Detailed directions about the route can be obtained from the altimetry (last figure of the gallery), from the captions of the individual photos and from the "Google Map" at the bottom right, which can be enlarged as desired. Double clicking on the photos you can view them at the highest resolution.
Description of the route
This is a route which connects Piazzale Roma in Venice to Chioggia, its smaller cousin located directly to the south across the Venice Lagoon. The primary problem is how to avoid Via Romea, an extremely busy highway filled every day with belching auto fumes, tanker trucks and tractor trailers - a true nightmare for the cyclist who would attempt this route.
The route described here avoids as much as possible getting on Via Romea, except in a brief section after Piazza Vecchia, which takes one along a narrow bike lane - almost acceptable on Sundays when the tankers and tractor trailers are rare. The distance from Piazzale Roma to the center of Chioggia is about 63 km/39 miles.
Leave from Piazzale Roma in Venice; after 500 m/.3 miles, at the traffic light, cross over to the left side of the road and onto the bike path which follows the Ponte della Libertà, the longest bridge over the lagoon (nearly 4 km/2.5 miles).
Arriving on the mainland, follow along the VEGA technology park and then along the Fincantieri [shipyards] up to the grade level crossing over the train tracks; on Sundays it is possible to use Via dell’Elettricità up to where it runs into Via Padana and then as far as the village of Malcontenta, where is is worth your while to take a little side tour to admire Villa Foscari [aka “Villa la Malcontenta"] one of the masterworks of Andrea Palladio.
After Malcontenta, follow Via Dogaletto until you cross Via Romea and head for Piazza Vecchia [a village, not a piazza], where one turns left as far as the bridge over the Idrovia [shipping channel] and then one must join the Romea for about 1,000 meters/.6 miles.(*).
Whether by way of Via Romea or by the argine [embankment road] one comes to Via Marghera; here a canal separates Via Romea from a small road along the right bank, that is now the GAL bike path; the base is rough and made up of old asphalt, but the bike path allows one to avoid the Romea for several miles.
The bike path ends at Lova at a contemporary metal bridge. After Lova one keeps on the left bank along a local road with almost no traffic, at first for about 500 m/.3 miles along the canal, and then through the countryside as far as the tiny village of Rosara where one comes to the Brenta River with provincial road SP53 following the left bank.
One can avoid this slightly used road by using the bike path which follows along the base of the embankment accessed with a series of ramps. In the end when there is no more bike path, one has to ascend onto the embankment and continue along the provincial highway.
This is the least bicycle friendly section of the entire route(*); traffic is not particularly heavy, but the roadway is very narrow and the vehicles travel at great velocity virtually brushing the cyclist. At the end one arrives at the town line of Chioggia and bit by bit the road becomes wider and two bike lanes appear which allow the biker to proceed with a lot less stress.
At the end one comes to a rotary, this puts one onto Via Romea for a brief section, heading north up to the turnoff for the historic center of Chioggia. Just before coming into the center you will pass in front of the train station - take note.
A real dilemma is how to get back to Venice without biking another 63 km/39 miles. The buses titled Arriva Veneto are very new, but don’t have places for bikes. In theory one could take the ACTV boats, first to the island of Pellestrina, and from there another boat to the Lido, and from the Lido take the ferry back to Venice; but the travel times are rather long and on Sundays it is possible to not be able to find an available space and have to wait for the next boat.
Taking the train is not much better, since it first takes one to Rovigo, where one can catch the train running between Bologna and Venice; but once again the travel time would be pretty long, just under three hours. The more athletic biker may choose to spend the same period of time by simply returning to Venice … by bicycle.
If one wishes to avoid even this brief section along the very busy highway then one must go through Piazza Vecchia as far as the bridge over the canal and immediately after take the Via Argine Destro towards the left, most of it unpaved.
If one wishes a more relaxed alternative one needs to head further south and follow along the Bacchiglione River, the river associated with Vicenza and Padova. This is a variant I have not tried, yet, and which would extend the route by several miles.