A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Riga vs. Milan for Food, Nightlife, Old Town, and Backpackers

Should you visit Riga or Milan?

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

Should I visit Riga or Milan? 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

Riga is a unique, historical, and vibrant city. Because this is such a big city, visitors will find many sights and attractions around town. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. It's also popular because of the museums, nightlife, and food.

Milan

Milan is a trendy, chic, and cultural city. With plenty of activities and things to do, it's a huge city that draws plenty of visitors. You'll find world class beauty here as well. And you can't forget about the food, shopping, and museums.

Riga and Milan: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Big city activities
  • Impressive beauty


Is there more to do in Riga or Milan?

Travelers will usually find more to do in Milan than Riga, as it is bigger with more sights, attractions, and activities for visitors. Milan is more touristy than Riga and is popular for its grand squares, dramatic architecture, and its leadership in the fashion world. It is also home to Piazza del Duomo. Riga is popular for its vibrant nightlife scene, busy old town, and beautiful architecture.

How is Riga different from Milan?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

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

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Riga or Milan?

Riga
Milan

Plenty of people visit the excellent sights and museums in both Riga and Milan.

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 Milan specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. The Milan Cathedral is the most famous landmark in the city, but other sights include Castello Sforzesco, Pinacoteca di Brera, and Sant'Ambrogio.


Is the Food Better in Riga or Milan? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its local cuisine and restaurants. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its restaurants.

For foodies, Milan is an obvious choice, as it is one of the food capitals of the world. The city has a mix of traditional dishes combined with modernized, trendy restaurants. You can try a new dish by a groundbreaking chef, or sample a long running favorite like risotto alla Milanese.

Riga has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. 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.

Is Riga or Milan Better for Nightlife?

Riga
Milan

Evening events are terrific in both Riga and Milan.

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.

Milan is a must-see party destination. The city has a huge number of students and young professionals, which make it a fun place with an active nightlife. There are cocktail bars, trendy clubs, and relaxed pubs that you can chose from.

Is Riga or Milan Better for Music?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its live music scene. However, Riga is not a live music destination.

Live music, and music in many other forms, is everyone in Milan The diversity of music ranges from classical concerts to techno raves. Popular venues include Blue Note Milan, Santeria Social Club, and Spirit de Milan.

Riga is not a live music destination.


Is Riga or Milan Better for its Old Town?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its old town. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its historic old town charm.

The rich history of Milan can be explored in its historical center. Known as the Centro Storic, this area is the most popular with tourists. It's where you'll find the most historic buildings and beautiful sights in the city.

There is a nice variety of sights in the old town of Riga. The old town is filled with cobblestone streets and charming architecture. The city is less touristy than many places in Europe so you can usually avoid the large crowds and enjoy a peaceful walk. During the evening you'll find the area turns into an entertainment district with many clubs and bars.

Is the Shopping Better in Riga or Milan?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its shopping opportunities. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its shopping areas.

The abundance of shops in Milan make it a world-class shopping destination. Famous as the fashion capital of Italy, shopping is the thing to do here. There are many streets that are lined with the biggest designers in fashion. Make sure you check out Via Monte Napoleone, Via Della Spiga, and Corso Buenos Aires.

Many visitors explore the shopping areas in Riga. 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.

Is Riga or Milan Better for Families?

Riga
Milan

Kids will enjoy a visit to either Riga or Milan.

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.

Milan is a family-friendly city. The city has a science museum and a children's museum, MuBa, that is great for the kids. There are also a number of parks to explore as well as playgrounds where the kids and get out their energy.


Is Riga or Milan Better for Couples?

Riga
Milan

Milan is notable for its romantic activities. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for couples.

Milan is a very popular place to visit for couples. There are many beautiful buildings, excellent shopping, and romantic restaurants that make for a wonderful couple's getaway.

Riga is a good city for couples to visit. 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.

Is Riga or Milan Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Riga
Milan

Riga is an amazing city to visit for backpackers and budget travelers. Also, Milan is not as popular, but is still a nice city for backpackers.

A large number of backpackers visit Riga, as it is a very popular city for budget travelers. 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.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Milan. While not as popular with backpackers as some Italian city's, there are a number of hostels and great activities that are fun for visitors.

