Civitavecchia is the port that acts as the gateway to the eternal city of Rome for cruise travellers. There are two main ways to reach Rome from Civitavecchia- by bus or by train. If you wish to go by bus, then you will have to book one of the shore excursions that are on offer through your cruise company. The journey from Civitavecchia to Rome by coach can take anything from one hour to two hours, depending on traffic. This can mean valuable sightseeing and exploration time is spent sitting on a bus. I think this is a major downside of getting the ship’s organised shore excursions to Rome as I like to maximise my time in each port of call. I’ve even been on cruises where sail-away has been delayed because whole tour buses have been stuck in traffic and late back to the ship! I don’t know about you, but I’d be panicking if I was on that delayed bus back…!

Trevi Fountain Rome, Civitavecchia to Rome

The beautiful Trevi Fountain

If you decide to be adventurous and travel to Rome yourself by train you’ll find that it is a lot quicker, not to mention much cheaper than the shore excursions on offer. From where the cruise ships dock, you will normally be taken on a complimentary (although some lines do charge a nominal fee for this!) shuttle bus to the port exit and this will be organised by your cruise company. To find the train station from the port exit you should turn right and walk along the main street parallel to the sea. Within a few minutes you will see the train station on the left hand side of the street. I recommend that you check the train timetables before making your way to the train station, there are normally 2-3 trains an hour. The train takes less than an hour and brings you right to the centre of the city.

Piazza Navona, Rome, Civitavecchia to Rome

Fountains in my favourite Piazza in Rome- Piazza Navona

If you decide not to venture into Rome from Civitavecchia, then there are a few hours to be spent happily in this large coastal town. There are plenty of shops if you’re looking for presents to take home, or just to treat yourself. There are also some good quality restaurants and nice cafés with relaxing views out to sea if you simply want to relax rather than battle the crowds in Rome. There’s no beach to speak of in Civitavecchia as there’s no sand, but nearby beach resort Santa Marinella is less than 10 minutes away by train and definitely fits the bill if you’re looking to enjoy a day at the beach.