A guide for Venice ship passengers
In August of 2021, the Italian government banned nearly all cruise ships from Venice's historic center. The current plan is to move all but the smallest cruise ships to a temporary port in the industrial district of Marghera and eventually build a new port on the Adriatic sea.
For more information, see our article on Venice cruising changes at Veniceforvisitors.com. (Note: The port and pier descriptions below are still valid for most ships below 25,000 GRT, such as small luxury cruise ships, private yachts, and river vessels that cruise in the Venetian Lagoon and the Po River Delta.)
Venice is one of Europe's busiest cruise ports, with more than 600 ship visits every year. Here's what you need to know as a cruise passenger:
The Port of Venice has three terminal areas:
- Marittima, the main ship basin, which handles ships of all sizes.
- San Basilio, a quay and terminal building next to the Giudecca Canal. This is used by small to medium-size ships and hydrofoil ferries to Croatia.
- Riva dei Sette Martiri, on the St. Mark's Basin waterfront in Venice's prime sightseeing area. River vessels and hotel barges often moor at Sette Martiri overnight, with embarkation and disembarkation at Marittima or San Basilio.
Where to board your ship:
If your cruise is departing from Venice, you'll need to know where to embark.
- Your cruise documentation should include terminal information (such as "Marittima 107" or "San Basilio").
- You can also check the port's official cruise calendar if you haven't yet received your cruise tickets.
Getting to the pier:
Unless your cruise line is providing transfers, see these pages for information on how to reach your ship:
From the pier to the airport:
If your ship is arriving in Venice and you're flying out the same day, allow plenty of time for your airport connection. Here's why:
- Immigration isn't always quick (we once waited 2½ hours to get our passports at Marittima).
- Unless you've arranged a transfer with your cruise line, getting to the airport may take a while. (Taxis are often in short supply.)
- Check-in, baggage drop, and security can be very slow at Venice Marco Polo airport at busy times or on mornings when several large cruise ships have arrived in Venice.
- Treviso Airport (used by Ryanair and several other budget airlines) is nearly an hour from Venice.
- To be on the safe side, spend a night in Venice before flying home, or book an airport transfer with your cruise line and hope for the best.
Pre- and post-cruise hotels:
Before reserving a hotel through your cruise line, make sure you know and like the location. (Some cruise lines' "Venice hotels" are half an hour from the city by train or bus.)
For advice on booking hotels that are convenient to the piers, see: