Venice Vaporetto Routes

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Venice's waterbus routes change from time to time. This means that map and guidebook descriptions of the vaporetto lines are frequently out of date. Although we try to keep the route table in this article up to date, please note that routes are subject to change and seasonal variation. When in doubt, check the timetables at the vaporetto stops.

Things to know:

1. At smaller stops, boats will come from both directions. Pay attention so you'll board the right waterbus!

2. Occasionally, a boat will ignore certain stops or will terminate its run before the end of the line. The placard or electronic signboard on the boat will indicate any such deviations. (Either that, or the conductor will shoo you off.)

3. Some lines are defined as "summer only," but "summer" usually means April through October on the Venice tourist calendar.

4. Routes marked with the icon are easily wheelchair-accessible (e.g, with vaporetti that have flat or single-level decks) Routes marked * have at least some wheelchair-accessible boats (e.g., new motoscafi on the circolare routes that have covered wheelchair positions and belts on the entrance deck).

orario5. Actv (the Venice public transportation system) has a printed timetable or Orario booklet that you should be able to get at any ticket booth unless stock has run low or the clerk is in a surly mood. Actv also has a Web site with a journey planner that's reasonably convenient if you know your departure and arrival stops.

6. If you board at a stop that doesn't have a ticket office, approach the conductor immediately after boarding and ask for a biglietto. Otherwise, you could be fined heavily for traveling without a ticket.

7. Be sure to validate your ticket before boarding the boat. Simply insert it in the yellow ticket machine near the floating platform, and the ticket will be stamped automatically. If you're using an Actv travel ticket (see below), validate the card the first time it's used.

8. You can save money on public transportation by purchasing a 12- to 72-hour Actv tourist travel card from any vaporetto ticket booth. A more expensive option is the tourist office's Venice Connected pass (formerly the Venice Card) which has a complicated pricing scheme but offers services beyond transportation. We recommend the Actv tourist travel cards, which are easier to buy and are a better value for most visitors. (They're easy to use, too: Just hold your card up to the electronic "Mobi" reader and wait for the beep before stepping onto the vaporetto platform.)

9. For convenience, "vaporetto" is often used as a generic synonym for "water bus," but technically there are three types of boat: the "vaporetto," a flat-decked boat used on routes such as No. 1 (Grand Canal) and No. 2; the "motoscafo" (used for routes that go into the Lagoon; see photo at top of page); and the "motonave" (a large double-decked vessel that looks like a ship and is used for commuter service to the Lido, Punta Sabioni, and Treporti).

Also see: Arriving in Venice

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