A Travel Price Comparison for Spain Marbella vs. Barcelona for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Marbella or Barcelona?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Marbella or Barcelona, this travel cost comparison can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Marbella

Marbella is a city in southern Spain in the province of Malaga. It is part of the Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun) and is located on the Mediterranean Sea between Malaga and the Strait of Gibraltar. It is one of the most important tourist cities in the area and receives many national and international tourists year round due to its climate and tourism structures. Marbella is a bit of a glamorous city due to its beauty and resort-type environment. The old town with its narrow cobbled streets and flower-filled plazas is packed with shops and art galleries selling boutique clothes and accessories, and handmade wares. The city has significant archaeological and historical heritage and many events and performances throughout the year.

Barcelona

Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain with a population of over 1.5 million people. It's also the capital of Catalonia and is located on the northeastern part of the Mediterranean coast. Barcelona is one of the country's most popular travel destinations because of its rich history, interesting architecture, and vibrant culture. Barcelona hosted the 1992 Summer Olympic games and that had a strong influence over tourism in the area. Many different neighborhoods were renovated and rebuilt. Modern design became the norm in many parts of the city, although there is still an old city feel and many efforts at preservation.

Which city is cheaper, Barcelona or Marbella?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Marbella is €93, while the average daily cost in Barcelona is €122. 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 Marbella and Barcelona in more detail.



Accommodation

The prices for places to stay in Marbella can vary by date, location, and type. Generally, the average cost for accommodation per person is €49, while a typical double-occupancy hotel room for two people will cost around €98.

The average price for accommodation for two people in Barcelona is €148. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Marbella 49
    Barcelona 74
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Marbella 98
    Barcelona 148

Food

While meal prices in Marbella can vary, the average travelers spends about €31 per day on food. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out, an average meal in Marbella should cost around €12 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Marbella is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

The price of a meal in Barcelona can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is €27 per person, and a typical meal will cost around €11 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Marbella 31
    Barcelona 27

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Marbella

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

  • Cooking courses at home & online: $75
  • Tapas & Paella Cooking Course: $80

Typical Food prices in Barcelona

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


  • Hot Cocoa & Churro
    4.15
  • Sandwich
    1.70
  • Baguette & Horchata
    3.80
  • Tapas on the beach
    8.28
  • Gelatto
    2.50

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Barcelona

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

  • Live from Barcelona to China: Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Live from Potato Gnocchi Online Cooking Class: $23
  • Barcelona organic dinner in a beautiful rooftop garden: $35
  • Interactive Spanish Cooking Experience in Barcelona: $49
  • Hands-on Brunch Cooking Class with Bottomless Mimosas!: $50
  • Born district food tour and tasting in Barcelona: $51
  • Barcelona Street Food Tour: Local Market & Gothic Quarter with Expert Guide: $52
  • Street Food Tour & Gothic Quater Sightseeing with Local Expert: $52
  • Bus and Walking Tour with Dinner: $58
  • Tasty Barcelona Street Food Tour With Local Market Visit: $59
  • Skip the Line: Flamenco Show and Dinner Ticket: $62
  • Traveling Spoon Seafood Paella and Sangria Private Online Cooking Class: $66

Local Transportation

Public transportation tends to be much less expensive in Marbella than paying for a taxi or private car service, as is expected. Typically, people spend €19 on transportation in Marbella on average per day.

The cost of a taxi ride in Barcelona is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent €15 per person, per day, on local transportation in Barcelona.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Marbella 19
    Barcelona 15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Marbella

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

  • Marbella to Malaga Airport (AGP) - Departure Private Van Transfer: $45
  • Marbella to Malaga Airport (AGP) - Departure Private Car Transfer: $61
  • Departure Private Transfer Business Car Marbella to Malaga airport AGP: $62
  • Departure Private Transfer Luxury Van Marbella to Malaga airport AGP: $92
  • TRANSFER MALAGA AIRPORT from/to PUERTO BANUS-PRICE ALL INCUSIVE: $106
  • TRANSFER MALAGA AIRPORT from/to MARBELLA-PRICE ALL INCLUSIVE: $106
  • Private Transfer from Las Chapas to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $111
  • Private Transfer from Elviria to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $111
  • Private Transfer from Hotel Marbella Beach Resort to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $111
  • Private Transfer from Marbesa to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $111
  • Private Transfer from Lomas De Cabopino to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $111
  • Private Transfer from Los Monteros to Malaga (AGP) Airport: $122

Typical Local Transportation prices in Barcelona

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


  • 10 Trip Metro Ticket
    7.80
  • Airport Bus
    5.00
  • Metro
    2.10

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Barcelona

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Barcelona:

