A Travel Price Comparison for France Montpellier vs. Arles for Attractions, Old Town, Food, and Couples

Should you visit Montpellier or Arles?

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 Montpellier and Arles. 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.

Montpellier

Montpellier is a beautiful, friendly, and historic city. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. Other popular activities here include shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Arles

Arles is a compact, quaint, and historic town. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. Other popular activities here include shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Montpellier and Arles: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less family-friendly
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Montpellier or Arles?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Montpellier than Arles. It is bigger and it has more sights, attractions, and activities for travelers. Montpellier is very popular for its beaches and shopping, while Arles attracts visitors for its museums and food. Montpellier is famous for its relaxed atmosphere, grand boulevards, and authentic personality. It is also well known for The Place de la Comédie. Arles is famous for its Roman history and its influence over Vincent van Gogh.

How is Montpellier different from Arles?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Montpellier or Arles?

Montpellier
Arles

Arles is an unbeatable place for its museums and landmarks. Also, Montpellier is still popular, but not quite as popular for its historical sights.

You'll find many recognizable landmarks that put Arles on the map. It's a small town but it's filled with Roman ruins and remarkable landmarks. Popular sights include L'Amphithéâtre Romain, Les Alyscamps, Cloître Saint-Trophime, and Théâtre Antique.

Montpellier offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. With such a long history, the city has many landmarks and monuments. Also make sure you visit Musée Fabre and Saint-Pierre Cathedral.


Is the Food Better in Montpellier or Arles? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Montpellier
Arles

Arles is a great destination for its restaurant scene. Also, Montpellier is still popular, but not quite as popular for its local flavors and cuisine.

Dining out in Arles is an experience not to be missed. The cuisine is heavily influenced by the region's local agriculture. Popular dishes include agriade (beef stew), tellines soup, and fougasse (a local bread).

There are plenty of up and coming restaurants around Montpellier. The dishes are made with fresh ingredients produced in the agricultural areas just outside of town. The area is known for its seafood and fish stews.

Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Nightlife?

Montpellier
Arles

It's hard to distinguish whether Montpellier or Arles has a better nightlife scene.

Montpellier has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. The weather is mild, making for a nice evening out. The population is also young, so you can expect a lot of activity during the evenings, particularly in the area around Place Jean Jaurés. Make sure you enjoy local wine and champagne while you're in town.

If you're looking for night time activities Arles has a few options to choose from. There are countless bars and pubs where you can enjoy a cold drink and a relaxing night out.

Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Beaches?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is well known for the beach. However, Arles is not a beach destination.

Montpellier is a very popular place to visit for its beaches. The coastline near Montpellier feels pristine and beautiful. You can also visit Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone to the southwest of town, which is a protected area.

Arles is not a beach destination.


Is Montpellier or Arles Better for its Old Town?

Montpellier
Arles

Visitors enjoy the first-rate old town areas in both Montpellier and Arles.

With a famous historical old-town, Montpellier offers plenty to see. Known as L'Écusson the town's old town dates back to the Middle Ages. It is a pedestrian area that is filled with boutiques, restaurants, and churches.

The rich history of Arles can be explored in its historical center. The large old town is filled with Roman ruins and historic sights. There are narrow streets and many interesting places to explore.

Is the Shopping Better in Montpellier or Arles?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is well known for its shopping areas. Also, Arles is still popular, but not quite as popular for shopping.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity in Montpellier. Head to Rue de la Loge for some of the city's best shopping.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Arles. There are many boutiques that are filled with local art, crafts, and merchandise.

Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Families?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is very good for its family-friendly activities. However, Arles is not particularly known for its kid-friendly activities.

You'll find plenty of kid-friendly things to do in Montpellier. Popular activities for kids include taking a ride on the carousel in the Comedie, visiting the playground - Jardin Champs de Mars, and visiting the botanical garden - Jardin des Plantes.

