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

Should you visit Darwin or Surfers Paradise?

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

Darwin

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.

Surfers Paradise

A tourist mecca, Surfers Paradise is one of the most popular travel destinations along Australia's famed Gold Coast. The beach stretches for miles and there is an endless supply of almost constant parties. You'll find high rise apartments lined up along the shore and plenty of shopping areas, restaurants, nightclubs, and bars. Travelers from around the world visit the area, and it's a right of passage for Australia's teens to vacation in or near Surfers Paradise. For many travelers, Surfers Paradise comes across as little more than a mass marketed, over commercialized, party destination, but for others it is a vacation dream. Prices are highly inflated so you have to keep your whits about you to avoid being ripped off. Surfers Paradise is a destination of extremes and it conjures up extreme emotions in many travelers, be it positive or negative.

Which city is cheaper, Surfers Paradise or Darwin?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Darwin is $100, while the average daily cost in Surfers Paradise is $94. 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 city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Darwin and Surfers Paradise in more detail.



Accommodation

A hotel room in Darwin is about $112 This assumes double occupancy and modest accommodations.

The prices for places to stay in Surfers Paradise can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is $60, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around $120.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Darwin $56
    Surfers Paradise $60
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Darwin $112
    Surfers Paradise $120

Food

Food in Darwin costs travelers about $34 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.

Food in Surfers Paradise costs travelers about $24 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Darwin $34
    Surfers Paradise $24

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Darwin

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

  • Private Pizza Making Class in Hunter Valley: $48
  • Pizza Paddle Sunset Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay: $66
  • Dinner Cruise at Sydney Harbour with Optional Mast Climb Experience: $72
  • Cairns Dinner Cruise by Spirit of Cairns: $73
  • Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner Show Ticket: $74
  • Charles Darwin Dinner Cruise: $75
  • Sydney Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise by Captain Cook: $77
  • Dumpling Cooking Class in Melbourne: $80
  • Cairns Aquarium Twilight Tour with 3-Course Dinner: $88
  • Pinnacles Sunset Dinner and Stargazing Tour: $109
  • Private Cooking School in the Hunter Valley: $114
  • Mexican Cooking Class in Melbourne: $122

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Surfers Paradise

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

  • Surfers Paradise Sunset Kayak and Dinner: $40
  • Private Pizza Making Class in Hunter Valley: $48
  • Pizza Paddle Sunset Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay: $66
  • Dinner Buffet Cruise on the Gold Coast: $70
  • Dinner Cruise at Sydney Harbour with Optional Mast Climb Experience: $72
  • Cairns Dinner Cruise by Spirit of Cairns: $73
  • Australian Outback Spectacular Dinner Show Ticket: $74
  • Charles Darwin Dinner Cruise: $75
  • Sydney Harbour Sunset Dinner Cruise by Captain Cook: $77
  • Dumpling Cooking Class in Melbourne: $80
  • Cairns Aquarium Twilight Tour with 3-Course Dinner: $88
  • Pinnacles Sunset Dinner and Stargazing Tour: $109

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Darwin is $11 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.

Surfers Paradise's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $10 per person, per day on transportation in Surfers Paradise.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Darwin $11
    Surfers Paradise $10
Typical Local Transportation prices in Darwin

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


  • Shuttle to Train Station
    $11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Darwin

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Darwin:

  • [Promotion: Adult at Kids Price] Hot Air Balloon Experience with Round-trip Transfers & Vineyard Champagne Breakfast in Gold Coast: $191
  • [Promotion: Adult at Kids Price] Hot Air Balloon Experience in Cairns with Round-trip Transfers: $176
  • Wildman Fishing Tours - Fishing + Scenic Flight Transfer: $1,146
  • Wet'n'Wild Return Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $18
  • Thredbo Day Trip with Round Trip Transfer from Sydney by Brighton Coach: $81
  • SkyBus Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared Sydney Airport Transfers (SYD) for Sydney: $13
  • Shared Sunshine Coast Airport Transfers (MCY) for Sunshine Coast: $12
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers from Kings Canyon to Alice Springs: $133
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers between Ayers Rock and Kings Canyon: $110
  • Shared Shuttle Bus Transfers between Alice Springs and Ayers Rock: $133
  • Shared Perth Airport (PER) Transfers for Perth and Fremantle: $22

