A Travel Price Comparison for Australia Sydney vs. Whitsundays for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Sydney or Whitsundays?

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

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Sydney or Whitsundays, 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.

Where Should I go: Sydney or Whitsundays?

Sydney

Sydney, known as the harbour city, is the most famous and frequently visited city in Australia. It is at the economical and cultural heart of the country, and is one of the most beautiful and livable cities in the world. It's situated on the water with stunning views of the famous harbour throughout the city. It's most famous landmarks include the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It is also very close wonderful beaches, parks, and nature.

Whitsundays

Just off the coast of Queensland, Australia is a cluster of 74 different islands. These islands, the Whitsunday Islands, welcome over a half a million visitors every year to see one of the Seven Wonders of the World - the Great Barrier Reef.

As one of the most famous destinations in the world, it's not uncommon to see expensive yachts sailing around among the private ferries. Most of the islands are designated as national parks with access to snorkeling and diving in the coral reefs, or just to lay in the sand on the famous Whitehaven Beach.

Which place is cheaper, Whitsundays or Sydney?

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

The average daily cost (per person) in Sydney is $275, while the average daily cost in Whitsundays is $133. 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 Sydney and Whitsundays in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Sydney $103
    Whitsundays $69
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Sydney $206
    Whitsundays $138
Compare Hotels in Sydney and Whitsundays

Looking for a hotel in Sydney or Whitsundays? 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 Sydney


Hotels in Whitsundays


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: Sydney Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Sydney $15
    Whitsundays $55
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Sydney

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


  • Taxi Ride
    $13
  • Taxi to Airport
    $16

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Sydney

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Sydney:

  • Private Round Transfer from Sydney to Blue Mountains: $1,049
  • Private Transfer from Sydney Hotels to Airport: $255
  • Tandem Skydive with Optional Transfers: $222
  • Premium Private Transfer FROM Sydney Airport to Sydney CBD/Downtown 1-11 people: $217
  • Premium Private Transfer FROM Sydney Airport to Sydney CBD/Downtown 1-13 people: $217
  • Premium Private Transfer FROM Sydney CBD/Downtown to Sydney Airport 1-11 people: $210
  • Sydney Airport (SYD): Private Transfer to Sydney hotels: $208
  • Premium Private Transfer FROM Sydney CBD/Downtown to Sydney Airport 1-13 people: $207
  • Airport transfers and shuttle bus - home/hotels: $197
  • From Sydney Hotels - Hotel Transfer to Airport: $195
  • Sydney Airport Transfers: $174
  • Sydney Airport Arrival Transfer (Airport to Sydney Central Business District): $165

Is it cheaper to fly into Sydney or Whitsundays?

Prices for flights to both Whitsundays and Sydney 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
    Sydney $45
    Whitsundays $30
Typical Food Prices in Sydney

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Sydney:


  • Tea
    $2.61
  • Lunch Special
    $9.79
  • Food/Drink Coogie Beach
    $9.79
  • Meat Pies
    $3.26

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Sydney

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

  • VIVID Dinner Cruise with Complimentary Drink on Arrival: $36
  • Sydney Street Art & Food Tour: $50
  • Sydney's Little Italy Food Tour: $50
  • Christmas in July Dinner Cruise on Sydney Harbour: $57
  • Sydney Harbour: Tall Ship Vivid Dinner Cruise: $58
  • Harbor Sunset Cruise with Dinner: $58
  • Vivid Tall Ships Dinner Cruise on Sydney Harbour: $59
  • 1.5 - Hour Sydney Harbour Tall Ship Twilight Dinner Cruise: $59
  • Kids Cooking Classes: $63
  • Small Group Refugee Chef Dinner Banquet at Bohemian Cafe: $63
  • Sydney Harbour: Latin Fiesta Dinner Cruise: $69
  • Latino Dinner Cruise on Sydney Harbour: $70

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Whitsundays

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

  • Hamilton Island: Whitsundays Sunset BBQ Dinner Cruise: $98

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Sydney $31
    Whitsundays $25
Typical Entertainment Prices in Sydney

Here are a few typical costs in Sydney for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Theatre Show
    $29
  • Sydney Tower Visit (for 2)
    $30
  • Blue Mountain Tour/Featherdale Park (for 2)
    $124
  • Powerhouse Museum
    $9.82

Tours and Activities in Sydney

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

  • Bespoke Cycle Tours - Sydney Harbour E-Bike Coffee/Lunch Tour: $184
  • Small-Group Sydney's Northern Beaches and Ku-ring-gai National Park Bus Tour: $230
  • 1 Day Thredbo Snow Tour: $100
  • 1 Day Thredbo Snow Tour From Sydney: $100
  • 2 Hours Running Tour in Sydney: $99
  • 2 Hours Sydney Harbour's True Crime Cruise Tour: $30
  • 2-Hour Guided Walking Tour in Sydney Harbour National Park : $37
  • 3 Hours Abba Tribute Cruise on Sydney Harbour: $79
  • 3 Hours Christmas Magic Private Walking Tour in Sydney: $231
  • 3-Hour Private Bike Tour with a Local Sydney Guide: $229
  • 3.5 Hours Explore Bondi Beach and Sydney Sightseeing Tour: $195
  • 30-Minute Sydney Harbour and Olympic Park Helicopter Tour: $217

Tours and Activities in Whitsundays

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

  • From Daydream Is.: Whitsundays & Whitehaven Half-Day Cruise: $92
  • Whitsundays Camira Sailing Adventure from Daydream Island: $150
  • Daydream Island: Great Barrier Reef Adventure Cruise: $196
  • Airlie Beach: Private Guided 2-Night Yacht Sailing Cruise: $4,507

