Which city is cheaper, Helsinki or Riga?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
Should I visit Riga or Helsinki? 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.
Riga is a vibrant, fun, and high energy city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. The beauty of this spot is also one of the main reasons why visitors come. Visitors also love the food, shopping, and museums.
Helsinki is a environmentally conscious, waterfront, and active city. You'll find world class beauty here as well. And you can't forget about the nightlife, food, and shopping.
Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Helsinki and Riga. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.
Plenty of people visit the sights and museums in both Riga and Helsinki.
Riga offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. As a capital city with a diverse history, you'll find a number of museums and landmarks in the area. Visitors frequently visit The Freedom Monument, St. Peters Church, the Riga Cathedral, The House of the Black Heads, and any of the many museums around town.
Many visitors head to Helsinki specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. Many of the city's sights and attractions center around nature and the water. Major hightlights of the city include the Fortress of Sveaborg, Seurasaari open-Air Museum, and Temppeliaukio Rock Church. The city is also home to The National Museum of Finland.
Both Riga and Helsinki offer a number of unique restaurants to choose from.
Eating is part of the travel experience when you visit Riga. The city offers a great opportunity to try many Latvian specialties including rasol (a potato salad), pelmeni (a Latvian dumpling), and karbonade (kind of like schnitzel). The cuisine is hearty and filling with lots of bread, dumpling, and meats. Riga is also where you'll find the largest food market in Europe, which is the perfect place to wander and pick up some local items.
Helsinki is becoming an appealing option for foodies. Food in town is all about local flavors and simple ingredients. The dishes let the flavor speak for itself without fancy cooking techniques or complex flavor combinations. Many of the restaurants are locally sourced with traditional ingredients. You'll find a lot of seafood, herring, grilled sausages, pancakes, and desserts.
With more options to choose from, you'll find a more vibrant nightlife in Riga.
Riga is a world class party destination. Despite being a small city, this capital has gained a reputation for its party atmosphere. The historic center comes to life in the evenings, particularly between Wednesdays and Saturdays. The area is compact enough that you can walk from club to club and prices are reasonable.
With a handful of venues, visitors can find a fairly lively vibe in Helsinki. The nightlife scene is at its best on weekends when the city center comes to life with parties, dance clubs, and student activities. Many of the best clubs and bars are concentrated in the city center. Weekends are a bit calmer and things quiet down a lot.
Both Riga and Helsinki are good shopping destinations.
Riga is a popular shopping destination with plenty of stores. Some of the most interesting shopping in the city is in the old town. Prices might be a little more expensive than you expect but it's possible to find some unique items. The city also has many markets, including the largest food market in Europe, which is a must-see.
Many visitors explore the shopping areas in Helsinki. The city is great for shopping, with many brands focused on sustainability. There are local boutiques as well as name brands. Flea markets and vintage shops are also popular.
Kids will enjoy a visit to either Riga or Helsinki.
Riga is a family-friendly place to visit. During the winter months, there are a number of museums that are fun to explore with kids including the Nature Museum, the Railroad Museum, the Aviation Technology Museum, and the Riga Firefighter Museum. There are also several indoor play areas. When the weather is warmer there are a number of outdoor parks and playgrounds to explore.
You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Helsinki. The coastal setting offers many activities that kids and adults alike will enjoy. This capital city has a calm atmosphere with plenty of parkland to explore. The shoreline is dotted by islands where you'll also find a zoo and a fort. Kids will also enjoy exploring the islands by boat.
With fun activities for couples, both Riga and Helsinki make for a good place to visit.
Riga makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. The city has a charming old town that you can explore, taking time to relax in the city squares or sip coffee at a cafe. There are also many nice restaurants that will make for a romantic date night.
Helsinki makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. The city's many parks offer the perfect setting for a picnic or a walk. There are also botanical gardens, evening boat rides, and saunas that will help you enjoy a romantic trip away.
While Helsinki and Riga are both good for backpackers, overall Riga is more popular.
Backpackers and budget travelers come from all over the world to visit Riga. There are many affordable hostels around town as well as restaurants where you can grab a cheap meal. The city offers a great European experience at a fraction of the price of many cities.
Plenty of backpackers visit Helsinki. With its active nightlife scene, vibrant atmosphere, and inclusive personality, this city is a fun place for backpackers, but you should expect to pay a premium for the experience. Many backpackers avoid the city because they have heard how expensive it is. There are a few hostels around that will help you keep costs a bit more manageable.
Riga and Helsinki are both good destinations for students and younger travelers.
Riga is a very popular city for students and younger travelers. The city's affordability and vibrant atmosphere make it a great spot for international students. There are many places to hang out and a lively nightlife scene that appeals to young travelers.
Helsinki is very popular with students. The city has an active student life with plenty of culture and nature. It's active nightlife scene and beautiful natural areas make it a wonderful place to study.
Both Riga and Helsinki offer public transit options.
Riga has some very good public transit options. Transportation options include buses, trolleybuses, and trams.
The public transit in Helsinki can get you to most places easily. Transit options include bus, tram, metro, commuter train and ferry services.
