I will be travelling from Ravenna cruise port to hotel in San Marco (St. Mark's Square) area of Venice. I'm not familiar with the geography of the area and wonder if it's possible to get a taxi/limo to take me all the way to the hotel or is water taxi required for the last leg? I want to avoid having to drag large suitcases on foot for several blocks. Am I better off staying at a hotel on the mainland to avoid dragging luggage around?
I assume you’re taking the train from Ravenna to Venice? That would be an awfully long cab ride. Once there, a land vehicle is not going to help, since there are none. If your hotel is close to the Grand Canal, you could take a vaporetto to get there. If not, and the hotel is on one of the small canals, a water taxi might be a good way to go - I would ask your hotel about that.
Ravenna to Venice is over 2 hrs by car. A bit longer by train. I'm sure you could find a taxi or limo to take you, if you are willing to pay the €€€€€€ they would charge. Since Venice doesnt have roads, your land transport will only get you to Piazzale Roma (or the train station). From there you either take a vaporetto or a water taxi. Whether or not you have to drag your large suitcases for blocks or over stepped bridges depends on whether your hotel is located on a canal or not. I suggest consulting a map or 2.
How long are you staying in Venice? If you're flying out the next day, I'm not sure it's worth the trouble- you might as well, just find an airport hotel. If more than a day, then staying in Venice is totally worthwhile
I did this back in 2017, but I started at the train station in Ravenna. And I was traveling with a 2-wheeled carry-on and a cross-body bag, so no large suitcases. I assume you can get a taxi from the port to the train station, and that the cruise folks can tell you how.
There are many, many trains scheduled from Ravenna to Venezia S. Lucia with only one train change at Ferrara along the way. The options with a regional train and a change to a fast Frecciarossa take about 3 hours and cost about 22,55€ . Those using two regional trains usually take 30 minutes or more longer and cost about 14,55€.
All terminate at Venezia S. Lucia. The time to make the train change seems to vary between about 15 and 45 minutes, depending on the connection.
You can go to Trenitalia using this link: https://www.trenitalia.com/en.html
There you can do a simple fill in the blanks search to get results options for the date and time you want to travel.
Be sure to adjust the time to start at the earliest time you're willing to leave Venice.
When you get your list of train options, be sure to click on the tiny little i (for information) in a circle next to the also tiny "1 change" just to the left of the price.
That will take you directly to the detailed list of towns you will pass through starting with your departure time in Venice and ending with your arrival time in Ferrara for the train change.
There's a break that shows how much time you have to change (Cambio: xx min) to your next train. If you are worried about your luggage, pay particular attention to the time listed. It could be the determining factor in choosing which trains to take.
After the break, the list of towns starts again with the departure time from Ferrara and ends with the arrival time at Venezia S. Lucia.
For more information and advice on the trains in Italy go to this section from the Man in Seat 61: https://www.seat61.com/train-travel-in-italy.htm
I don't believe anyone has mentioned in this thread that the Byzantine mosaics in Ravenna are among Italy's top sights. It would be a shame to be in Ravenna and not see at least some of them.
You don't say if you will be joining a Rick Steves tour in Venice after the cruise so I can't guess at the hotel - unless you are at the Guaratto or Ala - for which two a trivial short flat walk of a couple of minutes from the appropriate vaporetto stop will do.
If you are able to paint a bit more of the picture - how many of you, how long will you be in Venice, any mobility issues, what month the trip is, are you going on a tour, what are you doing after Venice (how are you leaving Venice) and most importantly which hotel, we can help a lot. We know many of the usual hotels and can find the others, and have a comprehensive knowledge of the Venice transportation, so really can help, if you help us.
Thank you all for your replies. I have a much clearer picture now of how to get to my hotel. I'm planning this on my own - no tour, and we are staying 2 nights before flying home.
Looks like a bit of an ordeal for two seniors like ourselves. Taxi from Ravenna cruise port to train station, train to Ferrara then switch trains to Venice, then catch a vaporetto or water taxi to Rialto ferry stop, then a walk of 2-3 blocks to the 40.17 San Marco hotel. I was hoping for a simpler, more direct route. Anybody have experience with carrying luggage aboard a water taxi?
Water taxi are so expensive that, at least, you are not supposed to load your luggage on the water taxi by yourself! Those boats can carry up to 7 passengers, two + luggage won't be a problem.
You said, "I was hoping for a simpler, more direct route."
Unfortunately, there really isn't one at a reasonable price. You can take the Flixbus from Bologna to Venice, but it doesn't go every day and it doesn't go to Venezia S. Lucia. It does go to the airport (one bus per day it runs) and Mestre or Tronchetto (2 buses per day it runs).
I'm sure there are water taxis from the airport. I know there are vaporetti from in front of Venezia S. Lucia. Perhaps someone who has gone the Tronchetto route could give advice about that. Note that there are baggage size rules for the Flixbus.
So if the Flixbus is running on the day you need to go, you'd still need to get to Bologna some way from Ravenna and get from where it stops to your lodgings or to the Venezia S. Lucia area or somewhere near Tronchetto to catch a vaporetto or a water taxi to the closest place to your guest house.