For families, Arles is not always the best place to visit. Filled with Roman ruins and beautiful art, this is a great town, but can make for a long day for younger kids.


Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Couples?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier and Arles both high quality destinations for a couple.

Couples visit Montpellier frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. Rich in history and beautiful architecture, this city offers a romantic setting for a great couple's getaway.

Arles is a great city if you're traveling as a couple. Couples who enjoy history, roman ruins, and beautiful art will appreciate a weekend getaway to this town.

Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is well known for backpackers. However, Arles is not particularly known for backpackers and budget travelers.

Montpellier is a very popular city for backpackers and budget travelers. With a young population and a number of hostels to choose from, Montpellier attracts its share of backpackers.

Arles is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. There are a couple of hostels and apartments in the area.

Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Students?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is an unbeatable place for students. However, Arles is not popular with students.

Students come from all over the world to visit Montpellier. Montpellier is a popular university town that is home to many trendy university students. It's also where you'll find the youngest population of any city in France.

Arles is not popular with students.


Is Montpellier or Arles Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier is well known for its public transit. Also, Arles is still popular, but not quite as popular for times when you don't have a car.

Many visitors use the public transit system in Montpellier. There are a number of options for getting around town including the tramway, bus, and tourist train.

While Arles offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. There are shuttle buses that run between the city center and the train station, which is less than a kilometer out of town.

Is Montpellier or Arles a more walkable city?

Montpellier
Arles

Montpellier and Arles both are high quality when exploring on foot.

Montpellier is a very walkable destination. Many of the sights and attractions are easily accessible on foot and can be enjoyed as part of a self-guided walking tour.

Arles is very walkable. It's a historic walled city that is very walkable.

For even more information, also check out Is Montpellier Worth Visiting? and Is Arles Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Arles or Montpellier?

How long in Montpellier or Arles?

You'll be able to find lots of things to do in Montpellier or Arles to fill your time. Many travelers usually spend more of their time in Montpellier than Arles because of the number of activities and things to do in the area. Usually, 1-3 days is a good amount of time for Montpellier, and 1-2 days is enough time in Arles.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Montpellier than Arles 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 Montpellier.


  • How many days in Montpellier or Arles? Ideal Length of Stay
    Montpellier 1-3 
    Arles 1-2

One day in Montpellier or Arles?

In Montpellier, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this historic destination offers. It's also a great beach destination, too. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Because of this, one day is usually enough time for a trip here.

Visitors enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the quaint town of Arles. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Most people visit for the museums. One day should give you a good understanding of everything this town has to offer. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.


A weekend in Montpellier or Arles?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Montpellier. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Visitors enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the compact destination of Arles. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. This town offers something for everyone. Plenty of people spend a weekend in the area when traveling. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Five days in Montpellier or Arles?

Montpellier is a fun place to experience. Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the destination of Montpellier. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

The quaint town of Arles offers shopping and museums. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.

A week in Montpellier or Arles?

You'll find food and shopping around the historic destination of Montpellier. Most people come for the beaches. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Arles. Anyone can find something fun to do here. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. Most people visit for the museums. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best One Week (7-Day) Tours in France, The Best 2-Week Tours in France, The Best River Cruises in France, and The Best Bicycle Tours in France.


Which place is cheaper, Arles or Montpellier?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Montpellier is €118, while the average daily cost in Arles is €142. 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 Montpellier and Arles in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Montpellier 69
    Arles 71
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Montpellier 138
    Arles 142
Compare Hotels in Montpellier and Arles

Looking for a hotel in Montpellier or Arles? 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 Montpellier


Hotels in Arles


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: Montpellier Hotel Prices and Arles Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Montpellier 26
    Arles 23

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Montpellier

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Montpellier:

  • Montpellier Private Transfer from Montpellier Airport to City centre: $75
  • Montpellier Private Transfer from Montpellier city centre to Montpellier Airport: $75
  • Montpellier–Méditerranée Airport Transfer: $65
  • Private Transfer from Sète Cruise Port to Marseille city hotels: $133
  • Transfer from Sète Port to Marseille Provence Airport MRS: $133

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Arles

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Arles:

  • Arles to Marseille Airport (MRS) - Departure Private Transfer: $119

Is it cheaper to fly into Montpellier or Arles?

Prices for flights to both Arles and Montpellier 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
    Montpellier 31
    Arles 52

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Montpellier

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

  • Guided Food Tour With Local Snacks and Wine: $92
  • Montpellier Food Tour: $94
  • From Pic Saint-Loup Wine and Food Tour: $103
  • Cooking workshop: $108
  • Private cooking class with specialized chefs Montpellier: $110
  • Fusion Food Cooking Class: $435

Typical Food Prices in Arles

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Arles:


  • Cooked Clams
    4.50
  • Ice Cream
    1.00

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Montpellier 12
    Arles 31

Tours and Activities in Montpellier

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

  • City Exploration Game and Tour on your Phone: $6.51
  • Montpellier Highlights Quest Experience: $7.19
  • Legendary Montpellier, flexible legends and storytelling tour: $17
  • CityTour and Photo Portraits Souvenirs in Montpellier: $39
  • Half-Day Hiking Tour of Pic Saint Loup & Picnic: $65
  • From Wine and Olive Tour: $76
  • Small-Group Half-Day Languedoc Wine and Olive Tour from Montpellier: $81
  • From Half-Day Vineyard & Pic Saint-Loup Tour: $82
  • From Camargue and Salt Marshes Guided Tour: $85
  • Montpellier Wine and Oyster Tour: $87
  • Small-Group Half-Day Languedoc Wine and Oyster Tour from Montpellier: $96
  • Winetour & food experience in Pic St Loup: $109

Typical Entertainment Prices in Arles

Here are a few typical costs in Arles for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Castle Entrance Fee
    5.50

Tours and Activities in Arles

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

  • Provence Region Roman Abbey of Montmajour Entrance Ticket: $7.76
  • City tour 45mn of the city, its history, its monuments,: $71
  • City tour 1 hour of the city, its history, its monuments,: $86
  • From Avignon: Arles, Les Baux-de-Provence & Saint-Rémy Tour: $108
  • Arles 2-Hour Private Walking Tour: $190
  • 2-Hour Private Walking Tour: $205
  • Half Day Private Guided Tour of Arles: $205
  • Private Guided Tour of Arles: $222
  • Art and History Walking Tour: $304
  • Arles Private guided walking tour from Marseille: $348
  • Arles, Saint-Rémy & Les Baux De Provence: Guided Tour: $1,196

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Montpellier 15
    Arles 24

Sample the Local Flavors in Montpellier

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

  • The Châteaux of Grès de Montpellier & Wine Tasting: $82
  • Small group half day Camargue and rosé wine tour from Montpellier: $83
  • Small-Group Half-Day Châteaux of Montpellier Wine Tour: $85
  • Small-Group Half-Day Languedoc Pic Saint-Loup Wine Tour from Montpellier: $85
  • Wine tour in Pic Saint-Loup area: $144
  • Half-Day Wine Tour with Lunch: $158
  • Montpellier : half day wine tour in Camargue: $162
  • Private Half-Day Languedoc Wine Tour from Sète: $243
  • Sète: Private Half–Day Wine Tour: $359

Sample the Local Flavors in Arles

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

  • Lavender Field & Distillery Tour between Nimes & Arles: $6.30


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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Montpellier Expensive? and Is Arles Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Montpellier or Arles?

Montpellier has a larger population, and is about 5 times larger than the population of Arles. When comparing the sizes of Montpellier and Arles, 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 Montpellier or Arles?

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 Montpellier or Arles in the Summer?

Both Arles and Montpellier are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Many travelers come to Montpellier for the beaches and the family-friendly experiences. Also, many visitors come to Arles in the summer for the family-friendly experiences.

