A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Cincinnati vs. Wisconsin Dells for Families, Attractions, Nightlife, and Couples

Should you visit Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

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

Should I visit Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells? 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.

Cincinnati

Cincinnati is a blue collar, authentic, and hard-working city. And you can't forget about the shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a lighthearted, high energy, and fun-filled city. And you can't forget about the food, hiking, and nightlife.

Cincinnati and Wisconsin Dells: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
Things to Consider
  • Less family-friendly
  • Less popular with couples
Pros
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Active nightlife
  • Nice resorts
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable


Is there more to do in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Visitors will usually find more to do in Wisconsin Dells than Cincinnati, as it offers more sights, attractions, and activities. Wisconsin Dells is better known for its food, nightlife, resorts, and hiking, while Cincinnati is more popular for its museums and shopping. Wisconsin Dells is more touristy than Cincinnati and is known for its many waterparks and unapologetically playful atmosphere. Also, Wisconsin Dells is famous for Noah's Ark Water Park. Cincinnati is well known for its breweries and down-to-earth personality.

How is Cincinnati different from Wisconsin Dells?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Cincinnati is a great destination for its museums and landmarks. However, Wisconsin Dells is a city with minimal options for its historical sights.

Cincinnati offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. You'll find both traditional and quirky museums around town. For outside-the-box, check out the American Sign Museum or the Behringer-Crawford Museum. Art museums include the Cincinnati Art Museum, the Contemporary Arts Center, and the Taft Museum of Art. Other popular museums include the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, and the Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminal.

While most people don't head to Wisconsin Dells specifically for the museums and attractions, it does offer a few options. There are a couple of art galleries in the area, but most visitors spend the majority of their time at the theme parks and waterparks.


Is the Food Better in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a popular place for its restaurant scene. However, Cincinnati is not a culinary destination.

Visitors will find a budding food and restaurant scene in Wisconsin Dells. Pizza, pasta, burgers, and steak in a family-friendly atmosphere are the most common options in the area. There are also a few fine dining restaurants as well as pubs and brunch places to choose from.

Cincinnati is not a culinary destination.

Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Nightlife?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is well known for nightlife and partying. Also, Cincinnati is still popular, but not quite as popular for its evening party scene.

Wisconsin Dells is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. In the evening the fun-filled atmosphere takes on a different vibe. There are bars, clubs, casinos, and shows that keep things lively throughout the evening.

If you're looking for night time activities Cincinnati has a few options to choose from. The nightlife scene is diverse and includes music venues, breweries, and nightclubs. In addition to the city's downtown, you'll find trendy places to hang out in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood. Breweries are popular in the city, in part because of its German roots.

Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Resorts?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a popular place for its resorts. However, Cincinnati is not a resort destination.

With a selection of resorts, Wisconsin Dells makes a nice vacation spot. Many of the waterparks in the area have affiliated resorts that offer family-friendly entertainment.

Cincinnati is not a resort destination.


Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Hiking?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a popular place for its hiking experiences. However, Cincinnati is not a hiking destination.

Wisconsin Dells is a good destination for hiking. Visitors often forget that this was originally a destination for its natural beauty. There are still many hiking trails in the area with some of the favorites found at Mirror Lake State Park, Rocky Arbor State Park, and Chimney Rock Private Park.

Cincinnati is not a hiking destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Cincinnati is a popular place for its shopping opportunities. However, Wisconsin Dells is a city with minimal options for its shopping areas.

Cincinnati offers some nice shopping areas. There are large shopping malls and retail outlets. You'll also find local boutiques in the Montgomery or Mariemont areas.

Wisconsin Dells has some good spots for those that want to go shopping. You'll find shopping malls and shopping centers, as well as gift shops in the area.

Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Families?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a world-class destination for its family-friendly activities. Also, Cincinnati is still popular, but not quite as popular for its kid-friendly activities.

As it has a large number of activities for kids, Wisconsin Dells is a very family-friendly destination. While it used to be known for its impressive sandstone formations along the Wisconsin River, today it has a more touristy atmosphere with theme parks and amusement parks. It's also become known as the "Water Park Capital of the World", and it won't disappoint. There are both indoor and outdoor waterparks as well as train rides, boat rides, and plenty of family-friendly restaurants.

Cincinnati offers lots of family activities. There's a surprising number of kid-friendly activities around town like the Cincinnati Zoo, the Cincinnati Museum Center, Newport Aquarium, and Smale Riverfront Park.


Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Couples?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Wisconsin Dells is a popular place for its romantic activities. However, Cincinnati is not particularly known for couples.

Wisconsin Dells makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. There are a number of resorts with spas and romantic atmospheres. There are also wineries and plenty of entertainment options in the area.

Cincinnati is not always the best place to visit for a couple. If you do find yourself in town for a few days, there are several good restaurants and a number of music venues that can keep the visit fun and entertaining.

Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Cincinnati is a popular place for backpackers. However, Wisconsin Dells is a city with minimal options for backpackers and budget travelers.

Plenty of budget travelers visit Cincinnati. There are actually a couple of hostels in town for backpackers or students.

