Venice Cruise Port

Ahhh Venice, Venezia, my absolute favorite city in Italy. Seriously, Venice is unlike any city in the world. I think Venice is way more romantic than Paris, but don’t tell the French! There are no cars, taxis are boats, buses are boats, little canals run all through the city, there are the most beautiful bridges and alleys, and it’s the best place to get lost in…and you will! It’s part of the charm, so don’t freak out when you get lost. Just be sure to arm yourself with a good map and you’ll be fine. When on a cruise you’ll need to know all there is about Venice cruise port.

Venice is a popular cruise port for cruises to Greece, Croatia, and other countries on the Adriatic and Aegean Seas. Most of the larger ships now leave from Trieste or Ravenna, but smaller ships still sail to Venice. Having cruised from Venice several times, I have some tips to help plan your trip if you will be starting or ending a cruise in Venice.

Getting To Venice Cruise Port

Most large cruise ships dock at the Marittima Basin of the Terminal Venezia Passeggeri. There are three ways to get to Venice: car, train or airplane. If you are driving, there are large parking lots and garages at either Piazzale Roma or Tronchetto. Both are very close to the cruise terminal, and there is a little tram called the Venice People Mover to take you there. The People Mover is located at Piazalle Roma and costs €1.50 each way. Ticket machines are located inside and they take small bills, debit and credit cards.

Alternatively, you can park on the mainland at the Mestre Train Station and take a quick and inexpensive train ride across the causeway to the Santa Lucia train station, then walk to the People Mover located in Piazzale Roma to get to the cruise terminal. Some cruise lines will have shuttles from Piazzale Roma to the ship, or take a Taxi if you don’t feel like hauling your luggag

If you arrive by train, I suggest taking it all the way to the Santa Lucia train station, turn right when you exit the station and walk up to Piazzale Roma to access transportation to the cruise terminal. Be aware that you will have to cross a bridge (with steps) to get there, and haul your luggage as well. The good news is that you can hire a porter to cart your luggage if you don’t feel like dealing with it! 

Lastly, if you arrive by plane, take a shuttle (cheapest), taxi (quickest), vaporetto, or water taxi (most expensive) to the Piazzale Roma. Tip: a taxi can take you to the ship! How you go depends on your budget, how much luggage you have, and how much time you have. 

Staying Near the Cruise Terminal

View from my room at
Hotel Arlecchino

If you are like me, you will want to stay in Venice for at least a couple of days before embarking on a cruise. It’s a great way to get over any jetlag before your cruise. There are several cute hotels close to the Piazzale Roma. My suggestions would be either the Hotel Arlecchino, Hotel Olimpia, or the Hotel Antiche Figure. All are very reasonable, with breakfast included, and are located within short walking distance to or on the Piazzale Roma and the Santa Lucia train station.

Places to See

Unfortunately, if you are only visiting Venice for a day in port you will have to limit what you see. Venice is easily done on your own, no need to pay for an expensive shore excursion. Arm yourself with a good map of the city, some comfortable walking shoes and head out!

Once off the ship, take a vaporetto or water taxi to St. Mark’s Square or the Rialto Bridge and start there. It’s an easy walk from one to the other with signs pointing the way. There are tons of shops along the way, and plenty of Gelato stores as well! Have lunch somewhere near the Rialto Bridge or along the Grand Canal, there are so many fabulous places all over Venice! In St. Mark’s Square be sure to visit the Cathedral and the Doge’s Palace, walk through the Bridge of Sighs on the inside. Stop for coffee at Café Florian and sit outside to enjoy views across the St. Mark’s Square and some wonderful classical music.

Another fabulous thing to do is to visit the glass factories on the island of Murano. To get there, take a vaporetto or water taxi. Take a factory tour, watch a glass blowing demonstration and purchase some famous Murano glass to take home. Tip: they ship to the US!

Finally, take a romantic gondola ride at sunset. Bring along a bottle of champagne and enjoy the views. Hopefully, your gondolier will have a spectacular singing voice and will serenade you all the way back to the Venice cruise port!

For more cruise tips read How to Avoid the Crowds on a Cruise. If you’re visiting Croatia on your cruise read Best of Dubrovnik.

Email me or leave a comment below.  Keep calm and travel on!



2 thoughts on “Venice Cruise Port

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *