A Travel Price Comparison for California Napa Valley vs. Santa Monica for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Napa Valley or Santa Monica?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Napa Valley and Santa Monica can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

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.

Santa Monica

When it comes to visiting Los Angeles, Santa Monica is high on the must-see-and-do list. Chances are you'll recognize the iconic ferris wheel from Pacific Park in films and TV shows, and nothing beats the relaxed yet bustling vibe of this laid-back city.

Santa Monica is a popular and diverse beach town, cultural hub, fitness venue, shopping district, and neighborhood full of unique and trendy restaurants, all rolled into one. Visited by more than 6 million people a year, it's no wonder you'll always find a crowd there.

So whether you're up for a high-end shopping spree, bicycling down the waterfront, an eclectic food crawl or simply a stroll down the promenade, Santa Monica is sure to have something in store for you.

The weather in Santa Monica is moderate, with average summer highs in the low to mid 70s and winter climate that rests comfortably around the low 50s. Though flip flops and sandals are considered year-round footwear in Los Angeles, bring comfortable walking shoes for browsing galleries, malls, and boutiques. Santa Monica is the perfect place to break out your California-casual wardrobe.

Which city is cheaper, Santa Monica 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 Santa Monica is $168. 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 Napa Valley and Santa Monica in more detail.



Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $202 for a double occupancy room in Napa Valley If you want to be in a premiere location or have high end amenities, you can expect to pay a bit more.

If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $98. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Santa Monica the cost is $196 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Napa Valley $101
    Santa Monica $98
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Napa Valley $202
    Santa Monica $196

Food

Food in Napa Valley costs travelers about $50 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.

On average, meal and food prices in Santa Monica cost around $42 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 $17.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Napa Valley $50
    Santa Monica $42

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santa Monica

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

  • Taste of Santa Monica Walking Food Tour: $84

Local Transportation

Napa Valley's transportation costs can vary by the type of transport chosen by visitors. Naturally, taxis and private drivers cost much more than public transportation options. On average, visitors spend $146 per person, per day on transportation in Napa Valley.

The average price of local transportation around Santa Monica is $40 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.
    Napa Valley $146
    Santa Monica $40

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santa Monica

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Santa Monica:

  • Malibu or Pacific Palisades Private Transfer To Los Angeles.: $115
  • Santa Monica to Long Beach Airport (LGB) - Deparure Private Transfer: $113
  • Private Transfer From Santa Monica Area To Los Angeles Airport (LAX).: $79
  • Santa Monica to Los Angeles Airport (LAX) - Departure Private Transfer: $61

Is it cheaper to fly into Napa Valley or Santa Monica?

Prices for flights to both Santa Monica 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.





Entertainment

Sightseeing, admission tickets, things to do, and other entertainment expenses in Napa Valley can vary widely by price. On average, visitors spend around $22 per person, per day on entertainment and sightseeing here.

Santa Monica's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $30 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.
    Napa Valley $22
    Santa Monica $30

Tours and Activities in Santa Monica

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

  • 5-Hour Limo Tour with Open Bar: $266
  • Bvc 02 -half Day Tour Santa Monica.: $45
  • Deluxe 6-Hour Los Angeles Private Limo Tour: $773
  • Experience a beach séance with a medium in Santa Monica: $48
  • Half Day Tour of Santa Monica and Venice Beach: $53
  • Half-Day Private Gas-Powered Scooter Tour in Los Angeles: $70
  • Half-Day Private Gas-Powered Skateboard Tour in Los Angeles: $85
  • Half-Day Private Tour in California by Gas-Powered Bicycle: $90
  • Las Vegas 2 Day Tour from Los Angeles Santa Monica Venice and Marina Del Rey: $147
  • Malibu Celebrity Homes Tour: $55
  • Malibu Wineries Private Tour: $532
  • Perfect 5 ½ Hour LA & Hollywood Tour from Santa Monica: $89

Alcohol

Alcoholic beverages can often be a significant portion of a traveler's budget, and the costs can vary greatly from person to person. In Napa Valley, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $53.

The average person spends about $17 on alcoholic beverages in Santa Monica per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Napa Valley $53
    Santa Monica $17

Sample the Local Flavors in Santa Monica

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

  • Vintage VW Hippie Tour to Malibu with wine tasting: $148


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Napa Valley and Santa Monica, we can see that Napa Valley is more expensive. And not only is Santa Monica much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Santa Monica would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Santa Monica 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 Santa Monica.

Budget Your Trip

Budget Your Trip has average travel costs for thousands of cities around the world, all provided by other travelers. You can also register to organize your spending by category and location with graphs, maps, charts, and tables.

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Napa Valley vs. Santa Monica Travel Comparison

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