A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Napier vs. Kaikoura for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Napier or Kaikoura?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Napier and Kaikoura can help you decide which place is right for you.

Napier

Napier is city on the eastern coast of the North Island of New Zealand. It is part of the Hawke's Bay Region, a famous area for wine vineyards. Napier has a population of 61,000 people and is known for its Art Deco architecture and of course, wine.

Kaikoura

Kaikoura is a town on the east coast of the South Island, situated between Christchurch and Belnheim. It has a permanent resident population of 1,971. The Seaward Kaikoura Mountains that surround this town collide with the Pacific Ocean, and the continental shelf edge is just offshore. The ocean in Kaikoura is very rich in marine life, especially seals and whales.

Which city is cheaper, Kaikoura or Napier?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Napier is $160, while the average daily cost in Kaikoura is $129. 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 Napier and Kaikoura in more detail.



Accommodation

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $194 in Napier For nicer amenities and a premiere location, 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 $46. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Kaikoura the cost is $92 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Napier $97
    Kaikoura $46
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Napier $194
    Kaikoura $92

Food

Napier food costs typically run travelers around $35 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.

The average traveler spends about $36 per day in Kaikoura for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Napier $35
    Kaikoura $36
Typical Food prices in Napier

For Napier, here are some examples of average food and meal prices for travelers:


  • Casural Lunch
    $9.96

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Napier

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

  • Queenstown Skyline Gondola and Luge Ride with Optional Buffet Lunch or Dinner: $47
  • Taste Auckland Group Food Tour: $98
  • Auckland Harbour Dinner Cruise: $102
  • Sunset / Night Kayak to Rangitoto Island with BBQ Dinner: $138
  • Queenstown Wine and Food Tour: $141

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Kaikoura

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

  • Queenstown Skyline Gondola and Luge Ride with Optional Buffet Lunch or Dinner: $47
  • Taste Auckland Group Food Tour: $98
  • Auckland Harbour Dinner Cruise: $102
  • Sunset / Night Kayak to Rangitoto Island with BBQ Dinner: $138
  • Queenstown Wine and Food Tour: $141

Local Transportation

To get around in Napier, the average visitor spends $29 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.

The average price of local transportation around Kaikoura is $17 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.
    Napier $29
    Kaikoura $17

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Napier

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

  • Shared and Private Nelson Airport (NSN) Transfers for Nelson CBD: $7.09
  • SkyBus Auckland Airport (AKL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared and Private Wellington Airport (WLG) Transfers for Wellington CBD: $11
  • Shared Queenstown Airport (ZQN) Transfers for Queenstown CBD: $11
  • Shared and Private Christchurch Airport (CHC) Transfers for Christchurch CBD: $13
  • Shared and Private Dunedin Airport (DUD) Transfers for Dunedin CBD: $14
  • Shared and Private Rotorua Airport (ROT) Transfers for Rotorua CBD: $16
  • Shared and Private Auckland Airport (AKL) Transfers to/from Auckland CBD: $18
  • Arrival Transfer: Hawkes Bay Airport to Central Napier City Centre: $21
  • Departure Transfer: Napier and Hastings City Centre to Hawkes Bay Airport: $21
  • SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton's Aquarium Entry Ticket and Auckland Airport (AKL) Express Transfer: $40
  • Private Luxury Transfers to Coronet Peak: $375

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Kaikoura

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Kaikoura:

  • SkyBus Auckland Airport (AKL) Express Transfer Ticket: $11
  • Shared and Private Wellington Airport (WLG) Transfers for Wellington CBD: $11
  • Shared and Private Rotorua Airport (ROT) Transfers for Rotorua CBD: $16
  • Shared and Private Nelson Airport (NSN) Transfers for Nelson CBD: $7.09
  • Shared and Private Dunedin Airport (DUD) Transfers for Dunedin CBD: $14
  • Shared and Private Christchurch Airport (CHC) Transfers for Christchurch CBD: $13
  • Shared and Private Auckland Airport (AKL) Transfers to/from Auckland CBD: $18
  • Shared Queenstown Airport (ZQN) Transfers for Queenstown CBD: $11
  • Private Transfers to Cardrona Ski Field or Treble Cone Ski Field: $629
  • Private Return Transfers from Queenstown to The Remarkables: $431
  • Private Return Transfers from Queenstown to Coronet Peak: $389
  • Private Luxury Transfers to The Remarkables: $445

Is it cheaper to fly into Napier or Kaikoura?

