A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Napa Valley vs. Columbia River Gorge for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge?

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

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Napa Valley and Columbia River Gorge 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.

Where Should I go: Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge?

Napa Valley

Napa Valley, in the Bay Area of California, is a popular destination for its wineries and beautiful scenery. The area, referred to as Wine Country, is just north of San Francisco and makes for a great day or weekend trip. Many honeymooners visit the area for its romantic setting and popular bed and breakfasts. The best time to visit is during the months of September and October when the grapes are wipe. This time is referred to as the harvest "crush." The summer months are also a popular time but the crowds are often overwhelming.

Columbia River Gorge

Columbia River Gorge is a popular destination in the Cascade Mountains in the Pacific Northwest. The region's close proximity to Portland, which is just 30 minutes away, makes it a popular weekend destination.

The gorge is formed by the Columbia River, with an 80 mile stretch designated as a National Scenic Area. The area has many beautiful cliffs with a number of tall waterfalls and its protected status means that most new development must occur within one of the already established towns.

Which city is cheaper, Columbia River Gorge or Napa Valley?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Napa Valley is $230, while the average daily cost in Columbia River Gorge is $143. 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 Napa Valley and Columbia River Gorge in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Napa Valley $101
    Columbia River Gorge $71
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Napa Valley $202
    Columbia River Gorge $142
Compare Hotels in Napa Valley and Columbia River Gorge

Looking for a hotel in Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge? 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 Napa Valley


Hotels in Columbia River Gorge


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: Napa Valley Hotel Prices and Columbia River Gorge Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Napa Valley $146
    Columbia River Gorge $62

Is it cheaper to fly into Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge?

Prices for flights to both Columbia River Gorge and Napa Valley 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
    Napa Valley $50
    Columbia River Gorge $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Napa Valley

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

  • Napa Valley Wine Train: Vista Dome Lunch or Dinner: $260

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Napa Valley $22
    Columbia River Gorge $16

Tours and Activities in Napa Valley

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Napa Valley.

  • From San Francisco: Napa Valley Beer Breweries Private Tour: $610

Tours and Activities in Columbia River Gorge

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Columbia River Gorge are as follows:

  • Cascade Locks: 1-Hour Columbia River Sightseeing Cruise: $50
  • Cascade Locks: Columbia Gorge Sunday Brunch Cruise: $94
  • Portland: Columbia Gorge Flight Tour: $99
  • Portland: Multnomah Falls Scenic Air Tour: $199

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Napa Valley $53
    Columbia River Gorge $9.49


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


When is the best time to visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge in the Summer?

Both Columbia River Gorge and Napa Valley during the summer are popular places to visit.

In the summer, Napa Valley is a little warmer than Columbia River Gorge. Typically, the summer temperatures in Napa Valley in July are around 73°F (23°C), and Columbia River Gorge is about 68°F (20°C).

In Columbia River Gorge, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Napa Valley. In the summer, Napa Valley often gets more sunshine than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 439 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Columbia River Gorge receives 338 hours of full sun.

Napa Valley usually gets less rain in July than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 0.1 inches (2 mm) of rain, while Columbia River Gorge receives 0.7 inches (18 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Napa Valley 73°F (23°C) 
    Columbia River Gorge 68°F (20°C)

Should I visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Napa Valley and Columbia River Gorge.

In October, Napa Valley is generally a little warmer than Columbia River Gorge. Temperatures in Napa Valley average around 62°F (17°C), and Columbia River Gorge stays around 55°F (13°C).

In Napa Valley, it's very sunny this time of the year. Napa Valley usually receives more sunshine than Columbia River Gorge during autumn. Napa Valley gets 300 hours of sunny skies, while Columbia River Gorge receives 155 hours of full sun in the autumn.

In October, Napa Valley usually receives less rain than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 1.3 inches (33 mm) of rain, while Columbia River Gorge receives 2.6 inches (67 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Napa Valley 62°F (17°C) 
    Columbia River Gorge 55°F (13°C)

Should I visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Napa Valley as well as Columbia River Gorge.

Be prepared for some very cold days in Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley is much warmer than Columbia River Gorge in the winter. The temperature in Napa Valley is usually 46°F (8°C) in January, and Columbia River Gorge stays around 40°F (4°C).

In the winter, Napa Valley often gets more sunshine than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 149 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Columbia River Gorge receives 86 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley usually gets less rain in January than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 3.8 inches (96 mm) of rain, while Columbia River Gorge receives 5.2 inches (132 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Napa Valley 46°F (8°C) 
    Columbia River Gorge 40°F (4°C)

Should I visit Napa Valley or Columbia River Gorge in the Spring?

Both Columbia River Gorge and Napa Valley are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities.

In the spring, Napa Valley is a little warmer than Columbia River Gorge. Typically, the spring temperatures in Napa Valley in April are around 56°F (13°C), and Columbia River Gorge is about 51°F (11°C).

It's quite sunny in Columbia River Gorge. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Napa Valley. Napa Valley usually receives more sunshine than Columbia River Gorge during spring. Napa Valley gets 328 hours of sunny skies, while Columbia River Gorge receives 231 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Napa Valley usually receives less rain than Columbia River Gorge. Napa Valley gets 1.2 inches (31 mm) of rain, while Columbia River Gorge receives 2.4 inches (61 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Napa Valley 56°F (13°C) 
    Columbia River Gorge 51°F (11°C)

Typical Weather for Columbia River Gorge and Napa Valley

Napa Valley Columbia River Gorge
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 46°F (8°C) 3.8 inches (96 mm) 40°F (4°C) 5.2 inches (132 mm)
Feb 51°F (11°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm) 44°F (7°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Mar 54°F (12°C) 2.7 inches (69 mm) 47°F (9°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm)
Apr 56°F (13°C) 1.2 inches (31 mm) 51°F (11°C) 2.4 inches (61 mm)
May 64°F (18°C) 0.2 inches (5 mm) 57°F (14°C) 2 inches (51 mm)
Jun 69°F (21°C) 0.1 inches (3 mm) 64°F (18°C) 1.5 inches (39 mm)
Jul 73°F (23°C) 0.1 inches (2 mm) 68°F (20°C) 0.7 inches (18 mm)
Aug 72°F (22°C) 0.1 inches (1 mm) 69°F (20°C) 1 inches (25 mm)
Sep 70°F (21°C) 0.3 inches (7 mm) 63°F (17°C) 1.7 inches (44 mm)
Oct 62°F (17°C) 1.3 inches (33 mm) 55°F (13°C) 2.6 inches (67 mm)
Nov 54°F (12°C) 2.8 inches (71 mm) 46°F (8°C) 5.4 inches (136 mm)
Dec 46°F (8°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm) 40°F (5°C) 6.1 inches (156 mm)


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Napa Valley vs. Columbia River Gorge Travel Comparison

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