Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Large Ships Banned from Venice Lagoon

Cruise Ship
2014 & Beyond

Shortly after the Concordia disaster, the government of Italy and various organizations rekindled their efforts to restrict cruise traffic in the Venice Lagoon.   A law was passed that banned large cruise ships from passing close to Italian shores.  It was to be a countrywide restriction, but due to the large tourism industry in Venice, the law was suspended temporarily.

Effective November 2014

According to the press reports out of Italy, officials have now banned large cruise ships (over 96,000
tons) from the Venice Lagoon starting in November, 2014.  This doesn't mean that cruise ships won't be visiting Venice, but rather cruise ship traffic will be rerouted perhaps through the Contorta Sant'Angelo Canal, which is farther away from the best-known parts of the city.

This scene, taken during our Mediterranean cruise which included Venice, will be a thing of the past.  Until that time, we highly suggest you take advantage of cruises that include a stop in Venice and be sure to get up early as the ship sails into the lagoon.

Starting January 2014

Even before the ban goes into effect late next year, there are other restrictions that will begin starting at the beginning of the year.  The number of cruise ships 40,000 tons or more sailing in Venetian waters must be reduced to 20 percent of the current volume.  That limit means no more than 5 cruise ships over 40,000 tons would be in port on any given day during the cruise season.

Cruise lines will continue to include Venice in their itineraries, but they will have to make alternative plans, perhaps including tendering, in order to make that possible.   What will be gone however is the sail by of attractions such as Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Square.   When that is in effect, we suggest that you be sure to take a water taxi so that you are still able to see the city from the water.  That is a perspective that is one you will cherish forever.

We have been following this developing story for some time now.  We've included links to some of our previous articles.  Also, be sure to visit our post, Diary of Cruise with Chris to Greek Isles, for more information about Venice and ports that we visited.

Related Blog Posts:

Future of Cruise Ships in Venice
Concordia Disaster Rekindles Venice Restrictions
Sailing Into Venice by Cruise Ship

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