How to Navigate Between Venice Italy Cruise Ports, Train Station and More

Gondolas and canals. Romance and intrigue. Mystery and magic, Venice, Italy has it all. But there’s one major change for passengers that hope to cruise past Piazza San Marco.

As of July 2021, cruise ships weighing over 25,000 tons are now banned from using the Venice Cruise Port. This means that the view of sailing past iconic St Mark’s Square, and into the narrow Giudecca Canal is over. 

With cruise ships will no longer able to dock in the city-center port, they’ll be rerouted to the mainland and to the industrial port of Marghera. 

This creates an entirely new set of directions to get to the Venice city-center, airport, train station and the other embarkation ports.

Venice Cruise Port

There’s not much more to say about this iconic view in Venice. Simply amazing.

How to Go from Porto Marghera Cruise Port to Venice

Porto Marghera is where almost all cruise ships will have to dock when visiting Venice. The new law forbids cruise ships from sailing past Piazza San Marco to or from the city cruise port. This could cause your few days in Venice before or after your cruise to be a little more complicated. 

The good news is that there’s a train at Porto Marghera that will whisk you into the heart of Venice at Santa Lucia train station, in just seven minutes. Another reason to make sure that you pack light so you can manage to haul your suitcases.

Once you arrive at Santa Lucia Station, this is when you need to know how to get around a city that doesn’t have any street transportation. 

Most people fly directly to Venice for either their vacation or to board a cruise ship. Others may opt for a river cruise Or like me, spend a night or two in Paris and then take an overnight train from Paris to Venice.

It’s a memorable sight as your train slowly crosses the Venice Lagoon and the Venetian skyline appears on the horizon as you enter heart of this island-city. 

Getting Between Porto Marghera, Santa Lucia Station, Airport and Hotels

Although the new big ship cruise port in Marghera isn’t very pretty or scenic, it is easier to get into Venice with only taking one train and you’re there.

But first, there are some basics to learn. Knowing the difference between a vaporetto or private water taxi is crucial. Riding in a private water taxi, in my opinion, something everyone should try at least once. It’s expensive as a solo traveler, but I would do it again without hesitation. 

Difference Between a Vaporetto and Water Taxi

This used to confuse me and I’ll clarify for you. Think of a vaporetto as a public bus on the water. There are two companies that operate vaporetti (plural for vaporetto); ACTV and Alilaguna.

ACTV is best for traveling around Venice and the islands. Alilaguna, as far as cruise passengers are concerned, is mainly for connecting between the airport and cruise port. Links to both companies are at the bottom of this article.

If you want to avoid crowds and glide through the canals on your own private “yacht” then opt for the more expensive water taxi.

Think of these as land-based taxis back home. This is your best option for early morning flights TO the airport from your hotel. Yes, there is rush hour on the canals.

Venice Italy at the Santa Lucia train station

First view of Venice as you exit the Santa Lucia train station.

To and From Santa Lucia Train Station to the Former Large Ship Cruise Port

If you’re booked on a very small ship or taking a river cruise from Venice, this is still where you’ll board the ship. 

Going from Santa Lucia Station may seem daunting but it’s actually easy. You can even walk part of the distance if your luggage isn’t too heavy. 

  • After you exit the train station, turn right and walk along the Grand Canal for a short distance.
  • Cross the Ponte della Costituzione glass and steel bridge to Piazzale Roma.

From Piazzale Roma

There are a few choices to reach the nearby Stazione Marittima (former large ship cruise port). Remember, as of July 2021, ships over 25,000 tons are not permitted to dock here. They are now rerouted to Porto Marghera, an industrial port. 

Once again, if you’re on a very small ship or river ship, this is where those ships will dock. 

  • If your arms are tired from hauling luggage, you can take a taxi for a few euros right to the terminal from Piazzale Roma
  • Wait for or hurry to the free shuttle bus which runs about every 15 minutes
  • Take a really short tram/train ride on the driverless People Mover. Sort of like the connector trams at airports. You’ll find a ticket machine inside the glass-enclosed ticket kiosk. You’ll quickly reach the Marittima exit (cruise terminal) – it’s the first stop along the way – in only a few minutes.
  • If you’re traveling really light and feeling adventurous, you can walk to the cruise terminal from Piazzale Roma. Start walking as if leaving Venice, following the busy causeway that leads over to the mainland. Once you’ve crossed over the water and train tracks, turn left into the terminal. But I really don’t recommend walking over to the port.

Take a Vaporetto Part of the Way

  • After exiting Santa Lucia train station, in front of you is the magnificent Grand Canal. You’ll find the ACTV vaporetto floating docks to your left. You want to buy a ticket for either #1 or #2 vaporetto going to Piazzale Roma.
  • Be prepared for a 30-40 minute boat ride. #1 is a local water bus and #2 is an express water bus. Both will give you a lovely waterborne introduction to Venice.
  • Once you arrive at Piazzale Roma, follow the options above.

Transportation to Your Hotel

Whether you arrive by air or train, the public vaporetti (plural for vaporetto) and private water taxis are waiting to take you to your hotel as soon as you step out of either terminal. Here’s where it gets tricky and a little preparation can go a long way.

Remember, there are only two ways to get around Venice: by foot or by boat.

Most important: pack light. The less luggage you have to haul around, the happier you will be. It’s probably more daunting to arrive into Venice by train than depart. And getting to or from the main cruise port, Stazione Marittima, is an experience worth planning in advance.

If you’re arriving into Porto Maghera, it’s easier to get to the city center, as I mentioned earlier in this article. 

Venice Cruise Terminal

At the Stazione Marittima Cruise Terminal via my water taxi. You won’t see these big ships here anymore.

Venice Cruise Port – Stazione Marittima

You can hire a private water taxi (90 € or more) or hop aboard a public vaporetto to travel between Santa Lucia train terminal and either of the two cruise ship ports.

It’s the walk between where your water vaporetto or water taxi docks, at either Venice cruise port – the larger Stazione Marittima cruise terminal or the adjacent smaller San Basilio port, that can be a potential nightmare if you’re not prepared.

San Basilio Cruise Port

If you are lucky and your smaller ship is docked at San Basilio, you are a short walk along a paved path to the San Basilio vaporetto and water taxi station.

It is likely, when docked at San Basilio, that your ship will run a 2-minute shuttle bus ride between the ship and the San Basilio water taxi/vaporetto floating station. This was the case on my recent Viking Star cruise from Barcelona to Venice.

From your hotel or train station to your ship at Stazione Marittima, luggage is usually checked right where either the water taxi or vaporetto lets you off, assuming that cruise ship representatives and luggage trollies are present.

On a cruise a couple of years ago, arriving by private water taxi, I was able to check my biggest suitcase to send to the ship. But because I had a case with my computer, another packed full with camera equipment and yet another small case with makeup/breakables.

I ended up pulling three small but very heavy two-wheeled suitcases for what seemed like miles.

A comfortable ride in a private water taxi

My pre-arranged private water taxi to get to the cruise terminal.

Arriving or Departing From the Airport

You’ll still have to get to or from the airport (mainland) and Venice Island. If arriving, look for signs to the water taxis and vaporettos just outside the arrival area and it’s the same procedure as above at the cruise port.

Public vaporetto in Venice

Take a public vaporetto (water bus) to your hotel or cruise ship if you don’t have much luggage.

Getting to/from Your Hotel in Venice

Many times for new visitors, finding their hotel means walking and pulling luggage on cobblestones, up steps and over bridges and sometimes up several flights of stairs if you’ve chosen a penzione.

INSIDER TIP: choose accommodations near a water bus (vaporetto) stop.

The #1 vaporetto runs between the cruise terminal, the train station and St. Mark’s Square and other stops in-between which may be convenient to your hotel. Note: Your vaporetto may be crowded so be prepared. This is why I love the private water taxis.

Note:  Since private water taxis can hold up to six-eight people, you could ask others in the water taxi queue if they’d like to share, provided of course that you are all headed to the same destination.

Entrance for private water taxis at the Hotel Danieli

Entrance to the Hotel Danieli for the private water taxis.

Believe it or not , there are land porters for hire to haul your luggage from point to point. Either phone or ask your hotel concierge for a list of companies. 

READ NEXT:  My review of the glamourous Hotel Danieli in Venice

They’re expensive but might be worth it. This saved my sanity when I had to change hotels from the Hotel Danieli to the Westin Europa, on totally opposite sides of St. Mark’s Square.

Bridge at Piazza San Marco (2)

Yes, people carry their luggage up and over bridges to get to their hotels.

Buy Your Vaporetto Pass Online

You can buy your water bus (vaporetto) pass before you leave home. Simply visit the ACTV website  where you can view all of the options. This will cost about 7.50 € pp and it makes several passenger stops. This is not the private water taxi service. For that, you look for a private water taxi at the dock or arrange it online or through your concierge. It’s at least 90 € but it’s the entire boat.

Alilaguna operates several lines, noted by their color. But for going from airport to cruise port, they depart every 15 minutes. Click the link for schedules and to purchase online.

Reserve Your Private Water Taxi

Some private water taxis add a mandatory meet and greet at the train station and charge for the service.

But the upside is that you don’t have to pull/push/drag your luggage through the station, down the steps and through the crowds at the waterfront and then determine which water taxi is the one you reserved.

You can reserve a private water taxi at various places online. Princess cruise ship on the Grand Canal in Venice

Princess cruise ship on the Grand Canal 

Cruise ships on the Venetian Lagoon in Venice are gone. Conservation groups finally won the battle of the behemoths, citing erosion and pollution as the two main reasons. 

You can’t blame the Venetians for their drive to preserve this easily flooded and slowly sinking magnificent island.

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  1. Hi Barry,
    Thank you for reading my article. Yours is the first question I’ve received since Venice banned the large ships. I’m guessing you are cruising with Royal Caribbean aboard the Brilliance. Because there is no direct train from Venice Santa Lucia to Ravenna, I would suggest taking the ship’s shuttle service that is most likely offered at the Venice airport to Ravenna. Check with your travel agent or contact your cruise line. It’s not a short jaunt between the two cruise ports. Definitely think about arranging transportation with the cruise line from the Venice airport. It would be a shame to get all the way to the airport in Venice and not be able to spend the day there, so maybe they offer a pre-cruise shore excursion to Venice. I hope this is somewhat helpful. Enjoy your cruise and thank you again for writing. I am sorry if I can’t be of more help.

  2. Hi Sherry,
    We have a group of 8 people – arrive to Venice Marco Polo Airport on Sept 10, 2022 and need to get to “Ravenna Cruise Port, Porto Corsini 48123, Ravenna – Italy on Sept 11, 2022. Please advise is there Airport Shuttle or Water taxi from Venice Marco Polo Airport to the Ravenna Cruise Port?

    Barry Ma

  3. Hi Margaret,
    Thank you very much for your kind words. And lucky you for going to Venice! You didn’t mention your ship’s cruise port but unless you’re on a very small ship, you will most likely (if the law should suddenly change) have to now board your ship at Porto Marghera, an ugly industrial port. From the airport you can can hire a taxi, take a vaporetto (they’re right outside the airport) or reserve a private water taxi. Most likely and the easiest to do would be to arrange transfers through the cruise line. They’ll collect you and your luggage and head straight to the ship.

    After your cruise, it’s an easy 10-minute train ride from Porto Marghera to Venice’s Santa Lucia Station. From there, you have only two choices; walk to your hotel if it is very close (remember there are bridges and cobblestones and narrow streets), pile into a vaporetto, or hire a private water taxi.

    Thank you again for taking the time to read my article and submit your question. Have a wonderful vacation in Italy.

  4. Hi Sherry,

    Great Article! My friends and I are heading to Venice in June for a 7 night cruise then returning to Venice to stay for 2 nights before heading home. What is the best way to get from the airport to the cruise port? Thanks in advance!

  5. Hi Debra,
    Thank you for reading my Venice article. I highly recommend that they do not attempt to walk from the cruise port to the People Mover to the bridge and train station. The bridge that have to cross is the Ponte della Costituzione, a new, very long glass bridge that can also be slippery when wet. Please have them take a look at this bridge before making a decision. With five people, they could (you could do it for them) reserve a private water taxi and split the cost. I think this would be the most convenient, less stressful and certainly less strenuous way to get to Santa Lucia train station. It should only cost about $20 USD or less with all five of them.
    I hope this is helpful. Once you see the bridge, you’ll know what I mean. Tourists hauling luggage trip, fall or twist ankles because of the way the steps are arranged. Thank you again for reading my article and taking the time to write.

  6. Hi Sherry,
    Great information. I am a travel agent and haven’t been to Venice in about 10 years. I have 5 ladies (2 in their 70’s and 1 of the younger gals has difficulty with a limp). They are arriving May 9th on the RCL Rhapsody of the Seas. They want to take their luggage to the Trains Station and store it there while they sightsee. My question to you, how should they get from the cruise port to the station? Can they get on the people mover and if so, should we purchase the tickets ahead of time?
    Thank you,

  7. Hi James,
    I sort of thought that once you saw the bridge and the very low steps, it would be do-able. For your train ticket, if it was me and I knew the time and date that I’d leave from Santa Lucia to Rome, I’d get my ticket ahead of time here. Mainly because I don’t want to fumble with getting out my wallet and guard my luggage to purchase my ticket. In your case and with two people, one is the “luggage guard” while the other gets the ticket. It’s always easier with four eyes. I’ve purchased tickets on the fly at Roma Termini using the kiosk and all was fine, though I was constantly watching my luggage and carry-on.

    Which brings me to the next point, when you get to Roma Termini, walk straight head towards the main doors, directly and firmly from the train platform to the taxi rank directly in front of the station. Maybe you’ve already been in and through Termini in which case, please disregard my warning. If anyone asks you if you need directions or assistance, a loud, firm “NO” will do and keep walking. Head out the doors to the taxi. I’ve arrived into Termini at 10pm and there were a few panhandlers working the taxi line, too.

    And one more suggestion, at Santa Lucia, there are handicapped (accessible) ramps on both sides of the station that makes it much easier to enter the station instead of the long flight of steps in the front. If you’re early, once you’re in the station…all the way in the left corner (as you face the trains) is a coffee shop. One of you can sit with the luggage while the other gets coffee.
    Have a fabulous cruise! And thank you very much for reading my article and taking the time to write.

  8. thank you Sherry. after google I think it will be ok for me to carry the luggege over the bridge. one more question: is it easy to buy train tickets to rome at Santa Lucia stations or I have to buy them in advance ? thank you again. James

  9. Hi James,
    Thank you for your questions. With your two large pieces of luggage, you will end up dragging them up the steps and there are a lot of step. If you google “Calatrava Bridge Venice” you’ll seen what I mean. And with such a long bridge, going back and forth twice would be a long haul. On the positive side, the rise of the steps is very low and thousands of people bump their luggage up, across and down the bridge every day. If your luggage wheels are sturdy, I’d say that’s the way to do it. I don’t know you or your wife’s ages, strength or mobility, but when you see the photo of the bridge, I think you’ll have a much better idea. I’d bet it’s at least 200 steps total, up and over and down.

