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

Should you visit Clearwater or Memphis?

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 Memphis. 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 adventure-filled, relaxing, and beautiful coastal city. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Memphis

Memphis is a soulful, creative, and laid-back city. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. It's also known for nightlife, live music, and food.

Clearwater and Memphis: 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
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for students
Things to Consider
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Clearwater or Memphis?

You'll generally find more things to do in Memphis than Clearwater. Memphis is bigger than Clearwater, and it also has more attractions and activities for travelers. Memphis is better known for its nightlife, music, and big city activities, while Clearwater is more popular for its museums, food, resorts, scuba diving & snorkeling, beaches, and shopping. Clearwater is more touristy than Memphis and is popular for its beautiful white sand beaches, laid back atmosphere, and watersports. Memphis is well known for its influential music scene and its southern barbecue. Also, Memphis is famous for Elvis Presley's Graceland.

How is Clearwater different from Memphis?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Memphis 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 Memphis?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a great coastal city for its historical sights. Also, Memphis is not as popular, but is still a nice city for its sights and museums.

With a variety of museums, monuments, and historical sights, a trip to Clearwater can be an interesting and educational experience. 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.

Memphis is a good place to visit if you're interested in museums or other recognizable sights. Many attractions in town are related to the city's history in music. There is the famed Graceland as well as the Rock 'n' Soul Museum, the Blues Hall of Fame and Stax Museum of American Soul Music. The city also has several art museums that are worth checking out.


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

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a great coastal city for its local flavors and cuisine. Also, Memphis is not as popular, but is still a nice city for its local cuisine and restaurants.

Clearwater has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. 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.

Memphis offers number of good local restaurants to choose from. The town has grown into a foodie destination with excellent barbecue and ribs. There are many award winning barbecue joints, but you'll also find casual bars that serve nachos, pizza, and other quick bites.

Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Nightlife?

Clearwater
Memphis

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

Memphis has plenty to do after the sun goes down. Music is at the heart of the nightlife scene. Head to Beale Street in Memphis's downtown for the most active nightlife that usually stays open the latest. You'll also find a lot of bars and clubs in Midtown around Overton Square.

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 Memphis Better for Music?

Clearwater
Memphis

Memphis is a world-class destination for live music. However, Clearwater is not a live music destination.

Memphis is a world class music destination. There are plenty of live music venues in the downtown area that you can explore. Several of the most famous include B.B. King's Blues Club, Handy Park Pavilion, and Blues City Cafe. The city is known for its influential role in several music genres including the blues, soul, and rock 'n' roll. There are also many music related museums and attractions in town like Graceland, the Rock 'n' Soul Museum, the Blues Hall of Fame and Stax Museum of American Soul Music.

Clearwater is not a live music destination.


Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Resorts?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a great coastal city for its luxury resorts. However, Memphis 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.

Memphis is not a resort destination.

Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a nice place to visit for snorkeling and scuba diving. However, Memphis 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.

Memphis is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Beaches?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a world-class destination for the beach. However, Memphis 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.

Memphis is not a beach destination.


Is the Shopping Better in Clearwater or Memphis?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a nice place to visit for its shopping areas. However, Memphis is not known for shopping.

Clearwater has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. 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.

Memphis is a good destination for shopping. The city has plenty of malls and chain stores where you can grab anything you might need.

Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Families?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a great coastal city for its kid-friendly activities. Also, Memphis is not as popular, but is still a nice city 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.

Memphis is a family-friendly place to visit. The town has some great activities for kids including a zoo, several museums, petting farms, and a botanical garden.

Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Couples?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater is a great coastal city for couples. Also, Memphis is not as popular, but is still a nice city for romance.

Clearwater is a great coastal city if you're traveling as 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.

Memphis is a nice destination for couples. Couples who enjoy good music and southern food will enjoy a weekend here. There are many music related landmarks including Graceland and the Rock 'n' Soul Museum. Live music is very popular as well.


Is Clearwater or Memphis Better for Students?

Clearwater
Memphis

Memphis is a good destination for students. However, Clearwater is not popular with students.

Memphis is a good city to visit for students. The live music scene and great food options make this is a fun town for students.

Clearwater is not popular with students.

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

Clearwater
Memphis

Both Clearwater and Memphis offer respectable public transit options.

Public transit is generally 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.

Public transit is mostly limited in Memphis. There is a trolley and bus system that the city operates, but a car is really helpful for getting around.

Is Clearwater or Memphis a more walkable city?

Clearwater
Memphis

Clearwater and Memphis both are notable when exploring on foot.

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

Memphis is a somewhat walkable place. Most of the touristy parts of town are walkable, but if you want to explore further out you'll need a car.


