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Florence (Livorno), Italy Port Review
Livorno, Italy On Your Own Shore Excursion
By Tom Ogg



One of Livorno's Canals

Overview:

Livorno is an often overlooked port of call simply because it is the gateway for Florence and Pisa. Most cruisers simply get off the ship, board a motor coach and head to Florence and / or Pisa for the day. Livorno would be a wonderful port if this were not the case. It offers great shopping, wonderful markets and a very pleasant experience. Livorno's weather is classic Mediterranean and the local currency is the euro. Most people speak at least some English and any attempt to speak a bit of Italian really helps.

Cruise Port Location and Information:


Docked in the Inner Harbor

Ships dock either in the industrial harbor (larger ships) or right in the inner harbor at the foot of Livorno's main street. Ships that are docked in the inner harbor have a huge advantage over those docked in the commercial harbor. One can simply get off the ship and walk 5-minutes into the downtown area of Livorno. This is a huge advantage when spending the night or departing late at night.


Docked in the Commercial Harbor

Ships docked in the commercial harbor must take motor coaches through the port and are deposited one block north of Livorno's main square and shopping area. This makes staying later in the evening a major chore since the shuttle will certainly have regulated hours of operation. To get to the main square and center of town, simply walk one block to the south from where the shuttle will drop you. You will see public transportation there, such as taxis and buses.

Exploring on Your Own:


Livorno Harbor and Fort

Livorno is easily visited on your own. Everything is within easy walking distance and the bus system is very easy to use and understand. Also, see the "On Your Own" options listed below if you want to head to Florence, Pisa, Lucca or Cinque Terre.

Shopping Tips:


Livorno's Shopping District

Many visitors are surprised to find so many high quality stores in Livorno.


More Shopping Opportunities

Prices in Livorno are much lower than at other ports of call simply because the stores serve the local population and are basically overlooked by the cruise passengers who drive right by them on their way to Florence.


Livorno's Public Market

Livorno features a fabulous old public market building that is bursting with local color. The building itself is something to see, as are the various vendor booths.


Livorno's Outdoor Market

Surrounding the public market are several street markets that operate daily. Fruits, vegetables, flowers and other organic products are found in the farmer's market area.


Livorno's Outdoor Maket

The outdoor market is the authentic thing. People are yelling and singing, laundry is hanging out of the windows of apartments above the market and the overall experience is like something out of an Italian movie.


The Livorno Flea Market

Also of interest for shoppers is the Livorno Flea Market. Located outside the public market, the flea market offers everything imaginable.


The Livorno Fish Market

A few blocks away on the inner harbor, local fishermen unload and sell their wares next to their boats on the docks. Fish is not going to get any fresher than this.


The Livorno Meat Market

Also adjacent to the public market is the meat market. This is one-stop shopping for all sorts of meats and treats.

Port Highlights:


Livornos Town Square

One should start their exploration of Livorno from this corner adjacent to the town square. The street right in front of you is the main shopping street and stores can be found to the right and the left and also straight ahead of you.


Livorno Harbor.

By walking to the right past the blocks of shopping and across the harbor front street, you reach the inner harbor.


The Livorno Fort

The harbor is impressive and the fort that dominates the inner harbor dates back centuries and accentuates the harbor with a flavor that is distinctively Livorno's.


Livorno Fishing Boat

The inner harbor is an active fishing port and the activity never stops.


Livorno's Harbor Statue

Livorno's busy streets and sense of community will capture your interest in this overlooked port of call. If you have been to Livorno before and simply bypassed its charm, I would suggest that you spend at least a couple of hours exploring her treasures.

Off the Beaten Path:

Livorno is the gateway to some incredible sightseeing. Be sure to read the "On Your Own" reviews that appear below for more information on off the beaten path ideas.

Dining and Drinking Suggestions:

I had a GREAT fish lunch at the restaurant right on the bridge of the main street in the inner harbor. I would definitely recommend it to anyone wanting local fare.

Must Do List:


Another of Livorno's Fabulous Canals

I would give exploring Livorno's treasures as defined above a "must do" for folks that have already been to Florence. Even then, Livorno is very much worth exploration when you return from your adventure to Florence.

On Your Own Reviews
(How to Venture On Your Own with Detailed Information)

Cinque Terre - On Your Own By Tom Ogg: Here is how to visit the fabulous and popular area of Cinque Terre on your own and at your own pace. There are tons of pictures and detailed information on how to do it from Livorno.

Florence and Pisa On-Your-Own By Tom Ogg: Everyone goes to Florence on their first visit to Livorno and they make the mistake of taking one of the ship's shore excursions thinking that it will be more efficient. Here is how to visit Florence and Pisa On-Your-Own and not only save money, but see more too.

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Copyright 2012, Tom Ogg & Associates * All content and information is property of TOA