A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Paphos vs. Crete for Attractions, Food, Resorts, and Beaches

Should you visit Paphos or Crete?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Paphos or Crete, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Paphos

Paphos is a coastal, overlooked, and ancient town. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. Other popular activities here include scuba diving and snorkeling, beaches, and shopping.

Crete

Crete is a world-renowned, scenic, and stunning island. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. It's also known for shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Paphos and Crete: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Scenic old town
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Impressive beauty


Is there more to do in Paphos or Crete?

Visitors will usually find more to do in Crete than Paphos, as it offers more sights, attractions, and activities. Crete is better known for its nightlife, scuba diving & snorkeling, and hiking, while Paphos is more popular for its museums, historical sights, and shopping. Crete is more touristy than Paphos and is known for its breathtaking beaches, wild nightlife, and impressive archeological ruins. Also, Crete is famous for the Palace of Knossos. Paphos is well known for its historical sights, rich culture, and beautiful churches.

How is Paphos different from Crete?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Crete and Paphos. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Paphos or Crete?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos is an amazing town to visit for its museums and landmarks. Also, Crete is still popular, but not quite as popular for its historical sights.

You'll find many recognizable landmarks that put Paphos on the map. The area is well known for its impressive archeological ruins, many of which are found at Paphos Archaeological Site. Other impressive sights include the Tombs of the Kings, the Chrysopolitissa Basilica & St. Paul's Pillar, Agia Paraskevi, and Paphos Fort.

Many visitors head to Crete specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. The island is filled with archeological sites including the famous Palace of Knossos. While most people come to Crete for the natural beauty, in the cities you'll find some great museums and landmarks.


Is the Food Better in Paphos or Crete? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Paphos
Crete

There are opportunities to sample the local cuisine at fantastic restaurants in both Paphos and Crete.

Known for it's food and restaurant scene, Paphos is always at the top of any foodie's travel list. Food is a huge part of the culture and family life in the area. The cuisine is influenced by the surrounding areas and you'll see similarities to Greek, Turkish, and Middle Eastern cuisines. Popular dishes include koupepia (vine leaves stuffed with a filling called gemista), souvlaki (a meat and salad filled pita), and makaronia tou fournou (a pasta dish made with halloumi and béchamel sauce).

Many restaurants in Crete have been singled out for their culinary prowess. Local cuisine is influenced by the island's fertile environment and excellent agriculture. You'll find olive oil in most dishes and seafood is a major staple. You'll also find a lot of stews and recipes that incorporate local ingredients.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Nightlife?

Paphos
Crete

Crete is a great destination for nightlife. Also, Paphos is still popular, but not quite as popular for nightlife and partying.

The people in Crete know how to have a good time. The island has excellent nightlife with clubs and bars found in Chania, Malia and Stalis to Elounda. The area is popular with British tourists and you'll find many bars open until 2 or 3 in the morning.

If you're looking for night time activities Paphos has a few options to choose from. Most people think of history, culture, beaches, and wine, but the city also has its share of clubs and bars. It's not the party-hard beach destination that you'll find at some Mediterranean tourist areas, but there are still plenty of bars and clubs with atmosphere and style. Head to Agiou Antoniou Street for the most action.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Resorts?

Paphos
Crete

With a similar set of options, fantastic resorts can be found in both Paphos and Crete.

Paphos offers an unforgettable resort vacation. The area is filled with all types of resorts. There are many all-inclusive resorts that cater to families, honeymooners, or luxury vacationers. If you want to experience more of the local culture, there are also smaller boutique hotels or local apartments available.

Crete is a world class resort vacation destination. The island has world class resorts that include pools and buffet meals. There are many beachfront resorts that range in style from romantic to family-friendly.


Is Paphos or Crete Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Paphos
Crete

Crete is a great destination for the nearby scuba diving and snorkeling. Also, Paphos is still popular, but not quite as popular for its diving and snorkeling.

Many visitors go to Crete to enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling. The island is surrounded by clear waters that make for great snorkeling and diving. There's a number of beautiful fish and other sea life that you can see. Be on the lookout for crabs, sea stars, sponges, and even octopi.

It's fun to get in the water and check out the local marine life in Paphos. There are many snorkeling and dive spots that aren't far away. You'll also find a number of scuba or snorkeling excursions that you can join. The water conditions for snorkeling and diving are best during the summer months.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Beaches?

Paphos
Crete

Both Paphos and Crete have fantastic beaches worth visiting.

