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

Should you visit Malaga or Bilbao?

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 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, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Where Should I go: Malaga or Bilbao?

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. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Malaga and Bilbao in more detail.



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

Looking for a hotel in Malaga or Bilbao? 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 Malaga


Hotels in Bilbao


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: Malaga Hotel Prices and Bilbao Hotel Prices.

Local 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
  • Private Transfer to/from Bilbao Airport (BIO): $51
  • 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

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.





Food
  • 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
  • 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

Entertainment
  • 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
  • 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
  • Skip-the-Line Malaga Cathedral Tickets with Tour: $18
  • Malaga Segway Castle Tour: $22
  • Adventure City Game with Augmented Reality: $23
  • Fast and Curious segway tour (30min): $26

Tours and Activities in Bilbao

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

  • Guided Tour of the Arriaga Theater: $5.66
  • Old Town Walking Tour and Cable Car Ride: $19
  • 3-Hour Guided Bike Tour: $36
  • Bilbao Historical Area: Small-Group Walking Tour: $36
  • Alternative Bike Tour: $40
  • Guided Tour of Guggenheim in Spanish with Ticket: $44
  • personalized guided tour with a local: $50
  • Old Quarter Walking Guided Tour: $51
  • Off-the-Beaten-Path Seaside Cycling Tour: $62
  • Basque Coast Tour: Vizcaya Bridge, Gaztelugatxe, Bermeo and Gernika: $75
  • Getxo and Bizcaya Bridge (UNESCO Site) Bike Tour from Bilbao: $77
  • Gaztelugatxe, Bermeo and Gernika Guided Tour with Hotel Pickup: $81

Alcohol
  • 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.


When is the best time to visit Malaga or Bilbao?

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 Malaga or Bilbao in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Malaga and Bilbao. The summer months attract visitors to Malaga because of the beaches, snorkeling, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.

Malaga is a little warmer than Bilbao in the summer. The temperature in Malaga is usually 25°C (77°F) in July, and Bilbao stays around 20°C (68°F).

In Malaga, it's very sunny this time of the year. Malaga usually receives more sunshine than Bilbao during summer. Malaga gets 348 hours of sunny skies, while Bilbao receives 188 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Malaga usually receives less rain than Bilbao. Malaga gets 2 mm (0.1 in) of rain, while Bilbao receives 51 mm (2 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Malaga 25°C (77°F) 
    Bilbao 20°C (68°F)

Should I visit Malaga or Bilbao in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Malaga as well as Bilbao. The shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area are the main draw to Malaga this time of year.

In the autumn, Malaga is a little warmer than Bilbao. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Malaga in October are around 19°C (67°F), and Bilbao is about 16°C (62°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Malaga this time of the year. In the autumn, Malaga often gets more sunshine than Bilbao. Malaga gets 213 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Bilbao receives 125 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Bilbao. Malaga usually gets less rain in October than Bilbao. Malaga gets 54 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Bilbao receives 111 mm (4.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Malaga 19°C (67°F) 
    Bilbao 16°C (62°F)

Should I visit Malaga or Bilbao in the Winter?

Both Bilbao and Malaga are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Many travelers come to Malaga for the shopping scene and the cuisine.

In January, Malaga is generally a little warmer than Bilbao. Temperatures in Malaga average around 12°C (54°F), and Bilbao stays around 9°C (48°F).

Malaga usually receives more sunshine than Bilbao during winter. Malaga gets 171 hours of sunny skies, while Bilbao receives 77 hours of full sun in the winter.

It rains a lot this time of the year in Bilbao. In January, Malaga usually receives less rain than Bilbao. Malaga gets 83 mm (3.3 in) of rain, while Bilbao receives 130 mm (5.1 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Malaga 12°C (54°F) 
    Bilbao 9°C (48°F)

Should I visit Malaga or Bilbao in the Spring?

Both Bilbao and Malaga during the spring are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Malaga in the spring for the beaches and the natural beauty.

Malaga is a little warmer than Bilbao in the spring. The temperature in Malaga is usually 16°C (60°F) in April, and Bilbao stays around 12°C (54°F).

It's quite sunny in Malaga. In the spring, Malaga often gets more sunshine than Bilbao. Malaga gets 220 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Bilbao receives 117 hours of full sun.

Bilbao gets a good bit of rain this time of year. Malaga usually gets less rain in April than Bilbao. Malaga gets 40 mm (1.6 in) of rain, while Bilbao receives 129 mm (5.1 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Malaga 16°C (60°F) 
    Bilbao 12°C (54°F)

Typical Weather for Bilbao and Malaga

Malaga Bilbao
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 12°C (54°F) 83 mm (3.3 in) 9°C (48°F) 130 mm (5.1 in)
Feb 13°C (55°F) 75 mm (3 in) 10°C (50°F) 108 mm (4.3 in)
Mar 14°C (57°F) 59 mm (2.3 in) 11°C (51°F) 100 mm (3.9 in)
Apr 16°C (60°F) 40 mm (1.6 in) 12°C (54°F) 129 mm (5.1 in)
May 19°C (66°F) 24 mm (0.9 in) 15°C (59°F) 92 mm (3.6 in)
Jun 22°C (72°F) 13 mm (0.5 in) 18°C (64°F) 65 mm (2.6 in)
Jul 25°C (77°F) 2 mm (0.1 in) 20°C (68°F) 51 mm (2 in)
Aug 25°C (78°F) 5 mm (0.2 in) 20°C (68°F) 89 mm (3.5 in)
Sep 23°C (74°F) 15 mm (0.6 in) 19°C (66°F) 75 mm (3 in)
Oct 19°C (67°F) 54 mm (2.1 in) 16°C (62°F) 111 mm (4.4 in)
Nov 15°C (60°F) 115 mm (4.5 in) 12°C (54°F) 152 mm (6 in)
Dec 13°C (55°F) 102 mm (4 in) 10°C (50°F) 135 mm (5.3 in)


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Malaga vs. Bilbao Travel Comparison

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