Mini guide on how to get to Venice by plane, train, car


There is a question that lurks in the mind of those who are about to visit the Veneto capital for the first time: “How to get to Venice?”. This question is very logical if we consider the city’s layout, but despite everything, reaching Venice isn’t as difficult as one might think. On the contrary, if you use the right means, it can be extremely simple.

Venice is easy to reach because it is well connected to the Italian motorway and railway network and because it is served by two airports. That is why it is the perfect destination for a two or three-day city break. In this regard, you might be surprised by how Venice is not particularly challenging to reach, but rather, it can be challenging to move around inside it. If you dream of driving or cycling through the city to get from point A to point B, you will have to rely only on your feet or boats (public or private). 

Glass bridge in Venice
Glass bridge near Piazzale Roma in Venice (Image source: Flickr)

In our opinion, this makes life easier for those arriving in Venice by public transport (planes, buses, trains) since in this case, finding parking won’t be a priority. Furthermore, before going further with all the practical advice, it is important to know that, being Venice a set of islands, there are two main points of access to the city from the mainland: the Venezia Santa Lucia train station (for those arriving by train) and Piazzale Roma. Piazzale Roma is the only point in the city where you can arrive by car and is the starting and ending point for all public buses that connect Venice with its hinterland.

Venice has two airports with both domestic and international flights:

  • Marco Polo Airport in Tessera, located 13 kilometers from the city and overlooking the lagoon, is the main airport in the Northeast where major international flights arrive and depart. The airport is also a base for low-cost airlines such as Volotea and Easy Jet.
  • Antonio Canova Airport in Treviso, located about 20 kilometers from Venice, is the reference point for some low-cost airlines, particularly RyanAir.

Costs and better-specified alternatives are provided below:

ServiceOne Way CostRound Trip CostMeans
Marco Polo Airport€8€15Bus
Marco Polo Airport€15€27Vaporetto
Marco Polo AirportVariableWater Taxi
Canova Airport – Treviso€12€22Bus

If you land at Venice Marco Polo Airport, there are two main ways to reach the lagoon city: by water or by land. To reach Venice by bus, follow the signs at the arrivals terminal that lead you outside where the Airport Shuttle bus (line 35) awaits you that connects the airport to Piazzale Roma without intermediate stops from 4:00/5:00 in the morning until midnight/01:00 at night with departures approximately every 20 minutes.

The cost of the airport shuttle starts at €8 per person for a single journey and €15 per person for a round trip, with reductions if you purchase tickets for multiple travelers. Tickets can be purchased online on the ATVO website, at the airport ticket office, or from vending machines. Some airlines like Easy Jet sell shuttle tickets onboard the flight. As already mentioned, the bus will leave you in Piazzale Roma from where you can then walk to your accommodation or take a vaporetto.

The alternative to land transportation is by water, and from Marco Polo Airport, you can choose between two options: taking a water taxi or boarding the Alilaguna. The Alilaguna is a public water transport service from the airport to the heart of Venice. There are three available lines – red, blue, and orange – that depart from the airport pier and lead to various points in the city. Make sure to take the line that gets you as close as possible to your accommodation.

Alilalguna in Venice
Alilaguna public water transport in Venice

The pier is reached by following the “Water Transport” indication and walking along the elevated pedestrian path. The cost of the transport service to Venice is €15 for a single journey, €27 for a round trip, and by purchasing the ticket on the Alilaguna website, you can save a few euros. Following the same indications for “water transport,” you will also arrive at water taxis and speedboats that provide passenger transport services to Venice.

These, of course, can take you directly to your hotel (if your hotel has a jetty) or as close as possible to your accommodation. There are various companies that provide taxi services from Marco Polo to the center of Venice. Prices may vary depending on the company, route, and services of the speedboat itself.

Antonio Canova Airport is located near Treviso, a very pretty Venetian town that is worth exploring in itself, just about twenty kilometers from Venice. Here, RyanAir, WizzAir, and other minor companies land and take off. From Canova Airport, you can reach Venice in two main ways: by bus or by taxi. For a taxi, the methods are the classic ones; a standard ride from the airport to Piazzale Roma should cost around €70-€80.

Buses, on the other hand, depart outside the airport (which is extremely small so you can’t miss it), and the services are provided by the same company that serves Venice Marco Polo Airport, ATVO. The line to take is 351 – Treviso shuttle bus, that stops in Venice Mestre and Piazzale Roma. The ticket cost is €12 for a single journey, €22 for a round trip. There are discounts for the purchase of tickets for groups of more than 10 people.

In our opinion, the train is the best way to reach Venice because it is the most comfortable and least stressful. Venezia Santa Lucia station is the arrival point for all those who want to visit the city (don’t mistake it for Venezia Mestre station, which is about 10 minutes earlier and is a very important railway junction). At Venezia Santa Lucia station, there are regional trains, Frecce and Intercity trains by Trenitalia, Italo trains, OBB trains, and even the famous Orient Express pass through here!

How to get to Venice by train
Santa Lucia train station

Just outside the station, there are the jetties from which you can take vaporettos to other stops in Venice and the neighboring islands. If you don’t have heavy luggage and your destination doesn’t require water transfers, you can walk to your destination, saving on vaporetto costs.

Venice is located along the A4 motorway axis that connects Turin and Milan with Trieste, crossing the entire North of Italy horizontally. Getting to Venice by car is easy, just follow the signs for the Venice-Mestre bypass (A57) and then follow Via della Libertà, which runs alongside the railway. You will find yourself crossing the Ponte della Libertà until you reach Piazzale Roma. Unless you want to arrive at Piazzale Roma just to turn around and go back, you will surely want to find parking where you can leave your car, in this regard, there are various possibilities at different costs.

In Piazzale Roma, there are few free parking spaces available since most are used by buses, but there are paid parking lots and covered parking. Here are some: Autorimessa Comunale, Parcheggio S. Andrea, Autopark Doge. Not far away, there is Tronchetto, where you will find a covered parking lot among the cheapest in the city center, the Venezia Tronchetto Parking, with rates around €20 per day.

From Tronchetto, there is also a convenient rail shuttle service that, in a few minutes for a few euros, takes passengers to Piazzale Roma. If you arrive in Venice by car, a valid alternative may be to leave the car in a parking lot in nearby Mestre. The most recommended ones are those located near the station (there are several to choose from right in front) because from here, it takes a moment to take the first train that in 10-15 minutes takes you to Venezia Santa Lucia Station.

Another solution can be to park your car at Parco San Giuliano and from there take one of the many buses that pass about every 5 minutes and take you to Venice Piazzale Roma (lines 5, 12, 19, 24). Uncovered paid parking spaces are also available in Fusina, just before taking the Ponte della Libertà on the right. For those parking here, just go to the bus stop located a few meters along the road and board the first bus heading towards Venice. They will all stop at Piazzale Roma, so you can’t go wrong!

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