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

Should you visit Columbus or Pasadena?

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

Should I visit Columbus 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.

Columbus

Columbus is a authentic, friendly, and welcoming city. Other popular activities here include museums, nightlife, and shopping.

Pasadena

Pasadena is a charming, picturesque, and quaint city. Other reasons to visit include food, shopping, and museums.

Columbus and Pasadena: Pros and Cons

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


Is there more to do in Columbus or Pasadena?

Travelers will generally find more things to do in Pasadena than Columbus. While Columbus is larger than Pasadena, Pasadena has more sights and attractions for tourists. Columbus is well known for its youthful energy and its growing arts scene. Pasadena is well known for being the home of the Tournament of Roses and the Rose Bowl. Also, Pasadena is famous for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

How is Columbus different from Pasadena?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

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

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a very popular place for its museums and history. Also, Columbus is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its museums and landmarks.

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.

Columbus offers a variety of museums and landmarks to choose from. Popular museums around town include the Center of Science and Technology, the Franklin Park Conservatory, the Columbus Museum of Art, and the Ohio History Center.


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

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a very popular place for its restaurants. However, Columbus is lacking in good options for its restaurant scene.

The food selection at local restaurants is excellent in Pasadena. 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.

You'll find the standard options when it comes to food in Columbus. Hearty and heavy comfort food is the mainstay in this town. There's pizza, casseroles, sausage, and milkshakes around town.

Is Columbus or Pasadena Better for Nightlife?

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a very popular place for nightlife. Also, Columbus is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for nightlife and partying.

Pasadena has a large number of nightlife venues. 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.

Columbus has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. The live music scene is growing. There are also a growing number of breweries around town.

Is the Shopping Better in Columbus or Pasadena?

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a very popular place for shopping. Also, Columbus is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its shopping opportunities.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Pasadena. Old Pasadena is where you'll find some of the best shopping. It's filled with a charming atmosphere and interesting boutiques.

Columbus offers some nice shopping areas. In addition to the standard shopping malls and retail outlets, there are some interesting shops in the Short North Arts District, German Village, and Easton Town Center.


Is Columbus or Pasadena Better for Families?

Columbus
Pasadena

Columbus is notable for its family-friendly activities. Also, Pasadena is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its kid-friendly activities.

Columbus is known to be a very family-friendly place to visit. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium is a highlight for many families. Right by it is the Zoombezi Bay Waterpark. For hands-on science-based activities check out the Center of Science and Industry. Kids will also love the Legoland Discovery Center or the Anthony-Thomas Candy Factory. There are also many outdoor parks, greenways, and playgrounds to visit.

Pasadena is a family-friendly city. 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 Columbus or Pasadena Better for Couples?

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a popular place for romance. However, Columbus is lacking in good options for its romantic activities.

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.

Most people don't think of Columbus as a couple's destination. You'll find restaurants and music venues that make for a nice date night. There are also wine tours and other entertainment options.

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

Columbus
Pasadena

Pasadena is a popular place for times when you don't have a car. However, Columbus is lacking in good options for its public transit.

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

Public transit is generally limited in Columbus. While there's a bus system, you'll really want to have a vehicle to get around town efficiently.


Is Columbus or Pasadena a more walkable city?

Columbus
Pasadena

Columbus and Pasadena are notable when it comes to walkability.

Columbus is somewhat walkable. The older neighborhoods are the most walkable, but if you want to get around town, you'll need to have a car.

Pasadena is a somewhat walkable place. 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 Columbus Worth Visiting? and Is Pasadena Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Pasadena or Columbus?

How long in Columbus or Pasadena?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Columbus and Pasadena. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Pasadena than in Columbus. Usually, 1-2 days is a good amount of time for Columbus, and 1-3 days is enough time in Pasadena.

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

Couples should spend more time in Pasadena than Columbus. 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 Columbus 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 Columbus or Pasadena? Ideal Length of Stay
    Columbus 1-2 
    Pasadena 1-3

One day in Columbus or Pasadena?

The city of Columbus offers nightlife and shopping. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

The city of Pasadena offers food and shopping. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Columbus or Pasadena?

Columbus 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. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Columbus, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

Pasadena 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. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Pasadena, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Columbus or Pasadena?

Columbus 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.

Pasadena 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.

A week in Columbus or Pasadena?

Columbus is a great place to explore. 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.

Pasadena is a great place to explore. 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.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from New York City, The Best 2-Week Tours from New York City, The Best 2-Week Tours from Anchorage, and The Best 2-Week Tours from San Francisco.