Wisconsin Dells is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. You'll find campgrounds in the area, but most places are very built up and don't have the natural setting that backpackers appreciate.

Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Cincinnati is a popular place for its public transit. However, Wisconsin Dells is a city with minimal options for times when you don't have a car.

You'll find some public transit in Cincinnati, but it may not be enough to take you everywhere. There are two bus systems around town - the METRO and TANK bus systems. There's also a streetcar that travels through the downtown.

Public transit is quite limited in Wisconsin Dells. There's no real public transportation in the area.


Is Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells a more walkable city?

Cincinnati
Wisconsin Dells

Cincinnati is a great destination for its high level of walkability. However, Wisconsin Dells is a city with minimal options for its ease of walking around.

Cincinnati is a very walkable city. There are several surprisingly walkable areas, particularly downtown and the nearby neighborhoods.

Wisconsin Dells is generally not a very walkable city. While the downtown area is walkable, you really need a car to access everything that the area has to offer.

For even more information, also check out Is Cincinnati Worth Visiting? and Is Wisconsin Dells Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Wisconsin Dells or Cincinnati?

How long in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

It's fun to spend time in either Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells. Generally, people tend to spend more time in Wisconsin Dells due to the larger number of activities and things to do. Usually, 1-2 days is a good amount of time for Cincinnati, and 2-4 days is enough time in Wisconsin Dells.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Cincinnati than Wisconsin Dells 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 Cincinnati.


  • How many days in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells? Ideal Length of Stay
    Cincinnati 1-2 
    Wisconsin Dells 2-4

One day in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

The hard-working destination of Cincinnati offers shopping and museums. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One day is usually enough time to experience most activities.

With food and nightlife around the fun-filled city of Wisconsin Dells, there's plenty to do. Anyone can find something fun to do here. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

The city of Cincinnati offers museums and nightlife. A weekend here is typical. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything. A weekend is often enough time to do most activities.

With nightlife and food around the destination of Wisconsin Dells, there's plenty to do. It offers something for everyone. Many people spend a weekend here. In a weekend, you should have a good grasp of this city.


Five days in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Cincinnati is a great place to explore. This city offers something for everyone. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

Wisconsin Dells, a popular city, is full of activities for travelers. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

A week in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Many people enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting Cincinnati. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Wisconsin Dells is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. 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.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Tours for Seniors to United States of America, The Best Contiki Tours to United States of America, The Best G Adventures Tours to United States of America, and The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Las Vegas.


Which place is cheaper, Wisconsin Dells or Cincinnati?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Cincinnati is $183, while the average daily cost in Wisconsin Dells is $142. 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 Cincinnati and Wisconsin Dells in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Cincinnati $102
    Wisconsin Dells $70
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Cincinnati $204
    Wisconsin Dells $140
Compare Hotels in Cincinnati and Wisconsin Dells

Looking for a hotel in Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells? 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 Cincinnati


Hotels in Wisconsin Dells


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: Cincinnati Hotel Prices and Wisconsin Dells Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Cincinnati $25
    Wisconsin Dells $35

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cincinnati

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Cincinnati:

  • Cincinnati to Cincinnati Airport (CVG) - Departure Private Transfer: $35

Is it cheaper to fly into Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Prices for flights to both Wisconsin Dells and Cincinnati 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
    Cincinnati $55
    Wisconsin Dells $43

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cincinnati

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

  • Ohio River Cruise with Buffet Dinner: $61
  • Mainstrasse Village Food Tour in Covington KY: $79
  • Cincinnati Streetcar Food Tour with Vegan Options: $85
  • Cincinnati Streetcar Food Tour With Findlay Market : $85
  • Cincinnati Walking Sightseeing Tour with Pizza and Ice-cream: $120

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Cincinnati $26
    Wisconsin Dells $46

Tours and Activities in Cincinnati

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

  • Mt Adams Historic, Cincinnati, App/GPS Audio Walking Tour: $6.75
  • Mount Adams Historic Smartphone Guided App GPS Audio Walking Tour: $6.75
  • Self-Guided Haunted Walking Audio Tour: $6.75
  • Self Guided Cincinnati Ghost Haunted Walking Tour Audio Tour Music Hall OTR: $7.75
  • Queen of the West's Best - An Audio Tour: $12
  • Self Guided Walking Tour of Cincinnati: $12
  • Reds Hall of Fame and Museum Entry Ticket: $12
  • Cincinnati Reds Baseball Game Ticket at Great American Ballpark: $17
  • Cincinnati Bengals Football Game Ticket at Paul Brown Stadium: $18
  • Tour of Historic Wesleyan Cemetery: $20
  • Ghost Walking Tour: $24
  • Smartphone-Guided Walking Tour of Downtown Cincinnati: $25

Tours and Activities in Wisconsin Dells

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

  • Haunted Downtown Tour of Baraboo: $20
  • City and History Trolley Tour in Wisconsin Dells: $24
  • Haunted History Trolley Tour in Wisconsin Dells: $25
  • Noah's Ark Water Park Entry Ticket: $40

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Cincinnati $11
    Wisconsin Dells $9.14

Sample the Local Flavors in Cincinnati

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

  • Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt: Cin-sational Cincinnati Bar Crawl: $12
  • Hidden Brewery Caverns Tour in Cincinnati with Beer Tasting: $49
  • Craft Brewery 3 Stop Hop: $64
  • Cincinnati Original Craft Brewery Small-Group Tour: $68


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

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


Which is Bigger, Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

Cincinnati has a larger population, and is about 120 times larger than the population of Wisconsin Dells. When comparing the sizes of Cincinnati and Wisconsin Dells, 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 Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells?