The beaches in Paphos are among the best in the world. Many people head to the area specifically for the beaches. This region has the longest coastline of any region in Cyprus, but keep in mind that some of the best beaches are found outside of the main tourist areas. However, they most are usually accessible by city bus with many remote stretches found along the Akamas Peninsula. Within town the beaches are often rocky and pebbly.

Crete is considered to be a world-class beach destination. There are some of the best beaches in the world on Crete. The areas around Chania have some of the island's best beaches, with one of the most beautiful being Balos. On the northern side of the island, be on the lookout for strong winds, particularly in August, which can make for larger waves. The island is large, so you'll find everything from secluded and quiet beaches to more active and lively places.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for its Old Town?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos is a popular place for its historic old town charm. However, Crete does not have a historic old town.

Paphos offers a nice historic old town area. The old town is a pleasant area to walk around with a number of interesting buildings.

Crete does not have a historic old town.


Is Paphos or Crete Better for Hiking?

Paphos
Crete

Crete is a great destination for its hiking experiences. However, Paphos is not a hiking destination.

You'll find a nice variety of hiking trails around Crete. The island is filled with beautiful hikes that run along the shoreline or head inland through the island's beautiful landscapes. There are hikes for every ability level that offer spectacular views and an incredible experience.

Paphos is not a hiking destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Paphos or Crete?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos is well known for its shopping areas. Also, Crete is still popular, but not quite as popular for shopping.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity in Paphos. There are outdoor markets, major shopping streets, and international fashion brands. You can pick up local souvenirs or beach gear that you may have forgotten.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Crete. The island has many markets that sell local foods and handicrafts. There are also shops and boutiques where you can buy anything from souvenirs to homemade artwork.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Families?

Paphos
Crete

Crete is renowned for its family-friendly activities. Also, Paphos is still popular, but not quite as popular for its kid-friendly activities.

Crete is an amazing family-friendly island to visit. The island is large and filled with countless family-friendly activities. You can spend several days at the beach, explore Lake Kournas, visit a water park, or even take a pirate themed boat cruise. There's also the amusement park, ​​Labyrinth Park, aquariums and more.

Because of its large number of kid-friendly activities, Paphos is very family-friendly. There are plenty of outdoor activities that kids will enjoy. Head to the beach or take a walk along the coastline. Animal lovers will appreciate a visit to the zoo, bird park, or aquarium and young thrill seekers will enjoy a day at the Aqua-park of Aphrodite. And, of course, there's also the ruins that kids can have fun exploring.


Is Paphos or Crete Better for Couples?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos and Crete are both fantastic to visit as a couple.

Paphos has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. Honeymooners who enjoy history, nature, beaches, and culture will find it all in the area. There are stunning beaches where you can relax in the sun, world renowned archeological ruins where you can immerse yourself in a historical world, and beautiful views around every corner. There are also excellent restaurants and wine tasting opportunities that will make for a memorable trip.

Crete is a great town for couples, as it has plenty to offer. It's stunning beaches, beautiful landscapes, world renowned restaurants, and amazing resorts make this a top honeymoon spot for international travelers and romance seekers.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos and Crete are very good places to visit for backpackers and budget travelers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Paphos. The area is generally accessible with a few good hostels and budget accommodation options sprinkled about. There are great beaches and restaurants as well as plenty of beautiful places to enjoy a walk.

Many backpackers visit Crete. It's a large island with a great social scene and no shortage of hostels for backpackers to choose from.

Is Paphos or Crete Better for Students?

Paphos
Crete

Crete is a great destination for students. However, Paphos is not popular with students.

Crete is a great island to visit as a student. It's affordability and great coastal activities is a big draw for students in the area.

Paphos is not popular with students.


Is Paphos or Crete Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos is well known for its public transit. Also, Crete is still popular, but not quite as popular for times when you don't have a car.

Paphos offers a very effecient public transportation network. It's possible to get around by city bus to most places. Buses connect many touristy areas such as Kato Paphos, Tombs of the Kings, Chloraka, Kissonerga, Coral Bay and Paphos Center.

While Crete offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. There's a decent bus system that travels around the island and offers access to many areas.

Is Paphos or Crete a more walkable city?

Paphos
Crete

Paphos is a popular place for its ease of walking around. However, Crete is not particularly known for its walkability.

Paphos is a somewhat walkable town. The main tourist area is Kato Paphos which is small, compact and easy to walk around, but if you want to head to areas further away then you likely won't be able to travel on foot. It's important to understand where your hotel is located if you're planning to explore on foot.

