A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Chattanooga vs. Pasadena for Attractions, Food, Nightlife, and Families

Should you visit Chattanooga or Pasadena?

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

Should I visit Chattanooga or Pasadena? 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.

Chattanooga

Chattanooga is a bustling, outdoorsy, and thriving city. Other popular activities here include food, hiking, and shopping.

Pasadena

Pasadena is a quaint, charming, and picturesque city. Other popular activities here include shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Chattanooga and Pasadena: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Chattanooga. Although Chattanooga and Pasadena are about the same size, Chattanooga has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Chattanooga is very popular for its hiking, while Pasadena attracts visitors for its museums, food, nightlife, and shopping. Chattanooga is more touristy than Pasadena and is known for it's hikes, railways, and nearby natural areas. It is also well known for Rock City. Pasadena is famous for being the home of the Tournament of Roses and the Rose Bowl.

How is Chattanooga different from Pasadena?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Pasadena is a great destination for its museums and landmarks. Also, Chattanooga is still popular, but not quite as popular for its historical sights.

Pasadena offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. There's a good number of museums around town that include kids' museums, art museums, and local museums. Popular museums include the USC Pacific Asia Museum, the Norton Simon Museum, and the Pasadena Museum of History. Many people also enjoy touring the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Chattanooga is a good place to visit if you're interested in museums or other recognizable sights. It's a thriving city and there are a number of museums to explore. The Hunter Museum of American Art is great for art enthusiasts. There's also the Creative Discovery Museum, the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, and the 6th Cavalry Museum, as well as several smaller museums that you can visit.


Is the Food Better in Chattanooga or Pasadena? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Pasadena is a great destination for its restaurant scene. Also, Chattanooga is still popular, but not quite as popular for its local flavors and cuisine.

Dining out in Pasadena is an experience not to be missed. Local restaurants feature southern California cuisine as well as international flavors. Dishes often use local ingredients that are fresh and seasonal. Restaurants range from casual to fine dining and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming.

There are plenty of up and coming restaurants around Chattanooga. There are a growing number of restaurants that range from local dives to fine dining. Fried food is common, but you'll also find Mexican and classic hamburgers. Popular dishes that are local to the area include catfish, southern barbecue, and hush puppies.

Is Chattanooga or Pasadena Better for Nightlife?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Pasadena is a great destination for its evening party scene. Also, Chattanooga is still popular, but not quite as popular for nightlife.

The people in Pasadena know how to have a good time. Much of the nightlife scene is concentrated around Old Pasadena. You'll find clubs, bars, and lounges that begin the evening with Happy Hours and then become more party-focused as the evening progresses.

If you're looking for night time activities Chattanooga has a few options to choose from. You'll find plenty of bars and clubs around town. There are also a number of comedy and improv clubs that are fun to check out.

Is Chattanooga or Pasadena Better for Hiking?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Chattanooga is notable for the nearby hiking options. However, Pasadena is not a hiking destination.

Chattanooga is a popular spot for hiking. It's proximity to the mountains means that you don't have to go far to find good hiking. Within a half hour of town there are more than 50 trailheads. Lookout Mountain and Signal Mountain are both hiking destinations. Several trails have swimming spots and many pass through nice forests or head to impressive viewpoints.

Pasadena is not a hiking destination.


Is the Shopping Better in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Pasadena is a great destination for its shopping areas. Also, Chattanooga is still popular, but not quite as popular for shopping.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity in Pasadena. Old Pasadena is where you'll find some of the best shopping. It's filled with a charming atmosphere and interesting boutiques.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Chattanooga. Head downtown for local shops or to the larger malls if you want mainstream stores. Many visitors enjoy antiquing while they're in town, but there are also farmer's markets and thrift stores.

Is Chattanooga or Pasadena Better for Families?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Kids will enjoy a visit to either Chattanooga or Pasadena.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Chattanooga. Many people enjoy a visit to the Tennessee Aquarium, which has a touch tank and a butterfly exhibit, among other things. Near downtown, Coolidge Park is a great place for kids to get their energy out. There's also the popular Lookout Mountain Incline Railway as well as many hiking trails in the area.

Pasadena offers lots of family activities. There are a number of kid-friendly museums around town including Kidspace Children's Museum. There are also nature centers, playgrounds, and plenty of family-friendly restaurants.

Is Chattanooga or Pasadena Better for Couples?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

With fun activities for couples, both Chattanooga and Pasadena make for a nice place to visit.

