A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Eilat vs. Istanbul for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Eilat or Istanbul?

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

Should I visit Eilat or Istanbul? 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.

Where Should I go: Eilat or Istanbul?

Eilat

Eilat serves as the gateway to Israel from Egypt. It's located at the southern tip of the country and sits on the Red Sea with views of the Gulf of Aqaba. It's location in the Negev Desert along the beautiful coast make it appealing to both domestic and international vacationers.

Eilat is a resort town with many dive shops and snorkeling opportunities. The population of about 50,000 can easily be overshadowed by vacationers. With no shortage of sun, entertainment, bars, and partying, you will find both Israeli and international tourists looking for an oasis of fun and relaxation.

Although the area's coral reefs were being damaged by overuse, the removal of contraversial fish cages in 2008 has led to a slow recovery and an improvement in the quality of diving and snorkeling in the area. There are also less crowds than you will find in Sharm el-Sheikh or Dahab, Egypt.

Eilat has a hot desert climate. The summers are hot and dry and the winters are warm and dry. Temperatures in the winter can range from 52 to 73 degrees Fahrenheit and summer temperatures are usually between 79 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

Istanbul

Istanbul is strategically located on the Bosphorus and is split between Europe and Asia. It truly is a city where east meets west. Istanbul is the cultural and financial hub of Turkey, and also the most populous city. The sites are countless and there's something for everybody, whether you're interested in art, music, food, or adventure. You can pass many days exploring both the residential and commercial pockets of this city. Much of the appeal is hidden away along back alleys or within corner shops.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best One Week (7-Day) Tours in Israel, The Best 2-Week Tours in Israel, The Best 2-Week Tours in Turkey, and Tours for Outdoor and Nature Lovers in Turkey.


Which place is cheaper, Istanbul or Eilat?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Eilat is $141, while the average daily cost in Istanbul is $125. 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 Eilat and Istanbul in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Eilat $94
    Istanbul $47
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Eilat $188
    Istanbul $94
Compare Hotels in Eilat and Istanbul

Looking for a hotel in Eilat or Istanbul? 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 Eilat


Hotels in Istanbul


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: Eilat Hotel Prices and Istanbul Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Eilat $13
    Istanbul $54
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Eilat

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Eilat:


  • Local Bus
    $3.76

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Eilat

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

  • Private Transfer From Ramon airport Eilat to Eilat Hotels or Arava Border : $70
  • From Jerusalem: One-Way Shuttle Transfer to Eilat: $90

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of transportation costs in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Ferry
    $0.09
  • Local Bus
    $0.09

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Istanbul

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Istanbul:

  • İstanbul Sabiha Gökçen Airport Transfer (SAW) To Istanbul Hotel: $66
  • İstanbul Private Airport Transfer: $139
  • İstanbul Airports Transfer Services: $43
  • istanbul airport & sabiha gokcen airport transfer by private car: $50
  • Vip Airport Transfer to/from Istanbul City Center: $59
  • VIP Transfer from Hotel, Airbnb To Istanbul Airport: $60
  • VIP Daily Transfer from the Istanbul Airport to Istanbul City: $77
  • Try find your better than us ! Airport transfer in Istanbul HTL-APT (SAW): $52
  • Transfer from Istanbul Port to Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen Airport(SAW: $31
  • Transfer from Hotels to Airports in Istanbul by Private Minivan : $61
  • Transfer from Airports in Istanbul to Hotels by Private Eco-Sedan: $50
  • Sabiha Gokcen Airport transfers to Sisli hotels: $77

Is it cheaper to fly into Eilat or Istanbul?