Crete is generally not a very walkable town. The island is large and requires a vehicle to get around, but there are short strolls that let you enjoy the stunning landscapes.

For even more information, also check out Is Paphos Worth Visiting? and Is Crete Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Crete or Paphos?

How long in Paphos or Crete?

Both Paphos and Crete have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Crete than in Paphos. Usually, 3-5 days is a good amount of time for Paphos, and 5-7 days is enough time in Crete.

Families should spend more time in Crete than Paphos. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Crete, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Paphos than Crete. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Paphos that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Paphos than Crete if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Paphos.


  • How many days in Paphos or Crete? Ideal Length of Stay
    Paphos 3-5 
    Crete 5-7

One day in Paphos or Crete?

In Paphos, many people enjoy the food and scuba diving and snorkeling that this cultural destination offers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. This town offers a variety of activities to choose from. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it.

Many travelers enjoy the scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping when visiting the destination of Crete. Hikers are also drawn to this area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.


A weekend in Paphos or Crete?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Paphos. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Crete is a great place to explore. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Paphos or Crete?

Paphos is a fun place to experience. In Paphos, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this destination offers. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. This would be the perfect place to spend five days, as it has just the right amount of activities.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Crete. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. With all of its activities, you can easily fill five days here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

A week in Paphos or Crete?

You'll find museums and nightlife around the cultural destination of Paphos. You can also relax and pamper yourself at one of the resorts. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Many travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the scenic destination of Crete. This island offers a variety of activities to choose from. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. If you have one week, this is a great place to go. This would be the perfect place to spend one week, as it has just the right amount of activities.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in Cyprus, The Best Tours for Seniors to Cyprus, The Best Contiki Tours to Greece, and The Best G Adventures Tours to Greece.


Which place is cheaper, Crete or Paphos?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Paphos is €97, while the average daily cost in Crete is €274. 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 destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Paphos and Crete in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Paphos 48
    Crete 133
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Paphos 96
    Crete 266
Compare Hotels in Paphos and Crete

Looking for a hotel in Paphos or Crete? 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 Paphos


Hotels in Crete


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: Paphos Hotel Prices and Crete Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Paphos 12
    Crete 189

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Paphos

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Paphos:

  • Blue Lagoon trip with slide, music & transfer from Paphos: $38
  • Blue Lagoon/Akamas: Adults Sunset with Food, Open Bar & Transfer: $82
  • Cyprus & International Show Night with buffet ,open bar, transfer: $86
  • Departure Transfer from Polis City to Paphos Airport PFO by Sedan: $69
  • From Nicosia Sightseeing Tour with Hotel Transfer: $30
  • Paphos Airport (PFO) to Paphos city - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $61
  • Paphos to Paphos Int Airport (PFO) - Departure Private Transfer: $31
  • 180 Minutes BBQ Cruise with food & Transfer: $52
  • Choirokitia & Famagusta Guided Tour with Transfers: $43
  • Night Cruise w/Dance Show, Food, Open Bar & Transfer: $85
  • Ocean Vision BBQ Cruise with transfer, swim stop & food: $53
  • Ocean Vision Sunset Cruise with BBQ, transfer, swim stop: $53

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Crete

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Crete:

  • Acqua Plus Water Park Admission with Optional Transfer: $31
  • Airports/ports Transfers from /to Rethymno (one way): $153
  • Arrival Transfer Chania Airport to Chania, Rethimno or Heraklion: $25
  • Crete Private Taxi and Transfer from Chania to Plakias: $161
  • Crete Private Taxi and Transfer from Heraklion Airport to Malia: $81
  • Crete Private Taxi and Transfer from Heraklion to Elounda: $124
  • Crete Private Taxi and Transfer from Kalyves to Heraklion Airport: $216
  • Crete Private Transfer to and from Heraklion Airport Port Town : $36
  • Crete Private Transfer to from Chania Port Airport Town: $19
  • Acqua Plus Water Park Entrance Ticket with Transfer: $32
  • Acqua Plus Water Park Entrance with Transfer & Lunch: $43
  • Balos & Gramvousa Boat Cruise including Bus Transfer: $62

Is it cheaper to fly into Paphos or Crete?

Prices for flights to both Crete and Paphos 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
    Paphos 38
    Crete 41

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Paphos

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

  • From Sunset Drink at Aphrodite's Rock & Folk Dinner: $52
  • Sunset Drink at Aphrodite's Rock & Folk Dinner: $53
  • Blue Lagoon Sunset Сruise with BBQ Dinner + Hotel Pick Up From Paphos: $55
  • Wave Dancer Fireworks, Buffet Dinner & Show Cruise: $66

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Crete

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

  • Troy Dinner-Show: $33
  • Spectacular Dinner-Show: $44
  • Cretan Night with Dinner & Live Show: $49
  • Olive Oil Factory Tour, Dinner & Traditional Dancing: $60
  • Olive Oil Festival in Cretan Farm with Traditional Dinner: $60
  • Chania: Cretan Folklore Dance Show with Dinner and Pickup: $75
  • The Delicious Chania PRIVATE Street Food Tour : $88
  • Cretan Cooking Class at Archanes Village with transfer & Lunch: $88
  • Half Day Sunset Tour in Rethymno with Dinner and Wine: $92
  • Sightseeing Day Trip with Cooking Lesson and Lunch: $95
  • Full-Day Jeep Safari Tour with Cooking Lesson: $97
  • Cook with Locals | Cretan cooking Class at Archanes (transfer - lunch included): $97

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Paphos 12
    Crete 20

Tours and Activities in Paphos

Here are a few actual costs in Paphos for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Pafos Zoo Ticket: $19
  • Cruise to Blue Lagoon from Latchi Port: $20
  • Blue Lagoon Cruise with Sightseeing from Latchi Harbour: $22
  • Nafsika II Half Day Cruise Swimming to blue lagoon water slide : $24
  • From Limassol Experience: $25
  • Latchi to Blue Lagoon Glass Bottom+slide Boat Tour: $25
  • Akamas, Baths of Aphrodite and Blue Lagoon Day Tour: $26
  • From Guided tour of Limassol with Rock of Aphrodite: $29
  • Paphos/Akamas: Blue Lagoon Bus & Boat Tour with Water Slide: $30
  • From Authentic Cyprus Guided Tour with Breakfast: $32
  • Authentic Cyprus Historic Day Tour from Paphos: $33
  • Wave Dancer Boat Sunset Cruise with BBQ and Swimming: $34

Tours and Activities in Crete

Here are a few actual costs in Crete for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Chania: Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and City Highlights Tour: $6.96
  • CRETAquarium Entrance Ticket in Crete: $8.76
  • The Terra Creta Olive Oil Experience Tour: $11
  • Heraklion: Hop-on Hop-off Open Top Bus Sightseeing Tour: $13
  • Chania: Sunset Boat Cruise with Guide: $15
  • Heraklion Archaeological Museum Ticket & Audio Guide: $16
  • Heraklion: Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus Tour: $16
  • Chersonissos: Mini-Train City Highlights Tour: $17
  • Gramvousa Island & Balos Bay Full-Day Tour from Rethymno English & German guide: $19
  • Full-Day Tour Gramvousa Balos Bay from Rethymno with French Guide: $19
  • Palace of Knossos Entry Ticket & Optional Audio Guide: $19
  • Chania: Semi-Submarine Boat Underwater Experience: $19

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Paphos 9.98
    Crete 30

Sample the Local Flavors in Paphos

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Paphos:

  • Wine Tasting and Winery Tour in Lemona Village, Paphos: $26
  • Troodos Mountains Jeep Tour with Wine Tasting: $65
  • Paphos Troodos Mountains Jeep Tour with Wine Tasting: $71
  • Regional Wineries Tour with Wine Tastings: $102
  • WINE TOUR from Paphos: $104

Sample the Local Flavors in Crete

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Crete:

  • Cheese and Wine Tasting Tour From Chania: $38
  • Wine Tasting: Meet the Cretan Vineyard at West Chania: $55
  • Chania: Off-Road Tour at Sunset with Wine Tasting: $95
  • Jeep Safari Wine Tour and South sea swimming: $97
  • Culinary Tour at an Olive Farm and Micro-Winery Raki Distillery: $98
  • Luxury Private Wine Tasting Experience in Haralabakis Winery: $119
  • Heraklion: Half Day Small Group Wine Tour with wine Tastings: $126
  • Wine Tasting on Luxury Yacht Sunset Evening in Marina: $174
  • Full Day - Ecobike - Discover old villages & Wine tasting: $175
  • The Gourmet Wine Tour of Heraklion area: $181
  • Private Wine Tour Olive Oil Tasting and Pottery from Heraklion: $188
  • Full Day Private Crete Wine Tour Experience from Heraklion : $190


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

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Paphos Expensive? and Is Crete Expensive?.


Which has a larger population, Paphos or Crete?

Crete has a larger population, and is about 20 times larger than the population of Paphos. When comparing the sizes of Paphos and Crete, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.