Chattanooga is a good city for couples to visit. Many couples enjoy staying at a local inn and then dining in a nice restaurant or visiting a winery. There's an eclectic art district to explore as well as horse drawn carriages and plenty of nearby hiking trails.

Pasadena is a nice destination for couples. It's a charming town with a bit of a European vibe and plenty of outdoor activities. Fine dining and interesting shopping make this a nice weekend destination.


Is Chattanooga or Pasadena Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

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

The public transit in Chattanooga can get you to most places easily. The city has a convenient and free electric shuttle service. It travels through the downtown and has stops at many points of interest such as the Chattanooga Choo Choo and the Tennessee Aquarium.

Pasadena has some public transit options. Buses and light rail offer local transit and connect the city to nearby Los Angeles.

Is Chattanooga or Pasadena a more walkable city?

Chattanooga
Pasadena

Chattanooga is notable for its ease of walking around. Also, Pasadena is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its walkability.

Chattanooga is a very walkable destination. The city has put a lot of effort into improving its walkability. In particular, the downtown is nice to explore on foot.

Pasadena is somewhat walkable. Most people head to Old Pasadena, which is the most concentrated and walkable part of the city.

For even more information, also check out Is Chattanooga Worth Visiting? and Is Pasadena Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Pasadena or Chattanooga?

How long in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Chattanooga and Pasadena. In our opinion, Pasadena has more to see and do, so we recommend spending more time in Pasadena than Chattanooga. In general, 2-3 days is a good amount of time for Chattanooga, and 1-3 days is enough time in Pasadena.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Pasadena than Chattanooga 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 Pasadena.


  • How many days in Chattanooga or Pasadena? Ideal Length of Stay
    Chattanooga 2-3 
    Pasadena 1-3

One day in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

The city of Chattanooga offers food and shopping. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Visitors enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the quaint city of Pasadena. One day should give you a good understanding of everything this city has to offer. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.


A weekend in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga 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 spend some time hiking while you're in the area. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Chattanooga, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Visitors enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the quaint destination of Pasadena. This city offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend a weekend in the area when traveling. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Five days in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga 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 region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

The quaint city of Pasadena offers shopping and museums. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

A week in Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga is a great place to explore. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. 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.

Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Pasadena. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Cruise Tours and Packages in United States of America, The Best Cultural Tours in United States of America, The Best Photography Tours in United States of America, and The Best Camping Tours in United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Pasadena or Chattanooga?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Chattanooga is $182, while the average daily cost in Pasadena is $62. 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 Chattanooga and Pasadena in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Chattanooga $92
    Pasadena $25
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Chattanooga $184
    Pasadena $50
Compare Hotels in Chattanooga and Pasadena

Looking for a hotel in Chattanooga or Pasadena? 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 Chattanooga


Hotels in Pasadena


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: Chattanooga Hotel Prices and Pasadena Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Chattanooga $35
    Pasadena $21
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Chattanooga

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


  • Chattanooga Zoo (for 2)
    $16

Is it cheaper to fly into Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Prices for flights to both Pasadena and Chattanooga 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
    Chattanooga $59
    Pasadena $19

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Chattanooga

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

  • MLK Walking Art History & Food Tour: $65
  • Historic Southside Food Tour in Chattanooga: $99
  • ChattaBrunch Food Tour: $99
  • Downtown Chattanooga Food Tour: $119

Typical Food Prices in Pasadena

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


  • Casual Dinner Out (family of 4)
    $58

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Chattanooga $52
    Pasadena -

Tours and Activities in Chattanooga

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

  • Scavenger Hunt Adventure Self-Guided City Game: $10
  • National Medal of Honor Heritage Museum Admission Ticket in Chattanooga: $14
  • Scenic City Ghosts, Voodoo, Murder Mystery Tour: $21
  • Guided Ghost Walking Tour: $23
  • Chattanooga Guided Walking Tour: $23
  • ChattaBOOga Ghost Walk Tour in Chattanooga: $23
  • Original Local Award-Winning Walking Ghost Tour: $25
  • Murder & Mayhem Haunted History Walking Tour: $25
  • Ghost & Booze Tour of Chattanooga - 21+ Over: $25
  • A Spooky and Family-Friendly Walking Tour: $25
  • Family-Friendly Ghost Tour in Chattanooga: $25
  • Ghosts of Scenic City: Chattanooga Ghosts, Murder & Mystery Tour: $25

Tours and Activities in Pasadena

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

  • Haunted Walking Tour: $33
  • Old Pasadena Scavenger Hunt Walking Tour: $49
  • Cozumel: ATVs Jungle Experience + Beach Club All Inclusive: $79
  • LA: East Side Guided Film Locations Tour: $350

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Chattanooga $24
    Pasadena -


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

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


Which is Bigger, Chattanooga or Pasadena?

Chattanooga has a larger population, and is about 8% larger than the population of Pasadena. When comparing the sizes of Chattanooga and Pasadena, 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 Chattanooga or Pasadena?

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 Chattanooga or Pasadena in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Chattanooga and Pasadena. Most visitors come to Chattanooga for the hiking and the family-friendly experiences during these months. Furthermore, the summer months attract visitors to Pasadena because of the family-friendly experiences.

Chattanooga is a little warmer than Pasadena in the summer. The daily temperature in Chattanooga averages around 81°F (27°C) in July, and Pasadena fluctuates around 73°F (23°C).

Chattanooga gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Chattanooga usually receives more rain than Pasadena. Chattanooga gets 5.2 inches (131 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0 inches (0 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Chattanooga 81°F (27°C) 
    Pasadena 73°F (23°C)

Should I visit Chattanooga or Pasadena in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Chattanooga as well as Pasadena. The autumn months attract visitors to Chattanooga because of the hiking trails and the shopping scene. Additionally, the shopping scene are the main draw to Pasadena this time of year.

In the autumn, Chattanooga is cooler than Pasadena. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Chattanooga in October average around 63°F (17°C), and Pasadena averages at about 68°F (20°C).

Chattanooga usually gets more rain in October than Pasadena. Chattanooga gets 3 inches (75 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0.3 inches (7 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Chattanooga 63°F (17°C) 
    Pasadena 68°F (20°C)

Should I visit Chattanooga or Pasadena in the Winter?

Both Pasadena and Chattanooga are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. The museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Chattanooga this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Pasadena for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

It's quite cold in Chattanooga in the winter. In January, Chattanooga is generally much colder than Pasadena. Daily temperatures in Chattanooga average around 40°F (5°C), and Pasadena fluctuates around 56°F (13°C).

It's quite rainy in Chattanooga. In January, Chattanooga usually receives more rain than Pasadena. Chattanooga gets 5.4 inches (137 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 2.5 inches (63 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Chattanooga 40°F (5°C) 
    Pasadena 56°F (13°C)

Should I visit Chattanooga or Pasadena in the Spring?

Both Pasadena and Chattanooga during the spring are popular places to visit.

Chattanooga is around the same temperature as Pasadena in the spring. The daily temperature in Chattanooga averages around 62°F (17°C) in April, and Pasadena fluctuates around 62°F (17°C).

It rains a lot this time of the year in Chattanooga. Chattanooga usually gets more rain in April than Pasadena. Chattanooga gets 4.4 inches (112 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0.7 inches (17 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Chattanooga 62°F (17°C) 
    Pasadena 62°F (17°C)

Typical Weather for Pasadena and Chattanooga

Chattanooga Pasadena
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 40°F (5°C) 5.4 inches (137 mm) 56°F (13°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm)
Feb 44°F (7°C) 5.2 inches (132 mm) 58°F (14°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm)
Mar 53°F (12°C) 5.6 inches (143 mm) 59°F (15°C) 2 inches (50 mm)
Apr 62°F (17°C) 4.4 inches (112 mm) 62°F (17°C) 0.7 inches (17 mm)
May 70°F (21°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm) 65°F (18°C) 0.2 inches (4 mm)
Jun 78°F (25°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm) 69°F (20°C) 0 inches (1 mm)
Jul 81°F (27°C) 5.2 inches (131 mm) 73°F (23°C) 0 inches (0 mm)
Aug 80°F (27°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 74°F (24°C) 0.1 inches (3 mm)
Sep 74°F (24°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm) 73°F (23°C) 0.3 inches (7 mm)
Oct 63°F (17°C) 3 inches (75 mm) 68°F (20°C) 0.3 inches (7 mm)
Nov 53°F (12°C) 3.9 inches (100 mm) 62°F (16°C) 1.6 inches (42 mm)
Dec 44°F (7°C) 5.2 inches (133 mm) 56°F (13°C) 1.7 inches (43 mm)