Which place is cheaper, Pasadena or Columbus?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Columbus is $158, 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 Columbus and Pasadena in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Columbus $72
    Pasadena $25
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Columbus $144
    Pasadena $50
Compare Hotels in Columbus and Pasadena

Looking for a hotel in Columbus 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 Columbus


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: Columbus Hotel Prices and Pasadena Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Columbus $50
    Pasadena $21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Columbus

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

  • Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Arrival Private Transfer: $66
  • Columbus to Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) - Departure Private Transfer: $66
  • Columbus John Glen Airport (CMH) to Columbus - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $133
  • Columbus Ohio (CMH) Airport Arrival or Departure Private Transfer: $180

Is it cheaper to fly into Columbus or Pasadena?

Prices for flights to both Pasadena and Columbus 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
    Columbus $49
    Pasadena $19

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.
    Columbus $46
    Pasadena -

Tours and Activities in Columbus

For Columbus, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Unique Scavenger Hunt Experience in Columbus by Crazy Dash: $10
  • Experience the season with a scavenger hunt in Columbus with Holly Jolly Hunt: $20
  • Columbus Scavenger Hunt Adventure : $21
  • LEGOLAND Discovery Center Columbus Ticket: $28
  • Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure: $44
  • Trolley Pub Holiday Lights Tour in Columbus: $45

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Columbus $20
    Pasadena -


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Columbus and Pasadena, we can see that Columbus 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 Columbus would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Columbus 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 Columbus Expensive? and Is Pasadena Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Columbus or Pasadena?

Columbus has a larger population, and is about 5 times larger than the population of Pasadena. When comparing the sizes of Columbus 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 Columbus or Pasadena?

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 Columbus or Pasadena in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Columbus as well as Pasadena. Most visitors come to Columbus for the family-friendly experiences during these months. Also, the summer months attract visitors to Pasadena because of the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Columbus is generally around the same temperature as Pasadena. Daily temperatures in Columbus average around 77°F (25°C), and Pasadena fluctuates around 73°F (23°C).

Columbus receives a lot of rain in the summer. Columbus usually gets more rain in July than Pasadena. Columbus gets 4.4 inches (112 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0 inches (0 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Columbus 77°F (25°C) 
    Pasadena 73°F (23°C)

Should I visit Columbus or Pasadena in the Autumn?

Both Pasadena and Columbus are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. The autumn months attract visitors to Columbus because of the shopping scene. Also, the shopping scene are the main draw to Pasadena this time of year.

Columbus is cooler than Pasadena in the autumn. The daily temperature in Columbus averages around 57°F (14°C) in October, and Pasadena fluctuates around 68°F (20°C).

In October, Columbus usually receives more rain than Pasadena. Columbus gets 2.2 inches (55 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0.3 inches (7 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Columbus 57°F (14°C) 
    Pasadena 68°F (20°C)

Should I visit Columbus or Pasadena in the Winter?

Both Pasadena and Columbus during the winter are popular places to visit. The museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Columbus this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Pasadena for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

It's quite cold in Columbus in the winter. In the winter, Columbus is much colder than Pasadena. Typically, the winter temperatures in Columbus in January average around 30°F (-1°C), and Pasadena averages at about 56°F (13°C).

Columbus usually gets less rain in January than Pasadena. Columbus gets 2.2 inches (56 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 2.5 inches (63 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Columbus 30°F (-1°C) 
    Pasadena 56°F (13°C)

Should I visit Columbus or Pasadena in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Columbus and Pasadena.

In April, Columbus is generally cooler than Pasadena. Daily temperatures in Columbus average around 54°F (12°C), and Pasadena fluctuates around 62°F (17°C).

In April, Columbus usually receives more rain than Pasadena. Columbus gets 3.2 inches (81 mm) of rain, while Pasadena receives 0.7 inches (17 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Columbus 54°F (12°C) 
    Pasadena 62°F (17°C)

Typical Weather for Pasadena and Columbus

Columbus Pasadena
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 30°F (-1°C) 2.2 inches (56 mm) 56°F (13°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm)
Feb 33°F (1°C) 2.2 inches (55 mm) 58°F (14°C) 2.5 inches (63 mm)
Mar 45°F (7°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 59°F (15°C) 2 inches (50 mm)
Apr 54°F (12°C) 3.2 inches (81 mm) 62°F (17°C) 0.7 inches (17 mm)
May 65°F (18°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm) 65°F (18°C) 0.2 inches (4 mm)
Jun 73°F (23°C) 4 inches (102 mm) 69°F (20°C) 0 inches (1 mm)
Jul 77°F (25°C) 4.4 inches (112 mm) 73°F (23°C) 0 inches (0 mm)
Aug 75°F (24°C) 3.7 inches (95 mm) 74°F (24°C) 0.1 inches (3 mm)
Sep 69°F (20°C) 3 inches (76 mm) 73°F (23°C) 0.3 inches (7 mm)
Oct 57°F (14°C) 2.2 inches (55 mm) 68°F (20°C) 0.3 inches (7 mm)
Nov 47°F (8°C) 3.2 inches (82 mm) 62°F (16°C) 1.6 inches (42 mm)
Dec 35°F (2°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm) 56°F (13°C) 1.7 inches (43 mm)