About to cruise Venice? Get off the ship and know what to do...

When you cruise Venice you realize...all these canals of Venice, palaces and gondolas of Venice aren't just props for tourists' fun. Here, things are down to earth...it is a city where real people live and work, a place where you come to admire its natural charm and atmosphere...just as it is.

In all these years of endless cruising, we've had a chance of meeting people who claimed to have "visited Venice once before" and wanted to see something else on that day. As someone who has visited Venice at least 50 times we could never understand people who cruise Venice once and claim to have "seen it all."

This city literally is like a museum in the open...and guess what, since it in the open, there are so many things to do in Venice for free.

Every facade, cupola, courtyards and Venice bridges speak a story of the fantastic mixture of peoples, religions and beliefs that meddled right here...you just need to learn how to read it. Trust me, even if this is your umpteenth visit...you'll learn and discover something new about the history of Venice Italy!

Even shopping here isn't only limited to the same-old-same-old that you see in every other capital of the world. Quite a few items you can buy here speak of its history and have meaning behind them.

Shopping in Venice is actually a fantastic opportunity to buy something handmade, unique and precious...something you might hand down in your family one day!

Today, there are numerous cheap and soulless copies of these items sold on streets so we'll help you recognize the real deal and avoid the tourist traps!

Although the majority of stores do take all major credit cards it is always wise to keep some cash on you and you might use our tips on where to find the nearest ATM machine

If you're not from the EU (European Union), you'll be happy to find that you might be eligible to claim the VAT tax back and maybe even get your customs stamp right there in Venice!

And if you are planning to focus your Venice day here on experiences, not shopping...trust us, you will still have a fantastic day...and won't even have to pay through your nose for it. Here's out tips on how to spend a memorable day in Venice on budget.

Photo by Ajay Goel - Flickr

Getting around Venice is generally easy on foot...and here at the Mediterranean Cruise Ports Easy you can learn all about how to walk Venice. If you do head towards Piazza San Marco on foot, Venice people mover will be of a great help, too.

Still, depending where you're headed, you can also choose from the big fleet of different boats unique to this city: Venice vaporetto, Venice water taxi, gondola Venice, Venice traghetto...just like you wouldn't miss a rikshaw ride in India, a horse drawn carriage in Vienna or a black cab in London, you don't wanna leave here without taking a little ride in any one of these!

Naturally, they all hugely vary in price and we'll teach you how to make the most of them regardless of whether you want to spend €100 or €2,50! You will literally cruise Venice!

Venice gondola, Venice gondolier, Cruise Venice, Gondola rides

Not even after a whole day of walking around on foot in the hot sun can one get enough of this magical place...it's just heartbreaking to say goodbye. That's why it's always good to rest a little in one of the stylish Venetian cafés before another couple of hours of tireless walking around. In the past, these cafés were frequented by many stylish and famous people and we'll tell you which!

Don't forget that having a drink in any of the cafés in Venice is also the easiest way to use the toilet for free. But if you've gulped down your espresso too quick and forgot about going, knowing where the nearest public toilets are will always help and you can find out all about that in our article on Venice practical tourist information.

When you cruise Venice, your time in this port of call can be pretty limited. However, some cruise lines offer overnights in Venice or a chance for their guests to embark or disembark the ship at the Venice cruise terminal and so spend some additional time here before or after their cruise.

Even just one overnight is more than enough to peer underneath the covers of this city, as well as visit other little neighboring islands such as Murano, Burano, Lido di Jesolo or San Michele. Each one a little gem completely different from the others. If you are travelling to Venice with kids, these are some of the places they might enjoy most!

Having an overnight in Venice? It would be a real shame to stay on the ship and not see this city at its most romantic-at night! Just remember this isn't an amusement park where you can pop into the latest superstar studded show or spend the night in a casino.

All these canals of Venice, palaces and gondolas of Venice aren't just props for tourists' fun. Here, things are down to earth...it is a city where real people live and work, a place where you come to admire its natural charm and atmosphere...just as it is.

However, there are many things to do at night in Venice, so make sure you don't miss the last boat back to the ship!

Feel like a day or two isn't enough to experience Venice? You're so right! Even after all these visits, we still get excited every time we cruise Venice.

So, we won't be surprised that once you put all the Venice pictures into your scrapbook, hang your new Murano chandelier and display your Venetian masks, you get all excited to cruise Venice all over again or maybe even spend a couple of days in one of the Venice Italy hotels before or after your cruise!


Venice articles table of contents

VENICE CITY SAIL-IN - Find out why it's a must to wake up early and be on the open deck as you cruise into Venice.

PORT OF VENICE - There are a few different locations in the port of Venice. Know which one to go to when you cruise Venice.

GETTING FROM THE PORT OF VENICE TO ST. MARK'S SQUARE - What factors should you take into account when planning your transportation downtown Venice and what are your options.

VENICE CRUISE TERMINAL - How to reach Stazione Marittima from the airport, Piazzale Roma or downtown hotel.

VENICE PEOPLE MOVER - What is it and when should you use it?

VENICE TRANSPORTATION - You know Venice is built on water but what is the best way to get around?

