Cowes to Southampton Ferry

The Cowes Southampton ferry route connects Isle of Wight with England. Currently there is just the 1 ferry company operating this ferry service, Red Funnel. The crossing operates up to 10 times each day with sailing durations from around 1 hour.

Cowes Southampton sailing durations and frequency may vary from season to season so we’d advise doing a live check to get the most up to date information.

Cowes - Southampton Ferry Operators

  • Red Funnel
    • 67 Sailings Weekly 1 hr
    • Get price

Cowes Guide

At the northern tip of the Isle of Wight, Cowes is inextricably associated with sailing craft: Henry VIII built a castle here to defend the Solent's expanding naval dockyards from the French and Spanish, and in the 1950s the world's first hovercraft made its test runs here. In 1820 the Prince Regent's patronage of the yacht club gave the port its cachet with the Royal Yacht Squadron , now one of the world's most exclusive sailing clubs, permitted to fly the St George's Ensign guaranteeing free entry to all foreign ports. Only its three hundred members and their guests are permitted within the hallowed precincts of the club house in the remains of Henry VIII's castle, and the club's landing stage is sacrosanct. The first week of August sees the international yachting festival known as Cowes Week , which visiting royalty turns into a high-society gala, although most summer weekends see some form of yachting or powerboat racing.

Southampton Guide

A glance at the map gives some idea of the strategic maritime importance of Southampton, which stands on a triangular peninsula formed at the place where the rivers Itchen and Test flow into Southampton Water, an eight-mile inlet from the Solent. Sure enough, Southampton has figured in numerous stirring events: it witnessed the exodus of Henry V's Agincourt-bound army, the Pilgrim Fathers' departure in the Mayflower in 1620 and the maiden voyages of such ships as the Queen Mary and the Titanic.
The Second World War hit Southampton particularly hard, because of its strategic importance as the major industrial area on the South Coast. Pockets of Georgian architecture remain, but much of the city was levelled. The accuracy of the locally-based Ordnance Survey's maps did not go unrecognised by the Luftwaffe: the German bomber pilots used them to bomb Southampton.