A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Kos vs. Albufeira for Food, Nightlife, Resorts, and Scuba Diving & Snorkeling

Should you visit Kos or Albufeira?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Kos and Albufeira can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Kos

Kos is a party-hard, vibrant, and beautiful island. The famous beauty of this place is one of the main draws. And you can't forget about the food, scuba diving and snorkeling, and beaches.

Albufeira

Albufeira is a touristy, popular, and activity-filled resort town. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. Other reasons to visit include nightlife, food, and scuba diving and snorkeling.

Kos and Albufeira: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Good for shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
  • Impressive beauty
Cons
  • Not as many resort options
Pros
  • Great resorts
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Cons
  • Less popular for shopping
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable


How is Kos different from Albufeira?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Food?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira offer good local cuisine and restaurants.

Many restaurants in Kos have been singled out for their culinary prowess. The cuisine relies heavily on locally harvested ingredients with many dishes featuring cheese, seafood, vegetables, olive oil, and potatoes. The dishes are influenced by Italian and Turkish cuisines and common dishes include moussaka, souvlaki and tzatziki. Popular seafood options are prawns, squid, lobster and octopus. A great way to enjoy a sampling of local dishes is to visit an ouzeri, which is a Greek taverna that serves mezza style meals with small dishes that you can share.

Eating is part of the travel experience when you visit Albufeira. As the largest resort town in the Algarve, the city also has the widest selection of restaurants. There are traditional options that serve up classic dishes like grilled sardines, as well as international restaurants with traveler favorites. As expected, you'll find a lot of seafood, but you'll also find inland influences from local farms in the area.


Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Nightlife?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira have similar vibes after the sun sets.

Kos has a lively atmosphere and nightlife is popular here. For such a small island you'll find a huge party scene during the peak summer months. There are almost nightly parties, beach raves, and late night clubs throughout the summer months. The bars and clubs are mostly concentrated around a couple of streets in the center of Kos Town, but Kardamena is also a lively party area. It's popular with British tourists who head here for the all-night clubs.

People head to Albufeira just to party. It's probably the most infamous party destination in the Algarve and it won't disappoint. During the peak summer months you'll find the streets around the popular "Strip" filled with tourists and party-goers. There are hen and stag parties, backpackers, and drunken travelers out for a good time. The Strip has become so popular that there are now bars and clubs on the adjacent streets as well. If you're not staying in the area, you'll likely want to take a taxi, as it's a couple kilometers outside of the town center.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Resorts?

Kos
Albufeira

If you're looking for a better selection of resorts, you'll probably want to head to Albufeira.

Albufeira is a world class resort vacation destination. As the largest resort town in the Algarve, you'll find a wide selection of hotels to choose from. Party-goers will want to stay near the Strip while families will prefer the old town or resorts in Olhos de Agua.

With a selection of resorts, Kos makes a nice vacation spot. It's a smaller island and there aren't as many resorts here as there are on some of the larger Greek islands. Some of the best resort areas include Lamp and Psalidi to the northwest, Tigaki on the west coast (a good option for families), as well as Mastihari and Marmari which both have relaxed atmospheres. The younger crowd often hangs out around Kardemena on the east coast.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira offer scuba diving or snorkeling.

Kos is a world class destination for scuba diving and snorkeling. There are countless snorkeling sports around the island where you can immerse yourself in the undersea world. Popular snorkeling areas include Camel Beach and Limnionas Beach. Make sure you understand the water conditions before heading into the water.

There are many scuba diving and snorkeling spots near Albufeira. There are countless vendors who will take you by boat to explore the underwater world, either by snorkeling or scuba diving. The marine life is impressive and the water is generally clear.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Beaches?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira are considered to be good beach destinations.

Kos is considered to be a world-class beach destination. The island is famous for its beautiful beaches, many of which are sandy with various shades of color. There are touristy beaches with plenty of amenities as well as less frequented beaches that offer a quieter and more remote atmosphere. Some of the most visited beaches on the island include Agios Stefanos, Kardamena, Kefalos and Lambi while some of the more peaceful areas are Cavo Paradiso and Helona Beach.

Albufeira offers stunning beaches that attract visitors from around the world. With their golden sands and blue waters, the beaches are world class. The area also has a diversity of beaches that are perfect for all types of vacationers. For water sports, head to Praia dos Alemaes but for relaxation and catching some rays check out Praia da Falesia. You'll find some interesting rock formations at Praia dos Olhos de Agua. One of the most convenient beaches to town is Praia dos Pescadores. For nightlife you'll want to head to Praia da Oura.


Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Hiking?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira are destinations which offer hiking.

Plenty of visitors go hiking around Kos. This is a great walking island with a number of easy walks or hikes that take you along the coastline or through interesting landscapes.

Albufeira offers some nice hiking trails. There are countless coastal walks that are perfect for all skill levels. Many offers stunning views along the rocky coast and pass through natural settings. Popular trails in the area include Praia Grande Interpretation Trail and Paderne Castle Trail.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Shopping?

Kos
Albufeira

While Albufeira and Kos are both popular shopping destinations, overall Kos is considered to be better.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Kos. There are a number of traditional items that you can pick up while you're in town. Fun souvenirs include jewelry, leather items, and perfumes.

Albufeira has some shopping areas for those that seek them out. You'll find most of the shops are geared toward souvenirs or beach items, particularly near the beach and marina. If you look hard you might find some nice ceramics or items made of cork.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Families?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira are fun to visit with kids.

Kos is a family-friendly island. It's comparable to other Greek islands when it comes to kids' activities. Kos Town can get a bit lively at night so if you want to avoid the party crowds, then those areas are easily avoided. Popular activities include exploring ancient ruins, going to the Kos Archaeological Museum, visiting The Castle of the Knights, and of course, hanging out at the beach. One of the best family-friendly resort areas is Tigaki along the west coast.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Albufeira. Despite it's reputation as a party-hard city, there are actually a lot of family-friendly activities in the area. Because it's the largest resort town in the Algarve, it also has the most activities to choose from, including theme parks, water parks, dolphin watching, ropes courses, go karting, and more. The best area's for families are in the old town or the most of the family-friendly resorts outside of town. Families should avoid staying near "the Strip."

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Couples?

Kos
Albufeira

Both Kos and Albufeira are good destinations for a couple's getaway.

Kos makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. This small island offers beautiful beaches and plenty of ancient ruins to explore. Kos Town is where you'll find the liveliest atmosphere but for some of the best resorts you'll want to stay in one of the resort suburbs like Lampi or Psalidi.

Albufeira is fantastic couple's destination with fun and romantic activities. For an active honeymoon or couple's retreat, this resort town has it all. Beautiful beaches, adventure-filled activities, a wild nightlife scene, and excellent resorts and restaurants all make for a memorable couple's getaway.


Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Kos
Albufeira

Kos and Albufeira are both good destinations for backpackers.

Kos is very popular with the backpacker crowd. It's a small island but has a few hostels and a variety of apartments available for rent. Despite its small size, there are areas where you'll want to have a car if you wish to explore, but if you stay in town you'll find getting around fairly easy. The island attracts its share of young travelers and you'll find plenty of people to hang out with.

Backpackers and budget travelers come from all over the world to visit Albufeira. If you're looking for a party, then you found it. The area is a top pick for European holidays, so you'll find plenty of energy and activities around town. There are also golden beaches and a decent selection of hostels to choose from.

Is Kos or Albufeira Better for Public Transit?

Kos
Albufeira

Kos generally offers a better public transit system than Albufeira.

Visitors to Kos can move around easily with public transportation. Buses connect many of the tourist destinations including beaches, cultural sights, are resort areas.

Public transit is generally limited in Albufeira. There are regional buses and even trains, but do take note that many of the train and bus stations are a good distance outside of town.

Is Kos or Albufeira a more walkable city?

Kos
Albufeira

Kos is generally more walkable than Albufeira.

Kos is very walkable. It's small size means it's possible to explore parts of the island on foot or bicycle. There are some beautiful walks on the island, but some areas will require a car or bus.

Albufeira is generally not very walkable. Most people prefer to hire a car, but if your hotel is near the beach and you're ok with walking to restaurants, then you may be able to get away without one. If you hope to travel into the countryside at all then a car is necessary.

Should I spend more time in Albufeira or Kos?

How long in Kos or Albufeira?

Both Kos and Albufeira have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Albufeira than Kos.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Kos is 2-5 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Albufeira is 3-7 days.


  • How many days in Kos or Albufeira? Ideal Length of Stay
    Kos 2-5 
    Albufeira 3-7

One day in Kos or Albufeira?

