A Travel Price Comparison for Virginia Charlottesville vs. Shenandoah National Park for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park?

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 Charlottesville and Shenandoah National Park. 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.

Where Should I go: Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park?

Charlottesville

Located in central Virginia, Charlottesville is a little university town steeped in history and culture. Home to Thomas Jefferson, much of the town's architecture is heavily influenced by his hand, while the people scene is full of activities, dining, and entertainment. Many visitors are drawn to the area for the University of Virginia, the Historic Downtown Mall, plus many quaint vineyards and farms in the surrounding countryside.

Shenandoah National Park

One of the most visited destinations in the eastern part of the United States, Shenandoah National Park attracts over a million people each year for its beautiful mountain scenery, abundant wildlife, and vibrant colors in the autumn months. Established in 1935, it is the largest fully protected area in the mid-Appalachian region.

Which city is cheaper, Shenandoah National Park or Charlottesville?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Charlottesville is $123, while the average daily cost in Shenandoah National Park is $100. 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 Charlottesville and Shenandoah National Park in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Charlottesville $64
    Shenandoah National Park $43
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Charlottesville $128
    Shenandoah National Park $86

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Charlottesville $42
    Shenandoah National Park $56

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Charlottesville

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

  • Private Arrival Transfer from Charlotteville Airport (CHO): $50
  • Private Departure Transfer to Charlottesville Airport (CHO): $50

Is it cheaper to fly into Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park?

Prices for flights to both Shenandoah National Park and Charlottesville 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
    Charlottesville $34
    Shenandoah National Park $23

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Charlottesville $14
    Shenandoah National Park $27

Tours and Activities in Charlottesville

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

  • Immersive Art Experience at The Looking Glass Ticket: $15
  • Private Virginia BBQ Experience Tour: $107
  • Private Virginia Craft Beer Tour: $180

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Charlottesville $42
    Shenandoah National Park $5.71

Sample the Local Flavors in Charlottesville

Also in Charlottesville, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Private Wine Tours: $75
  • Weekday Virginia Private Custom Wine Tour from Charlottesville: $217
  • Virginia Private Custom Wine Tour from Charlottesville: $379


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


When is the best time to visit Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park?

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 Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park in the Summer?

Both Shenandoah National Park and Charlottesville are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Charlottesville for the hiking, the small town charm, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In the summer, Charlottesville is around the same temperature as Shenandoah National Park. Typically, the summer temperatures in Charlottesville in July are around 78°F (26°C), and Shenandoah National Park is about 77°F (25°C).

It's quite rainy in Charlottesville. In July, Charlottesville usually receives more rain than Shenandoah National Park. At this time of the year, Charlottesville gets 5 inches (128 mm) of rain, while Shenandoah National Park receives 3.4 inches (87 mm) of rain.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Charlottesville 78°F (26°C) 
    Shenandoah National Park 77°F (25°C)

Should I visit Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park in the Autumn?

Both Shenandoah National Park and Charlottesville during the autumn are popular places to visit. The autumn months attract visitors to Charlottesville because of the hiking trails, the small town atmosphere, and the natural beauty of the area.

In October, Charlottesville is generally a little warmer than Shenandoah National Park. Temperatures in Charlottesville average around 59°F (15°C), and Shenandoah National Park stays around 56°F (13°C).

Charlottesville usually gets around the same amount of rain in October as Shenandoah National Park. Charlottesville gets 3.5 inches (90 mm) of rain, while Shenandoah National Park receives 3.3 inches (84 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Charlottesville 59°F (15°C) 
    Shenandoah National Park 56°F (13°C)

Should I visit Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Charlottesville and Shenandoah National Park. The museums, the Christmas ambience, and the cuisine are the main draw to Charlottesville this time of year.

Be prepared for some very cold days in Shenandoah National Park. It's quite cold in Charlottesville in the winter. Charlottesville is much warmer than Shenandoah National Park in the winter. The temperature in Charlottesville is usually 36°F (2°C) in January, and Shenandoah National Park stays around 32°F (-0°C).

In January, Charlottesville usually receives more rain than Shenandoah National Park. At this time of the year, Charlottesville gets 3.2 inches (83 mm) of rain, while Shenandoah National Park receives 2.8 inches (70 mm) of rain.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Charlottesville 36°F (2°C) 
    Shenandoah National Park 32°F (-0°C)

Should I visit Charlottesville or Shenandoah National Park in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Charlottesville as well as Shenandoah National Park. Many travelers come to Charlottesville for the small town charm and the natural beauty.

In the spring, Charlottesville is a little warmer than Shenandoah National Park. Typically, the spring temperatures in Charlottesville in April are around 58°F (14°C), and Shenandoah National Park is about 54°F (12°C).

Charlottesville usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Shenandoah National Park. Charlottesville gets 3 inches (75 mm) of rain, while Shenandoah National Park receives 3.1 inches (78 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Charlottesville 58°F (14°C) 
    Shenandoah National Park 54°F (12°C)

Typical Weather for Shenandoah National Park and Charlottesville

Charlottesville Shenandoah National Park
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 36°F (2°C) 3.2 inches (83 mm) 32°F (-0°C) 2.8 inches (70 mm)
Feb 39°F (4°C) 3.2 inches (80 mm) 35°F (1°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm)
Mar 49°F (9°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm) 44°F (7°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm)
Apr 58°F (14°C) 3 inches (75 mm) 54°F (12°C) 3.1 inches (78 mm)
May 67°F (19°C) 3.8 inches (98 mm) 63°F (17°C) 4 inches (102 mm)
Jun 74°F (24°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm) 72°F (22°C) 3.9 inches (100 mm)
Jul 78°F (26°C) 5 inches (128 mm) 77°F (25°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm)
Aug 77°F (25°C) 4.4 inches (113 mm) 75°F (24°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Sep 71°F (21°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm) 68°F (20°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm)
Oct 59°F (15°C) 3.5 inches (90 mm) 56°F (13°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Nov 50°F (10°C) 3.2 inches (81 mm) 47°F (8°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Dec 41°F (5°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 36°F (2°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)


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Charlottesville vs. Shenandoah National Park Travel Comparison

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