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

Should I spend more time in Memphis or Clearwater?

How long in Clearwater or Memphis?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Clearwater and Memphis. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Clearwater than in Memphis. Usually, 3-5 days is a good amount of time for Clearwater, and 2-3 days is enough time in Memphis.

Families should spend more time in Clearwater than Memphis. 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 Memphis. 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 Clearwater than Memphis 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 Clearwater.


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

One day in Clearwater or Memphis?

In Clearwater, you'll find shopping and museums. Travelers enjoy the resorts in the area as well. One reason most visitors come is for the beaches. This coastal city offers something for everyone. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

With museums and nightlife around the soulful city of Memphis, there's plenty to do. Anyone can find something fun to do here. One of the main draws to the area is the live music. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Clearwater or Memphis?

In Clearwater, you'll find museums and nightlife. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. Most people come for the beaches. One reason most visitors come is for the beaches. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

With nightlife and live music around the destination of Memphis, there's plenty to do. It offers something for everyone. Many people spend a weekend here. One of the main draws to the area is the live music. In a weekend, you should have a good grasp of this city.

Five days in Clearwater or Memphis?

Clearwater is a great place to explore. It is common to spend five days here. You can also relax and pamper yourself at one of the resorts. Five days is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Clearwater has to offer. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

Memphis, 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 Memphis?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Clearwater. Many people enjoy the food and scuba diving and snorkeling when visiting Clearwater. One reason most visitors come is for the beaches. It's also a relaxing resort destination. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Memphis is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. One of the main draws to the area is the live music. 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, Memphis 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 Memphis is $167. 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 Memphis in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Clearwater $141
    Memphis $84
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Clearwater $282
    Memphis $168
Compare Hotels in Clearwater and Memphis

Looking for a hotel in Clearwater or Memphis? 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 Memphis


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 Memphis Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Clearwater $221
    Memphis $59

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Clearwater

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Clearwater:

  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to St. Petersburg - Roundtrip Private Transfer: $128
  • Private Transfer from Clearwater to Tampa Airport: $120
  • Private Airport Transfer to St. Petersburg or Clearwater Beach : $105
  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to Clearwater Beach - Arrival Private Transfer: $103
  • Private Transfer from St Petersburg Clearwater Airport to St Pete Beach: $75
  • St. Petersburg to St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) - Departure Private Transfer: $64
  • St. Pete–Clearwater Airport (PIE) to St. Petersburg - Arrival Private Transfer : $64

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Memphis

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

  • Memphis Airport Transfers: $60
  • Private Departure Transfer to Memphis Airport MEM: $72
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Memphis Airport MEM: $72
  • Greater Memphis To MEM International Airport - Luxury Transfer: $95
  • Memphis Airport (MEM) to Memphis City - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $135
  • Memphis Airport MEM to Hot Springs Resorts Round-Trip Transfer: $288
  • Guided Tour with Riverboat Cruise & Hotel Transfers: $339

Is it cheaper to fly into Clearwater or Memphis?

Prices for flights to both Memphis 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
    Memphis $43

Typical Food Prices in Memphis

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Memphis:


  • Baskin Robins (for 2)
    $6.00

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Memphis

For Memphis, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Taste of Downtown Memphis Food Tour: $75

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Clearwater -
    Memphis $45

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 around Clearwater Beach: $65
  • 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
  • Calypso Breeze Tropical Party Cruise: $57

Tours and Activities in Memphis

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

  • Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour of Beale Street: $6.50
  • Beale Street Experience Audio App Self Guided Walking Tour: $7.75
  • Memphis Music Hall of Fame Admission Ticket: $8.00
  • Memphis Music Hall of Fame Admission Ticket: $8.00
  • Downtown In-App Audio Tour: $9.00
  • Entry Ticket to the Edge Motor Museum: $10
  • Scavenger Hunt Adventure City Game on Your Phone: $10
  • Rock 'n' Soul Museum with Audio Tour: $11
  • Brews, Blues and BBQ Self-Guided Audio Tour: $12
  • A Self Guided Walking Tour of Brews, Blues and BBQ in Memphis: $12
  • Woodruff-Fontaine House Museum Admission Ticket in Memphis: $15
  • 1-Hour Beale Street Guided Walking Tour: $16

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Clearwater -
    Memphis $26

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

Sample the Local Flavors in Memphis

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Memphis:

  • Drinking Spirits with Spirits Haunted Pub Crawl: $27
  • Haunted Pub Crawl in Memphis: $27
  • Guided Bar Crawl on a Pedal Bike: $39
  • Signature Guided Brewery Tour: $62
  • Memphis Signature Guided Brewery Tour: $69


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Clearwater and Memphis, we can see that Clearwater is more expensive. And not only is Memphis much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Memphis would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Memphis 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 Memphis.

