The Best Ways of Getting to Florence from for Cruisers - Bus, Tours or Train?

The best ways of getting to Florence from Livorno cruise port include taking a special tourist bus, one of the shore excursions, or a train. This page helps you decide what means of transportation to take to suit your time-frame and your budget.

If you are usually a very relaxed person and like to let your days in ports of call unfold on their own… Florence, Italy is not one of those ports where this approach works well at all.

Getting To Florence

Due to the fact your ship will be docked in Livorno Italy, a smaller port town 80 km away from Florence, getting to Florence should be taken seriously before you even step foot on the ship.

Whether or not you have invested some time into planning your Florence transportation can make or break your day!

Here at Mediterranean Cruise Ports Easy, I’ll do everything I can for you to have the smoothest possible time in Florence.

In my Florence articles, you should find everything you need to have a fantastic day in this exciting port of call!

But before you start, look at my Florence map that shows you the distance between Livorno, Florence and other attractive destinations in the area.

What is the best way of getting to Florence from Livorno cruise port?

In this article, I will focus on different kinds of transportation when it comes to getting to Florence. There are a few and choosing the best one for you will depend on a few factors:

  • How much money you would like to spend?
  • How much time in port do you have? Staying for an overnight?
  • Would you like to focus on Florence only or also wish to experience Pisa, Lucca, or maybe even some wineries in the Tuscany
  • Are you able to walk all day?

In this article, I will only focus on getting you to Florence only!

So let me give you an overview of the best Florence transportation options from the cruise dock of Livorno Italy:

Florence DavidGetting from Livorno to Florence is a must! The only question is 'how do we get there?'

Are you planning to stay in Livorno before or after your Mediterranean cruise? It's less crowded, can be more affordable than staying in Florence, and you get to enjoy the beaches too! Check the accommodation close to the cruise port: 


What are the best private Florence tours?

Private tours are perfect for those who love individual attention, comfort, flexibility, and direct interaction with tour guides. Also, if you travel with family or a bigger party this can be the best way to accommodate a larger group of people.

When booking an independent tour, make sure you are clear about whether you have:

  • an official and qualified tour guide
  • or just a tour driver that will drop you off at certain points.

This is very important in Florence if your primary goal of traveling there is learning about its history and attractions.

If you’re simply into soaking up the atmosphere and learning from your book guide, being dropped off by a driver to explore on your own will be just fine.

Here are some of our suggestions for the best rated Florence shore excursions...

Taking cruise line organized tours/shore excursions

A certain percentage of cruise line passengers will decide to get to Florence with one of these.

The problem is cruise lines can order only a certain number of buses from the local tour operators so the number of seats they offer by the time you get on board is very limited and the tours sell out very quickly.

In other words, if you postpone choosing your tours for the moment you get on board, you will be competing with a few thousand other passengers on your ship, and another 10,000 passengers who will be visiting the port of Livorno on the same day (there can be 4-5 ships in port every day).

Tour operators that 'sell' the seats to your cruise line are the same tour operators that offer those same tours to you directly on one of the reputable platforms like Viator, but if you buy them on board, they come with an extra charge from your cruise line.

That is why it really pays to compare the prices of those same tours online!

So you may as well go ahead and pick your tours/shore excursions from a much bigger pool of options, in time to get the exact tours you like and without the percentage you pay to your cruise line for the service offered (compare the prices!)

If you are still considering buying tours on the ship, make sure you read some great tips, budgeting advice, and general guidelines on Booking shore excursions on your Cruise Vacations by the TV Travel Show Producer Marianne Schwab.

If you would like to research your online options catering for cruisers specifically (getting you back in time), you can start exploring some of the bestsellers I posted for you above.

LivornoFlorence Viator

Getting from Livorno to Florence by train

italy train

Can you get from Livorno to Florence by train on your own?

If you travel a lot, you know that it is always possible to get from point A to point B on your own. 

If you don’t like to stay stuck on a tour bus with the same people you’ve been sharing the ship with for days, have your own idea of what you’d like to see in the port of call, or simply want to save some money… you can get from Livorno ship dock to Livorno Centrale train station and reach Florence from there.

We have prepared a detailed set of instructions in our article Travel to Florence by train.

Make sure you know your “all aboard time” before leaving the gangway, as you are responsible to return to the ship on time!

 Can you get to Florence by bus?

If you looked at our Livorno map and thought that taking a train from Livorno to Florence might involve a bit too much planning for your taste, this is your lucky day!

There is actually a no-brainer bus service that takes a lot of stress out of your Livorno-Florence independent travel planning. And it's super affordable, too!

Read all about it on our Livorno to Florence by Bus page or make a quick booking for this tranfer service right here, it sells out quickly with 4-5 ships in port on the same day!

Can you get to Florence by taxi?

TIP: When booking an independent tour, check what their cancellation/refund policy is in case your cruise ship cannot dock in port due to weather conditions.

As you get off your cruise ship onto the pier surrounded by containers and nothing much else around, you will see several taxi drivers offering one-way or round trips to Florence, Pisa Italy, or Tuscany.

They will have some kind of posters/boards advertising their itineraries. These taxi drivers will not be willing to take you to Livorno train station only.

If you are interested in getting to Livorno Centrale train station in a taxi, you can find more information in our article Travel to Florence by train.

Depending on their level of proficiency in English, these drivers will often act as your impromptu guides, especially if you’re taking a trip around Tuscany.

They love to show you the little hidden gems, restaurants that only the locals know about, and small wineries. However, you cannot expect them to walk you around Florence explaining how the Renaissance was born here.

In Florence, they will simply wait for you and meet you at a pre-arranged time to take you back to the ship.

For the whole day tour, expect to pay from at least €550.

Most drivers will have smaller vehicles for up to 4 people. If you travel with a larger group and need a minivan, book one of the tours ahead of time online to make your getting to Florence stress-free.

Is taking a Florence car rental a good option?

If you like to be completely independent and take things into your own hands, you might consider going with car hire when it comes to getting to Florence.

When booking your car online have in mind one thing: not all the companies can deliver the car straight to the ship.

To our knowledge, it is only Hertz and Avis that are certified to do this.

Before making a final decision, keep a few things in mind: finding a car park in Florence is not the easiest thing.

Once in Florence, you will not need a car at all. Florence is perfectly walkable and the whole center is one big pedestrian-only area. So even if you wanted, you wouldn’t be able to use the car. Honestly, taking a car rental might be a better option when wanting to do a little tour around Tuscany!

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