A Travel Price Comparison for Australia Darwin vs. Canberra for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Darwin or Canberra?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Darwin or Canberra, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Where Should I go: Darwin or Canberra?


Darwin is a tropical city set against the Timor Sea in north central Australia. It is also the capital city of the Northern Territory. Despite being a relatively small city, Darwin is very diverse with residents from all over the world. The city itself has a very relaxed vibe with plenty to do. Visitors can enjoy everything from traditionally Asian style markets to culturally diverse events such as concerts, festivals or art shows.


There is something special about the capital city of Australia. Canberra's not just a wonderful spot for outdoor adventures. It's a city completely designed and built up around the coast of an artificial lake. When architects Walter Burley and Marion Mahony Griffin proposed their plans for Canberra it was met with a lot of criticism. Many people thought it would be a "waste of a good sheep pasture."

Which place is cheaper, Canberra or Darwin?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Darwin is $110, while the average daily cost in Canberra is $132. 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 Darwin and Canberra in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Darwin $61
    Canberra $81
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Darwin $122
    Canberra $162
Compare Hotels in Darwin and Canberra

Looking for a hotel in Darwin or Canberra? 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 Darwin

Hotels in Canberra

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: Darwin Hotel Prices and Canberra Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Darwin $12
    Canberra $24
Typical Local Transportation prices in Darwin

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Darwin:

  • Shuttle to Train Station

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Darwin

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Darwin:

  • Private Transfer from Darwin Cruise Port to Darwin city hotels: $58
  • Private Transfer from Darwin Cruise Port to Darwin Airport (DRW): $58
  • Private Transfer from Darwin City Hotels to Darwin Cruise Port: $58
  • Private Transfer from Darwin Airport (DRW) to Darwin Cruise Port: $58
  • Darwin to Darwin Int Airport (DRW) - Departure Private Transfer: $70
  • Darwin Int Airport (DRW) to Darwin - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $140
  • Darwin Int Airport (DRW) to Darwin - Arrival Private Transfer: $70
  • Crocodile Jumping Wetlands Cruise with Transfer from Darwin: $88

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Canberra

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

  • Canberra Int'l Airport to Canberra - Arrival Private Transfer: $33
  • Canberra to Canberra Int Airport - Departure Private Transfer: $33
  • Private Departure Transfer from Canberra City to Canberra Airport: $57
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Canberra Airport to Canberra City: $57
  • Canberra Airport (CBR) to Canberra - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $67
  • Private Transfer from Canberra city hotels to Eden Cruise Port: $81
  • Private Transfer from Canberra Airport CBR to Eden Cruise Port : $81
  • Osaka Airport: One-Way Private Transfer to Downtown: $90
  • Private Canberra Airport - Canberra City Round-Trip Transfer: $113
  • Guided Tour of Floriade Festival with Transfers: $115
  • Canberra - Sydney Private Transfers: $456
  • Canberra -> Sydney -> Jindabyne -> Perisher Ski Resort : Private Transfer: $586

Is it cheaper to fly into Darwin or Canberra?

Prices for flights to both Canberra and Darwin 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 Meals for one day
    Darwin $37
    Canberra $34

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Darwin

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

  • Sunset Harbour Cruise with Fish and Chips Dinner: $64
  • Darwin Harbor Sunset Cruise with Buffet Dinner: $84
  • Charles Darwin Dinner Cruise: $85
  • Darwin Sunset Dinner Cruise on Cape Adieu: $101
  • Sunset 3-Hour Cruise from Darwin with Dinner and Sparkling Wine: $103
  • 3.5 Hour Small Group Walking Food & Art Tour with LUNCH or DINNER: $162

Typical Food prices in Canberra

For Canberra, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:

  • Lunch

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Darwin $15
    Canberra $17

Tours and Activities in Darwin

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

  • 3 Days Kakadu Cultural Rock Art Experience: $1,562
  • 1 Day Corroboree Billabong Wetland Experience including 2.5 hour cruise + lunch: $127
  • 1 Day Litchfield National Park Tour & Berry Springs Max. 10 Guest: $114
  • 1 Hour Darwin Adventure Boats Tour: $124
  • 1 Hour Jumping Crocodile Cruise on the Adelaide River: $29
  • 17-Day Darwin to Cairns Tour: $3,885
  • 3-Day Kakadu & Litchfield 4WD Camping Adventure from Darwin: $526
  • 3-Day Tour of Top End Highlights in Northern Territory, Australia: $579
  • 3.5-Hour Gourmet Bar & Street Art Tour: $162
  • 4 Day Kakadu 4WD Adventure Tour from Darwin with Billabong Wetlands Cruise: $1,354
  • 4-Day Litchfield, Katherine and Kakadu Guided Tour From Darwin : $1,041
  • 45-Minute Darwin Harbor Sightseeing Cruise: $32