Is Riga or Milan Better for Students?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for students. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its student-friendly activities.

Many students frequent Milan. It is one of the more popular city's for international students in Italy. It is very livable with a lot of culture and a fun nightlife, so you're sure to have the experience of a lifetime.

Riga is very popular with students. 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.


Is Riga or Milan Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its public transit. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for times when you don't have a car.

Milan has a world-class public transit network to take passengers everywhere in the city. Options include metro, bus, tram, and train lines.

The public transit in Riga can get you to most places easily. Transportation options include buses, trolleybuses, and trams.

Is Riga or Milan a more walkable city?

Riga
Milan

Milan is a must-visit destination for its high level of walkability. Also, Riga is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its ease of walking around.

It is easy to get around Milan on foot. In particular, the city center is walkable.

Riga is a very walkable destination. The city is small enough that most areas can be explored on foot.

For even more information, also check out Is Riga Worth Visiting? and Is Milan Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Milan or Riga?

How long in Riga or Milan?

In either Riga or Milan, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Milan than Riga because of the overall number of sights and activities. Usually, 2-4 days is a good amount of time for Riga, and 1-5 days is enough time in Milan.

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

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

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Milan than Riga 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 Milan.


  • How many days in Riga or Milan? Ideal Length of Stay
    Riga 2-4 
    Milan 1-5

One day in Riga or Milan?

In Riga, many people enjoy the shopping and museums that this historical destination offers. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. Lots of people come for the nightlife. This city 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.

Milan is a big city destination where you can fill many days. Visiting the old town is also a must. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One day is usually enough time to experience most activities.


A weekend in Riga or Milan?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Riga. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Milan is a fun place to experience. If you have a weekend, this is a great place to go. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. 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.

Five days in Riga or Milan?

Riga is a fun place to experience. Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the destination of Riga. Lots of people come for the nightlife. Visiting the old town is also a must. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

Milan is a cultural big city where you can fill many days. This city offers something for everyone. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. Five days is often enough time to do most activities.

A week in Riga or Milan?

You'll find food and shopping around the unique destination of Riga. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Lots of people come for the nightlife. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

The trendy city of Milan offers shopping and museums. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. 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.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Sightseeing Tours in Italy, and The Best Vineyard & Wine Tours in Italy.


Which place is cheaper, Milan or Riga?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Riga is €104, while the average daily cost in Milan is €166. 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 Riga and Milan in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Riga 53
    Milan 96
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Riga 106
    Milan 192
Compare Hotels in Riga and Milan

Looking for a hotel in Riga or Milan? 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 Riga


Hotels in Milan


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: Riga Hotel Prices and Milan Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Riga 15
    Milan 35

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Riga

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Riga:

  • Riga Limo Airport Transfer : $165
  • Arrival Private Transfer from Riga Airport RIX to Riga City by Minibus: $91
  • Private Transfer From Riga Airport To Riga City Center: $39
  • Private Transfer from Riga City Center to Riga Airport RIX: $32

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Milan

Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Milan:


  • Train to Airport
    7.00
  • Malpensa Airport Train (for Two)
    22
  • Taxi From Airport
    90
  • Public Transit Day Pass
    4.50
  • Short Taxi Ride
    7.13

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Milan

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

  • Linate Airport to/from Milan Central Station Transfer: $5.44
  • Bergamo Airport Transfer: $11
  • Direct Transfer between Malpensa Airport and Center: $11
  • Bus Transfer from/to Bergamo Airport: $11
  • Transfer Milan city center - Malpensa airport: $12
  • Transfer Milan city center - Bergamo Airport: $12
  • Serravalle Designer Outlet Roundtrip Bus Transfer: $27
  • Milan to Linate Airport Milan (LIN) - Departure Private Transfer: $29
  • Private Luxury day Transfer from Linate Airport to Milan: $38
  • Luxury Private Day Transfer from Milan to Linate Airport: $38
  • Luxury Private Night Transfer from Milan to Linate Airport: $55
  • Private Transfer Milan Linate Airport LIN to Milan City in Business Class MB E: $62

Is it cheaper to fly into Riga or Milan?

Prices for flights to both Milan 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.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Riga 33
    Milan 39
Typical Food Prices in Riga

Some typical examples of dining costs in Riga are as follows:


  • Fast Food Lunch
    5.77

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Riga

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

  • Riga Medieval Dinner: $115
  • Private Cooking Master Class In The Latvian Family : $133

Typical Food Prices in Milan

Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Milan:


  • Snack at Train Station
    8.60
  • Restaurant Pizza
    6.60
  • Casual Cafe Lunch (for Two)
    27
  • Three Course Dinner (for Two)
    64
  • Cappuccino
    1.63

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Milan

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

  • PYT Milano Dinner Show with Live Music and DJ Set: $22
  • Hard Rock Cafe with Set Menu for Lunch or Dinner: $30
  • Gourmet Street Food Tour with Sightseeing and Tasting: $46
  • Eating Milan Street Food Tour with Guided Tasting and Sightseeing: $46
  • Tasty Milan Street Food Tour with Local Guide: $46
  • Devour Milan Street Food Tour and Sightseeing: $46
  • NO DIET CLUB - Best Food Tour in Milan !: $60
  • NO DIET CLUB - Best Food Tour in Milan !: $61
  • 2-Hour Cooking Course of Delicious Desserts for Families in Milan: $65
  • Mamma Mia - Make Your own Italian Pizza: $70
  • Local Market and Cooking Class with an Italian Chef: $71
  • Italian Cooking Class with Food and Wine: $71

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Riga 21
    Milan 31

Tours and Activities in Riga

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

  • 1 Day Riga Sightseeing Red Bus Grand Tour: $28
  • 2 Day Gastronomy Tour In Latgale : $244
  • 3-Hour Private Paintball Game Experience in Zīles: $87
  • 5 Hour Shared Tour to Hill of Crosses from Riga: $83
  • ATV Quad Off Road or City Tour in Riga: $144
  • Best of Riga Walking Tour - Highlights and Hidden Gems: $66
  • Daily Bike Tour in Riga with Professional Guide: $44
  • From Gauja National Park Hiking & Sightseeing Trip: $235
  • Full Day Gauja National Park Ultimate Hiking & Sightseeing Trip: $277
  • Full-Day Rundale Palace Tour from Riga: $85
  • Fun Walk Tour Around Central Market Riga: $131
  • Group Tour: Sigulda and Turaida from Riga.: $133

Typical Entertainment Prices in Milan

For Milan, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:


  • Stairs to Duomo Rooftop
    7.00

Tours and Activities in Milan

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

  • First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.26
  • Self Guided Tours In Milan With 100 Captivating Audio Stories: $3.30
  • The City Storytelling Experience: Art, History and Myths Come Together: $3.30
  • Unique Self-Guided Audio Tour on Alessandro Manzoni: $4.67
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Exploring Age-Old Plants: $4.67
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour Exploring the Famous Five Days: $4.67
  • Giuseppe Verdi in Self-Guided Audio Tour: $4.67
  • From Italy eSIM Tourist Roaming Data Plan: $4.89
  • Milano Walking Tour with Audio and Written Guide by a Local: $5.30
  • Stories of the Fashion Capital: A Self-Guided Audio Tour of Milan: $5.49
  • The Best of A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $5.99
  • City Exploration Game and Tour on your Phone: $6.51

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Riga 20
    Milan 24

Sample the Local Flavors in Riga

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

  • Pub Crawl in Riga: $33
  • Riga Happy Hour Pub Crawl: $54
  • Riga Brewery Tour: $71
  • Riga Wine Tasting Session: $104

Typical Alcohol Prices in Milan

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for alcohol and nightlife costs in Milan:


  • Cocktail at a Bar
    8.40
  • Beer
    3.35

Sample the Local Flavors in Milan

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

  • Wine Tasting Experience in the City Centre: $43
  • Milan Wine Tasting Experience: $53
  • Milan Wine Tasting Aperitivo: $57
  • Milan Wine Tasting with Italian Sommelier: $87
  • Private Food and Wine Tasting Experience in the Center of Milan: $88
  • Wine Tasting with an Italian Sommelier: $95
  • Best of Guided Tour with Duomo, Food & Wine Tasting: $162
  • Food and Wine Tasting enjoying the New Milan: $166
  • Brescia & Franciacorta Guided Tour with Wine Tasting: $195
  • Milan Private Tour - Duomo with Rooftop, Food & Wine Tasting: $234
  • Private Tour - Sforza Castle, La Scala & Wine Tasting: $245
  • Private Guided Wine Tasting Tour with Optional Snacks: $285


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

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


Which is Bigger, Riga or Milan?