Prices for flights to both Kaikoura and Napier 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

In Napier, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $26 per person, per day.

Kaikoura's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $146 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.
    Napier $26
    Kaikoura $146

Tours and Activities in Napier

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

  • Time Tripper Queenstown Virtual Journey Through Time Experience: $7.09
  • Te Papa Museum Ticket in Wellington: $11
  • Devonport Ferry Tickets in Auckland: $11
  • Putt and Glow Indoor Mini Golf Experience in Queenstown: $12
  • Napier Earthquake Self-Guided Audio Tour: $12
  • Napier Art Deco Self-Guided Audio Tour: $12
  • Napier Prison Self-Guided Audio Tour: $13
  • Hamilton Gardens Guided Walking Tour: $14
  • Waikite Valley Thermal Pools Entry Ticket: $14
  • Auckland Zoo Ticket: $16
  • 3D Trick Art Gallery Entry Ticket: $16
  • SheepWorld Admission Ticket: $16

Tours and Activities in Kaikoura

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

  • 4WD-U Drive Experience: $232
  • Hobbiton Movie Set Day Tour from Auckland: $140
  • Hobbiton and Waitomo Caves Tour from Auckland: $211
  • Kaituna Whitewater Rafting Experience : $84
  • Kaituna Whitewater Sledging Experience: $91
  • Milford Sound Vista Day Tour from Queenstown or Te Anau: $127
  • Mt Tarawera Volcanic Crater Hiking Experience: $131
  • Putt and Glow Indoor Mini Golf Experience in Queenstown: $12
  • Queenstown Scenic Cruise - Spirit of Queenstown: $28
  • Queenstown Tiki Tour: $70
  • Rotorua Day Tour from Auckland: $188
  • Ultimate Queenstown Highlights Tour: $77

Alcohol

Typically, people visiting Napier spend on average $16 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Napier $16
    Kaikoura -
Typical Alcohol prices in Napier

Some typical examples of the costs for nightlife and alcohol in Napier are as follows:


  • Wine
    $14

Sample the Local Flavors in Napier

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Napier:

  • Sip Marlborough Wine Tour: $69
  • Wine Tours from Queenstown: $71
  • Hawke's Bay Wine Tour Including Pick Up From Napier or Hastings: $78
  • Wine Tour - 3 wineries in an afternoon: $81
  • Half Day Small-Group Hawkes Bay Wine Tour: $84
  • Gibbston Valley Ride and Wine Tours: $88
  • Bubbly Grape Marlborough Wine Tours: $92
  • Full Day Small-Group Hawke's Bay Wine Tour: $95
  • Napier Afternoon Wine Tour + Optional Beer Tasting: $100
  • Afternoon Brewery Tour with Lunch in Queenstown: $117
  • Wine Tasting Sampler Tour from Queenstown: $119
  • Queenstown’s Original Wine Tour: $119

Sample the Local Flavors in Kaikoura

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

  • Sip Marlborough Wine Tour: $69
  • Wine Tours from Queenstown: $71
  • Gibbston Valley Ride and Wine Tours: $88
  • Bubbly Grape Marlborough Wine Tours: $92
  • Afternoon Brewery Tour with Lunch in Queenstown: $117
  • Wine Tasting Sampler Tour from Queenstown: $119
  • Queenstown’s Original Wine Tour: $119
  • Taste Marlborough Wine Tour: $138
  • Queenstown E-Bikes Wine Tour: $147
  • Spa and Wine Tasting Experience in Queenstown: $293
  • Queenstown Private Helicopter and Wine Tour: $672


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

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Napier vs. Kaikoura Travel Comparison

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