A Travel Price Comparison for Japan Nara vs. Sendai for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Nara or Sendai?

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

Should I visit Nara or Sendai? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Nara

As Japan's first capital, Nara offers a world of tradition and culture second only to the city of Kyoto. It is home to eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites, which are largely concentrated in the area of Nara Park. Here, it is also common to see many deer wandering freely amongst the temples and shrines.

Sendai

Sendai, Japan is located in the Toohoku region on the main Honshu island. It is often referred to as "Forest City" due to the large amount of green space throughout the city and the tree filled parks and public spaces. Sendai is a very pleasant city to visit; they are in close proximity to both mountains and the sea and have many large universities throughout the city, making it a popular college town.

Which city is cheaper, Sendai or Nara?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Nara is $78, while the average daily cost in Sendai is $95. 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 Nara and Sendai in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Nara $47
    Sendai $53
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Nara $94
    Sendai $106

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Nara $5.55
    Sendai $16

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Sendai

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

  • Sendai International Airport: 1-Way Shared Shuttle Transfer: $77
  • Private Transfer to/from Sendai Airport: $111

Is it cheaper to fly into Nara or Sendai?

Prices for flights to both Sendai and Nara 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
    Nara $25
    Sendai $29

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Nara

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

  • Cooking Japanese rice in traditional oven at Shikano-fune, Kamado: $38

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Sendai

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

  • Private Tour - Japanese Meal in a Historic Port Town! Enjoy the Food Tour!: $138

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Nara $7.14
    Sendai $16

Tours and Activities in Nara

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

  • 1-Day Nara and Uji Private Custom Tour from Osaka by Chartered Vehicle: $831
  • All must-sees in 3 hours - Nara Park Classic Tour!: $30
  • Deer City Nara Walking & Izakaya Hopping Tour: $167
  • Discover Traditional Nara Walking Tour (Full day): $118
  • Discover Traditional Nara Walking Tour (Half day): $91
  • Full-Day Private Guided Tour to Nara Temples: $246
  • Gigantic Todai-ji Temple Early Bird Tour: $96
  • Hand Painted Yuzen Dyeing Experience: $383
  • Heijo Palace Walking Tour (Half Day): $43
  • Heijo Palace and Yamato Koriyama Walking Tour (Full Day): $107
  • Japanese Calligraphy Experience in Nara: $35
  • Nara - Craft Beer and Sake Walking Tour: $98

Tours and Activities in Sendai

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

  • Private Tour - Everything good in Sendai! Find goods in craftsmanship town: $79
  • Private Tour - Glossy Sendai Night, Taste the sake and Food of Tohoku!: $89
  • Explore the Ice Monster Forest in Zao! Snow Vehicle Tour to See the Snow Rime: $96
  • A Special Tour to Visit the Ice-clad Crater-Lake and the Frost-covered Shrine: $96
  • Sendai / Matsushima Half-Day Private Tour with Nationally-Licensed Guide: $98
  • Private Tour - Fill your Stomach with Must-Eats of Sendai, a Gourmet City!: $98
  • Private Tour - Scenary beyond imagination, a temple into the Sky in Sendai: $108
  • Private Tour - Leap Time Back to Know Sendai by Visiting All Must Sees: $108
  • Private Tour - Feel the Sea Breeze in an adventurous island: Urato: $113
  • Private Tour - A Tour to Get Luck Through Three Bridges and an Island!: $113
  • Private Tour - Energy charge with a trip around power spots in Sendai!: $118
  • Private Tour - Great Views and Foods, Explore Matsushima to your Fullest!: $118

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Nara $10
    Sendai $9.65


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

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.

Share This Page
Pin This Page
Nara vs. Sendai Travel Comparison

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.