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

Should you visit Clearwater or Arlington?

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 Clearwater and Arlington. 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.

Clearwater

Clearwater is a beautiful, outdoorsy, and adventure-filled coastal city. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Arlington

Arlington is a international, historical, and educational city. It's also known for nightlife, food, and shopping.

Clearwater and Arlington: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Nice resorts
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Public transit not as usable
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Good public transit
  • Home to Arlington National Cemetery


Is there more to do in Clearwater or Arlington?

Travelers will generally find more things to do in Clearwater than Arlington. While Arlington is larger than Clearwater, Clearwater has more sights and attractions for tourists. Clearwater is better known for its resorts, scuba diving & snorkeling, and beaches, while Arlington is more popular for its nightlife. Clearwater is well known for its beautiful white sand beaches, laid back atmosphere, and watersports. Also, Clearwater is famous for Clearwater Beach. Arlington is well known for its international connections, its biking and walking trails, and being the location of the Pentagon.

How is Clearwater different from Arlington?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Clearwater or Arlington?

Clearwater
Arlington

Both Clearwater and Arlington have great landmarks and museums for visitors.

Visitors can fill many days exploring the museums and attractions around Clearwater. Perhaps most well known is the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, but there are also a surprising number of museums nearby such as the Dalí Museum, the impressive Chihuly Glass Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts.

Arlington offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. Arlington National Cemetery is where you'll find the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier as well as the tomb of John F. Kennedy Jr. There are many memorials around town, with the most famous being the U.S. Marine Corps Memorial. There are also several museums like the DEA Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art.


Is the Food Better in Clearwater or Arlington? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Clearwater
Arlington

Foodies will find both Clearwater and Arlington both to be great destinations.

With its innovative style combined with traditional elements, Clearwater makes for a great culinary experience. Head to the waterfront for some of the best seafood. Unfortunately this is also where you'll find the highest prices. Shrimp, crab, and a fresh catch of the day are common on many menus.

Arlington has a huge number of terrific restaurants. It's a global city, and the restaurants reflect that. You'll find amazing Thai, Japanese, and Mexican restaurants. There are also less common cuisines to choose from such as Ethiopian, Moroccan, and Peruvian.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Nightlife?

Clearwater
Arlington

Arlington is notable for nightlife. Also, Clearwater is not as famous, but is still a good coastal city to visit for nightlife and partying.

Arlington has plenty to do after the sun goes down. The city has a huge young population that drives the nightlife scene. There are clubs, bars, and lounges in many neighborhoods. There are also comedy clubs and plenty of live music.

With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Clearwater. You'll find laid back beach clubs, glitzy wine bars, and relaxed bars where you can spend a nice night out.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Resorts?

Clearwater
Arlington

Clearwater is an excellent place to visit for its luxury resorts. However, Arlington is not a resort destination.

Clearwater is a popular resort destination that attracts visitors from everywhere. You'll find a number of nice resorts along the coastline. Some of the most popular are the Sandpearl Resort, the Opal Sands Resort, and the Clearwater Beach Marriott.

Arlington is not a resort destination.


Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Clearwater
Arlington

Clearwater is a nice place to visit for snorkeling and scuba diving. However, Arlington is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Clearwater has a few areas where visitors often go scuba diving or snorkeling. There's both snorkeling and diving nearby. Some of the best dive spots are within and hour of the shore and you'll find diving shops that offer trips.

Arlington is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Beaches?

Clearwater
Arlington

Clearwater is terrific for the beach. However, Arlington is not a beach destination.

The beaches in Clearwater are among the best in the world. Clearwater Beach is on many lists as one of the best beaches in America. It's the most popular beach in the area and it spreads out over 2.5 miles. Sand Key Beach is another popular destination as is the pristine Caladesi Island State Park.

Arlington is not a beach destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Clearwater or Arlington?

Clearwater
Arlington

Both Clearwater and Arlington are notable shopping destinations.

Clearwater is a great destination for shopping. You'll find all of the standard shopping options in the area such as malls, shopping centers, and outlets. Westfield Countryside Mall is a popular destination as is the Cleveland Street District.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Arlington. Many neighborhoods have local shops or farmer's markets. There are also shopping centers and malls such as Ballston Quarter, The Crossing Clarendon, and The Village at Shirlington.


Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Families?

Clearwater
Arlington

Clearwater is an excellent place to visit for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Arlington is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its family-friendly activities.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Clearwater. Check out the playground and activities around Pier 60. Less crowded and family-friendly Sand Key Park is another favorite spot and the playgrounds at New Coachman Park and Crest Lake Park are also fun. Clearwater Marine Aquarium is another popular attraction for visitors with kids.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Arlington. Kids will enjoy seeing the planes talk off from Gravelly Point park. There are also plenty of outdoor spaces and educational opportunities in the area, including world class museums.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Couples?

Clearwater
Arlington

Clearwater is an excellent place to visit for couples. Also, Arlington is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for romance.

Clearwater makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. There are beautiful parks and beaches as well as romantic activities like sunset cruises and dolphin spotting tours. Couples will also enjoy dining on local seafood and shopping at the local venues.

Arlington is a nice destination for couples. There's a vibrant cultural scene and many international restaurants that couples can enjoy. It's also a great place to take in a show or concert.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Clearwater
Arlington

Arlington is notable for backpackers. However, Clearwater is a mediocre coastal city for backpackers and budget travelers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Arlington. There are a couple of hostels and many free activities nearby. There's also great public transportation that makes for a convenient backpacker destination.

Clearwater is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. There is a hostel in town, and you'll find more affordable prices than in some nearby beach destinations.


Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Students?

Clearwater
Arlington

Arlington is notable for students. However, Clearwater is not popular with students.

Many students visit Arlington. There are a huge number of colleges and museums in the area as well as many great internship and educational opportunities.

Clearwater is not popular with students.

Is Clearwater or Arlington Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Clearwater
Arlington

Arlington is a world-class destination for its public transit. However, Clearwater is a mediocre coastal city for times when you don't have a car.

With a huge network, the transit system in Arlington can get you around easily. There is a reliable bus system around town as well as many metro connections.

Public transit is mostly limited in Clearwater. The Clearwater Jolley Trolley connects some of the area's highlights. There are also public buses that run several routes through town.

Is Clearwater or Arlington a more walkable city?

Clearwater
Arlington

Arlington is notable for its walkability. Also, Clearwater is not as famous, but is still a good coastal city to visit for its high level of walkability.

Arlington is very walkable. There are many pedestrian-friendly areas around town, particularly in the neighborhoods that are concentrated around metro stations.

Clearwater is a somewhat walkable place. The waterfront and downtown areas are surprisingly walkable.


For even more information, also check out Is Clearwater Worth Visiting? and Is Arlington Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Arlington or Clearwater?

How long in Clearwater or Arlington?

It's fun to spend time in either Clearwater or Arlington. Generally, people tend to spend more time in Clearwater due to the larger number of activities and things to do. Usually, 3-5 days is a good amount of time for Clearwater, and 2-4 days is enough time in Arlington.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Arlington than Clearwater 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 Arlington.


  • How many days in Clearwater or Arlington? Ideal Length of Stay
    Clearwater 3-5 
    Arlington 2-4

One day in Clearwater or Arlington?

You'll find nightlife and food around the coastal city of Clearwater. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

With museums and nightlife around the historical city of Arlington, 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 Clearwater or Arlington?

You'll find food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the outdoorsy destination of Clearwater. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This coastal city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

With nightlife and food around the destination of Arlington, 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 Clearwater or Arlington?

You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping around the adventure-filled coastal city of Clearwater. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this coastal city makes for a great vacation. It's also a relaxing resort destination. Most people head to the area for the beaches. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this coastal city has to offer.

Arlington, 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 Clearwater or Arlington?

Clearwater is a popular choice for travelers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. One week 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. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Arlington 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 Romantic Tours for Couples in United States of America, The Best Polar Tours & Cruises in United States of America, The Best Walking Tours in United States of America, and The Best Tours Under $1000 in United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Arlington or Clearwater?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Clearwater is $309, while the average daily cost in Arlington is $264. 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 Clearwater and Arlington in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Clearwater $141
    Arlington $131
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Clearwater $282
    Arlington $262
Compare Hotels in Clearwater and Arlington

Looking for a hotel in Clearwater or Arlington? 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 Clearwater


Hotels in Arlington


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: Clearwater Hotel Prices and Arlington Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Clearwater $221
    Arlington $49

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Clearwater

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Clearwater:

  • St. Petersburg to St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) - Departure Private Transfer: $63
  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to St. Petersburg - Roundtrip Private Transfer: $126
  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to St. Petersburg - Arrival Private Transfer : $63
  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to Clearwater Beach - Arrival Private Transfer: $101
  • Private Transfer from St Petersburg Clearwater Airport to St Pete Beach: $75
  • Private Transfer from Clearwater to Tampa Airport: $120
  • Private Airport Transfer to St. Petersburg or Clearwater Beach : $103
  • From Orlando: Clearwater Beach Day with Transfers and Lunch: $100

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Arlington

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

  • Ronald Reagan DCA Airport Transfers: $160

Is it cheaper to fly into Clearwater or Arlington?

