Learn how to get to Marghera cruise port if Venice is your embarkation port and how to get from this industrial area into Venice if this is your port of call.
In the past year or so, in cruising circles there has been a lot of talk regarding the relocation of cruise operations in Venice from Stazione Marittima to Marghera cruise port or, better to say the Marghera industrial area.
This move was primarily driven by concerns about the environmental impact and sustainability of large cruise ships navigating through the fragile and historically significant Venetian Lagoon and the Grand Canal.
So, if you have visited Venice on a cruise ship before - things have changed, and there is an additional step involved in getting from your cruise ship to the beautiful Venice. Are cruise passengers happy about this? No, not at all as it makes your day in port even shorter.
My first experience of docking at Marghera was in June 2023. As most passengers, I tried to avoid paying for expensive cruise line waterbus shuttles from the dock in Marghera straight into San Marco.
Keep reading to find out what steps are involved in getting from Marghera cruise port to Venice if you want to do it on your own!
Marghera is actually an industrial area located on the mainland of Venice, Italy. Marghera is known for its industrial facilities, including factories, ports, and shipyards.
When you dock in Marghera, all you will see around you is the sea of containers.There are no regular cruise port facilities like the check-in desks, taxi stands, customs and immigration, etc. Just a big set up tent with restrooms and the luggage handling area and a dock in the middle of this industrial area.
It is situated northwest of the historic city center of Venice and is separated from the main islands of Venice by the Venetian Lagoon.
Here is the location of Marghera on the map. The location of the ship is approximate. As you can see, it would take you almost 1,5 hours to walk.
How far is Marghera Cruise Port from Venice Piazzale Roma and Stazione Marittima cruise terminal?
The distance between the Marghera industrial area and the Piazzale Roma/ Stazione Marittima in Venice is approximately 10 kilometers (about 6.2 miles) if traveling by road.
Stazione Marittima is a big cruise port terminal between the area of Tronchetto and Piazzale Roma, the square which is the last point you can reach by car when coming from direction of Marghera or Mestre.
Until recently most cruise ships would dock in Stazione Marittima but now that has changed: all operations are transfering to Marghera cruise port even though there is no cruise terminal building there (I am writing this in summer of 2023. If the terminal has been built at the moment of your reading this, please let me know)
No, you can't, for two reasons: it is very far and you would not be allowed to walk from the cruise dock to the exit from Marghera industrial area as it is not safe for pedestrians. Actually, it took us almost 10 minutes just to get out of the area by bus.
Technically, you could if there was a way for you to get out of this big port area on foot. But there isn't.
I was hoping for the same as I saw on different public transportation applications there is a local bus from Marghera to Piazzale Roma. However, there was no way to reach it from the ship.
When I realized this, I was happy to be sitting on a free cruise line provided shuttle bus that took us to the Stazione Marittima where there is still the official terminal building (althought ships don't dock there).
No, you can't as taxis are not allowed into this industrial area. However, you can catch a taxi to Piazzale Roma (the last point cars are allowed) from Stazione Marittima (although it's 15 euros charge for a few minutes ride). Keep reading for a more affordable solution.
If Venice is one of the ports of call on your itinerary and you want to go into Venice independently on this day, here's how to reach it from Marghera cruise port/industrial area:
If you are embarking the ship in Venice, don't go straight to Marghera! There is no cruise ship terminal/ check-in/customs there! It's just where your cruise ship is parked.
The terminal is still in the Stazione Marittima cruise port area, where you will leave your luggage in hands of the cruiseline, go through customs and after that you will be shuttled to the ship in Marghera either on a free cruiseline provided bus or a special water bus.
If you purchased your Venice shore excursion through the cruiseline, follow the instructions you will be given onboard the ship.
If you purchased a private shore excursion via one of the trusted platforms like Viator, check what the meeting point is.
If it's in historical Venice, make sure you get to the meeting point in time, having in mind all the above listed factors involved in getting from Marghera to central Venice.
Some shore excursions will have a meeting point at Stazione Marittima and are much more convenient for cruisers. I found a few with the best price/review ratio:
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4. Capri ferry
10. Livorno Italy
13. Naples to Capri
16. Messina Sicily
17. Pisa Train
18. Visiting Pompeii
19. Pompeii forum
20. Port of Piraeus
22. Venice vaporetto
23. Venice water bus
24. Livorno map
25. Getting to Zadar
27. Walk Venice
28. Mykonos beach
30. Pomepii homes