Portsmouth Ferry Routes - UK Ferries & Crossings to France
Portsmouth is the second best known port in the United Kingdom after Dover. In a central position on the South coast of England, Portsmouth is a busy ferry port taking passengers to destinations such as Caen, St. Malo, Cherbourg and Le Havre in France and Bilbao in Spain.
Portsmouth ferry port offers fast craft travel and car ferry cruisers from a range of companies. Portsmouth ferries pride themselves on comfortable ships, fast crossings and friendly service and as many as 3.4 million people travel through Portsmouth Ferry Port every year as a testament to this.
In around 300 AD the Romans constructed a shore fort here called Porchester because of its excellent location and Portsmouth has now been the home of the Royal Navy for over five hundred years with its own range of attractions such as The Maritime Heritage Centre.
Cross channel Portsmouth ferries are represented by two major operators:
Brittany Ferries operate the western route across the channel going from Portsmouth to Caen. They have two car ferry vessels, Mont St Michel and Normandie which operate during the day and overnight. Crossing time is six hours and if you sail overnight you will arrive in Caen at 6.30 in the morning.
Brittany ferries also travel to Cherbourg and St.Malo. The crossing to Cherbourg is the shortest distance but Brittany ferries only offer one crossing a day from Monday to Thursday with a sailing time of four and a half hours. The popular route to St. Malo takes 8 hours 45 minutes. If you sail overnight you will arrive in St. Malo at 8.00 am the next day.
P and O ferries are the other major operators taking the western route across the channel. P and O offer three crossings per day between Portsmouth and Cherbourg. By 'fastcraft' on The Portsmouth Express crossing time is 2 hours 45 minutes while on the typical car ferry crossing times are 4 hours 45 minutes.
Portsmouth to Le Havre on P and O sails three times daily on The Pride of Le Havre and The Pride of Portsmouth with a day sailing time of 5hours 30 minutes, and an overnight sailing time of 8 hours thirty minutes.
Portsmouth to Caen with P and O Ferries operate car ferries and a 'fastcraft' service. Crossing time during the day is six hours and overnight sailings arrive in Caen at 6.15 the next day. If you travel on The Portsmouth Express fastcraft crossing time is 3 hours 25 minutes.
The P and O crossing between Portsmouth and Bilbao sails on The Pride of Bilbao with a crossing time of 35 hours. The ship leaves at 20.00hrs every Tuesday and Saturday. Passengers spend two nights aboard the vessel.
All check in times are 45 minutes.
Portsmouth Ferry Port Map
Use the M3 or M3 then join M27 or M275 for easy well signposted access to the port.
Despite being Britain's second busiest ferry port, Portsmouth has much to offer in the way of maritime history. Visit HMS Victory, Admiral Nelson's flagship, or Henry VII's beautiful 18th century warship, the fascinating Mary Rose. Also worth a visit are The D-day Museum and The Royal Naval Museum.