Prices for flights to both Arlington and Clearwater 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
    Clearwater $46
    Arlington $81

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Clearwater

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

  • 2 Hours Beach Bites & Brews Food Tour in Gulfport, Florida: $69

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Clearwater -
    Arlington $11

Tours and Activities in Clearwater

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

  • 1-hour Dolphin Sightseeing Adventure Cruise from Madeira Beach: $28
  • 1.5 Hour Tiki Tour with Open Bar in Clearwater Beach: $49
  • 2 Hour Guided Kayak Tour in Boca Ciega Bay - St. Pete: $55
  • 2 Hour Guided Segway Tour of Downtown St Pete: $59
  • 2 Hour Sunset Cruise in Clearwater, Florida: $35
  • 2 Hours Kayak Eco Tour in Tarpon Springs: $54
  • 2-Hour Sunset Cruise Tour in St. Petersburg: $67
  • 4-Hour St. Pete Pier to Egmont Key Experience by Ferry: $67
  • 90 Minute Axe Throwing Guided Experience in Clearwater at Hatchet Hangout: $50
  • All Day Fishing Experience from John's Pass in Madeira Beach, FL - 10 Hours: $160
  • Amazing Helicopter Tour of Treasure Island, John's Pass, Don CeSar Resort & Bay: $126
  • Aqua Sol Adventures -Signature Sunset Cruise and Bridge tour: $275

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Clearwater -
    Arlington $17

Sample the Local Flavors in Clearwater

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Clearwater:

  • The Tour and Wine Tasting Experience at Aspirations Winery: $20


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

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


Which is Bigger, Clearwater or Arlington?

Arlington has a larger population, and is about 72% larger than the population of Clearwater. When comparing the sizes of Clearwater and Arlington, 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 Clearwater or Arlington?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Clearwater or Arlington in the Summer?

Both Arlington and Clearwater during the summer are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Clearwater in the summer for the beaches, snorkeling, and the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Arlington for the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Clearwater is generally around the same temperature as Arlington. Daily temperatures in Clearwater average around 82°F (28°C), and Arlington fluctuates around 79°F (26°C).

In Arlington, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Clearwater. In the summer, Clearwater often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Arlington. Clearwater gets 265 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arlington receives 278 hours of full sun.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Clearwater. Clearwater usually gets more rain in July than Arlington. Clearwater gets 8.4 inches (214 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 3.5 inches (88 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Clearwater 82°F (28°C) 
    Arlington 79°F (26°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Arlington in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Clearwater and Arlington. Most visitors come to Clearwater for the shopping scene during these months. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Arlington because of the shopping scene.

Clearwater is much warmer than Arlington in the autumn. The daily temperature in Clearwater averages around 75°F (24°C) in October, and Arlington fluctuates around 60°F (15°C).

In Clearwater, it's very sunny this time of the year. Clearwater usually receives more sunshine than Arlington during autumn. Clearwater gets 234 hours of sunny skies, while Arlington receives 197 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Clearwater usually receives less rain than Arlington. Clearwater gets 2.6 inches (65 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain each month for the autumn. The hurricane season in Clearwater is June to November.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Clearwater 75°F (24°C) 
    Arlington 60°F (15°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Arlington in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Clearwater as well as Arlington. The winter months attract visitors to Clearwater because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Arlington this time of year.

It's quite cold in Arlington in the winter. In the winter, Clearwater is much warmer than Arlington. Typically, the winter temperatures in Clearwater in January average around 60°F (15°C), and Arlington averages at about 35°F (1°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Clearwater this time of the year. In the winter, Clearwater often gets more sunshine than Arlington. Clearwater gets 200 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arlington receives 139 hours of full sun.

Clearwater usually gets less rain in January than Arlington. Clearwater gets 2.3 inches (59 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.7 inches (68 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Clearwater 60°F (15°C) 
    Arlington 35°F (1°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Arlington in the Spring?

Both Arlington and Clearwater are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The beaches are the main draw to Clearwater this time of year.

In April, Clearwater is generally much warmer than Arlington. Daily temperatures in Clearwater average around 71°F (22°C), and Arlington fluctuates around 56°F (14°C).

It's quite sunny in Arlington. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Clearwater. Clearwater usually receives more sunshine than Arlington during spring. Clearwater gets 299 hours of sunny skies, while Arlington receives 228 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Clearwater usually receives less rain than Arlington. Clearwater gets 2.1 inches (53 mm) of rain, while Arlington receives 2.8 inches (72 mm) of rain each month for the spring. June to November is the hurricane season in Clearwater.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Clearwater 71°F (22°C) 
    Arlington 56°F (14°C)

Typical Weather for Arlington and Clearwater

Clearwater Arlington
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 60°F (15°C) 2.3 inches (59 mm) 35°F (1°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm)
Feb 61°F (16°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm) 37°F (3°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm)
Mar 67°F (19°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm) 47°F (8°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Apr 71°F (22°C) 2.1 inches (53 mm) 56°F (14°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm)
May 77°F (25°C) 2.4 inches (61 mm) 66°F (19°C) 3.5 inches (89 mm)
Jun 81°F (27°C) 6.5 inches (165 mm) 75°F (24°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm)
Jul 82°F (28°C) 8.4 inches (214 mm) 79°F (26°C) 3.5 inches (88 mm)
Aug 82°F (28°C) 8 inches (203 mm) 78°F (26°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Sep 81°F (27°C) 6.3 inches (161 mm) 71°F (22°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Oct 75°F (24°C) 2.6 inches (65 mm) 60°F (15°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
Nov 68°F (20°C) 1.8 inches (45 mm) 50°F (10°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)
Dec 62°F (17°C) 2.2 inches (56 mm) 39°F (4°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm)