By cruise ship, Venice
Transport to the cruise terminal is quick and easy. We caught the water bus from Zaccaria "C" station near San Marco. There are other stops also. Cost 8 Euro each.
Once at the terminal signage will direct you to the correct terminal for your cruise.
This cruising ship of enourmuos roportions is almost bigger then Piazza San Marco! It is even higher the bell tower of San Giorgio, as you can see on the picture. I wasn't expected to see such a "monster" boat entering in the harbour of Venice. When it happened, it was the main attraction of the moment, everybody came on Piazzetta to make a photo of it.
The other two pictures have been taken in Canale Giudecca, demonstrating the huge proportions of the boat which is much bigger then the huge church of Redintore.
That cruise ships are getting bigger and bigger and becoming a problem for Venice not only because the cruise ships passing at San Marco contribute to the wake pollution called "Moto Ondoso" even if they move very slowly but also because in a short time thousand of tourists "invade" the centre of the city.
With 23 millions of tourists per year, an average of 60.000/day with peaks of 100.000/day I don't think that a cruise ship load of 2000 - 3000 tourists will be visible. Every visitor of Venice contributes in some way to the pollution but spends also money and contributes consequently to keep the 50.000 Venetian inhabitants active.
Most of these tourists stay only for the day so that the atmosphere of Venice undergoes a complete change in the evening.
I found a film from a stay in 1995 and it's evident that the cruise ships of that time were mini ships compared with those I saw on my last visit. Somewhat exceptional was the presence of an Italian destroyer at anchor in front of the Piazzetta. The Marina Militare Guided Missile Destroyer D560 "Durand de la Penne" put in service in 1993.
Made me think of the time where the Venetian galleys dominated the Adriatic Sea and participated to the naval victory of Lepante against the Turk Ottomans.
Exit the cruise terminal, head for the People Mover and buy a ticket (1 Euro), take this driverless train to Piazzale Roma, only a few minutes, than head for the ACTV terminals and buy a 12 hours 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 six ACTV Pass kinds:
16,00 € - 12-HOUR TRAVELCARD
18,00 € - 24-HOUR TRAVELCARD
23,00 € - 36-HOUR TRAVELCARD
28,00 € - 48-HOUR TRAVELCARD
33,00 € - 72-HOUR TRAVELCARD
50,00 € - 7 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, but are of limited use if you want to discover Venice as a whole.
This is maybe the last photo of a big cruise ship on the Bacino di San Marco you might see!
The Italian government has announced that from January 2014, the number of cruise ships allowed through Venice will be cut by 20%.
Ships of more than 96,000 tons will be banned from the centre of the city from November next year.
Probably that during your stay in Venice you will see one of these giant cruise ships passing on the Canal of San Marco, surprisingly deep enough, and the Canal of the Giudecca.
You can not miss them because they are often higher than the buildings or even the campaniles from Venice.
When we were having lunch on the Riva near the Arsenal we saw one of them passing.
It was the Celebrity Century with 1814 passengers (I counted them all standing on the decks).
There is some opposition in Venice about these cruise ships passing at San Marco because they also contribute to the wake pollution called "Moto Ondoso" even if they move very slowly.
It is a reality that every visitor of Venice contributes in some way to the pollution but spends also money and contributes consequently to keep Venice active and alive.
It's up to the authorities to find equilibrium.
We took a 7 night R/T Med cruise from Venice in Sept/Oct of 2012. This was our third cruise aboard a NCL ship and our first on the NCL Jade. We opted for a Balcony Stateroom and it was fresh, bright, appeared to have been fairly recently refurbished. Actually, the entire ship was in great shape. Bath was of course quite small but shower itself was larger than on most cruise ships. The main dining rooms, there are two, had great service and the food was excellent. We greatly enjoyed the dining room at the rear of the ship, however, we found the middle dining room noisy and a bit claustrophobic with it's low ceilings. The gym was a bit on the small side and the steam rooms were rather small. Pool area was quite crowded on sea days. Entertainment was good. All in all, we found the Jade to be one of the better cruise ships we have been on.
We travelled overnight by ship up the Adriatic from Koper, Slovenia, to Venice in Italy in May 2011. Venice is very popular for day trippers from cruises which can either be a good or bad thing (depending on your opinion).
We booked a package which included a motor launch to San Marco where we had begun our city exploration but I know that there are scheduled water bus services from the port to the city centre should you wish to make your own way there.
The motor launch took approximately 25 minutes from the port to San Marco District.
If you are looking for an easy and quick way to get from Piazzale Roma to the Stazione Marittima (the cruise boat harbour) you can take the litte train called "People mover" that goes back and forth between these two places every day.
The fare is one 1 Euro each way and takes about 5 minutes. You can buy your ticket directly from the machine - the display shows how to proceed in several languages.
An excellent solution if you're coming/leaving Venice from the cruise harbour and don't want to loose time waiting for the vaporetto.
Very good of you to reply. Yes, some back tracking is needed to leave the ship, go to hotel and back to Venice, etc. This is our first experience and we wanted to stay closer to the air port, because the latest flight we could get was early, 7:45 AM. We did not have the benefit of Google or train schedules or VT experteese before booking the room, just partially informed travel agent and ship booking agent.
I just discovered VT late last night. I'm recommending the group to all I meet.
Thank you once again.
My grandmother took me to Venice on a cruise ship. We were on the NCL Jade. You might not think of a big ship as a way to get to Venice, but there are a lot of ships that come to Venice. Of course they don't come right in the Grand Canal - even if there weren't bridges it would be too narrow and shallow.
There are many cruise lines that ply the Med and offer stops in Venice. When choosing your cruise ship it's best to take in passenger to crew ratio, this measures the number of passengers per crew member.