Cruising into the Venetian Lagoon is an unforgettable experience, as you skirt the islands to dock at the Stazione Marittima near the Piazzale Roma transport hub. St. Mark’s Square and its many-domed basilica is only a short public ferry or water taxi ride away, and the picturesque canals, bridges, and palaces of Venice await.
Venice can be a confusing maze of winding canals and tiny backstreets for any visitor, so joining a private walking tour of the Floating City is the most stress-free way to savor its unique beauty and visit the most famous attractions while in port. Maximize your time by exploring Venice with a shore excursion that includes a water taxi ride from the cruise port down the Grand Canal to St. Mark’s Square and skip-the-line tickets to the more crowded attractions like the Doge’s Palace and St. Mark’s Basilica. Most Venice shore excursions include a half-day guided walking tour that takes in highlights like St. Mark’s Square and Basilica, the Doge’s Palace, the Rialto Bridge, and the city’s famous network of canals, bridges, and quiet backstreets.
Things to Know Before You Go
- St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace are the most visited attractions in Venice, so be sure to choose a tour with skip-the-line tickets.
- Entry to most Venetian churches, including St. Mark’s Basilica, require clothing that covers shoulders and knees.
- Private tours and shore excursions of Venice require a fair amount of walking, and comfortable footwear and weather-appropriate clothing is recommended.
- There are numerous canalside stops around the city where you can book a gondola ride; rates are official and posted at all the stops.
How to Get to Venice from the Venice Cruise Port
Vaporettos (public ferries) and water taxis run to St. Mark’s Square from the Stazione Marittima cruise port hourly and take about 20 minutes to make the trip down the Grand Canal; you could also walk 10 to 15 minutes to Piazzale Roma and catch the vaporetto from there, which run more frequently. Some cruise lines provide a free shuttle to St. Mark’s Square, and many shore excursions include a private water taxi to the square.
Venice Cruise Port Information
Most of the largest cruise lines stop at the Venice cruise port. Italian is the predominant language here, but English is widely understood throughout Venice. The local currency is the euro; ATMs and foreign exchange bureaus are clustered around St. Mark’s Square.