Civitavecchia port · Cruises · Ferry traffic · Info

­­The port of Civitavecchia is the largest cruise port in the Mediterranean and a ferry port with regular services to Sardinia, Palermo, Barcelona and Tunisia. Part of the port is used for goods traffic.

Civitavecchia cruise port

The port of Civitavecchia is the largest cruise port in the Mediterranean with around 2.6 million passengers.

The terminal for the cruise ships is the “Molo Grimaldi”. There are often numerous cruise ships at the same time here. The ships usually arrive in the morning and continue in the evening.

The Molo Grimaldi is connected by a shuttle bus to the Fort Michelangelo and to the Largo della Pace. From Forte Michelangelo you can walk to the train station, from Largo della Pace are buses to Rome.


Civitavecchia shore excursions

You have half a day to go ashore to Rome. The ships arrive in the morning and continue in the evening. You can find out here what you can do during this time and what you should pay attention to.

The Rome day pass from Civitavecchia is a service by Ticketbar. The day pass includes:

  • Train from Civitavecchia to Rome St. Peter and back
  • Hop on hop off bus
  • Colosseum ticket including reservation
  • 20% discount on more tickets

If you choose Civitavecchia as the starting point for your Mediterranean cruise, you should include a visit to Rome. Rome was not built in a day and there is so much to see that you could spend many days and weeks in Rome. For a first visit, you should plan two to three days for visiting Rome.

Civitavecchia ferry port

The ferry port is called the “Motorway of the Sea”. There are regular services to Sardinia, Palermo, Barcelona and Tunisia. People, cars and trucks are transported.

The port area is quite extensive. There is a free shuttle bus line in the ferry port that runs every twenty minutes. The start and end point is the Largo della Pace outside the port area. There is an info point at Largo della Pace, as well as the bus stop to the train station and shuttle connections to Rome and the airports.

Location of the port of Civitavecchia

Civitavecchia is a good starting point for your Mediterranean cruise or for a ferry trip to various destinations in the Mediterranean. The distance to the port of Civitavecchia from the city center of Rome is 76km. Rome Fiumcino Airport is 70 km away, Rome Ciampino 90 km. Thanks to the connection to this largest airport system in Italy, Civitavecchia is easily and inexpensively connected to the whole world by air.

History of the port of Civitavecchia

The port was built in the year 106 at the request of Roman Emperor Trajan. He was also the founder of the city, then called Centumcellae. The purpose of the port was to ensure the food supply of Rome through a second safe port.

The port was designed by the architect Apollodoro of Damascus and consisted of an almost round, approximately a third mile large basin with two piers, a dam and an artificial island built into the sea, and was surmounted by four towers.

Remains of a tower are still visible on the pier, which is called “il bicchiere”. Opposite is the tower “del Lazzaretto”, which was built there on the site of the ancient tower. The other two towers today no longer exists.

The ancient harbour basin is supplied with fresh water through an underground tunnel system, that still works.

Statue of the Japanese Samurai Hasekura Tsunenaga
Statue of the Japanese Samurai Hasekura Tsunenaga

After the fall of the Roman Empire, the port lost its importance until it came under the control of the popes in the 15th century. The still existing Forte Michelangelo was completed in 1537. In the year 1608, a lighthouse was added, which was destroyed in the second world war. Other buildings of the Popes are the Porta Livorno from the year 1679 and the fountain Fontana Vanvitelli constructed in 1743.

Above the Porta Livorno is the statue of the Japanese samurai and Ambassador Hasekura Tsunenaga. He handed over a valuable letter to Pope Leo V in the November 1615 with the proposal for a trade agreement between Japan and Mexico and the invitation to send missionaries to Japan. His mission from Japan to Mexico to Europe and back took almost seven years from October 1613 to August 1620 with several stops.

At the end of the First World War, the port served for the post service with airboats to Sardinia. From 1961 to 2009, the port was used for ferry services with trains to Sardinia. In recent years, the port has been greatly expanded and further investment programs are currently being implemented.

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