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Surfers Paradise

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

  • Shared City Transfers from Darwin to Stokes Hill Wharf: $6.65
  • SkyBus Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared Sunshine Coast Airport Transfers (MCY) for Sunshine Coast: $12
  • Shared Cairns Airport Transfer (CNS) from and to Cairns, Port Douglas, Palm Cove: $13
  • Shared Sydney Airport Transfers (SYD) for Sydney: $13
  • Gold Coast Theme Parks: Shared Hotel Transfers: $13
  • Hobart International Airport (HBA) Express Bus Transfers by SkyBus: $14
  • Sea World Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $15
  • Shared Brisbane Airport Transfers (BNE) for Brisbane : $15
  • Avalon Airport (AVV) Express Transfer by SkyBus for Melbourne City: $15
  • Shared Gold Coast Airport Transfers (OOL) for Gold Coast: $17
  • Paradise Country Shared Shuttle Transfer from Gold Coast Hotels: $18

Is it cheaper to fly into Darwin or Surfers Paradise?

Prices for flights to both Surfers Paradise 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.





Entertainment

Darwin's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $14 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Surfers Paradise can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $21 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Darwin $14
    Surfers Paradise $21

Tours and Activities in Darwin

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

  • Abseiling Adventure in Adelaide : $73
  • Half Day Kayak Tour in Bateman's Bay + FREE Paddle Pack: $95
  • Hunter Valley Scenic Wine and Cheese Tour from Sydney: $125
  • Nowra Treetop and Zipline Adventure: $32
  • Yarra Valley Hot Air Balloon Flight and Winery Tour: $385
  • 'Have a Go' Clay Target Shooting Experience in Brisbane: $110
  • 1-Day Wetlands + Wildlife Adventure: $114
  • 1-Day Wildlife Park + Berry Springs experience: $81
  • 11-day Darwin to Cairns tour: $1,580
  • 12 Apostles, Otways & Great Ocean Road Hiking Adventure from Melbourne: $132
  • 1D1N Kangaroo Island Road to Recovery Tour: $514
  • 2-Day Kakadu and Arnhem Land Tour from Darwin: $753

Typical Entertainment prices in Surfers Paradise

Below are a few sample prices from actual travelers for Surfers Paradise's activities, tours, and tickets:


  • Surf Lesson
    $88

Tours and Activities in Surfers Paradise

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

  • North Stradbroke Island Water Taxi Ferry Ticket: $7.95
  • Searoad Ferry Tickets between Queenscliff and Sorrento: $8.85
  • Bridestowe Lavender Estate Tour: $8.85
  • Koala Conservation Reserve Tickets in Phillip Island: $9.95
  • Hunter Valley Wine Theatre Experience: $11
  • Margaret River Region Lighthouse Tours: $11
  • Sydney Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour with Mobile App: $12
  • Melbourne Sports Lovers Tours: $13
  • Kuranda Bird World General Admission Ticket in Cairns: $13
  • Private Hunter Valley Wine Barrel Rolling Experience: $13
  • Kuranda Koala Gardens General Admission Ticket in Cairns: $13
  • Phillip Island Chocolate Factory Ticket: $13

Alcohol

The average person spends about $12 on alcoholic beverages in Darwin per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Typically, people visiting Surfers Paradise spend on average $10 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Darwin $12
    Surfers Paradise $10
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
    $18
  • Glass of Wine
    $5.15

Sample the Local Flavors in Darwin

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

  • Savannah Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tempus Two Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Hanging Tree Wines Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Capercaillie Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Misty Glen Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tintilla Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Hunter’s Dream Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Pokolbin Estate Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Wine Tasting at Horner Wines in Hunter Valley: $7.39
  • Talits Estate Cellar Door Wine Tasting Experience: $7.39
  • Wine Tasting at Wine House in Hunter Valley: $7.39
  • Glandore Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $7.39

Sample the Local Flavors in Surfers Paradise

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

  • Savannah Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Hunter’s Dream Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Misty Glen Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Tintilla Estate Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Pokolbin Estate Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Tempus Two Wine Tasting Experience: $3.69
  • Hanging Tree Wines Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Capercaillie Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley: $3.69
  • Red Door Collective Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley (Adults Only): $7.39
  • Hungerford Hill Wine Tasting in Hunter Valley : $7.39
  • Talits Estate Cellar Door Wine Tasting Experience: $7.39
  • Wine Tasting at Wine House in Hunter Valley: $7.39


When comparing the travel costs between Darwin and Surfers Paradise, we can see that Darwin is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Pacific, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Darwin vs. Surfers Paradise Travel Comparison

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