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


Which is Bigger, Clearwater or Memphis?

Memphis has a larger population, and is about 6 times larger than the population of Clearwater. When comparing the sizes of Clearwater and Memphis, 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 Memphis?

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 Memphis in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Clearwater as well as Memphis. Many visitors come to Clearwater in the summer for the beaches, snorkeling, and the family-friendly experiences. Also, most visitors come to Memphis for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In July, Clearwater is generally around the same temperature as Memphis. Daily temperatures in Clearwater average around 82°F (28°C), and Memphis fluctuates around 83°F (29°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Memphis. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Clearwater this time of the year. In the summer, Clearwater often gets less sunshine than Memphis. Clearwater gets 265 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Memphis receives 328 hours of full sun.

Clearwater receives a lot of rain in the summer. Clearwater usually gets more rain in July than Memphis. Clearwater gets 8.4 inches (214 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Clearwater 82°F (28°C) 
    Memphis 83°F (29°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Memphis in the Autumn?

Both Memphis and Clearwater are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. Most visitors come to Clearwater for the shopping scene during these months. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Memphis because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the music scene.

Clearwater is a little warmer than Memphis in the autumn. The daily temperature in Clearwater averages around 75°F (24°C) in October, and Memphis fluctuates around 64°F (18°C).

It's quite sunny in Memphis. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Clearwater. Clearwater usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Memphis during autumn. Clearwater gets 234 hours of sunny skies, while Memphis receives 240 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Clearwater usually receives more rain than Memphis. Clearwater gets 2.6 inches (65 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 1.6 inches (41 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) 
    Memphis 64°F (18°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Memphis in the Winter?

Both Memphis and Clearwater during the winter are popular places to visit. The winter months attract visitors to Clearwater because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Furthermore, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Memphis this time of year.

It's quite cold in Memphis in the winter. In the winter, Clearwater is much warmer than Memphis. Typically, the winter temperatures in Clearwater in January average around 60°F (15°C), and Memphis averages at about 40°F (5°C).

It's quite sunny in Clearwater. In the winter, Clearwater often gets more sunshine than Memphis. Clearwater gets 200 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Memphis receives 163 hours of full sun.

Clearwater usually gets around the same amount of rain in January as Memphis. Clearwater gets 2.3 inches (59 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 2.4 inches (62 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Clearwater 60°F (15°C) 
    Memphis 40°F (5°C)

Should I visit Clearwater or Memphis in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Clearwater and Memphis. The beaches are the main draw to Clearwater this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Memphis for the activities around the city.

In April, Clearwater is generally a little warmer than Memphis. Daily temperatures in Clearwater average around 71°F (22°C), and Memphis fluctuates around 64°F (18°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Memphis this time of the year. In Clearwater, it's very sunny this time of the year. Clearwater usually receives more sunshine than Memphis during spring. Clearwater gets 299 hours of sunny skies, while Memphis receives 254 hours of full sun in the spring.

Memphis receives a lot of rain in the spring. In April, Clearwater usually receives less rain than Memphis. Clearwater gets 2.1 inches (53 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 4.3 inches (109 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) 
    Memphis 64°F (18°C)

Typical Weather for Memphis and Clearwater

Clearwater Memphis
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 60°F (15°C) 2.3 inches (59 mm) 40°F (5°C) 2.4 inches (62 mm)
Feb 61°F (16°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm) 45°F (7°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Mar 67°F (19°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm) 54°F (12°C) 4.2 inches (106 mm)
Apr 71°F (22°C) 2.1 inches (53 mm) 64°F (18°C) 4.3 inches (109 mm)
May 77°F (25°C) 2.4 inches (61 mm) 72°F (22°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Jun 81°F (27°C) 6.5 inches (165 mm) 80°F (27°C) 2.3 inches (58 mm)
Jul 82°F (28°C) 8.4 inches (214 mm) 83°F (29°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
Aug 82°F (28°C) 8 inches (203 mm) 82°F (28°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm)
Sep 81°F (27°C) 6.3 inches (161 mm) 76°F (24°C) 2.6 inches (66 mm)
Oct 75°F (24°C) 2.6 inches (65 mm) 64°F (18°C) 1.6 inches (41 mm)
Nov 68°F (20°C) 1.8 inches (45 mm) 54°F (12°C) 2.6 inches (65 mm)
Dec 62°F (17°C) 2.2 inches (56 mm) 44°F (7°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm)