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

Should you visit Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville 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.

Jacksonville

Jacksonville is a under-rated, lively, and youthful city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Memphis

Memphis is a laid-back, soulful, and creative city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. It's also popular because of the live music, food, and museums.

Jacksonville and Memphis: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Popular beach
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for shopping
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Jacksonville or Memphis?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Jacksonville than Memphis. It is bigger and it has more sights, attractions, and activities for travelers. Jacksonville is very popular for its museums, food, beaches, and shopping, while Memphis attracts visitors for its music. Jacksonville is famous for its beautiful beaches and lively downtown area. It is also well known for Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens. Memphis is famous for its influential music scene and its southern barbecue.

How is Jacksonville different from Memphis?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Jacksonville or Memphis?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a great 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 Jacksonville can be an interesting and educational experience. The city has a number of museums that range from art museums to science or kid-friendly museums. Some favorites are the Museum of Science and History, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Mandarin Museum and Historical Society, and Kingsley Plantation.

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 Jacksonville or Memphis? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a great 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.

Jacksonville has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. Local cuisine has its own identity. Unique dishes around town include garlic crabs, seafood boil, gumbo, and shrimp and grits. The local cuisine is similar to Lowcountry dishes with a lot of Cajun influence. If you want something different from seafood, you should try the barbecue.

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 Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Nightlife?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Both Jacksonville and Memphis have great vibes after the sun sets.

Jacksonville has a lively atmosphere and nightlife is popular here. The young population brings out the nightlife scene. There's a great concentration of bars and clubs in the area known as The Elbow, which is at the intersection of N. Ocean and E. Bay Street. You'll find plenty of cocktail bars, lounges, and clubs around town that make for a fun night out.

The people in Memphis know how to have a good time. 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.

Is Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Music?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Memphis is renowned for its music scene. However, Jacksonville is not a live music destination.

Memphis has become a mecca for musicians from around the world. 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.

Jacksonville is not a live music destination.


Is Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Beaches?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a great city for the beach. However, Memphis is not a beach destination.

You'll have a great beach vacation in Jacksonville. There are a number of beaches that are just a short distance from the city. Some have a historic vibe while others are more lively. Atlantic Beach is about a half hour drive from the city. For a laid back vibe head to Neptune Beach and the most popular beach in the area is Jacksonville Beach.

Memphis is not a beach destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Jacksonville or Memphis?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a great city for its shopping areas. However, Memphis is not known for shopping.

Many visitors explore the shopping areas in Jacksonville. There are countless malls and shopping districts around town. Some of the best shopping is found at St. John's Center, Five Points, and Avondale.

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 Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Families?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Both Jacksonville and Memphis are nice family-friendly destinations.

Jacksonville is a family-friendly city. It's filled with adventure parks, zoos, animal farms, nature centers, and gardens. Adults will have as much fun as kids exploring the city and all of its family-friendly attractions.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Memphis. The town has some great activities for kids including a zoo, several museums, petting farms, and a botanical garden.


Is Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Couples?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville and Memphis both nice destinations for a couple.

Jacksonville is a good city for couples to visit. It's a young city that's near nature and has plenty of adventurous activities. There's sailing, botanical gardens, restaurants, and plenty of bars around town.

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 Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a nice place to visit for backpackers and budget travelers. However, Memphis is not known for backpackers.

It's common for backpackers to visit Jacksonville. There are a few hostels in town as well as affordable motels. The city has a young population with plenty to do. Although it's often overlooked by tourists, there's a surprising and underrated appeal to the backpacker crowd.

Memphis is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. There are a couple of hostels and plenty of live music that make this a popular stop off for young travelers.

Is Jacksonville or Memphis Better for Students?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Both Jacksonville and Memphis are nice destinations for students.

Plenty of students visit Jacksonville. There are a few colleges and universities in town. The city's population is also very young, making it a great place to study.

Memphis is popular with students. The live music scene and great food options make this is a fun town for students.


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

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville is a nice place to visit for times when you don't have a car. However, Memphis is not known for its public transit.

While Jacksonville offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. The public transportation system includes trolleys, the Skyway, buses, water taxis, and the ferry.

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

Is Jacksonville or Memphis a more walkable city?

Jacksonville
Memphis

Jacksonville and Memphis are nice when it comes to walkability.

Jacksonville is a somewhat walkable city. Downtown Jacksonville is the most walkable part of the city.

Memphis is somewhat walkable. 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 Jacksonville Worth Visiting? and Is Memphis Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Memphis or Jacksonville?

How long in Jacksonville or Memphis?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Jacksonville and Memphis. In our opinion, Jacksonville has more to see and do, so we recommend that you spend more time in Jacksonville than Memphis. However, 2-3 days is a good amount of time to spend in either destination.

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

Couples should spend more time in Jacksonville than Memphis. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Jacksonville that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville.


