Livorno is the third largest port in Italy and the cruise ship gateway to Tuscany. Near Livorno, the cruise ship traveler will find world-renowned cities like Florence, Pisa, Lucca, Siena, San Gimignano and Volterra. These destinations are, in fact, the main attractions for cruise passengers calling at the port of Livorno and should not be missed. All these cities, among other magic jewels, are 30 to 90 minutes away by bus, car or train.
If for whatever reason the cruise traveler does not wish to spend a full day on a tour exploring such wonderful destinations, there are a few alternatives in the southern outskirts of Livorno. The small towns of Antignano and Ardenza (and the Sanctuary of Montenero close by) are just between 3 and 5 miles away. Farther south (30 miles), the “Etruscan Coast” offers interesting Eco-adventures alternatives to the more traditional, cultural and historical aspect of Tuscany.
Just 3 miles north of the city's center, Tirrenia is a 20-mile long strip of sandy beaches ending in Marina the Pisa. This is the place to go if sunbathing and sea splashing are in your plans for a day in Livorno.
Livorno is an industrial port with a population of 165.00 and, at first sight, may not seem to be the most adorable town in Tuscany. Yet, the City Centre has a few interesting charming attractions. Surely, even the savvier cruiser that has visited major highlights like Florence, Pisa, Lucca or Siena will discover delightful places in Livorno to enjoy.
Amongst the most interesting sites, the cruise visitor should not miss the Duomo (Cathedral), the Via Madonna, the Mercato Centrale (Central Market), the Teatro Mascagni, the Fosso Reale, the Old and the New Forts, a couple of squares (namely the Piazza Repubblica - claimed to be the widest bridge in Europe) and, last but not least, the Synagogue.
Photo © IQCruising.com
Just around the corner from the city center, the district known as Quartieri Venezia is in itself an interesting area of renaissance past to explore. Between one and two miles south of the City Centre, the cruise visitor will find touristic attractions such as the Museo Civico Giovanni Fattori, the Acquario Comunale Giacinto Cestoni, the Passeggiata Mascagni or the Museum of Natural History.
Exploring the city center on your own is easy and, being absolutely flat, physically undemanding. Since 2009, City Sightseeing buses operate in Livorno and tour the city with multilingual audio guides. Cruising the canals of Livorno on a Batello (small barge) has become another attractive way of exploring the city. Wherever, and whatever, you decide to explore always keep in mind that Livorno was heavily bombed during WWII and many areas clearly show the 'scares' of devastation. Click Here to Explore Sightseeing.
There aren’t any really extravagant designer shops in Livorno, but you will find typical ‘affordable' brands ranging from Zara to United Colors of Benetton. And also, small boutiques that display labels like Trusardi or Stefanell. Be aware that most shops close between 1:00 pm and 4:00 pm, are closed on Sundays and that some shops are also closed on Monday mornings.
Shopping in Via Grande
Photo: © IQCruising.com
There are two main shopping streets in Livorno: Via Grande and Via Cairoli (the latter on the more upscale end). If looking for basic or emergency stuff (like pharmacies, toiletries or baby-children needs) it is on Via Grande that you will find most of what you may need. On this main street, the cruise passenger will also find a few coffee shops and the best ice cream (gelato) in town. Close to the Porto Mediceo at the West end of Via Grande, an Enoteca (Wine Bar) is the place to go if looking for a quick bite. For a selection of the best Shops - Click Here to Explore Livorno Shopping.
Livorno has a good number of unpretentious restaurants with very nice home cooked food, a number of coffee shops most of them along and under the large arcades on both sides on the main street and a few commendable Enotecas (wine bars serving light lunches and wines by the glass (be aware that these can get crowed at lunch time). Not to be missed is the local dish - Caciucco. For a selection of Restaurants - Click Here to Explore Livorno's Restaurants.
Besides a few nice gardens surrounding a couple of churches, you will have to walk quite a while to enjoy the few parks that Livorno has to offer. Undoubtedly, the most famous outdoor setting in Livorno is the Passeggiata Mascagni - named after the famous opera composer born in the city. For those cruising with children or just not in the mood for a full day of historical/artistic explorations, the beaches in Tirrenia or even scuba diving just south of the city center can be a good option. Click Here to Explore Beaches and Watersports.
The Mercatino Americano is often highlighted in many a travel guide but it is now a shadow of its former appeal since it changed to an off the beaten track location. What used to be a 'street market' on Piazza XX Settembre become a series of stands in storehouses next to the entrance of the Porto Industriale.
Seldom mentioned onboard cruise ships - and never offered on tours - destinations such as Montecatini, Pistoia, Prato and Vinci (the birth town of Leonardo da Vinci) are close enough to be explored whilst calling at Livorno for a day. These and many other small jewels in Tuscany are alternative destinations for those that have visited Livorno and its most famous highlights.
|TO||By Car||By Train||By Bus||Tour||Distance|
|Florence||1 h 20 min||1 h 20 min||1 h 50 min||1 h 30 min||90km
|Pisa||30 min||20 min||1 h
|Lucca||45min||1 hour||NA||1 hour||47km
|Siena||2 hours||2 h 15 min||2 h 10 min||NA||130km
|San Gimignano||1 h 20 min||2 h 20 min
(bus and train)
|2 h 20 min
(bus and train)
|1 h 30 min||83km
|Volterra||1 h 15 min||2 h 40 min
(bus and train)
|2 h 40 min
(bus and train)
|1 h 30 min||73km
Have in mind that the shuttle bus from the port takes at between 10 and 20 minutes to get to Piazza Municipio and that from here the bus to the Railway Station takes at least another 20 minutes. Click Here to Discover How to Get Around in Livorno Cruise Ship Port.
Train to Florence
There are 7 trains departing Livorno between 8:00am and 11:00am (including weekends).
Bus to Pisa
Depart on the hour behind the Duomo (Cathedral). Bus station in Pisa is 20 minutes walk (flat and pleasant) from major attractions.
Train to Pisa
Departs Livorno every 15 minutes. Train station in Pisa is 20 minutes walk (flat and pleasant) from major attractions.Click Here to Discover How To Travel to Pisa
Train to Lucca
Departs Livorno every 30 minutes - you will need to change train in Pisa. Train station in Lucca is 15 minutes walk (pleasant and flat) from main attractions.Click Here to Discover How To Travel to Lucca
Train to Siena
You will need to change Train in Empoli. Train Station in Siena is 2.3km (1.5 miles) uphill from main attractions - bus or taxi are advisable. Click Here to Discover How To Travel to Siena
Train and Bus to San Gimignano
You will need to change Train in Empoli and again in Poggibonsi where you will get bus #130 towards San Gimignano. Bus station in San Gimignano is 5 minutes walk from main attractions. Click Here to Discover How To Travel to San Gimignano
Train and Bus to Volterra
You will need to change Train in Pontedera where you will get bus #500 towards Volterra (bus departs next to Train Station). Bus station in Volterra is right by main attractions. Be aware: To be back in Livorno in time you must get on the bus #780 departing Volterra at 2:35pm towards Saline, where you will get on the 3:15pm train to Livorno arriving at 4:35pm. Click Here to Discover How To Travel to Volterra
To find out all about the public transportation in Livorno and how to discover the city on your own: Click Here to Explore Transportation - Getting Around in Livorno Cruise Ship Port.
Italy is on CET (Central European Time) and CEST (Central European Summer Time) which means that Daylight Saving Time (DST) is implement in the Summer.
Daylight Saving Time (DST) for 2015:
Sunday, Mar 29, 2:00 AM ( +1 hour )
Sunday, Oct 25, 3:00 AM ( -1 hour )
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What is the easiest way to get to the city center from Porto Industriale?
All cruise lines supply 'shuttle' buses to Piazza Municipio, right in the heart of the city. Some cruise lines may charge a fee but most don’t. As Shuttle Buses can get full easily, you may want to explore alternatives but walking is the least appealing option. In fact, if docked at the farthest piers Port Authorities do not allow walking.
What is the easiest way to get to the Train Station?
There are two possible ways: either getting on the Shuttle Bus to the city center and from there get on a bus OR take a taxi directly to the Railway Station.
How far is the Porto Industriale from the city center?
The farthest piers are over 2 miles away; the closest one is just shy of 1 mile (1.6 km) away.
Can I walk to the City Center from Porto Industriale?
Walking is not allowed from the farthest piers. From the closest piers walking is OK but not the most pleasant.
How much does a taxi cost to the City Center?
Normally it shouldn't be more than €7.00 (euro). However, the few taxis standing by are waiting for passengers that want to go farther away and will ask exorbitant amounts.
Can I rent a car at the Porto Industriale?
Yes, there is always, at least, one major rent-a-car company offering deals.
Where is the nearest Tourist Information office?
Some 'luxury' cruise lines have a local representative onboard. However, there is almost always a representative at the pier. Before getting in-line onboard, look out to the pier to make sure that you don't waste time in line - not many people know this insiders trick.