Milan has a larger population, and is about 76% larger than the population of Riga. When comparing the sizes of Riga and Milan, 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.


When is the best time to visit Riga or Milan?

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.

Should I visit Riga or Milan in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Riga as well as Milan. Many visitors come to Riga in the summer for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences. Additionally, most visitors come to Milan for the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences during these months.

In the summer, Riga is cooler than Milan. Typically, the summer temperatures in Riga in July average around 17°C (63°F), and Milan averages at about 23°C (73°F).

Riga usually gets more rain in July than Milan. Riga gets 79 mm (3.1 in) of rain, while Milan receives 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Riga 17°C (63°F) 
    Milan 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Riga or Milan in the Autumn?

Both Milan and Riga are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. 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. Also, the autumn months attract visitors to Milan because of the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, the music scene, and the natural beauty of the area.

In October, Riga is generally much colder than Milan. Daily temperatures in Riga average around 7°C (45°F), and Milan fluctuates around 15°C (58°F).

It rains a lot this time of the year in Milan. In October, Riga usually receives less rain than Milan. Riga gets 60 mm (2.4 in) of rain, while Milan receives 103 mm (4 in) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Riga 7°C (45°F) 
    Milan 15°C (58°F)

Should I visit Riga or Milan in the Winter?

Both Milan and Riga during the winter are popular places to visit. The winter months attract visitors to Riga because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Milan this time of year.

It's quite cold in Milan in the winter. The weather in Riga can be very cold. Riga is much colder than Milan in the winter. The daily temperature in Riga averages around -5°C (23°F) in January, and Milan fluctuates around 5°C (41°F).

Riga usually gets less rain in January than Milan. Riga gets 33 mm (1.3 in) of rain, while Milan receives 68 mm (2.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Riga -5°C (23°F) 
    Milan 5°C (41°F)

Should I visit Riga or Milan in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Riga and Milan. The activities around the city and the natural beauty are the main draw to Riga this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Milan for the activities around the city and the natural beauty.

In the spring, Riga is much colder than Milan. Typically, the spring temperatures in Riga in April average around 5°C (42°F), and Milan averages at about 13°C (55°F).

In April, Riga usually receives less rain than Milan. Riga gets 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Milan receives 76 mm (3 in) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Riga 5°C (42°F) 
    Milan 13°C (55°F)

Typical Weather for Milan and Riga

Riga Milan
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan -5°C (23°F) 33 mm (1.3 in) 5°C (41°F) 68 mm (2.7 in)
Feb -4°C (24°F) 25 mm (1 in) 6°C (44°F) 60 mm (2.3 in)
Mar -0°C (31°F) 31 mm (1.2 in) 10°C (49°F) 85 mm (3.4 in)
Apr 5°C (42°F) 39 mm (1.5 in) 13°C (55°F) 76 mm (3 in)
May 12°C (53°F) 43 mm (1.7 in) 17°C (62°F) 102 mm (4 in)
Jun 15°C (60°F) 61 mm (2.4 in) 20°C (69°F) 78 mm (3.1 in)
Jul 17°C (63°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 23°C (73°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)
Aug 16°C (62°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 22°C (72°F) 94 mm (3.7 in)
Sep 12°C (54°F) 76 mm (3 in) 19°C (67°F) 74 mm (2.9 in)
Oct 7°C (45°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 15°C (58°F) 103 mm (4 in)
Nov 2°C (36°F) 61 mm (2.4 in) 9°C (49°F) 102 mm (4 in)
Dec -2°C (28°F) 49 mm (1.9 in) 6°C (42°F) 60 mm (2.4 in)