Moving around Venice, a city without cars
Venice is the biggest pedestrian city in the world.
Venice is also the Italian leader in ecological mobility. Indeed, the percentage of citizens using public transport instead of private transport is higher than anywhere else in Italy.
What are the best ways for you to move around Venice on your next visit? Find out below
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Moving around Venice on foot
The best way to move around Venice, Italy, is on foot.
In fact, going on foot in Venice is almost always the quickest way to reach your destination.
It might sound like a health campaign but truth is that Venetian are indeed generally fit and healthy because they move around mainly on foot.
In other words:
if you want to move around Venice like a Venetian, walk!
Walking is not just the fastest way to around Venice and healthy activity. It is also a great way to explore the city.
It’s a unique opportunity to discover the little bridges, canals and hidden gems of Venice that one would otherwise miss on a water bus.
Moving around Venice by waterbus, the ``vaporetto``
The second-best option to move around Venice is by water bus.
Public service runs 24/7, 365 days a year.
During the day, water bus stops on the Grand Canal, the main canal in Venice, are served every 10 minutes. Service to reach the islands of Murano, Burano, and Lido is every 20 minutes.
At night, water bus stops are served respectively every 20 and 40 minutes.
Check out the following website to plan your waterbus trips in Venice.
Price of the waterbus ticket in Venice
The price for a single ticket to ride on the city waterbus line in Venice is 7,50€.
The ticket is valid for 75minutes since you validate it at the ticket machine. Once validated, you can take as many waterbus rides as you want for the following 75 minutes.
Water bus tickets can be bought in several places in Venice:
- At the vendors’ machines in front of all main waterbus stops.
- At ticket offices outside Venice train station, the Rialto bridge, and close to Saint Mark’s. Take advantage of these offices to ask questions, if you have any, and purchase your tickets.
- At newspaper kiosks and tobacco shops around the city.
Venice waterbus tickets come also as day tickets:
- The 1-day ticket lasts for 24h after validation and costs 20€.
- The 2-day ticket lasts for 48h and costs 30€.
- The 3-day last 72h and costs 40€.
- The 7-day ticket costs 60€ and lasts 7 days.
For more information about prices and online purchases, you can visit www.veneziaunica.it.
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon to find long queues at vending machines and at ticket offices.
If you don’t manage to purchase a ticket there, you can also do it on board the water bus!
In that case, make sure to:
- Inform the sailor that you need to buy tickets as soon as you step on the water bus. Failing to do so might result in a hefty fine!
- Have cash, as that is the only way to pay onboard.
Moving around Venice by water taxi
Locals in Venice don’t use taxis because of their very high fixed prices.
Taxis are used almost exclusively by tourists who prefer the comfort of private transport over the use of a public waterbus.
The price for a taxi ride is usually between 100 and 130 € per ride for up to 4 people. Taxis can fit up to 10 passengers, but charge an extra fee from the 5th passenger onwards. The fee per passenger is around 15€.
To summarize, taxis provide greater comfort and intimacy than waterbuses but come at a steeper price.
Nonetheless, a group of 8 to 10 people travelling from the airport to Venice should consider taking a water taxi since the waterbus ticket from the airport costs 15 euros per person.
Therefore, the price to reach Venice via taxi or water bus is not too different for a bigger group, but a water taxi will stop right at their destination.
Moving around Venice by gondola and sandolo
Gondolas and “sandoli” in Venice are not a means of transportation. Instead, they are private sightseeing tours on the water.
Gondola and sandolo tours can be found in different locations around the city.
The rides offer beautiful views of the surrounding areas, last 30 minutes and cost 80€ per boat.
A gondola or a sandolo can fit up to 6 passengers, plus the gondoliere or “sandolista”.
Keep in mind that gondolas return to their boarding station: unlike a water bus or a taxi, a gondola is not used for getting somewhere.
Gondolas are the most famous traditional Venetian boats and they used to be the equivalent of horse carriages in other cities. Sandolo tours work just like gondola tours, but on a different Venetian boat, a “sandolo”.
There is one exception to gondola tours: the “gondola da traghetto”. A “traghetto” is a fare service on a gondola that lets you cross the Grand Canal, the main canal in Venice.
As of today, there are still three locations with a “traghetto” service in place.
How do Venetians move around Venice? What are our recommendations?
Most of the time, Venetians prefer to move on foot.
Moving on foot is the fastest and most efficient way to move around Venice… if you know where you’re going, of course!
Most Venetians use public transportation only when necessary. For example, when they need to reach an island.
There are also private boats and rowing boats in Venice, of course. However, Venetians rarely use them to go to work, meet friends, or run errands in the city.
Rowing boats are mainly used for leisure or sports, and private boats for work or to spend a day out in the Venetian Lagoon.
In conclusion, our suggestion to experience Venice like a local is to move around on foot whenever it is possible.
By doing so, you can explore Venice beyond the “touristy” places, avoid crowds, and do something good for your health!
We also recommend setting some time aside to see Venice from the water, in your preferred way. Seeing Venice from the water will give you a completely different perspective of this unique city!
Besides, walking and taking a tour on a rowing boat are not just beautiful and fun activities. They are two ways that let you discover the city while helping you reduce your carbon footprint.
Venice is a great place where to start going green, don’t you think?
You now know everything about moving around Venice like a Venetian.
To know also where to eat, drink, and shop like a local and to find many other useful resources, make sure to check out the following links:
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