CRUISE SHIP ORGANIZED WATER BUS TRANSFER - Often your cruise lines will organize some kind of shuttle boats to downtown Venice. Should you use them?

MAP OF VENICE - Map of Venice Stazione Marittima and Piazzale Roma will help you plan your transport to Piazza San Marco.

VENICE VAPORETTOS FOR CRUISERS - How to get to the closest water bus station on the Grand Canal from the Stazione Marittima cruise terminal.

VENICE VAPORETTOS - What are they, what makes them different from water taxis and when to use them as a cruise ship guest.

WALK INTO VENICE FROM THE CRUISE TERMINAL? - You are fit for walking and don't want to leave a single corner of Venice undiscovered? Go ahead and walk in to Venice from your cruise ship terminal.

WHAT IS A VENICE WATER TAXI - What are they and will you need to use them when you cruise Venice?

WHAT'S SO SPECIAL ABOUT A VENETIAN GONDOLA - You've heard about it, you've seen it in glossy magazines, now is your chance to have a ride but how do you go about it?

GONDOLA VENICE FOR CRUISERS - Learn how to go about having a gondola ride. Pay for a cruise line organized gondola shore excursion or not?

WHAT IS A VENICE TRAGHETTO? - How to get a gondola ride for less than the price of an espresso.

VENICE ITALY SHOPPING - How to bring home both some authentic quality goods and some trinkets for friends and family

PRACTICAL TIPS FOR VENICE CRUISERS: where to find ATMs, public toilets and Tourist Info Offices.

TOP 13 THINGS TO DO IN VENICE FOR FREE! - Venice is like a museum in the open and you don't need to spend a fortune to enjoy it!

VENICE LAND TAXI - When you cruise Venice you may not use land taxis to get downtown Venice, but they are a great choice when getting to or from the Venice airport.

PIAZZA SAN MARCO - ST. MARK'S SQARE INTRODUCTION FOR CRUISERS - Start your day exploring one of the most fabulous places on earth! Find out what there is to see and when to go to avoid all the crowds and pigeons :-)

ST. MARK'S SQUARE - TOP 5 - What are the top 5 things to do in St Mark's square.

BASILICA DI SAN MARCO - TIPS AND TRICKS - The most unique and maginificent sight in Venice; plan your visit ahead with the help of these tips!

ST. MARK'S BASILICA - BASILICA DI SAN MARCO LEGENDS AND STORIES - Learn stories and legends on how St. Mark became the patron of Venice. A must read for those who like to show off at the dining room table! :-)

ST. MARK'S BASILICA - BASILICA DI SAN MARCO INSIDE - You are a Mediterranean cruiser and time can be tight for you... learn whether to go inside the Basilica or enjoy it from the outside.

CANALS OF VENICE - They are one of the things that makes Venice so special, learn how to see them and where to get the best pics from!

VENICE GRAND CANAL - Grand Canal of Venice is the most beautiful "street" in the world; learn how to take a ride down the canal and enjoy the beautiful palazzos.

RIALTO BRIDGE IN VENICE - THE OLDEST BRIDGE ON THE GRAND CANAL - Learn why this is one of the most famous bridges in the world; Rialto bridge facts you didn't know and can use to impress your dining-room table party with.

VENICE BRIDGES ON THE GRAND CANAL - Do you know how many bridges there are on the Grand Canal? And did you know that one of them was built only about a year ago?

DOGE'S PALACE - ONE OF THE TOP VENICE ATTRACTIONS - What was a Doge and what's all the fuss about his palace; find out tips that will save you time when organizing your visit to one of the top Venice attractions.

DOGE'S PALACE - 21 HIGHLIGHTS - There's so much to see inside the Doge's Palace! This article will help you put everything into perspective and plan your time when visiting one of the best museums in Venice.

BRIDGE OF SIGHS - THE MOST ROMANTIC OF VENICE BRIDGES - This Venice must-see has always had romantic associations but find out the truth behind the name of this bridge!

VENICE WITH CHILDREN - Have the most unforgetable time in Venice with your kids

VENICE ITALY BEACHES - If you have been to Venice many times before you may want to visit Lido di Jesolo and it's beaches

VENICE HONEYMOON AND ROMANCE - Find out how to maximize the romantic feel of Venice and have an unforgetable experience with your loved one

VENICE SAVING TIPS - It is possible to have a fantastic, memorable, fun-filled day in Venice without breaking the bank 

HOTEL DANIELI VENICE - Many people make the mistake of not entering this historical Venetian hotel on the way to Piazza San Marco. Be in the know and taste Venice before even reaching all the touristy stuff!

VENETIAN HOTELS - 3 FAMOUS LOVE STORIES OF HOTEL DANIELI - What do Maria Callas, Eleonora Duse, George Sand, Alfred de Musset, Aristotle Onnasis and D'Annunzio have in comon?

CAFFE FLORIAN VENICE - What is the oldest cafe you've ever had a coffee in? We promise you that after having a coffee in Caffe Florian you will beat your own personal record!

VENICE BASILICA DI SANTA MARIA DELLA SALUTE- A perfect spot to get away from the crowds, get a great distance shot of Piazza San Marco and see a Titian for free.

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