  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Transfer from City Centre to Barcelona Cruise Port: $9.41
  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Transfer from Barcelona Cruise Port to City Centre: $9.41
  • Ultra - Barcelona Private Airport Transfer city centre to El Prat Airport BCN: $9.41
  • Transfers From Cruise Port to Barcelona Main Train Station( Sants Train Station): $30
  • Transfer to Montserrat Monastery from Barcelona: $33
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Barcelona El Prat Airport to Barcelona City: $39
  • Transfer in private vehicle from Barcelona City to Barcelona El Prat Airport: $39
  • Transfer in private minivan from Barcelona City to Barcelona el Prat Airport: $55
  • Transfer from Barcelona to Valencia or viceversa: $498
  • Transfer from Barcelona to Port Aventura Park: $435
  • Transfer from Barcelona Airport to Barcelona CITY - ROUND TRIP: $124
  • Transfer from Barcelona (any hotel or address) to Barcelona Airport (BCN): $61

Is it cheaper to fly into Marbella or Barcelona?

Prices for flights to both Barcelona and Marbella 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

Sightseeing expenses in Marbella, including the cost of admission tickets for day tours, museums, and attractions, usually cost an average of €15 per day, per person.

Entertainment and activities in Barcelona typically cost an average of €27 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Marbella 15
    Barcelona 27

Tours and Activities in Marbella

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

  • Secrets of Marbella walking tour (Group): $19
  • Marbella small group walking Tour: $24
  • Marbella group walking tour: $32
  • Bike City Tour Marbella: $32
  • Marbella Like a Local: Customized Private Tour: $41
  • Paddle Boarding Tour on the beautiful Marbella Coast: $49
  • Sunset SUP Tour in Marbella: $61
  • Can-am Route Experience: $77
  • Original Marbella Tapas Adventure: $86
  • Marbella Gourmet Tapas Tour - Do Eat Better Experience: $88
  • Stand-up Paddle Sunset Tour in Marbella: $91
  • E-Mountain Bike Explorer Tour departing from Marbella: $93

Typical Entertainment prices in Barcelona

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


  • Picasso Walking Tour and Museum Pass
    42
  • Souvenir Gaudi Book
    8.55
  • Admission to Museo Picasso
    6.00

Tours and Activities in Barcelona

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

  • #1dayBarcelona. 6-Hour Action Packed Private City Discovery Tour: $549
  • "Gaudi’s Pedrera: The Origins" Night Show and Ticket: $41
  • 'Game Of Thrones' Small Group Tour in Girona from Barcelona: $125
  • 1 hour private sailing tour: $158
  • 1,5 hour Vermut & Sailing Experience Barcelona with drinks and snacks!: $41
  • 1-hour Private Speedboat Cruise from Barcelona: $372
  • 1.5-Hour Sights of Barcelona E-Bike Tour Led by a Local Guide: $34
  • 2 Hours Private Sailing Tour for Family and Friends: $316
  • 2 Hours Running Tour in Barcelona with Local Guide: $35
  • 2 hour Private Sunset Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $372
  • 2 hour Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $47
  • 2 hour Sunset Sailing Cruise Barcelona: $47

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Marbella spend on average €4.57 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.

The average person spends about €14 on alcoholic beverages in Barcelona per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Marbella 4.57
    Barcelona 14

Sample the Local Flavors in Marbella

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

  • E-Mountain Bike & Wine Tour from Marbella to Sierra Blanca: $123
  • Manilva & Gaucin Wine Tour from the Costa del Sol: $160
  • Ronda Full Day Wine Tour from Marbella: $210
  • VIP Wine Tour through the Guadalhorce Valley & Wolf Sanctuary Visit: $360
  • Ronda Private Wine Tour and Tapas from Marbella: $406
  • VIP Ronda Wine Tour and Tasting and Gourmet Lunch Experience with Winemaker: $778

Sample the Local Flavors in Barcelona

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Barcelona:

  • Columbus Monument with Optional Wine Tasting: $7.16
  • Estrella Damm Brewery Guided Tour with Tasting: $9.54
  • Backpacker Pub Crawl: $18
  • The Original Barcelona Pub Crawl: $18
  • Barcelona Halloween Pub Crawl: $18
  • Generation Pub Crawl in Barcelona: $19
  • Barcelona Pub Crawl: $20
  • Barcelona Wine Tasting: Catalan and Spanish Wines: $21
  • Wine Tasting Experience in Barcelona: $22
  • Opera Samfaina: Food and Wine Tasting Interactive Experience in Barcelona: $26
  • Wine tasting & tapas: $39
  • Barcelona Guided Local Wine Tasting Tour: $44


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Marbella and Barcelona, we can see that Barcelona is more expensive. And not only is Marbella much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Marbella would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Marbella 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 Barcelona would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Barcelona than you might in Marbella.

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Marbella vs. Barcelona Travel Comparison

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