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

Should you visit Paphos or Santorini?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Paphos or Santorini, 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 ancient, beautiful, and cultural town. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. Visitors also love the food, scuba diving and snorkeling, and beaches.

Santorini

Santorini is a stunning, historic, and romantic island. The famous beauty of this place is one of the main draws. With a quaint atmosphere, it also offers a unique feeling. It's also known for shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Paphos and Santorini: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Cons
  • Less museums and historical sights
  • Less popular for food
  • Less attractive beach


How is Paphos different from Santorini?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Museums and Historical Sights?

Paphos
Santorini

Head to Paphos if you're looking for good museums or notable landmarks, as it has more to offer than Santorini.

Visitors will find world class museums and historical sights in Paphos that are not to be missed. 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.

Santorini offers a variety of museums and landmarks to choose from. One of the most impressive historical sights is Akrotiri Archaeological Site. The island has many archeological sites as well as the Archeological Museum in Fira.


Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Food?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos has a longer list of notable local restaurants than Santorini.

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).

Santorini has a delicious restaurant scene that relies on local flavors. Popular foods on this island include fava, Greek salad, and kofta.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Nightlife?

Paphos
Santorini

It's hard to distinguish whether Paphos or Santorini has a better nightlife scene.

Paphos has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. 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.

If you're looking for night time activities Santorini has a few options to choose from. It is one of the calmer, more romantic islands in Greece. For the best nightlife, you'll want to stay near Fira.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Resorts?

Paphos
Santorini

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

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.

Santorini is a world class resort vacation destination. The resorts range from all-inclusive options to resorts with a more local feel. The island is one of the most romantic of the Greek Islands, and the resorts are no exception.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Paphos
Santorini

You'll find snorkeling or scuba diving in both Paphos and Santorini.

Paphos has a few areas where visitors often go scuba diving or snorkeling. 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.

It's fun to get in the water and check out the local marine life in Santorini. Some of the best snorkeling places are found at Red Beach, White Beach, and the less accessible Kambia. One of the island's best diving spots is Caldera Beach.


Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Beaches?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos is considered to be a more popular beach destination than Santorini.

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.

Plenty of visitors enjoy relaxing on the beach in Santorini. The island has many beaches, most of which are made of black pebbly sand that are a result of the island's volcanic history. Popular beaches include Perissa Beach, Kamari Beach, and Perivolos Beach.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Shopping?

Paphos
Santorini

Shopping is a popular activity in both Santorini and Paphos.

Paphos is an extremely popular place for shoppers. 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.

Santorini is well-known for its shopping. Towns around the island are filled with clothing and jewelry boutiques as well as many unique Greek shopping experiences.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Families?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos and Santorini are both fun destinations for the whole family.

Paphos is a very family-friendly place to visit. 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.

Santorini offers lots of family activities. It is a calmer destination than many of the Greek Islands. While it's a great place to relax with kids, the beaches aren't as good as they are on some of the other islands. Most families hang out in Kamari and Perissa Beach.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Couples?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos and Santorini are both fun 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.

Santorini is a great town for couples, as it has plenty to offer. It is a dream honeymoon destination that is famous for its picturesque setting and luxury resorts. For many couples, this is a top pick for a romantic trip to the Greek Isles.


Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos and Santorini are comparable 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.

It's common for backpackers to visit Santorini. The island has its share of 5 star resorts, but if you head a few streets in you'll find some surprisingly affordable accommodation. Backpackers are welcomed on the island and beaches are free, so it's possible to get by on a relatively low budget.

Is Paphos or Santorini Better for Public Transit?

Paphos
Santorini

You'll find somewhat comparable public transit options in both Paphos and Santorini.

Visitors to Paphos can move around easily with public transportation. 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 Santorini offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. There is a bus system, KTEL Santorini Buses, that runs 23 buses during the summer months but only a small fraction of that operate during the winter months.

Is Paphos or Santorini a more walkable city?

Paphos
Santorini

Paphos and Santorini both are comparable when exploring on foot.

Paphos is somewhat walkable. 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.

Santorini is a somewhat walkable place. Many towns on the island are walkable, including Fira, but the actual island is too large to explore on foot.

Should I spend more time in Santorini or Paphos?

How long in Paphos or Santorini?

Both Paphos and Santorini have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Santorini than Paphos.

The ideal length of time for a trip to Paphos is 3-5 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Santorini is 3-7 days.


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

One day in Paphos or Santorini?

You'll find nightlife and food around the town of Paphos. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Many travelers enjoy the scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping when visiting the quaint destination of Santorini. You can also relax and pamper yourself at one of the resorts. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.


A weekend in Paphos or Santorini?

You'll find food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the ancient destination of Paphos. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This town offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Santorini 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 Santorini?

You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping around the overlooked town of Paphos. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this town makes for a great vacation. It's also a relaxing resort destination. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this town has to offer.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Santorini. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. 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 Santorini?

Paphos is a popular choice for travelers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Many travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the romantic destination of Santorini. This island offers a variety of activities to choose from. Travelers enjoy the resorts in the area as well. 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.