    For your second question, you can buy your People Mover ticket at the station from the kiosk. Have euro change with you, enough for both of you. So far, the cost is 1.50euro per person. An alternative is to take a taxi from outside the cruise terminal to Maestre and then a train into Venice Santa Lucia station.

    Your ship’s front desk will also be able to give you a map and maybe more advice.

    Thank you again for reading my article and have a wonderful cruise and time in Venice.

  10. hi, sherry: I plan to use the people mover and walk over bridge to the station. only thing I am worrying about is the luggage. I an d my wife have two large luggage and one small luggage. is it ok for me to carry two large luggage to walk over the stairs to cross the bridge, or one by one each time? total how many stairs ? also is it ok if I just go to the train station and buy the ticket? or I have to buy the ticket in advance? thank you

  11. Hi Annette,
    Thank you for your comment. In a perfect world, one would think that you should be able to get your luggage and take the people mover, walk etc. to Santa Lucia in time for the 10:25am train. However, in my opinion, that is cutting it a little close. You could ask MSC when you are onboard for priority debarkation. Assuming that the ship is cleared at exactly 8am (or maybe earlier!) then if you do not put your luggage outside of your door the night before and do a self-assist early walk-off, then yes, it definitely could be possible.

    I am confused as to why you are going to Civitavecchia via Florence and Pisa for six hours. The train to Roma Termini is about a 3 1/2 hour ride and then to connect to Civitavecchia would be another 45 minute train ride. Maybe for the chance to go through Pisa and Florence.

    I hope your connection works. I’ve taken an 11 am train from Santa Lucia on debarkation day, but as a solo, I opted to share a private water taxi with two other people from my ship. We arrived at the train station with about a half-hour to spare. There is a busy coffee shop at the Venice terminal if you should be lucky and have time before your train arrives. Keep an eye on your luggage. Have a wonderful cruise! Please let me know if this works out for you.

  12. Hi Sherry
    We are sailing with MSC and will be docking in Venice at 08h00 (Oct 2019). I would like to book the 10h25 train departing from Santa Lucia to Florence, Pisa and Civitavecchia , which will take about 6 hrs. We plan to use the people mover and walk over bridge to the station. Is there enough time to catch that train? Is one able to request an early disembarkation from MSC Info desk on the ship?
    Kind regards, Annette

  13. Hi Nicole,
    No worries. Your best bet is to contact a travel agent who can find a bus to Florence for your group. I’m sorry I can’t help you with it. From the Marittima to Santa Lucia train station, as you exit the port, follow the signs and you can take the People Mover (little tram ride) to the Piazzale Roma. From there, you’ll cross the glass and metal Calatrava Bridge. It’s only a 10-minute walk to the station. Otherwise you can take the #1 vaporetto somewhere around 7Euros. The staff onboard your ship will be able to answer any logistical questions that you may have. I hope you have a wonderful time in Italy.

  14. Hi Sherry,

    I apologize if this sounds redundant, but can you again explain how to get from Marittima to St Lucia train station via water bus and its associated price. After the cruise we would like to visit Florence. Also is there a bus that goes from Venice to Florence? if there is can you please give directions and info for that. My very small group is REALLY trying to keep the price low….any added links are much appreciated.

  15. Hi Sherry,

    I apologize if this sounds redundant, but can you again explain how to get from Marittima to St Lucia train station via waterbus and its associated price. After the cruise we would like to visit Florence. Also is there a bus that goes from Venice to Florence? if there is can you please give directions and info for that. My very small group is REALLY trying to keep the price low….any added links are much appreciated.

  16. Hi Marisa,
    To get from Venice Marittima to Piazza San Marco, yes, a vaporetto is the least expensive and easiest way. You can also arrange a private water taxi, but it is very expensive, around 80-100 Euro. The alternative is to take the land-way with the People Mover tram to Piazza Roma. If you like to walk, you can get to Piazza San Marco that way, too. Have a great time in Italy!

  17. To get from the cruise port to Piazza San Marco you have to go by vaporetto ? or you can use some other public transport.

  18. Hi Deb,
    Lucky you! I love Budapest. Be sure to use Budapest Keleti station (and be sure to admire the beautiful train station!).

    For Venice, I think your best, easiest and least expensive and stressful hotel option would be in Maestre, right across the water from Venice island. The city is directly on the train route to Vienna. There’s a Best Western hotel (they’re very nice in Europe) right across from the train station. Then you can zip in and out of Venice via the train and on departure day to Vienna and Budapest, you’re right there.

    Another nice feature of staying a couple of nights in Maestre is that it is accessible from the Marittima cruise terminal by land instead of staying in Venice proper and worrying about getting to your hotel from the ship.