Once you get to San Marco or the Rialto vaporetto stop, you'll still have to get yourselves and your luggage to 40.17 San Marco.
These logistical challenges are one of the many reasons people pack light. I've never been on a cruise, but some folks who have report that they were able to do cruises with a normal carry-on and personal item like for the plane.
I hope you'll be able to work everything out and will have a great time in Venice. 40.17 San Marco looks wonderful.
Unfortunately, you can't get to your hotel by ground transport. Venice is nearly entirely pedestrianized.
You mentioned a cruise? There's been quite a lot of chatter about the change of the big-ships port from Venice to Ravenna on CruiseCritic, and it looks like a number of lines are offering shuttles - either free or for a fee - from Marco Polo airport to Ravenna and back to the airport (you don't mention how you're getting to Ravenna to begin with)? If your cruise line offers one of these, you might consider taking it, checking your large bags at the airport, and taking a smaller carryon bag into Venice for your two nights. You shouldn't need much for that amount of time, and it'll be much easier than dealing with any big, heavy stuff. Follow the instructions on the hotel's website for travel from the airport.
Left Luggage service at the airport.
One question for others who've been to Venice much more recently than I have: do you think this luggage check is easily accessed by persons arriving at Marco Polo by means other than air? I would guess so as it needs to be accessible to people retrieving checked bags for onward travel before the security point.
Andglp649, are you flying out of Marco Polo at the end of your stay?
Under usual circumstances , I would never recommend staying on the mainland ( Mestre ) , this is an exception . Since you are dragging large , heavy luggage , Take the train as far as Mestre and drop your bags , There are a number of hotels quite near the station . Continue by train to Santa Lucia ( ten minutes ) , and by vaporetto into Venice . Considering that you are only staying for a very short time , this would save you a great deal of wear and tear ( physical , and stressful ) getting to a hotel in San Marco ( keep in mind , that whatever walking you will need to do , it will likely be peppered with any number of up and down bridges with that luggage . ( a very common feature of Venice ) . As noted above , it is a shame you have no time for Ravenna . I spent the better part of a week there , and the Byzantine mosaics are superb . Each of the eight or ten sites is distinctive and worth the time . The Jugendstil painter Gustav Klimt made several visits there around 1902 - 1903 , and the mosaics highly influenced his Gold period paintings ( " The Kiss " and " Adele Bloch Bauer 1 " ) https://email@example.com,12.232555,16z/data=!3m1!4b1
Thank you Kathy for your suggestion to store large luggage at the airport and take small bags into Venice. I'm looking into the details of that. That seems like a good way to stay in central Venice without the hassle of dragging luggage around. We are spending 4 nights in Rome prior to a 6 day cruise so it's not possible to travel for a total of 2 weeks with just a carry-on.
Now I'm going to contact Royal Caribbean to see if they offer transport to Marco Polo airport from the Ravenna cruise port. If that works out it will simplify things and I just need to arrange transport back to the airport before flying back to Chicago on May 17.
You're probably not going to want to hear this, but many of us pack for a week (or less), no matter the season, how long we travel or where we go. We sink wash, have laundry done for us or do it ourselves at laundromats.
We coordinate everything and wear things 2 or 3 times each week. That makes it easily possible to do carry-on along with a personal item. I don't even own enough pairs of panties to have a fresh pair each day for 2 weeks without washing them. 😄
You might want to explore the Packing Light section of this RS website for guidance: https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-tips/packing-light
The Packing Forum is also a good place to learn about how others have dealt with this challenge: https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/packing
Most of my trips are for at least 4 weeks. My last one in the summer of 2019 was for 5 weeks. The "big" (36-39 liter) bag I used is an older and lighter (4.5 pounds) version of this Eagle Creek International one:
I travel solo. I use 2-wheeled bags and manage my luggage by myself. I own no bag that weighs over 6 pounds empty. I prefer the two I have that weigh about 4.5 pounds empty. The last thing I need is to be encumbered with a large, heavy suitcase.
I was 73 in 2019, wore plus sized clothes and I still had plenty of space to pack all the clothes I needed in that Eagle Creek bag. If I get to go on my hoped-for 5-week trip this coming summer, my now much smaller 76 year old self will have plenty of room for my clothes in that bag or my new 38 liter, 4.5 pound Osprey Ozone Global bag:
For me, it's much less complicated to pack a few well-coordinated garments and be able move around easily with a carry-on sized bag than to have to deal with the logistical issues created by large, heavy suitcases.
glp649, let us know what you found out? As a side note, if you've not been to Rome before, large, heavy baggage can be a detriment there as well. It's not uncommon for hotels not to have elevators due to the age of the structures but maybe you already know the situation with yours? It's also unclear how you're getting from Rome to Ravenna for boarding in the first place? Hauling a lot of size/weight on and off the trains isn't any fun either.
it's not possible to travel for a total of 2 weeks with just a carry-on.
Many would disagree with that statement.
I did 4 weeks in Italy with a carry-on and 'personal item' size bag.
As noted earlier, there are multiple ways to do laundry ( or have it done ) in Italy.