Which city is cheaper, Santorini or Paphos?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Paphos is €77, while the average daily cost in Santorini is €131. 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 Paphos and Santorini in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Paphos 37
    Santorini 66
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Paphos 74
    Santorini 132
Compare Hotels in Paphos and Santorini

Looking for a hotel in Paphos or Santorini? 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 Santorini


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 Santorini Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Paphos 9.29
    Santorini 23

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Paphos

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Paphos:

  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Paphos Town to Larnaca Airport - Minibus 1-13: $274
  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Chloraka/Coral bay to Larnaca Airport - Minibus 1-13: $274
  • Departure Private Transfer Paphos City to Larnaca Airport LCA by Minibus: $262
  • Departure Private Transfer Paphos City to Larnaca Airport LCA by Luxury Car: $262
  • Departure Private Transfer Paphos City to Larnaca Airport LCA by Luxury Van: $240
  • Arrival Private Transfer Paphos Airport PFO to Nicosia City by Luxury Van: $228
  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Chloraka/Coral bay to Larnaca Airport - Minibus: $224
  • Private Airport Round-Trip Transfer: Larnaca Airport to Paphos: $218
  • Private Transfer from Paphos Airport to Larnaca in Minivan(Taxi): $218
  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Paphos Town to Larnaca Airport - Minibus: $216
  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Chloraka/Coral bay to Larnaca Airport - Minivan: $179
  • Cyprus Airport Transfers - Paphos Town to Larnaca Airport - Minivan: $177

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Santorini

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

  • Helicopter Transfer between Mykonos & Santorini: $2,839
  • Oia Sunset: Evening Shuttle Transfer and Free Time: $23
  • Premium Santorini Private Day Tour Lagoon 450, BBQ, drinks, transfer: $933
  • Santorini Airport Hotels Transfer Shuttle Bus Service: $27
  • Santorini Airport to Hotel: Private Arrival Transfer: $45
  • Santorini Taxi Service & Airport, Hotel and Port Transfers: $62
  • Santorini transfer service: $17
  • Private Airport Transfer: $25
  • Private Transfer to/from Santorini Airport (JTR): $50
  • Shared Transfer Service: $17
  • Tour of Caldera on Sailing Boat & Bus Transfer:Volcano-Hot springs-Thirassia-Oia: $75
  • Transfer from Santorini Airport&Port all destination except OIA up to 4 customer: $37

Is it cheaper to fly into Paphos or Santorini?

Prices for flights to both Santorini 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 30
    Santorini 38

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Paphos

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

  • Traditional Cuisine & Cultural Flavours - City Walking Food Tour Paphos 2.5hrs: $59
  • Sea Star Evening Dinner and Fireworks Cruise from Paphos: $73

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Santorini

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

  • Live Virtual Cooking Class: $26
  • A taste of Mediterranean Cuisine Dinner: $90
  • Hands on Cooking Class with a Chef: $90
  • Fira: 4-Hour Walking Food Tour With Tastings: $108
  • Sunset Sea Kayak and Snorkel with Dinner: $108
  • Santorini : Sunset Sea Kayak & Snorkel with Dinner: $118
  • Santorini : Cooking Class, Easy Hike, and Snorkeling: $131
  • Cooking Class with Santorini’s Aroma: $506
  • Full-Day Royalty Private Cooking Class and Tour in Santorini: $506
  • Cooking Class with Santorini’s Aroma: $546
  • Santorini Private Sunset Sailing Cruise with Dinner, Drinks &Transfer included: $1,350

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Paphos 9.56
    Santorini 29

Tours and Activities in Paphos

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

  • 1 Hour Tour to Local Radio in Paphos with Live Radio Show: $50
  • Akamas 4x4 Adventure: $197
  • All in Paphos big photo tour!: $398
  • Authentic Cyprus Historic Day Tour from Paphos: $32
  • Blue Lagoon Day Cruise from Paphos: $83
  • Cruise and 4X4 Safari Tour at Akamas Peninsula from Paphos: $106
  • Fireworks Night Cruise from Paphos: $81
  • Full-day Famagusta, Varosha, and Salamis Tour from Paphos: $47
  • Grand Tour Jeep Safari - Kykkos Monastery (From Paphos): $93
  • Guided tour “Love stories of Paphos”: $496
  • Half Day BBQ Lunch Cruise from Paphos: $58
  • Halloumi Heaven ( Cheese-Making Workshop & Tour): $112

Tours and Activities in Santorini

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

  • Akrotiri Prehistoric City Audio Tour: $18
  • Unique Oia's Sunset Tour in Santorini: $30
  • Royalty Unique Oia’s Sunset Tour in Santorini: $31
  • Santorini-Unique Oia’s Sunset Tour: $31
  • Island Bus Tour: The Majestic Spots Of Santorini: $43
  • Santorini Volcano and Thirassia Islands Tour: $43
  • Oia and Fira Evening Small Group Tour: $45
  • 3 Hour Santorini Walking Tour with Hotel Pickup: $50
  • Volcanic Sunset Cruise: $58
  • Santorini Traditional Villages and Oia Sunset Tour: $62
  • Santorini-Classic Tour in Traditional Villages: $67
  • Santorini-Classic Tour in Traditional Villages: $71

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Paphos 7.98
    Santorini 21

Sample the Local Flavors in Paphos

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Paphos:

  • WINE TOUR from Paphos: $372

Sample the Local Flavors in Santorini

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

  • 4-Hours Santorini Vothonas Village Tour with Wine Tasting: $89
  • Authentic Santorinian Tour at Vothonas Village with Wine Tasting: $93
  • Half-Day Santorini Tour Vothonas Village with Wine Tasting: $93
  • Santorini-Wine Tour Αround Megalochori Village: $111
  • Sunset and Wine Tasting Tour by Electric Bike: $114
  • Santorini-Wine Tour Around Megalochori Village: $117
  • Santorini-Wine Tour Around Megalochori Village: $124
  • Santorini-Sunset Caldera’s View from Megalochori with Wine Tasting: $134
  • Santorini-Sunset Caldera’s View from Megalochori with Wine Tasting: $140
  • Half-Day Sunset Wine Tasting Tour in Santorini with Pick Up: $141
  • Santorini Wine Tasting and History Small Group Tour: $153
  • 4-Hour Sunset Wine Tour: $159


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Paphos and Santorini, we can see that Santorini 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 Santorini would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Santorini than you might in Paphos.

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Paphos vs. Santorini Travel Comparison

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