    Have a wonderful time! Oh! When you’re on the Railjet to Budapest, be sure to order (for a fee) their homemade Hungarian Goulash. I thought it was really good…and fun to have a “local” meal while in transit!

  19. We are arriving from Holland Cruise and would like to stay an extra day or two in Venice, before leaving by train for an additional week ending up in Budapest. We are thinking train from Venice to Vienna to Budapest. Any thoughts of where to stay in Venice and how long to stay? Ship arrives Saturday June 16 @ 1pm and we are officially off the ship @ 6am Sunday June 17. We are hoping to be in Budapest on Thursday June 21st. Where to stay in Vienna, near train? Anyplace else we should look at?

  20. Hi Peggy,
    The least expensive and easiest way to Marittima Cruise Terminal is to get a hotel in Maestra, just across the water from Venice Island. From there it’s a quick taxi or bus ride to the terminal. If they’re on Venice itself, a hotel close to Piazzale Roma and take either the People Mover tram, taxi or free shuttle to Marittima would be the second choice. If they are staying downtown near Piazza San Marco, they’ll need to haul their luggage to a vaporetto stop, probably over bridges. They will then take the Alilaguna Blue water bus from San Marco-Giardinetti docks to Marittima cruise terminal. It will cost somewhere around 8 euro.

    I hope this helps.


  21. I have clients who are arriving by Rome to Venice for 1 night and then taking cruise from Venice next day

    How do they get from Venice Island to the Port of Venice —easiest and least expensive

    thank you

  22. Hi Jude,

    You are on the right path. Yes, I would suggest the #1 Water Bus/vaporetto. It will be somewhat scenic as you make your way to the Rialto Bridge stop. If you can budget for it, I like to suggest to first time visitors to reserve a water taxi. Yes, it is more expensive, but for some first timers, it takes away any anxiety. Since you are a “we” that means you’ll have four eyes to help you navigate through this incredible city. You can always ask the ticket seller for directions…most have a good grasp of English. Have a wonderful time!

  23. Hi we disembarking at Marittima Port and need to get to Hotel Rialto which I understand is at Rialto Bridge, we haven’t been to Venice before so have little idea on which Water Bus we should get in order to get to the Rialto- can you guide me – I’ve been looking at the ACTV Water Bus Map Routes and thinking we need get on either the 1 or 2 line which both stop at Rialto Bridge is the correct? you help is soooo appreciated as we are very very green.

  24. Hi Ashley,

    Lucky you! It’s easy to get from the Maritima Cruise Terminal to Santa Lucia train station. The most expensive way (and most scenic) is to arrange for a private water taxi. The ride to the station will include a trip down the Grand Canal, too. That will run about $120 USD. It can be arranged onboard. Alternatively, walk from the Maritima Cruise Terminal to the People Mover and take it to the Piazzale Roma exit. From there you can walk to the Venice train station if you do not have much luggage, due to steps over bridges, or take a Vaporetto to the station. Also, your cruise ship might have transfers available to take you from the cruise terminal to Maestre, the train station on the mainland.

    Please read my post again, only read the directions in reverse. You can also look at my map here to get your bearings.

    Have a wonderful cruise and enjoy Venice and Rome. Thank you for your email.


  25. Hello, we are planning to take a train from Venice to Rome this summer after our ship docks in Venice. What is the best way to travel to the train station from the cruise ship dock? Which train station is closest to the dock. I believe we are docking the main pier in Venice.

  26. Hi Joelle, I’m so sorry I couldn’t be of help earlier; it’s a transit day for me, too. I hope your transportation worked out okay. Have a wonderful cruise! Sherry

  27. Hello Sherry, Do you know how to get to the Royal Carribean Rhapsody of the sea ftom Venice Calle Del Magazine Tre Archi? Thank you! We have to check out at 1030am and cruise departs at 5pm today!

  28. Hi Beth,
    Oh good! I hoped that you would nix the walking to the port. I think you’ll do fine! Have a wonderful trip!

  29. Hi Sherry,

    THANK YOU, THANK YOU. Definitely not going to navigate stairs with luggage. #2 Vaporetto it will be 🙂

    Have a great day!

  30. Hi Beth,
    Thank you for your question! I’m doing a brand new post with photos, just for you. I’ll publish it tomorrow, Wednesday, and I’ll go back here and insert the link. Thank you again. I’m sure this will be helpful for others, too.

    My best advice is to not walk the distance. It’s not easy, has tons of bridges with steps. It’s also not a great walk from the train station to the main cruise terminal either. The new article is done and here’s the link:

    I hope this clears up all questions. Have a wonderful trip!


  31. Hi Ms. Kennedy,

    Your information is so helpful. I just want to make sure I have the most up to date information. I read your post to Ms. Karen on May 10, 2016. We are arriving by train to the VENEZIA S LUCIA on July 14, 2017. Our ship departs from San Basillo pier. After being on the train for 7.5 hours from Basel we will need a walk I understand that we “Turn right after you exit the train station, walk along the Grand Canal for a short distance. Cross the Ponte della Costituzione glass and steel bridge to Piazzale Roma” from another website. Is this where we purchase a ticket to the pier or can we continue and walk from Piazzala Roma. Our luggage is on wheels and we love to walk. I thank you in advance for your time and assistance.


