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

Should you visit Nikko or Nara?

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

Nikko

Nikko is a small Japanese city located in the mountains north of Tokyo. It is well-known for the site of Toshogu, a famed Shinto shrine established in 1617, in memory of Tokugawa Ieyasu who was the founding ruler of the Edo Period. The town is situated just outside of Nikko National Park which offers scenic mountain landscapes, lakes, waterfalls, hot springs, wild monkeys, and hiking trails.

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.

Which city is cheaper, Nara or Nikko?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Nikko is $88, while the average daily cost in Nara is $93. 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 Nikko and Nara in more detail.



Accommodation

Travelers usually pay around $100 for a double occupancy room in Nikko 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 $56. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Nara the cost is $112 on average.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Nikko $50
    Nara $56
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Nikko $100
    Nara $112

Food

Nikko food costs typically run travelers around $33 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.

Nara food costs typically run travelers around $30 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.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Nikko $33
    Nara $30

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Nikko

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

  • Nikko Guided Tour by Chartered Vehicle with Exclusive Lunch and Dinner: $2,910

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

Local Transportation

The average price of local transportation around Nara is $6.62 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.
    Nikko -
    Nara $6.62

Is it cheaper to fly into Nikko or Nara?

Prices for flights to both Nara and Nikko 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 Nikko, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $23 per person, per day.

Nara's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $8.51 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.
    Nikko $23
    Nara $8.51

Tours and Activities in Nikko

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

  • Nikko Half-Day Private Tour with Nationally-Licensed Guide: $103
  • Visit the Unexplored Regions of Lake Chuzenji--Scenic Trekking and Rafting Tour: $115
  • Nikko Full-Day Private Tour with Nationally-Licensed Guide: $129
  • Nikko Custom Half Day Tour: $149
  • Bask in the beauty of winter Nikko in this unforgettable ice climbing experience: $166
  • The Nikko National Park Bike Experience: $172
  • Nikko Custom Full Day Tour: $260
  • Nikko Private Tour by public transportation: $289
  • Exciting Nikko - One Day Tour from Tokyo: $347
  • Nikko 1 day private walking tour: $430
  • Full Day Nikko Private Custom Tour from Tokyo by Chartered Vehicle: $1,122
  • Trekking and Private Onsen Temple Tour in Nikko: $1,474

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

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 Nikko, the average amount that a visitor spends on alcoholic beverages per day is $16.

The average person spends about $12 on alcoholic beverages in Nara per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Nikko $16
    Nara $12


When comparing the travel costs between Nikko and Nara, we can see that Nara is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Asia, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

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
Nikko vs. Nara 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.