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

One day in Jacksonville or Memphis?

In Jacksonville, you'll find nightlife and food. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. This city offers something for everyone. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

In Memphis, many people enjoy the live music and food that this soulful city offers. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.


A weekend in Jacksonville or Memphis?

In Jacksonville, you'll find food and shopping. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. A weekend here is typical. Most people come for the beaches. A weekend is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Jacksonville has to offer.

Memphis is a fun place to experience. If you have a weekend, this is a great place to go. It will give you the chance to have new experiences. Lots of people come for the live music. So, a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Five days in Jacksonville or Memphis?

Jacksonville is a great place to explore. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

You'll find museums and nightlife around the soulful destination of Memphis. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Lots of people come for the live music. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days.

A week in Jacksonville or Memphis?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Jacksonville. Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Jacksonville. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

Memphis is a popular place to visit. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Tours for Seniors to United States of America, The Best Contiki Tours to United States of America, The Best G Adventures Tours to United States of America, and The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Las Vegas.


Which place is cheaper, Memphis or Jacksonville?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Jacksonville is $220, 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 Jacksonville and Memphis in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Jacksonville $92
    Memphis $84
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Jacksonville $184
    Memphis $168
Compare Hotels in Jacksonville and Memphis

Looking for a hotel in Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville


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: Jacksonville Hotel Prices and Memphis Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Jacksonville $53
    Memphis $59

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Jacksonville

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

  • Carnival Cruise Port Transfer to Jacksonville: $336
  • JAX Airport Transfer to Amelia Island: $195
  • Jacksonville Airport (JAX) to Jacksonville City - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $122
  • Jacksonville Airport (JAX) to Jacksonville Port - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $109
  • One Way Airport Transfer to/from City Center: $85
  • Miami: One Way To/From Airport Transfer: $78
  • Carnival Cruise Port Jacksonville to City - Arrival Transfer: $63
  • Jacksonville Airport (JAX) to Jacksonville City - Arrival Private Transfer: $61
  • Private Transfer from Carnival Port to Jacksonville Airport (JAX): $55
  • Jacksonville Airport (JAX) to Jacksonville Cruise Port -Arrival Private Transfer: $55

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Memphis

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

  • Private Departure Transfer to Memphis Airport MEM: $72
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Memphis Airport MEM: $72
  • Guided Tour with Riverboat Cruise & Hotel Transfers: $339
  • Memphis Airport Transfers: $60
  • Memphis Airport MEM to Hot Springs Resorts Round-Trip Transfer: $283
  • Memphis Airport (MEM) to Memphis City - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $134
  • Greater Memphis To MEM International Airport - Luxury Transfer: $95

Is it cheaper to fly into Jacksonville or Memphis?

Prices for flights to both Memphis and Jacksonville 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
    Jacksonville $96
    Memphis $43

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Jacksonville

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

  • 1 Hour of Chocolate Pizza Making Class in Jacksonville: $18

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.
    Jacksonville $20
    Memphis $45

Tours and Activities in Jacksonville

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

  • Jacksonville Ghosts and Ghouls Tour By US Ghost Adventures: $30
  • 20 Minutes Chocolate & Candy Factory Tour in Jacksonville: $6.00
  • 90 Minute Self-Guided Arcimoto FUV Adventure: $100
  • Amelia Island Area Kayak Rental on Lofton Creek with Adventures Up The Creek: $36
  • Amelia Island Guided Kayak Tour of Lofton Creek : $60
  • Best of the Beaches E-Bike Tour: $100
  • Big Talbot Island Self Guided Tour with Smart Helmets: $115
  • CraigCat Boat Tour from Fernandina Beach: $145
  • Daytona Beach: 3 Hour Coastal Discovery Boat Cruise: $150
  • Downtown Fernandina Historical Walking Tour: $30
  • Eight Flags Road Tour: $50
  • Electric Bike Art and Architecture Guided Tour in Jacksonville : $60

Tours and Activities in Memphis

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

  • 2.5 Hours Essence of Memphis African American History Tour: $72
  • A Self Guided Walking Tour of Brews, Blues and BBQ in Memphis: $12
  • Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure - Memphis: $44
  • Beale Street & Sun Studio: Private Half-Day Walking Tour: $160
  • Beale Street Experience Audio App Self Guided Walking Tour: $7.75
  • Beale Street Guided Walking Tour: $22
  • Best of Memphis Walking Tour: $99
  • Downtown Memphis : Ultimate Private Party Experience: $430
  • Elvis Presley's Childhood Home Sightseeing Daytrip from Memphis: $111
  • Elvis Unleashed: Private Elvis Walking Tour: $150
  • From Tupelo Elvis Presley's Upbringing Tour: $102
  • Guided Memphis City Tour with Riverboat Cruise along Mississippi River: $85

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Jacksonville $20
    Memphis $26

Sample the Local Flavors in Jacksonville

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

  • Jacksonville Ghosts Boos and Booze Haunted Pub Crawl: $30
  • Jax Brewery Tour (Drinks Included): $135

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 Jacksonville and Memphis, we can see that Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville Expensive? and Is Memphis Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Jacksonville or Memphis?

