the Local Flavors in Belfast

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Belfast:

  • Giant's Causeway and Bushmills distillery and tasting tour from Belfast: $48
  • Tour of Giants causeway and bushmills distillery.: $662


When comparing the travel costs between Cardiff and Belfast, we can see that Cardiff 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 Cardiff or Belfast?

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 Cardiff or Belfast in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Cardiff and Belfast. Many travelers come to Cardiff for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Also, many visitors come to Belfast in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Cardiff is generally a little warmer than Belfast. Temperatures in Cardiff average around 17°C (63°F), and Belfast stays around 15°C (59°F).

In Cardiff, it's very sunny this time of the year. Cardiff usually receives more sunshine than Belfast during summer. At this time of the year, Cardiff gets 220 hours of sunny skies, while Belfast receives 151 hours of full sun.

In July, Cardiff usually receives less rain than Belfast. At this time of the year, Cardiff gets 62 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Belfast receives 70 mm (2.8 in) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Cardiff 17°C (63°F) 
    Belfast 15°C (59°F)

Should I visit Cardiff or Belfast in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Cardiff as well as Belfast. Many visitors come to Cardiff in the autumn for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area. Also, most visitors come to Belfast for the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene during these months.

Cardiff is a little warmer than Belfast in the autumn. The temperature in Cardiff is usually 11°C (52°F) in October, and Belfast stays around 9°C (48°F).

In the autumn, Cardiff often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Belfast. Cardiff gets 95 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Belfast receives 92 hours of full sun.

Cardiff receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Cardiff usually gets more rain in October than Belfast. Cardiff gets 101 mm (4 in) of rain, while Belfast receives 90 mm (3.5 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Cardiff 11°C (52°F) 
    Belfast 9°C (48°F)

Should I visit Cardiff or Belfast in the Winter?

Both Belfast and Cardiff are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Cardiff for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Belfast because of the shopping scene and the cuisine.

The weather in Belfast can be very cold. Cardiff can be very cold during winter. In the winter, Cardiff is cooler than Belfast. Typically, the winter temperatures in Cardiff in January are around 3°C (38°F), and Belfast is about 4°C (39°F).

Cardiff usually receives more sunshine than Belfast during winter. At this time of the year, Cardiff gets 57 hours of sunny skies, while Belfast receives 50 hours of full sun.

In January, Cardiff usually receives more rain than Belfast. At this time of the year, Cardiff gets 95 mm (3.7 in) of rain, while Belfast receives 80 mm (3.1 in) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Cardiff 3°C (38°F) 
    Belfast 4°C (39°F)

Should I visit Cardiff or Belfast in the Spring?

Both Belfast and Cardiff during the spring are popular places to visit. The spring months attract visitors to Cardiff because of the activities around the city and the natural beauty. Furthermore, the activities around the city are the main draw to Belfast this time of year.

In April, Cardiff is generally around the same temperature as Belfast. Temperatures in Cardiff average around 9°C (48°F), and Belfast stays around 8°C (46°F).

In the spring, Cardiff often gets more sunshine than Belfast. Cardiff gets 183 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Belfast receives 150 hours of full sun.

Cardiff usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Belfast. Cardiff gets 47 mm (1.9 in) of rain, while Belfast receives 50 mm (2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Cardiff 9°C (48°F) 
    Belfast 8°C (46°F)

Typical Weather for Belfast and Cardiff

Cardiff Belfast
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 3°C (38°F) 95 mm (3.7 in) 4°C (39°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Feb 4°C (40°F) 70 mm (2.7 in) 4°C (39°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)
Mar 6°C (42°F) 80 mm (3.2 in) 6°C (43°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Apr 9°C (48°F) 47 mm (1.9 in) 8°C (46°F) 50 mm (2 in)
May 12°C (53°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 11°C (52°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Jun 15°C (59°F) 57 mm (2.3 in) 13°C (55°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
Jul 17°C (63°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 15°C (59°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
Aug 17°C (62°F) 75 mm (3 in) 15°C (59°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Sep 14°C (58°F) 95 mm (3.7 in) 12°C (54°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Oct 11°C (52°F) 101 mm (4 in) 9°C (48°F) 90 mm (3.5 in)
Nov 7°C (45°F) 97 mm (3.8 in) 7°C (45°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)
Dec 5°C (40°F) 96 mm (3.8 in) 5°C (41°F) 80 mm (3.1 in)


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Cardiff vs. Belfast Travel Comparison

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