Prices for flights to both Istanbul and Eilat 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
    Eilat $35
    Istanbul $31

Typical Food Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of dining costs in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Juice
    $0.06
  • Turkish Delight
    $0.02
  • Dessert
    $0.26
  • Pastries
    $0.05

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Istanbul

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

  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Turkish Night Show from Istanbul: $17
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise Turkish Night Show All inclusive: $17
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Cruise with All inclusive Dinner and Belly-Dancer Show : $27
  • Dinner Cruise Bosphorus with Hotel Transfer: $28
  • Istanbul Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Unlimited Drinks and Shows: $30
  • Luxury Bosphorus Dinner Cruise & Shows Private Table & Free Wi-Fi: $31
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise with Folklore Show & Belly Dancers: $32
  • 3 Hour Ottoman Dinner Cruise in Istanbul : $33
  • All Inclusive Moonlight Dinner Cruise on The Bosphorus: $33
  • Bosphorus Night Cruise with Dinner, Show and Private Table: $35
  • Bosphorus Dinner Cruise Tour: $38
  • Bosphorus Dinner And Show Cruise With Unlimited Non Alcoholic Drinks: $39

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Eilat $16
    Istanbul $78

Tours and Activities in Eilat

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

  • Glass Bottom Boat Cruise in Eilat: $30
  • Jeep tour adventure Eilat mountains: $55
  • Summer night jeep tour in Eilat mountains: $55
  • From Timna Park Guided Jeep Tour: $64
  • Red canyon jeep tour in Eilat: $70
  • Timna park Jeep tour adventure: $70
  • Timna Park Tour from Eilat: $150
  • Full-Day Tour of Petra from Eilat: $199
  • Petra 1-Day Tour from Eilat + FREE Traditional Lunch: $199
  • 1 Day Tour to Petra From Eilat: $217
  • Day Tour to Petra from Eilat: $219
  • Private Scuba Diving Tour with Transportation and Guide : $220

Typical Entertainment Prices in Istanbul

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Istanbul are as follows:


  • Bosphurus Boat (for 2)
    $0.61
  • Yerebatan Cistern for Two
    $0.61
  • Museum of Turkish and Islamic Arts for Two
    $0.31
  • Hagia Sofia entrance
    $0.92

Tours and Activities in Istanbul

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

  • 4 Hours Private Highlights Tour Of Istanbul: $275
  • All in One Day Istanbul - Historical Tour of Istanbul with Bosphorus Cruise: $165
  • Bosphorus Cruise And Asia Minor Tour: $220
  • Bosphorus Morning or Sunset Guided Cruise Tour: $23
  • Dolmabace Palace, Bosphorus Boat Tour , Eyüp Sultan Mosque Tour: $150
  • Full Day Private Guided Istanbul Tour: $50
  • Hagia Sophia Private Tour - Skip the Ticket Line : $199
  • Highlights of Cappadocia with Mehmet ( Private Tour ): $95
  • Hippodrome and Blue Mosque Guided Tour: $22
  • Istanbul Half Day City Tour (Ottoman Relics): $77
  • Must - See Istanbul Stops 1: Half Day Morning Tour: $140
  • Private Istanbul Guided Tour: $75

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Eilat $27
    Istanbul $15

Sample the Local Flavors in Istanbul

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Istanbul:

  • Famous Istanbul Pub Crawl #1 Nightlife Experience: $27


When comparing the travel costs between Eilat and Istanbul, we can see that Eilat 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. Even though Eilat is in Middle East and Istanbul is in Europe, both of these destinations have relatively similar prices of travel. Generally, the levels of luxury and expenses are the same for these cities even though they are geographically far apart.

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


Which is Bigger, Eilat or Istanbul?

Istanbul has a larger population, and is about 250 times larger than the population of Eilat. When comparing the sizes of Eilat and Istanbul, 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 Eilat or Istanbul?

Istanbul has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons, but Eilat experiences a warm climate with fairly sunny weather most of the year.

Should I visit Eilat or Istanbul in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Eilat as well as Istanbul. Eilat attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and sunny climate. Additionally, many visitors come to Istanbul in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences.

The heat can be very extreme in Eilat. In the summer, Eilat is a little warmer than Istanbul. Typically, the summer temperatures in Eilat in July average around 33°C (91°F), and Istanbul averages at about 24°C (74°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Istanbul. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Eilat this time of the year. In the summer, Eilat often gets more sunshine than Istanbul. Eilat gets 384 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Istanbul receives 333 hours of full sun.

