Isle of Wight by ferry

Mark and David's verdict
The Isle of Wight ferry is arguably the quickest, easiest and least expensive way of taking a holiday off the British mainland. There's something magical about hopping aboard, and yet Wightlink runs more than 100 crossings daily from Portsmouth and Lymington with journey times from as little as 22 minutes. The island itself is packed with things to do, lovely countryside and pretty ports.

Recommended company: Wightlink

Wightlink says

There’s nothing quite like stepping on board a ferry for that “shoulders down, we’re on holiday” feeling. As you cross the Solent, relaxing in one of our comfortable lounges, the Isle of Wight’s gentle rolling downs, attractive port towns and beautiful coastline will start to weave their magic.

  • England's first hybrid ferry
  • Short & frequent crossings
  • Dog-friendly

Our 100+ daily crossings from Portsmouth and Lymington to the Isle of Wight take from between 22 and 45 minutes, with sailings to Fishbourne and Ryde in the northeast of the island and Yarmouth in the west.

For foot passengers, we operate FastCat catamarans from Portsmouth’s historic harbour – it’s a short walk from the railway station and, as you set sail, you can enjoy great views of Queen Victoria’s HMS Warrior.

Our car ferries sail from Portsmouth’s Gunwharf Harbour (allow some time for a bit of retail therapy in the swanky shopping outlet!) and pretty Lymington.

There are cafés and kids play areas on the larger ships and all our ferries have dog-friendly lounge areas. The Isle of Wight is justifiably renowned for its great produce and so we also operate Wight Taste outlets at our ports with island produce from various independent and family-owned businesses.

With a proud history of 160 years behind us, we’re equally proud to have our sights set firmly on the future. Our fleet includes Victoria of Wight, England’s first hybrid ferry and a keystone of our environmental programme. We are installing high-speed electric vehicle charging points at our ports, working to reintroduce oyster farming in Lymington, and building artificial rock pools to create habitats for more marine species.

Bookings can be made online or on the telephone, with free and unlimited online date amendments.

Find out more about Wightlink services to the Isle of Wight, our Explorer Guide to the island and the latest special offers.

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Before you book

Travel restrictions have been lifted by the UK, but some other countries still have measures in place. Check the latest government travel advice.