You'll find nightlife and food around the island of Kos. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

With food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the party hard destination of Albufeira, there's plenty to do. It's also a relaxing resort destination. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.


A weekend in Kos or Albufeira?

You'll find food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the beautiful destination of Kos. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this island has to offer. This island offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Many people visit Albufeira for a weekend. With scuba diving and snorkeling and nightlife around the high energy resort town of Albufeira, there's plenty to do. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

Five days in Kos or Albufeira?

You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping around the ancient island of Kos. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this island makes for a great vacation. It's also a great beach destination, too. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this island has to offer.

With nightlife and food around the destination of Albufeira, there's plenty to do. Many people spend five days here. Travelers enjoy the resorts in the area as well. It offers something for everyone. Because of this, five days is usually enough time for a trip here.

A week in Kos or Albufeira?

Kos is a popular choice for travelers. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. One week 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. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Albufeira, a popular resort town, is full of activities for travelers. This is a popular place to visit for one week. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Your budget might influence how long you stay. One week is usually enough time to experience most activities.

Which city is cheaper, Albufeira or Kos?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Kos is €107, while the average daily cost in Albufeira is €118. 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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Kos and Albufeira in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Kos 49
    Albufeira 59
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Kos 98
    Albufeira 118
Compare Hotels in Kos and Albufeira

Looking for a hotel in Kos or Albufeira? 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 Kos


Hotels in Albufeira


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: Kos Hotel Prices and Albufeira Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Kos 29
    Albufeira 27

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Kos

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

  • Kos - Airport Private Transfer: $62
  • Private Transfer to/from Kos Airport (KGS): $71
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Kos Island to Kos Airport (KGS): $41
  • Private departure Transfer from Kos island resorts to Kos airport: $96

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Albufeira

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Albufeira:

  • Transfer Galé - Boavista Golf (Lagos): $77
  • Transfer Galé - Benamor Golf (Conceição): $100
  • Transfer Galé - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $36
  • Transfer Galé - Alto Golf Pestana (Alvor): $62
  • Transfer Galé - Alamos Golf (Portimão): $62
  • Transfer From Albufeira Algarve To Lisboa: $235
  • Transfer Algarve - Up to 7 People: $871
  • Transfer Algarve - Up to 3 People: $746
  • Transfer Albufeira to Faro Airport: $36
  • Transfer Albufeira - Boavista Golf (Lagos): $77
  • Transfer Albufeira - Benamor Golf (Conceição): $100
  • Transfer Albufeira - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $19

Is it cheaper to fly into Kos or Albufeira?

Prices for flights to both Albufeira and Kos 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
    Kos 35
    Albufeira 38

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Kos 26
    Albufeira 31

Tours and Activities in Kos

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

  • Kalymnos and Pserimos Day Cruise: $55
  • Photo tour island of Kos: $684

Tours and Activities in Albufeira

Here are a few actual costs in Albufeira for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • 'Leaozinho' Pirate Ship Cruise from Albufeira: $30
  • 1.5 Hour Quad Off-Road Tour from Albufeira: $31
  • Abulferia: 3-Hour Yacht Cruise to Benagil: $34
  • Albufeira 1.5 hour Off-Road Tour Buggy Adventure Tour: $40
  • Albufeira 1.5-Hour Off-road Quad Tour: $75
  • Albufeira 3-Hour Off-Road Quad Tour: $137
  • Albufeira Beach Tour: $25
  • Albufeira Coast and Countryside Mountain Bike Tour: $73
  • Albufeira Jeep Safari Tour (Full Day): $65
  • Albufeira to Algibre Trails Bike Tour: $73
  • 2-Hour Caves and Cliffs Kayaking Experience: $40
  • 2.5-Hour Dolphin Watching and Caves Cruise: $31

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Kos 16
    Albufeira 21

Sample the Local Flavors in Albufeira

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

  • Small group Wine Tasting Tour from Albufeira: $61
  • sunset wine tasting from Albufeira: $87
  • Half Day Small Group Premium Wine Tour from Albufeira: $93
  • Wine Tour & Walking 7 Hanging Valleys - Coast Algarve: $156
  • From Algarve: Medieval Évora with Lunch and Wine Tasting: $319
  • Algarve Art and Wine Tour from Albufeira: $653


When comparing the travel costs between Kos and Albufeira, we can see that Albufeira 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 Europe, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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Kos vs. Albufeira Travel Comparison

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