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Sydney $15
    Whitsundays $12
Typical Alcohol Prices in Sydney

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


  • Wine
    $10

Sample the Local Flavors in Sydney

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

  • Night Out Pub Crawl with Local Guide: $30
  • Big Night Out Pub Crawl: $30
  • Sydney Cellar Door - Old Vine Expressions Wine Tasting: $47
  • Private Wine Tour and Tasting: $56
  • Urban Winery Wine Tasting Tour with Cheese Platter: $56
  • Beach and Brew - Hike and Brewery (Men and Women): $73
  • Marrickville Brewery Tour: $77
  • The Rocks Pub Walking Tour: $77
  • Balmain Pub Walking Tour: $77
  • Luxury Hunter Valley Wildlife & Wine Tasting Tour from Sydney: $83
  • Sydney The Rocks Historical Pub Tour: $102
  • Sydney Beer and Brewery Tour: $103


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

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



When is the best time to visit Sydney or Whitsundays?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the southern hemisphere, summer is in January and winter is in July.

Should I visit Sydney or Whitsundays in the Summer?

Both Whitsundays and Sydney during the summer are popular places to visit. Many visitors come to Sydney in the summer for the beaches, snorkeling, the hiking, the city activities, and the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Sydney is cooler than Whitsundays. Typically, the summer temperatures in Sydney in January average around 23°C (73°F), and Whitsundays averages at about 26°C (79°F).

In Whitsundays, it's very sunny this time of the year. It's quite sunny in Sydney. In the summer, Sydney often gets less sunshine than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 236 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Whitsundays receives 285 hours of full sun.

Whitsundays gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Sydney. Sydney usually gets less rain in January than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 116 mm (4.6 in) of rain, while Whitsundays receives 331 mm (13 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures January
    Sydney 23°C (73°F) 
    Whitsundays 26°C (79°F)

Should I visit Sydney or Whitsundays in the Autumn?

The autumn attracts plenty of travelers to both Sydney and Whitsundays. Most visitors come to Sydney for the hiking trails, the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the natural beauty of the area during these months.

In April, Sydney is generally cooler than Whitsundays. Daily temperatures in Sydney average around 19°C (65°F), and Whitsundays fluctuates around 23°C (73°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Whitsundays this time of the year. Sydney usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Whitsundays during autumn. Sydney gets 195 hours of sunny skies, while Whitsundays receives 207 hours of full sun in the autumn.

Whitsundays receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Sydney gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In April, Sydney usually receives less rain than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 120 mm (4.7 in) of rain, while Whitsundays receives 143 mm (5.6 in) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures April
    Sydney 19°C (65°F) 
    Whitsundays 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Sydney or Whitsundays in the Winter?

The winter brings many poeple to Sydney as well as Whitsundays. The winter months attract visitors to Sydney because of the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

Sydney is cooler than Whitsundays in the winter. The daily temperature in Sydney averages around 12°C (53°F) in July, and Whitsundays fluctuates around 16°C (62°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Whitsundays. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Sydney this time of the year. In the winter, Sydney often gets less sunshine than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 208 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Whitsundays receives 226 hours of full sun.

Sydney usually gets more rain in July than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 54 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Whitsundays receives 40 mm (1.6 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures July
    Sydney 12°C (53°F) 
    Whitsundays 16°C (62°F)

Should I visit Sydney or Whitsundays in the Spring?

Both Whitsundays and Sydney are popular destinations to visit in the spring with plenty of activities. The beaches, the activities around the city, and the natural beauty are the main draw to Sydney this time of year.

In the spring, Sydney is cooler than Whitsundays. Typically, the spring temperatures in Sydney in October average around 18°C (64°F), and Whitsundays averages at about 23°C (73°F).

It's quite sunny in Whitsundays. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Sydney. Sydney usually receives less sunshine than Whitsundays during spring. Sydney gets 240 hours of sunny skies, while Whitsundays receives 298 hours of full sun in the spring.

In October, Sydney usually receives more rain than Whitsundays. Sydney gets 79 mm (3.1 in) of rain, while Whitsundays receives 48 mm (1.9 in) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures October
    Sydney 18°C (64°F) 
    Whitsundays 23°C (73°F)

Typical Weather for Whitsundays and Sydney

Sydney Whitsundays
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 23°C (73°F) 116 mm (4.6 in) 26°C (79°F) 331 mm (13 in)
Feb 23°C (73°F) 113 mm (4.4 in) 26°C (78°F) 377 mm (14.8 in)
Mar 21°C (70°F) 148 mm (5.8 in) 25°C (77°F) 312 mm (12.3 in)
Apr 19°C (65°F) 120 mm (4.7 in) 23°C (73°F) 143 mm (5.6 in)
May 15°C (60°F) 88 mm (3.5 in) 20°C (68°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Jun 13°C (55°F) 128 mm (5 in) 17°C (63°F) 57 mm (2.2 in)
Jul 12°C (53°F) 54 mm (2.1 in) 16°C (62°F) 40 mm (1.6 in)
Aug 13°C (55°F) 90 mm (3.5 in) 18°C (65°F) 27 mm (1.1 in)
Sep 15°C (59°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 20°C (68°F) 15 mm (0.6 in)
Oct 18°C (64°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 23°C (73°F) 48 mm (1.9 in)
Nov 20°C (67°F) 101 mm (4 in) 25°C (77°F) 107 mm (4.2 in)
Dec 22°C (71°F) 81 mm (3.2 in) 26°C (78°F) 191 mm (7.5 in)