  32. Hi Robyn, From Hotel Baglioni, there are two vaporetto platforms – San Marco Vallaresso and San Marco Giardinetti. You will want to take either the #1 or #2 vaporetto. Keep in mind that the #1 vaporetto does not stop at Giardinetti. The #2 water bus will be a little shorter travel time than the #1. But allow an hour including walking time with luggage, buying your ticket etc. Your stop for Santa Lucia train station is Ferrovia. Once there, the station is right in front of you. There are gentle walking ramps that flank the wide staircase. You just have to look a little to find them as the concrete sort of blends in with the steps and buildings.

    I always suggest arriving at any train station in Europe no more than 30 minutes prior to departure. Since your train begins in Venice, you will be allowed to board maybe 10-15 minutes prior to departure. There’s a café overlooking the train platforms but finding a seat can be a challenge at times. So for a 10:25am departure, if you are planning to take a vaporetto, I’d leave the hotel by 8:30am. If you want to splurge a bit (really a lot!), consider hiring a private water taxi. It will whisk you from the hotel to Santa Lucia station in about 20 minutes and you’ll have the entire boat to yourself. You can ask your hotel to arrange it (they’ll probably pad in a fee) or book it yourself, either online or when you’re in Venice.

    I hope this information is helpful. Have a wonderful time in Venice!

  33. Hello
    I am travelling from baglioni hotel to Venice s Lucia train leaves at 10.25am to go to Naples what do you suggest best way to get to station and what time do you think I should plan to get to station, Thankyou for you help

  34. Hi Diane, As you exit from Santa Lucia train station, there’s a wide flight of step downward (there are also two ramps on either side of the entrance) and right in front of you, you’ll find the vaporetti boarding docks. Here’s the link the schedule (copy & paste): . I didn’t find an English version, but the route you want is Ferrovia to P. Le Roma. Translated it’s from Santa Lucia to Piazzale Roma, where the People Mover tram is located. Alternatively, you can make a right turn out of the train station, walk along the Grand Canal for a short distance and cross the glass-and-steel Ponte della Costituzione bridge to Piazzale Roma and the People Mover tram. If your arms hurt from hauling luggage, for a few euros you can catch a taxi to the cruise port. There should also be a free shuttle public bus to the cruise port, too. Once you’ve done this, it will be easy peasy the next time! Thanks for asking…I hope this is helpful.

  35. Can you please tell me where to get the vaparetto from San Lusia and how long and how much it costs to get to the port we are sailing on Royal Carabbean thank you in advance.

  36. Hi Catalina,
    Thank you very much. You’ve welcome! Have a wonderful trip!

  37. Hi Catalina,

    My first suggestion would be to purchase your cruise line’s airport transfers to the cruise port. If you have their transfers, then there’s no worry about getting to the ship on time as other guests will also arrive and have purchased transfers, too. It’s about a 2 hour public boat ride from the airport to the cruise port.

    It helps to know that both the airport and Maritima cruise port are accessible via land transportation as well as water transport.

    A taxi ride from the airport to the Maritima takes about 20 minutes for about $40. Or you can take an public airport shuttle to Piazzale Roma and then take a short taxi ride or the People Mover (an elevated tram/train) to the Maritima Basin entrance. Or if you don’t have much luggage, it’s somewhat walkable (15-20 minutes) from Piazzale Roma to the cruise port.

    The best way to get to Florence from Venice is by train and Santa Lucia is the train station on Venice island. There’s also Maestre station on the mainland but I’ve never used it. There are several departures throughout the day leaving at :25 past the hour. I’d suggest nothing before the 11:25am train. You don’t want to arrive more than 30 minutes before your train. There’s a café there but seats are hard to find. It’s only a two-hour and five minute train ride.

    Getting to Santa Lucia: If you don’t have tons of luggage you can make your way from the cruise port to Piazzale Roma, either on foot or People Mover train. From Maritima to Santa Lucia station, follow the signs as you leave the port for the People Mover to Piazzale Roma. From there, you can follow the crowds and cross the bridge to the station. Keep in mind that you will encounter steps (all bridges have steps) and hauling luggage up, across and over can be exhausting. You can also find water taxis to the train station.

    Because it’s an island without cars or taxis, getting around Venice can be very confusing on your first visit. After that, it all makes sense!

    Good luck and have a wonderful time in Italy and on your cruise.

  38. Hi Sherry

    I need some help/advice. I arrive into Marco Polo and my cruise leaves from Marittima. I was looking at the Ailaguna passes as I would rather not pay for a private water taxi. On the way back my ship arrives into Marittima and I need to go to Florence. I was considering taking the train to Florence. My question is my plane arrives in Venice at noon and we should be boarding the ship about 3ish is that enough time to go from the airport to the cruise port? Also would Ailaguna be the best option to get from the airport to the cruise port other than the private boat? One last thing, where would I grab the train to get to Florence from the cruise port and what mode of transportation would be best to use? Thanks a million!

  39. Hi Melanie,

    My best advice, since there are four of you, would be to hire a private water taxi and share the cost. It will take you directly to Santa Lucia station with plenty of time for a coffee at the café near the platform. Also, Santa Lucia station has two accessible ramps that flank the entrance to the station which are perfect for hauling a large suitcase, instead of bumping and dragging it up the stairs. I have taken the exact same train to Rome and used a private water taxi to make life easier and less stressful with connections.

    If you are all on a budget, then yes, I’d say to go to Maestra instead, since it’s on the mainland. But make sure your train stops there! To the best of my knowledge, not all Santa Lucia trains stop at Maestra.
    Have a fabulous cruise and trip in Italy!


  40. I have a couple of questions. We will be getting back to Venice from our MSC cruise at 9am. We want to take the high speed train to Rome. There will be 4 of us each with a large suitcase. Is it easier to get to the Maestra train station or the Lucia train station and is it doable to arrive to the train by 11:45 am?

  41. Hi Dita, thank you for your nice comment about this article. The most simple way to get from the airport to Marittima cruise terminal is to purchase the cruise line’s transfers. To take the tram from the airport to Piazzale Roma is the least expense way to go.

    If you want to take the ATVO to Piazzale Roma (the junction where you make connections to the port) visit ATVO Web site’s Venice Airport pages and select Venice Marco Polo Airport – Venice Piazzale Roma (Express Service).

    Once you’re at the Piazzale Roma, that’s when you can decide if you’d like to try the People Mover for a one-minute ride to Marittima Terminal. It’s a little bit of a walk as you exit the People Mover train just outside the port entrance. You could also take a taxi to the port or look for a possibly free shuttle at Piazzale Roma to your ship.

    Figure that unless you take a private water taxi at about 120€ (for 6-8 people), you can expect to pay less than 10€ per person. I hope this additional info is helpful. Have a wonderful trip!

  42. Hi Sherry, Looking at the Alilaguna blue line, it looks like you can take it from the airport and stops at the cruise terminal. But which Terminal is it? Is it the Marittima Cruise Terminal? This is the other option I am exploring vs. the ATVO airport express to Piazzale Roma. Which will you recommend? Thanks again. Dita

  43. Hi Sherry, your information and tips on getting to/from airport to Marittima Cruise Terminal is very helpful. We are taking NCl cruise from Venice in August,2017. Our plane arrives at VCE airport at around 9.40 am. on the day the cruise departs. I am thing of taking The airport express (ATVO) to Piazzale Roma. I have read from your post that you can Tram 1 from the Marittima cruise terminal to Piazzale Roma.
    Can we take this tram from Piazzale Roma to Marittima Cruise Terminal? Do we enoough time to do this? How much does it cost to take this Tram ? Are there othe tram, since you mention Tram 1. Your advise is greatly appreciated. Dita

  44. Hi Marshal, If you arrive into Venice airport at 2pm, keep in mind that you’ll need to check in at the cruise terminal no later than 4 or 4:30pm. I would advise that you ask your travel agent or contact the cruise line to know exactly when the cut-off time is for embarkation. Two hours should be enough time for public transportation as long as you don’t get lost. You might also ask about purchasing airport to ship transfers through the cruise line. It could save you a lot of headache. Then you could take public transport from the ship to the airport, instead. Have a wonderful cruise!

  45. hi my plane arriving in venice airport @2pm and my cruise (ncl) departs at 6pm is that enough time for me if I use public transportations.

  46. Hi Joe, thanks for your question. The travel time between Santa Lucia and the Marittima Cruise Terminal could be determined on how you choose to get there. If you make a reservation for a private water taxi, it would only be about a 20-miinute scenic, stress-free boat ride. Or you could take a public vaporetto; they run about every 15 minutes from Santa Lucia and could take about 30 to 40-minutes. My article has links to both so you can make your reservation. If you are traveling with several others, a private water taxi is definitely the best way to go, as it costs about 90 euro for the entire boat vs. less than $10 for a vaporetto ticket.

    For me, when I arrive into Venice after an overnight train ride, I’ve saved up to afford a private water taxi along with someone at the platform to help me with luggage. There are now two ramps on either side of the exit doors so that makes getting from the station to the water’s edge a little easier.

    Have a wonderful trip! Sherry

  47. How long does it take to get from Santa Lucia train station to the cruise port (NCL)?? What is the best way to get there?