Montpellier is around the same temperature as Arles in the summer. The daily temperature in Montpellier averages around 23°C (73°F) in July, and Arles fluctuates around 24°C (75°F).

It's quite sunny in Arles. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Montpellier. Montpellier usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Arles during summer. Montpellier gets 351 hours of sunny skies, while Arles receives 354 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Montpellier usually receives less rain than Arles. Montpellier gets 20 mm (0.8 in) of rain, while Arles receives 31 mm (1.2 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Montpellier 23°C (73°F) 
    Arles 24°C (75°F)

Should I visit Montpellier or Arles in the Autumn?

Both Arles and Montpellier during the autumn are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Montpellier in the autumn for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area. Furthermore, most visitors come to Arles for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

In the autumn, Montpellier is around the same temperature as Arles. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Montpellier in October average around 15°C (60°F), and Arles averages at about 16°C (61°F).

In the autumn, Montpellier often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Arles. Montpellier gets 187 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arles receives 178 hours of full sun.

Arles gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Montpellier. Montpellier usually gets less rain in October than Arles. Montpellier gets 110 mm (4.3 in) of rain, while Arles receives 130 mm (5.1 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Montpellier 15°C (60°F) 
    Arles 16°C (61°F)

Should I visit Montpellier or Arles in the Winter?

The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Montpellier and Arles. Most visitors come to Montpellier for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months. Furthermore, the winter months attract visitors to Arles because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

In January, Montpellier is generally around the same temperature as Arles. Daily temperatures in Montpellier average around 7°C (44°F), and Arles fluctuates around 7°C (44°F).

Montpellier usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Arles during winter. Montpellier gets 147 hours of sunny skies, while Arles receives 146 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Montpellier usually receives around the same amount of rain as Arles. Montpellier gets 72 mm (2.8 in) of rain, while Arles receives 67 mm (2.6 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Montpellier 7°C (44°F) 
    Arles 7°C (44°F)

Should I visit Montpellier or Arles in the Spring?

The spring brings many poeple to Montpellier as well as Arles. The spring months attract visitors to Montpellier because of the beaches and the natural beauty. Additionally, the natural beauty are the main draw to Arles this time of year.

Montpellier is around the same temperature as Arles in the spring. The daily temperature in Montpellier averages around 13°C (55°F) in April, and Arles fluctuates around 13°C (56°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Arles. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Montpellier this time of the year. In the spring, Montpellier often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Arles. Montpellier gets 230 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Arles receives 218 hours of full sun.

Montpellier usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Arles. Montpellier gets 55 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Arles receives 57 mm (2.2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Montpellier 13°C (55°F) 
    Arles 13°C (56°F)

Typical Weather for Arles and Montpellier

Montpellier Arles
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 7°C (44°F) 72 mm (2.8 in) 7°C (44°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Feb 8°C (46°F) 72 mm (2.8 in) 8°C (46°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
Mar 10°C (50°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 10°C (50°F) 56 mm (2.2 in)
Apr 13°C (55°F) 55 mm (2.2 in) 13°C (56°F) 57 mm (2.2 in)
May 16°C (61°F) 52 mm (2 in) 17°C (63°F) 60 mm (2.3 in)
Jun 20°C (68°F) 33 mm (1.3 in) 21°C (69°F) 38 mm (1.5 in)
Jul 23°C (73°F) 20 mm (0.8 in) 24°C (75°F) 31 mm (1.2 in)
Aug 22°C (72°F) 42 mm (1.7 in) 23°C (74°F) 46 mm (1.8 in)
Sep 19°C (67°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 20°C (69°F) 65 mm (2.6 in)
Oct 15°C (60°F) 110 mm (4.3 in) 16°C (61°F) 130 mm (5.1 in)
Nov 10°C (51°F) 63 mm (2.5 in) 11°C (51°F) 68 mm (2.7 in)
Dec 7°C (45°F) 63 mm (2.5 in) 7°C (45°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)