How To Get Around In Venice – By Foot, Gondola & Vaporetto september 23, 2021 – Posted in: Italy, Travel – Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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An Essential Guide to Public Transport in Venice

Getting around Venice, the best way is on foot or by vaporetto, one of the many water buses. It takes a day or two getting used to suddenly being in a city where all the routes through the city also require a consideration of how to get across the canals. There are only four bridges over the Canal Grande, the great canal deviding the city, with the Rialto Bridge as the most famous.

So the impressive lagoon city is also a city where you have to both sail and walk! In addition to the four large bridges, the city also consists of an infinite number of small stone bridges with stairs that must be climbed, and if you have difficulty walking, it will be a tough vacation. There are no ramps across many of the bridges, but luckily the staff on the vaporetti, the harbor buses, are kind and helpful getting wheelchairs on and off.

Get around Venice on foot

In other words, Venice requires you to have both the will and energy to move around on foot. And finally, leave the high-heeled shoes and the flip-flops at home! The city requires a pair of good walking shoes, preferably sneakers or hiking sandals, because there are many cobblestones and craters in the sidewalks. It also quickly becomes a long journey for small feet, and you can read our good tips for a kids-friendly holiday here.

Venice is one big maze of water, and walking through the city, you get quite fond of Google Maps. There are both bus and metro lines on the map, you are shown the fastest route and you get a map at the same time. You can easily use a paper city mapfor the major roads, but inside the small alleys it is difficult to find your way around the canals.

But Venice also invites you to get a little lost, because there is so much to look at! There are many amazing places in Venice that you might not get to see if you just follow the usual tourist routes. A little tip, though, is that before you walk all the way down the street, just look to see if there is any water moving at the end. If there is no bridge, it’s probably a dead end, and then you’ll have to go all the way back again.

Cycling in Venice

Note that cycling is not allowed in Venice, in fact you are not even allowed to pull a bike, it must be carried like a suitcase. Only city residents and children up to the age of eight are allowed to use bicycles in Venice. This is one of the special rules that apply to tourists in Venice and which you can read more about here. You are also not allowed to sit on the ground at St. Mark’s Square and take a rest. The rules have been introduced because too many tourists had difficulties behaving properly – and after a visit to the city with the large tourits crowds, you will end up agreeing to the rules.

Get around Venice by boat

In return, you can easily get around Venice with a vaporetto, the harbor bus with the many routes. The Vaporettos sail all over the city and also out to many of the 117 other Venetian islands in the lagoon. The locals in the city are diligent users of the veporetto, and it’s an easy way to get around. Unfortunately, they get filled up quickly and you can’t be sure to always get omboard in the first place. Please place your backpack between your legs, so there will be room for more people.

We visited Venice in September 2021, where the great tourist crowds had not yet returned to Venice, and already there the Vaporettos were filled. But Venice is thankfully no bigger than you can walk around to all the sights.

It’s recommended to buy a 3-day transport card, or how many days you are in the city. You can buy it at Piazzale Roma or here on ACTV, where you will also find time tables and lots of information about the vaporetti system. With the multi-day ticket, you can travel unlimited in Venice and out to the other islands. Remember to scan your ticket before boarding, otherwise you will be fined.

In Venice you can also take a water taxi if you need to get there a little faster. It’s expensive as a normal taxi, and you can check prices yourself and book a trip here with one of the city’s largest companies, Consorzio Motoscafi.

Finally, you can also take a gondola tour on the canals. A private gondola ride costs from €75 and up. You can board the gondolas everywhere, and many of them are located at St. Mark’s Square. See the official prices for goldola tours in Venice here: The Gondola and its history.

How do you get to Venice?

Venice has two airports: Marco Polo Airport, 10 km from the city center, and Treviso Airport, 40 km north of Venice. If you land in Treviso, there are airport buses to Venice all day, which cost 12 euros (2021) for a single ticket. Read more here: Treviso Airport Shuttle Bus.

If you arrive by car, be aware that you – of course – can’t drive around in Venice. Once you have crossed the long bridge to the island, you can park your car in one of the large parking areas behind Piazzale Roma or on the Tronchetto, where all the major cruise ships dock.

If you are located north of Venice, you can also catch the vaporetto at Punta Sabbioni. It takes about an hour with the vaporetto, sailing through the beautiful lagoon and past many of the small Venetian islands.

More tips for your holiday in Venice

Where to stay in Venice?

There are many wonderful hotels in Venice, but where is the best place to stay? On you can see the large selection of hotels in Venice, and in the article Where to stay in Venice you can read more about where in Venice you should book your holiday. There are several romantic hotels for couples on the list, and you also get a really good tip if you are on holiday in Venice with kids.

You can also do your own search on  for a good hotel in Venice right here:

Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo - Sidder Under En Palme

Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo – click here to see more!

A recommendation: Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo

Hotel Al Ponte Mocenigo is a perfect setting for a romantic holiday in Venice. The hotel is located right in the heart of Venice, away from the tourist crowds and with a vaporetto station (San Stae) down the street. Otherwise, the Rialto Bridge is only a seven minute walk away and St. Mark’s Square a quarter of an hour.

The small boutique hotel has just 10 beautiful rooms, all decorated in Venetian 18th-century style with exposed ceiling beams, damask curtains, large chandeliers and soft beds. In the morning, the hotel offers a wonderful breakfast in the small courtyard, serving eggs and bacon, crispy croissants and most importantly: great coffee!

See more good hotels here: Where to stay in Venice

Read the other articles about Venice here!

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