If you are flying into Marco Polo airport, make sure you are seated on the right hand side of the plane. You will get to see stunning Venice and the cruise terminal from above.
Marco Polo Airport Terminal is far too small for the amount of passengers it is handling and especially when flying back home it can become claustrophobic, not knowing which line starts where. Just be patient and it all will work out. Do not arrive too early, two hours before plane departure is more than plenty. You will not be able to drop your bags any earlier anyhow.
For detailed instructions how to reach your cruise terminal from Marco Polo airport click here. If you have time to spare, take the Alilaguna blu line boat, for 15 Euro, you will enjoy a 90 minute tour around Venice and it will dock right in the middle of all the cruise ships.
Left luggage is 6 euro per 24 hours.
By bus from Treviso Airport to Venice:
An efficient coach service for Venice is scheduled to coincide with flights landing and departing at Treviso. The service is run by a local company called ATVO, there are coaches specifically to serve arriving flights, so if your plane is late there will still be a bus waiting. At Treviso you can buy tickets in the airport's arrivals hall, validate them in the machine provided, and then simply step outside to find coaches waiting on the tarmac. In Venice you can buy tickets at the ATVO office in Piazzale Roma, underneath the car park building. You can't buy them on the bus.The journey takes between 35 and 70 minutes, depending on the route and traffic, and normally this a swift and efficient service with sufficient coaches to meet demand. Most of the services stop first in Mestre, Venice's mainland industrial zone - confirm with the driver if this is your destination as occasionally they run separate buses for each destination - before continuing over the road bridge to Piazzale Roma, Venice's transport hub. The return journey is from Piazzale Roma, bay D2 (check the timetable for the latest details). Most of the ATVO coaches are comfortable with air-conditioning, curtains to keep out the hot sun, seat belts - which should be fastened - and a hold for luggage. It's worth looking out of the window during your journey - the regular route passes some grand old villas on the plains between Treviso and Venice.
The car park at the terminal is open on days when cruise ships are in port; make you online reservation here.
Arriving at the main train station St. Lucia Railway
station the terminals can be reached by:
- Public water buses (vaporetti) to P.le Roma (1 stop) where you will find the terminal's bus shuttle or you can take a taxi cab or the new people mover.
- Water taxi directly to the cruise terminal.
From Mestre Railway station (10 km far away from
Venice) the Port of Venice can be reached by:
- Taxi cab (about a 20 minute ride)
- Public bus arriving in Piazzale Roma, nearby the Port of Venice.
Please note: some cruise companies make you believe that taxis are difficult to get. In general a taxi for 2 persons or more is cheaper than a cruise organized transfer.
In terminal 103 you can arrange to get your luggage shipped to the airport for €12.50 a piece, great if your ship arrives early and your flight leaves late and want to explore Venice in the mean time.
Starting 2020 or perhaps earlier, ships over 55,000 tonnes or over 2000 pax, will be stopped from steaming past Venice's St Mark's Square under a new deal between the Italian government and Venice officials and you will be docked mainland's industrial Marghera port, a 15 minute drive.
Click here to see the cruise schedule.
Map of the present Venice cruise terminals.
Watch destination videos.
What to do:
Of all the squares in Venice, Piazza San Marco is the most spectacular, the only one named Piazza, while all the others are named "Campo".
You can visit the Clock Tower: this extraordinary tour of the Renaissance Tower enables visitors to get a close view of the clock mechanism; it ends on terraces which afford a magnificent view of St. Mark's Square and the whole city. The tours, with an expert guide, have to be booked in advance.
The Venetians love mucking about in boats, and row around in the canals and lagoon, especially on weekends. In summer, get a ferry to the Lido's beaches or sunbathe on the Fondamenta delle Zattere promenade. Floating between the sea and the lagoon is the beautiful island of the Lido of Venice: few minutes away from Venice, kilometers of golden sands offer something for everyone.
You might like the Secret itineraries in Doge's Palace tour: not accessible with the standard ticket, these tours take the visitor into the most secret and fascinating rooms in the Palace; the tours are all with a specialized guide, with a minimum of 2 people.
Don't leave without a visit to the famous islands, known throughout the world for picturesque scenery, handicraft and history. Murano is well known for its glass making, Burano is famous not only for its lace but it is also a pretty fishing village - its streets lined with bright colored houses. Torcello is a delightful little island, the earliest center of civilizations in the estuary
The most popular way to do sightseeing in Venice is as follows:
Exit the cruise terminal, head for the People Mover and buy a ticket (1.50 Euro), take this driverless train to Piazzale Roma, only a few minutes, than head for the ACTV terminals and buy a day or longer ticket for all canal buses (Vaparetti). It is like a giant Hop On/Off cruising experience covering all of Venice, Murano, Burano, Lido all the way to Punta Sabbioni.
There are ACTV Pass kinds:
20,00 € - 1 DAY TRAVELCARD
30,00 € - 2 DAYS TRAVELCARD
Note: When you get off your cruise ship you will be tempted to buy local transportation tickets at the booths outside the terminal. These only sell tickets for the Alilaguna boats, which are great to get you to the airport and Piazza San Marco, but are of limited use if you want to discover Venice as a whole. Return ticket to Piazza San Marco is €15. Check return times before you set out.
A gondola should cost € 70,00 for 50 minutes (up to six passengers), with an additional € 35,00 surcharge for every additional 25 minutes. The price goes up to € 80,00 between 8pm and 8am (prices at time of writing). The tariffs for gondola rides are established by the government, but the gondolier are notorious for extorting large sums of money from unsuspecting tourists. You are advised to agree on a price before boarding.
Hop on/off Boat. From one of the most beautiful squares in the world, Piazza San Marco, to the Bridge of Sighs from the pristine beaches of Lido to the island of Murano.
Be aware that Venice is not the most friendly for passengers with walking difficulty and there are no shuttles in the port area.
It pays to compare your cruise line shore excursions here.
It's not too hard to travel onwards from Venice, but if you are planning day trips in the Veneto you do need to consider the extra time it may take you if you have to begin your journey by crossing Venice on foot or by boat. Trains run from Venice's Santa Lucia Station all over Italy, although for some services you may need to change at the mainland station Venezia Mestre. Padua and Verona are among the interesting towns which can be visited by train from Venice. Buses depart from Piazzale Roma and cover the region.
What to see in the Veneto:
Verona, with its Roman ruins and rather spurious Shakespeare connection is a lovely town to wander around. So too is the rather humbler Treviso, a quiet and prosperous town near Venice with picturesque canals of its own.
Padua is an attractive and interesting town with a rich history, impressive architecture and art - particularly Giotto's frescoes - which is a must for the art historian.
Venice and its lagoon offer unmissable sightseeing experiences, and once you're tired of crowded bridges and canals there are plenty of interesting excursions around the lagoon to quieter destinations such as the fishing port of Chioggia and the abandoned island of Torcello.
The wealthy city-dwellers of the Veneto became obsessed with erecting elegant villas in the countryside, and employed the finest architects to design these rural palaces. Andrea Palladio was the most famous, and the Palladian villas of the region are, after the canals of Venice, one of the Veneto's most renowned images. The town of Vicenza is the place to visit to see more of his work, while a trip down the Brenta Canal passes his famous villa La Malcontenta, and scores of other summer homes of the Venetian aristocracy.
Culture-lovers will want to attend the famous outdoors opera season in Verona's Roman arena, and will be spoiled for choice with the region's collection of art galleries and fine architecture. Wine-lovers will find several good local wines, including the sparkling Prosecco which can be sampled in vineyards along the so called 'Ring of Prosecco'.
Venice has always been a busy retail center, with an emphasis on luxury goods and a flair for the eccentric. The main retail areas are the Mercerie and the streets known collectively as the Frezzeria, which wind between campo San Fantin and piazza San Marco itself. The densest concentration of big-name fashion houses is in calle Larga XXII Marzo, just west of the piazza, where Gucci, Prada, Valentino, Fendi and Ferragamo huddle together. Calle della Mandola is the street for books and glass beads. For antiques, nose around campo Santo Stefano and San Marco. Look out for unique boutiques with imported or hand-crafted items between the Rialto and San Polo.
There are duty free stores in the cruise terminals, but often are not operating or are not very competitive priced. Hand luggage will be checked by state officials, before you enter the ship, but not on the ship itself.
Venice is very expensive. A soda or cappuccino on a nice outdoor terrace on San Marco Square including classy live music from a quintet and perfect service will cost you around €14 each!
Marco Polo airport has free WiFi for the first half an hour. 4.95 per hour thereafter.
The cruise terminals offer also free WiFi. The login codes are somewhat clumsily posted at the entrance. If you can not find it try VTPWIFI and FREE
Emergency number: 112
The typical majority of the clothing and gift stores are closed Monday morning, while in general the food stores close Wednesday afternoons.
The most current schedules of opening are 9 a.m. in the morning to 7:30 p.m. in the evening with a closing for the lunch break and nap- 1:00 p.m. to sometimes until 4 p.m.
Nearly all of the stores are closed Sunday, except for certain shops which sell souvenirs.
Holidays in Italy
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