Eilat usually gets less rain in July than Istanbul. Eilat gets 0 mm (0 in) of rain, while Istanbul receives 19 mm (0.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Eilat 33°C (91°F) 
    Istanbul 24°C (74°F)

Should I visit Eilat or Istanbul in the Autumn?

Both Istanbul and Eilat are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. The warm climate attracts visitors to Eilat throughout the year. Also, most visitors come to Istanbul for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

In October, Eilat is generally much warmer than Istanbul. Daily temperatures in Eilat average around 26°C (79°F), and Istanbul fluctuates around 16°C (61°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Eilat. Eilat usually receives more sunshine than Istanbul during autumn. Eilat gets 295 hours of sunny skies, while Istanbul receives 169 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Eilat usually receives less rain than Istanbul. Eilat gets 1 mm (0 in) of rain, while Istanbul receives 71 mm (2.8 in) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Eilat 26°C (79°F) 
    Istanbul 16°C (61°F)

Should I visit Eilat or Istanbul in the Winter?

Both Istanbul and Eilat during the winter are popular places to visit. Plenty of visitors come to Eilat because of the warm climate and sunshine that lasts throughout the year. Also, the winter months attract visitors to Istanbul because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

Eilat is much warmer than Istanbul in the winter. The daily temperature in Eilat averages around 14°C (57°F) in January, and Istanbul fluctuates around 6°C (43°F).

It's quite sunny in Eilat. In the winter, Eilat often gets more sunshine than Istanbul. Eilat gets 234 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Istanbul receives 75 hours of full sun.

Eilat usually gets less rain in January than Istanbul. Eilat gets 2 mm (0.1 in) of rain, while Istanbul receives 99 mm (3.9 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Eilat 14°C (57°F) 
    Istanbul 6°C (43°F)

Should I visit Eilat or Istanbul in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Eilat and Istanbul. Warm weather and sunshine bring visitors to Eilat year-round. Also, the activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Istanbul this time of year.

In the spring, Eilat is much warmer than Istanbul. Typically, the spring temperatures in Eilat in April average around 24°C (75°F), and Istanbul averages at about 13°C (55°F).

In Eilat, it's very sunny this time of the year. Eilat usually receives more sunshine than Istanbul during spring. Eilat gets 282 hours of sunny skies, while Istanbul receives 180 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Eilat usually receives less rain than Istanbul. Eilat gets 0 mm (0 in) of rain, while Istanbul receives 49 mm (1.9 in) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Eilat 24°C (75°F) 
    Istanbul 13°C (55°F)

Typical Weather for Istanbul and Eilat

Eilat Istanbul
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 14°C (57°F) 2 mm (0.1 in) 6°C (43°F) 99 mm (3.9 in)
Feb 16°C (61°F) 1 mm (0 in) 6°C (44°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Mar 19°C (66°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 8°C (47°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Apr 24°C (75°F) 0 mm (0 in) 13°C (55°F) 49 mm (1.9 in)
May 27°C (81°F) 0 mm (0 in) 17°C (63°F) 31 mm (1.2 in)
Jun 31°C (88°F) 0 mm (0 in) 21°C (71°F) 21 mm (0.8 in)
Jul 33°C (91°F) 0 mm (0 in) 24°C (74°F) 19 mm (0.7 in)
Aug 33°C (91°F) 0 mm (0 in) 24°C (74°F) 26 mm (1 in)
Sep 31°C (88°F) 0 mm (0 in) 20°C (69°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
Oct 26°C (79°F) 1 mm (0 in) 16°C (61°F) 71 mm (2.8 in)
Nov 20°C (68°F) 0 mm (0 in) 12°C (54°F) 89 mm (3.5 in)
Dec 15°C (59°F) 6 mm (0.2 in) 9°C (47°F) 122 mm (4.8 in)