A Travel Price Comparison for Spain Malaga vs. Bilbao for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Malaga or Bilbao?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Malaga and Bilbao. 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. So, let's dig into it.

Malaga

Malaga is a port city in the southern part of Spain. It is the 6th largest city in Spain and the southernmost large city in Europe. Malaga lies on the Mediterranean on the Costa del Sol, only 62 miles east of the Strait of Gibraltar, and 80 miles north of Africa. Malaga's history dates back about 2,800 years, which makes it one of the oldest cities in the world. The archaeological remains and monuments from the Phoenician, Roman, Arabic and Christian eras make the historic center of the city an "open museum", displaying its history of more than 3,000 years. Because of its important cultural infrastructure and the artistic heritage, Malaga has been nominated for the European Capital of Culture. Malaga's most important economic contributors include tourism, technology, and construction, but transportation and logistics are becoming increasingly important factors as well.

Bilbao

The industrial city of Bilbao is located on a port of the Nervión River in northern Spain, an important location of Basque country. While the downtown is filled with skyscrapers and innovative architecture, it sits between a river and mountains of natural allure. A city of hard-workers to the core, Bilbao displays remnants of its industrial past, though in more recent years it has transformed into a center for art. It is now a popular location for visitors looking to experience art galleries and museums.

Which city is cheaper, Bilbao or Malaga?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Malaga is €106, while the average daily cost in Bilbao is €110. 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 Malaga and Bilbao in more detail.



Accommodation

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about €108 for a double occupancy room in Malaga.

Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about €114 for a double occupancy room in Bilbao.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Malaga 54
    Bilbao 57
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Malaga 108
    Bilbao 114

Food

Malaga food costs typically run travelers around €27 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

On average, meal and food prices in Bilbao cost around €37 per person, per day. While this price can vary widely by location, the type of restaurant, and the amount of food ordered, a typical meal often costs around €15.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Malaga 27
    Bilbao 37
Typical Food prices in Malaga

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


  • Breakfast for 2
    8.00

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Malaga

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

  • Sardines Espetos Cooking Workshop: $73
  • Typical Andalusian Dinner with Wine Pairing in Málaga: $79
  • Malaga Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience: $86
  • Sardines On Skewers Cooking Class in Malaga: $111
  • Malaga Sunset Cruise and Restaurant Dinner: $112
  • Málaga Swim Cruise with Tapas Dinner and Flamenco Show: $128
  • Malaga Catamaran Cruise with BBQ Lunch and Port Restaurant Dinner: $146
  • Malaga Market Visit and Cooking Class in Malaga Countryside House: $149

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Bilbao

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

  • The authentic Bilbao food tour: $96

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Malaga is €25 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.

The average price of local transportation around Bilbao is €21 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.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Malaga 25
    Bilbao 21

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Malaga

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Malaga:

  • Airport Private Transfer: $72
  • Arrival Private Transfer Business Car Malaga airport AGP to Malaga: $26
  • Arrival Private Transfer Business Car Malaga airport AGP to Marbella: $62
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Malaga airport AGP to Malaga: $30
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Malaga airport AGP to Marbella: $92
  • Departure Private Transfer Business Car Malaga City to Malaga airport AGP: $26
  • Departure Private Transfer Luxury Van Malaga City to Malaga airport AGP: $30
  • Departure Private Transfer Malaga Airport AGP to Seville Airport by Luxury Van: $742
  • Departure Private Transfer Malaga Airport AGP to Seville SVQ by Business Car: $611
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Málaga Airport to Cádiz City - One Way: $376
  • Low Cost Private Transfer From Málaga Airport to Malaga City - One Way: $46
  • Malaga - Marbella Private Transfer: $317

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Bilbao

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Bilbao:

  • Private Airport Transfer: from Bilbao Airport (BIO) to Bilbao: $25
  • Private Airport Transfer: from Bilbao to Bilbao Airport (BIO): $25
  • Arrival Private Transfer Business Car Bilbao airport BIO to Bilbao City: $47
  • Departure Private Transfer Business Car Bilbao City to Bilbao airport BIO: $47
  • Bilbao Airport Private Arrival Transfer: $48
  • Bilbao Airport Private Departure Transfer: $48
  • Bilbao Airport Transfers : Bilbao City to Bilbao Airport BIO in Business Car: $54
  • Departure Private Transfers: Bilbao City to Bilbao Airport BIO in Business Car: $57
  • Bilbao Private Transfer from Bilbao city centre to Bilbao Airport: $67
  • Arrival Private Transfer Luxury Van Bilbao airport BIO to Bilbao City: $67
  • Departure Private Transfer Luxury Van Bilbao City to Bilbao airport BIO: $67
  • Private Transfer from Bilbao city to Bilbao Cruise Port: $68

Is it cheaper to fly into Malaga or Bilbao?

Prices for flights to both Bilbao and Malaga 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

Malaga's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around €25 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.

Bilbao's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around €23 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.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Malaga 25
    Bilbao 23
Typical Entertainment prices in Malaga

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


  • Entrance to Castillos
    7.10
  • Concert
    31

Tours and Activities in Malaga

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

  • Alcazaba de Málaga and Teatro Romano Walking Tour in Spanish: $4.98
  • Skip the Line: Picasso's Birthplace Museum Entrance Ticket: $4.98
  • Temporary Exhibition Museo Picasso Málaga Tickets: $6.66
  • Walking Tour of Malaga's Historic Center: $7.46
  • Skip the Line: Centre Pompidou in Malaga Ticket: $11
  • Skip the Line: Museo Picasso Malaga Entrance Ticket: $11
  • Museo Carmen Thyssen de Malaga Entrance Ticket: $12
  • Skip the Line: Malaga Automobile and Fashion Museum Entrance Ticket: $14
  • 1.5-Hour Roman Theater and Alcazaba Castle Walking Tour: $16
  • Malaga Segway Castle Tour: $22
  • Fast and Curious segway tour (30min): $26
  • Malaga Shore Excursion: City Sightseeing Malaga Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $27

Tours and Activities in Bilbao

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

  • Portugalete, Getxo, & Santurtzi Panoramic Boat Tour: $7.10
  • personalized guided tour with a local: $50
  • Basque Coast Tour: Vizcaya Bridge, Gaztelugatxe, Bermeo and Gernika: $75
  • Gaztelugatxe, Bermeo and Gernika Guided Tour with Hotel Pickup: $81
  • Santoña and Santander Guided Tour with Hotel Pick up from Bilbao: $83
  • Biarritz, Saint Jean de Luz, Hondarribia and San Sebastian Full Day Tour: $87
  • Full-day San Sebastian tour from Bilbao: $89
  • Guided Pintxos Tour: $108
  • Basque Country Full Day Tour from Bilbao: $112
  • Getxo and Bizkaia bridge small group tour: $124
  • Tour Bilbao in a Vintage VW "Beetle": $185
  • Guggenheim Museum Personalized & Private Tour with Official Guide: $198

Alcohol

The average person spends about €18 on alcoholic beverages in Malaga per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

While the amount that someone spends on alcohol while visiting Bilbao may vary from person to person, on average a person spends €17 per day on alcoholic beverages.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Malaga 18
    Bilbao 17

Sample the Local Flavors in Malaga

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

  • Malaga Nightlife - Pub Crawl Tour with Skip-the-line Club Access: $26
  • Frigiliana Small-Group Hike and Wine Tasting Tour from Malaga: $49
  • Muscatel Winery Tour and Wine Tastings from Malaga: $75
  • Malaga Tapas and Wine Tour: $81
  • Flamenco, Tapas and Wine Tour: BEST OF Málaga in one evening!: $108
  • Private Ronda Wine Tour with Tapas Including a Visit to Ronda: $404
  • Ronda Private Full Day Wine Tour with Tapas: $406
  • Malaga Shore Excursion: Panoramic Buggy Tour with Wine Tasting in a Historical Cellar: $481

Sample the Local Flavors in Bilbao

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

  • La Rioja and Vitoria Wine Tour with Winery Visit: $87
  • Cantabric Sea Experience: Food & Wine Tasting: $199
  • La Rioja Wine Tour with Two Winery Visits with Wine Tasting from Bilbao: $243
  • Architectural Rioja Wine Tour from Bilbao: $287
  • San Sebastian & The Basque Wine Region with Lunch and Wine Tasting (From Bilbao): $305
  • Essential Rioja Private Wine Tour from Bilbao: $311
  • La Rioja Wine Tour with Gourmet lunch from Bilbao: $383


When comparing the travel costs between Malaga and Bilbao, we can see that Bilbao 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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Malaga vs. Bilbao Travel Comparison

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