Tours and Activities in Canberra

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

  • Museum Highlights Tour | 1pm Daily: $13
  • Building + Architecture Tour | 10am Daily: $13
  • First Australians Tour | 3pm Daily: $13
  • Australian Institute of Sport: The AIS Tour: $13
  • Hop-on Hop-off Sightseeing Tour in Canberra: $20
  • LGBTQIA+ History Walking Tour: $33
  • Women's History Walking Tour with Local Guide: $33
  • Spies in the Capital: Women in Espionage Walking Tour: $33
  • Private Mini Bus Tour of Canberra: $49
  • Canberra Best of Wildlife Tour: $87
  • Best of Wildlife and Birds Tour: $88
  • Beer, Wine, and Spirits Tasting Tour: $109

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Darwin $13
    Canberra $15
Typical Alcohol prices in Darwin

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Darwin from other travelers:

  • Evening at a Bar
  • Glass of Wine

Typical Alcohol prices in Canberra

Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Canberra from other travelers:

  • Drinks at a Bar

Sample the Local Flavors in Canberra

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

  • Canberra Brewery and Beer Tour in 3 Hours: $96
  • Canberra Brewery Winery and Distillery Tour: $111
  • Capital Brewery Full-Day Tour: $119
  • CanBEERa Explorer: Capital Brewery Full-Day Tour: $121
  • Full-Day Canberra Brewery, Wineries & Distillery tour /w lunch: $139
  • Canberra Wine Tour: $143
  • From Winery, Distillery, & Tasting Tour with Lunch: $145

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

Which is Bigger, Darwin or Canberra?

Canberra is bigger, and its population is about 3.5 times larger than the population of Darwin. When comparing the population of Darwin vs. Canberra, 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 and the activities that interest you.

When is the best time to visit Darwin or Canberra?

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

Should I visit Darwin or Canberra in the Summer?

Both Canberra and Darwin during the summer are popular places to visit.

Darwin is a little warmer than Canberra in the summer. The daily temperature in Darwin averages around 29°C (83°F) in January, and Canberra fluctuates around 20°C (68°F).

It rains a lot this time of the year in Darwin. Darwin usually gets more rain in January than Canberra. Darwin gets 437 mm (17.2 in) of rain, while Canberra receives 87 mm (3.4 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Summer Average Temperatures January
    Darwin 29°C (83°F) 
    Canberra 20°C (68°F)

Should I visit Darwin or Canberra in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Darwin and Canberra.

In the autumn, Darwin is much warmer than Canberra. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Darwin in April average around 29°C (84°F), and Canberra averages at about 17°C (63°F).

Canberra receives a lot of rain in the autumn. In April, Darwin usually receives less rain than Canberra. Darwin gets 85 mm (3.3 in) of rain, while Canberra receives 110 mm (4.3 in) of rain each month for the autumn.

  • Autumn Average Temperatures April
    Darwin 29°C (84°F) 
    Canberra 17°C (63°F)

Should I visit Darwin or Canberra in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Darwin as well as Canberra.

In July, Darwin is generally much warmer than Canberra. Daily temperatures in Darwin average around 25°C (77°F), and Canberra fluctuates around 11°C (52°F).

Darwin usually gets less rain in July than Canberra. Darwin gets 1 mm (0 in) of rain, while Canberra receives 43 mm (1.7 in) of rain this time of the year.

  • Winter Average Temperatures July
    Darwin 25°C (77°F) 
    Canberra 11°C (52°F)

Should I visit Darwin or Canberra in the Spring?

Both Canberra and Darwin are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities.

Darwin is much warmer than Canberra in the spring. The daily temperature in Darwin averages around 29°C (85°F) in October, and Canberra fluctuates around 15°C (60°F).

In October, Darwin usually receives less rain than Canberra. Darwin gets 76 mm (3 in) of rain, while Canberra receives 95 mm (3.7 in) of rain each month for the spring.

  • Spring Average Temperatures October
    Darwin 29°C (85°F) 
    Canberra 15°C (60°F)

Typical Weather for Canberra and Darwin

Darwin Canberra
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 29°C (83°F) 437 mm (17.2 in) 20°C (68°F) 87 mm (3.4 in)
Feb 28°C (83°F) 343 mm (13.5 in) 20°C (68°F) 107 mm (4.2 in)
Mar 28°C (83°F) 342 mm (13.5 in) 19°C (67°F) 131 mm (5.2 in)
Apr 29°C (84°F) 85 mm (3.3 in) 17°C (63°F) 110 mm (4.3 in)
May 27°C (81°F) 29 mm (1.1 in) 14°C (58°F) 87 mm (3.4 in)
Jun 26°C (78°F) 2 mm (0.1 in) 12°C (54°F) 90 mm (3.5 in)
Jul 25°C (77°F) 1 mm (0 in) 11°C (52°F) 43 mm (1.7 in)
Aug 26°C (79°F) 8 mm (0.3 in) 12°C (53°F) 66 mm (2.6 in)
Sep 28°C (83°F) 19 mm (0.7 in) 14°C (56°F) 63 mm (2.5 in)
Oct 29°C (85°F) 76 mm (3 in) 15°C (60°F) 95 mm (3.7 in)
Nov 30°C (85°F) 131 mm (5.2 in) 17°C (63°F) 104 mm (4.1 in)
Dec 29°C (85°F) 234 mm (9.2 in) 19°C (66°F) 79 mm (3.1 in)

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.
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Darwin vs. Canberra Travel Comparison

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