  48. Hi Marline,
    I’m guessing you will be staying at a hotel in Mestre. It’s easy to get there from the big cruise ship terminal, Marittima. For about €30-40 you can hop into a taxi as you exit the terminal (follow the signs or follow the crowd!). If you’d rather save your money, you can take the T1 tram to Piazzale Roma, a central hub for vehicles. If you’re traveling light, there is a public bus but if you’re not familiar with the buses, especially just coming off a ship, I’d go with the other two ideas. I hope this is helpful. Have a wonderful cruise. Sherry

  49. Hi Ana,
    The BEST way is of course the most expensive: by private water taxi. This can set you back about €110. The good new is that if you can find more people (up to 10 total) to share it with you, the price can be a bargain. I would inquire at the Shore Excursion Desk on your ship if they will sell group transportation to Santa Lucia. It is possible. Also, offers a meet and greet at the ship to Santa Lucia station. There is always public transportation on the water bus (vaporetto) that you can try. If you were to take transportation from the ship (at Marittima) to Piazzale Roma, you can the take the #1 ACTV vaporetto to Santa Lucia station. Yes, it all sounds confusing but once you get there, it will be easier. The distance, as the crow flies, from Marittima to Santa Lucia is very close. But because of the canals, it’s a round-about way to get there. Easiest: private water taxi. Least expensive: walk from ship to the People Mover to Piazzale Roma and vaporetto to Train. But…you will have luggage and it’s not always easy to drag luggage. Take land taxi to Piazzale Roma and then the vaporetto.

    Thanks again, Ana. I know this is a lot to try to absorb. Best bet, like I mentioned, is to first ask the ship’s tour dept. when you board. Then if they aren’t providing a purchasable transportation option, you’ll still have enough time to book with Viator.

    Yes, there is left luggage storage (baggage office – deposito bagagli) at Santa Lucia near Track #1.


  50. What is the best way to get from the port terminal (Celebrity cruise ship – Venezia Terminal Passenger Maritima) to the St Lucia train station to go to Florence?

    Do you know if the St Lucia train station has lockers or baggage storage?

  51. Hi Karen,
    Lucky you! I would suggest Santa Lucia train station. If you go through Mestre, it’s on the mainland, so it will add to the time needed to get between San Basilio. San Basilio is closer to Santa Lucia than the major Marittima Cruise Terminal. You have options when you arrive in Venice. Walk directly straight ahead after you exit your train and you’ll be right there at the canal. There may even be a vaporetto to go direct to San Basilio. It can be a bit overwhelming so just take a breath, enjoy the first glimpse of Venice and simply ask the ticket vendor (go down the stairs and you’ll see it)for a ticket to San Basilio. There are ramps if your luggage is cumbersome. The ramps are on your right and hopefully the ramp on your left is open, too. Once you get to San Basilio, you’ll see your ship, and there may even be a shuttle provided by your ship between San Basilio Cruise Terminal and boarding. You’ll do embarkation at the small terminal right there as you exit the water transport. Thank you for reading my website! Happy travels! Sherry

  52. Hi Sherry. We are going to San Basilio Cruise port from the rail station. Which rail station is best to arrive and the least amount of hassle and expense to San Bailio? Thank you!

  53. Hi Dolores,
    Simply exit the airport terminal and look for the Water Taxi sign. You’ll need to know at which cruise port your ship is docked…San Basilio or Marittima. The same will apply from the cruise port to Santa Lucia station. If you’re feeling flush, you can pre-arrange a private water taxi. There are links to all of the info in this article. Have a terrific cruise and Happy Travels!

  54. What’s the best way to get to Venice cruise port from Venice airport, and from cruise port to Saint Lucia. Train station

  55. Hi Charlene,
    Yes, you can come and go from Santa Lucia to the Airport (VCE) but you have to change trains on the mainland at Mestre station. And yes, you can take either a land taxi, water taxi or bus to and from Piazzale Roma. Or take a water bus (about an hour boat ride) from right outside the airport to Piazza San Marco and walk from there.

  56. Regarding this informatio “From the airport, you can take either a bus or taxi to Piazzale Roma. From there, you can either walk across the modern-looking bridge or take a vaporetto/water taxi to your hotel. If this seems too daunting (too much luggage) you can board a water taxi at the airport (outside of the customs area) to go to your hotel in Venice. It’s strange to think of Venice as an island without roads. You can buy your water taxi tickets here” Can you also go to the airport via taxi or bus from Piazzale roma? I was under the impression you could take a train from the Santa Lucia station to the airport. I guess I was wrong, thank you for your help.

  57. Hi Charlene,
    I’m not sure if you meant to take the train from the airport to Venice (the city/island) or the Marittima Cruise Terminal. Assuming that you mean to go from the airport into Venice, no, you cannot take a train directly into Venice from the airport. On an aside note: You could take a land taxi or bus from the airport to Venice Mestre train station. From there, you can board a train that goes across the water into Venice proper. But that’s a lot of work.

    From the airport, you can take either a bus or taxi to Piazzale Roma. From there, you can either walk across the modern-looking bridge or take a vaporetto/water taxi to your hotel. If this seems too daunting (too much luggage) you can board a water taxi at the airport (outside of the customs area) to go to your hotel in Venice. It’s strange to think of Venice as an island without roads. You can buy your water taxi tickets here

    I hope this is helpful. Thank you for your comment.

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