Riga and Helsinki both are comparable when exploring on foot.
Riga is a very walkable city. The city is small enough that most areas can be explored on foot.
Helsinki is a somewhat walkable city. Many neighborhoods are easy to explore on foot. The air is also clean and the setting is refreshing.
It's fun to spend time in either Riga or Helsinki. Both can be explored in comparable amounts of time.
The ideal length of time for a trip to Riga is 2-4 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Helsinki is 2-4 days.
The beautiful city of Riga offers food and shopping. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.
Visitors enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the destination of Helsinki. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.
Riga is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this city makes for a great vacation. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Riga, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.
Helsinki is a fun place to experience. If you have a weekend, this is a great place to go. A weekend is often enough time to do most activities. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.
Riga is a popular choice for travelers. It's no surprise that nightlife is why people visit. Five days 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. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.
You'll find museums and nightlife around the active destination of Helsinki. This city offers something for everyone. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.
Riga is a great place to explore. It's no surprise that nightlife is why people visit. Visiting the old town is also a must. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This city offers something for everyone.
The coastal city of Helsinki offers nightlife and food. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. 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.
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Riga is €82, while the average daily cost in Helsinki is €112. 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 Riga and Helsinki in more detail.
Looking for a hotel in Riga or Helsinki? 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.
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.
Some specific examples of transportation prices in Riga:
Also for Helsinki, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Prices for flights to both Helsinki and Riga 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.
Some typical examples of dining costs in Riga are as follows:
Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Riga.
For Helsinki, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Riga are as follows:
For Helsinki, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:
Also in Riga, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Riga and Helsinki, we can see that Helsinki is more expensive. And not only is Riga much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Riga would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Riga 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 Helsinki would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Helsinki than you might in Riga.
Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.
Both Helsinki and Riga during the summer are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Riga in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Furthermore, most visitors come to Helsinki for the family-friendly experiences during these months.
Riga is around the same temperature as Helsinki in the summer. The temperature in Riga is usually 17°C (63°F) in July, and Helsinki stays around 17°C (62°F).
Riga usually gets more rain in July than Helsinki. Riga gets 79 mm (3.1 in) of rain, while Helsinki receives 58 mm (2.3 in) of rain this time of the year.
The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Riga and Helsinki. Most visitors come to Riga for the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months. Furthermore, the autumn months attract visitors to Helsinki because of the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area.
In the autumn, Riga is a little warmer than Helsinki. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Riga in October are around 7°C (45°F), and Helsinki is about 6°C (42°F).
In October, Riga usually receives less rain than Helsinki. Riga gets 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Helsinki receives 71 mm (2.8 in) of rain each month for the autumn.
The winter brings many poeple to Riga as well as Helsinki. The winter months attract visitors to Riga because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Additionally, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Helsinki this time of year.
It's quite cold in Helsinki in the winter. The weather in Riga can be very cold. In January, Riga is generally a little warmer than Helsinki. Temperatures in Riga average around -5°C (23°F), and Helsinki stays around -6°C (21°F).
Riga usually gets less rain in January than Helsinki. Riga gets 33 mm (1.3 in) of rain, while Helsinki receives 40 mm (1.6 in) of rain this time of the year.
Both Helsinki and Riga are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Riga this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Helsinki for the natural beauty.
Be prepared for some very cold days in Helsinki. Riga is much warmer than Helsinki in the spring. The temperature in Riga is usually 5°C (42°F) in April, and Helsinki stays around 3°C (37°F).
In April, Riga usually receives around the same amount of rain as Helsinki. Riga gets 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Helsinki receives 41 mm (1.6 in) of rain each month for the spring.
|Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)||Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)|
|Jan||-5°C (23°F)||33 mm (1.3 in)||-6°C (21°F)||40 mm (1.6 in)|
|Feb||-4°C (24°F)||25 mm (1 in)||-7°C (20°F)||31 mm (1.2 in)|
|Mar||-0°C (31°F)||31 mm (1.2 in)||-3°C (27°F)||34 mm (1.4 in)|
|Apr||5°C (42°F)||39 mm (1.5 in)||3°C (37°F)||41 mm (1.6 in)|
|May||12°C (53°F)||43 mm (1.7 in)||9°C (49°F)||31 mm (1.2 in)|
|Jun||15°C (60°F)||61 mm (2.4 in)||15°C (59°F)||40 mm (1.6 in)|
|Jul||17°C (63°F)||79 mm (3.1 in)||17°C (62°F)||58 mm (2.3 in)|
|Aug||16°C (62°F)||79 mm (3.1 in)||16°C (60°F)||72 mm (2.8 in)|
|Sep||12°C (54°F)||76 mm (3 in)||11°C (51°F)||74 mm (2.9 in)|
|Oct||7°C (45°F)||60 mm (2.4 in)||6°C (42°F)||71 mm (2.8 in)|
|Nov||2°C (36°F)||61 mm (2.4 in)||1°C (33°F)||70 mm (2.8 in)|
|Dec||-2°C (28°F)||49 mm (1.9 in)||-4°C (26°F)||58 mm (2.3 in)|
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.