Jacksonville has a larger population, and is about 23% larger than the population of Memphis. When comparing the sizes of Jacksonville 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 Jacksonville or Memphis?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Jacksonville or Memphis in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Jacksonville and Memphis. Many visitors come to Jacksonville in the summer for the beaches, the city activities, 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.

Jacksonville is around the same temperature as Memphis in the summer. The daily temperature in Jacksonville averages around 82°F (28°C) in July, and Memphis fluctuates around 83°F (29°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Memphis this time of the year. In Jacksonville, it's very sunny this time of the year. Jacksonville usually receives less sunshine than Memphis during summer. Jacksonville gets 286 hours of sunny skies, while Memphis receives 328 hours of full sun in the summer.

Jacksonville gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In July, Jacksonville usually receives more rain than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 5.4 inches (137 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain each month for the summer.


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

Should I visit Jacksonville or Memphis in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Jacksonville as well as Memphis. Most visitors come to Jacksonville for the city's sights and attractions and 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.

In the autumn, Jacksonville is a little warmer than Memphis. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Jacksonville in October average around 70°F (21°C), and Memphis averages at about 64°F (18°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Memphis. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Jacksonville this time of the year. In the autumn, Jacksonville often gets less sunshine than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 214 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Memphis receives 240 hours of full sun.

Jacksonville usually gets more rain in October than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 1.6 inches (41 mm) of rain this time of the year. Also, the hurricane season in Jacksonville is June to November.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Jacksonville 70°F (21°C) 
    Memphis 64°F (18°C)

Should I visit Jacksonville or Memphis in the Winter?

Both Memphis and Jacksonville are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. The winter months attract visitors to Jacksonville because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, 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 January, Jacksonville is generally much warmer than Memphis. Daily temperatures in Jacksonville average around 53°F (12°C), and Memphis fluctuates around 40°F (5°C).

Jacksonville usually receives more sunshine than Memphis during winter. Jacksonville gets 191 hours of sunny skies, while Memphis receives 163 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Jacksonville usually receives more rain than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 3.3 inches (83 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 2.4 inches (62 mm) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Jacksonville 53°F (12°C) 
    Memphis 40°F (5°C)

Should I visit Jacksonville or Memphis in the Spring?

Both Memphis and Jacksonville during the spring are popular places to visit. The beaches and the activities around the city are the main draw to Jacksonville this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Memphis for the activities around the city.

Jacksonville is a little warmer than Memphis in the spring. The daily temperature in Jacksonville averages around 68°F (20°C) in April, and Memphis fluctuates around 64°F (18°C).

In Memphis, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Jacksonville. In the spring, Jacksonville often gets more sunshine than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 285 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Memphis receives 254 hours of full sun.

Memphis gets a good bit of rain this time of year. Jacksonville usually gets less rain in April than Memphis. Jacksonville gets 2.8 inches (72 mm) of rain, while Memphis receives 4.3 inches (109 mm) of rain this time of the year. Keep in mind that June to November is the hurricane season in Jacksonville.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Jacksonville 68°F (20°C) 
    Memphis 64°F (18°C)

Typical Weather for Memphis and Jacksonville

Jacksonville Memphis
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 53°F (12°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 40°F (5°C) 2.4 inches (62 mm)
Feb 56°F (13°C) 3.9 inches (100 mm) 45°F (7°C) 3.3 inches (85 mm)
Mar 62°F (17°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm) 54°F (12°C) 4.2 inches (106 mm)
Apr 68°F (20°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm) 64°F (18°C) 4.3 inches (109 mm)
May 74°F (24°C) 3.7 inches (93 mm) 72°F (22°C) 3.3 inches (84 mm)
Jun 80°F (27°C) 5.7 inches (146 mm) 80°F (27°C) 2.3 inches (58 mm)
Jul 82°F (28°C) 5.4 inches (137 mm) 83°F (29°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
Aug 82°F (28°C) 7.8 inches (199 mm) 82°F (28°C) 2.8 inches (72 mm)
Sep 79°F (26°C) 7.1 inches (180 mm) 76°F (24°C) 2.6 inches (66 mm)
Oct 70°F (21°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm) 64°F (18°C) 1.6 inches (41 mm)
Nov 62°F (17°C) 2.2 inches (55 mm) 54°F (12°C) 2.6 inches (65 mm)
Dec 56°F (13°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm) 44°F (7°C) 4.1 inches (105 mm)