The various lines that serve Venice and the lagoon can be divided into three separate groups.
- CentroCittà – City Center. Lines 1, 2, and NCity Center & Grand Canal — Night Lines (there is night service to all the islands of the lagoon)Note that Line 2 travels to Lido only in season.
- Giracittà — Around Venice. Lines 4 & 5 are paired lines encircling Venice and connecting it to the adjacent islands of Murano, Giudecca, and Lido. 4 or 5.1 lines travel clockwise (CW), 4 or 5.2 lines travel counter-clockwise (CCW). Line 6 is an express line to Lido from Piazzale Roma via the Zattere, traveling the Giudecca Canal.
- Across the lagoon: Line 3 runs direct to Murano from P.Roma and the train station, and Line 7 runs to Murano from S.Zaccaria, this line is seasonal. Lines 12 and 14 run to Burano from F.Nove and S.Zaccaria, respectively. Lines 11, 13, 20 will take you to Chioggia, S.Erasmo and San Servolo; private water buses run by Alilaguna will take you to the Airport from all over the city, including the maritime port.
» Boarding at Il Pontile, or the LANDING DOCK
Don’t get confused: the covered, bobbing landing is not the vaporetto — it’s where you wait for the boat to arrive. If there’s more than one, you’ll identify the one you need, then board from there when your boat arrives.
For stops (fermate) that service only a single line, there will be only one landing, so you only need to make sure to boat you board is heading in the direction you need. (An exception: Riva S. Biasio has one stop for LINE 1, and a separate one for Lines 51-52).
The principal stops serve multiple lines, so there will be more than one landing, each serving the boats heading in the same direction. For example, as you face the water, boats heading to your left will stop at the landing on the right (that is, at the first one they approach) — and vice-versa for those heading in the opposite direction. Verify the direction with the overhead signs and the attendant as you board. These larger stops can be particularly confusing, and things do change from time to time, according to season, construction, or other factors, so do double-check landings and lines to make sure you head in the right direction.
A schedule with specific times, stops, and direction is located at the entrance of each landing. Times are specified as minutes past the hour, with the hour posted above.
You’ll also spot ticket booths at all the principal stops (San Zaccaria, San Marco/Vallaresso, Accademia, San Tomà, Rialto, Ferrovia, Piazzale Roma), and some of the smaller ones (Ca d’Oro, for example, is only open part of the day). Unless you have an abbonamento, you cannot buy vaporetto tickets at the tabaccaio.
» MAIN STOPS: Fermate Principali
These are the principal stops where, because they are served by so many lines, can become pretty confusing if you’re not used to them. The diagrams below the list illustrate the groupings of stops and the direction according to destination. Note that each dock is now associated with a letter A, B, C, D, etc.; the line numbers will indicated the letter of their departure dock in addition to the Italian name.
The main docks are:
- Piazzale Roma (VeneziaUnica info point)
- Ferrovia (train station) (VeneziaUnica info point)
- San Zaccaria (Ticket booths)
- Rialto (Ticket booths)
- Fondamente Nove
- Lido – S.M. Elisabetta (VeneziaUnica)
- Murano Colonna
- Murano Faro