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 Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells in the Summer?

Both Wisconsin Dells and Cincinnati are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. The summer months attract visitors to Cincinnati because of the family-friendly experiences. Also, the hiking and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Wisconsin Dells this time of year.

Cincinnati is around the same temperature as Wisconsin Dells in the summer. The daily temperature in Cincinnati averages around 79°F (26°C) in July, and Wisconsin Dells fluctuates around 74°F (24°C).

It's quite sunny in Wisconsin Dells. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Cincinnati. Cincinnati usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Wisconsin Dells during summer. Cincinnati gets 298 hours of sunny skies, while Wisconsin Dells receives 309 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Cincinnati usually receives more rain than Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 3.5 inches (90 mm) of rain, while Wisconsin Dells receives 3 inches (76 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Cincinnati 79°F (26°C) 
    Wisconsin Dells 74°F (24°C)

Should I visit Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells in the Autumn?

Both Wisconsin Dells and Cincinnati during the autumn are popular places to visit. The shopping scene are the main draw to Cincinnati this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Wisconsin Dells for the hiking trails and the shopping scene.

In the autumn, Cincinnati is a little warmer than Wisconsin Dells. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Cincinnati in October average around 58°F (15°C), and Wisconsin Dells averages at about 52°F (11°C).

In the autumn, Cincinnati often gets more sunshine than Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 188 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Wisconsin Dells receives 171 hours of full sun.

Cincinnati usually gets more rain in October than Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 2.2 inches (56 mm) of rain, while Wisconsin Dells receives 1.9 inches (48 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Cincinnati 58°F (15°C) 
    Wisconsin Dells 52°F (11°C)

Should I visit Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Cincinnati and Wisconsin Dells. Many travelers come to Cincinnati for the museums and the shopping scene. Furthermore, many visitors come to Wisconsin Dells in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

Wisconsin Dells can get quite cold in the winter. Be prepared for some very cold days in Cincinnati. In January, Cincinnati is generally much warmer than Wisconsin Dells. Daily temperatures in Cincinnati average around 31°F (-0°C), and Wisconsin Dells fluctuates around 19°F (-7°C).

Cincinnati usually receives less sunshine than Wisconsin Dells during winter. Cincinnati gets 129 hours of sunny skies, while Wisconsin Dells receives 141 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Cincinnati usually receives more rain than Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 2.2 inches (57 mm) of rain, while Wisconsin Dells receives 1 inches (25 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Cincinnati 31°F (-0°C) 
    Wisconsin Dells 19°F (-7°C)

Should I visit Cincinnati or Wisconsin Dells in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Cincinnati as well as Wisconsin Dells.

Cincinnati is a little warmer than Wisconsin Dells in the spring. The daily temperature in Cincinnati averages around 56°F (14°C) in April, and Wisconsin Dells fluctuates around 49°F (10°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Wisconsin Dells. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Cincinnati this time of the year. In the spring, Cincinnati often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 215 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Wisconsin Dells receives 208 hours of full sun.

Cincinnati usually gets more rain in April than Wisconsin Dells. Cincinnati gets 3.5 inches (89 mm) of rain, while Wisconsin Dells receives 2.6 inches (65 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Cincinnati 56°F (14°C) 
    Wisconsin Dells 49°F (10°C)

Typical Weather for Wisconsin Dells and Cincinnati

Cincinnati Wisconsin Dells
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 31°F (-0°C) 2.2 inches (57 mm) 19°F (-7°C) 1 inches (25 mm)
Feb 35°F (2°C) 2.5 inches (64 mm) 24°F (-5°C) 0.8 inches (21 mm)
Mar 46°F (8°C) 3.9 inches (100 mm) 36°F (2°C) 2.2 inches (55 mm)
Apr 56°F (14°C) 3.5 inches (89 mm) 49°F (10°C) 2.6 inches (65 mm)
May 66°F (19°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm) 60°F (16°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
Jun 74°F (24°C) 3.1 inches (80 mm) 70°F (21°C) 3 inches (76 mm)
Jul 79°F (26°C) 3.5 inches (90 mm) 74°F (24°C) 3 inches (76 mm)
Aug 77°F (25°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm) 72°F (22°C) 3.4 inches (87 mm)
Sep 71°F (21°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm) 63°F (17°C) 2.8 inches (70 mm)
Oct 58°F (15°C) 2.2 inches (56 mm) 52°F (11°C) 1.9 inches (48 mm)
Nov 48°F (9°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm) 39°F (4°C) 1.7 inches (42 mm)
Dec 37°F (3°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm) 25°F (-4°C) 1.6 inches (41 mm)