Dover to the Isle of Wight
Getting from Dover Ferry Port to the Isle of Wight is straightforward by car and normally takes about 3½ hrs via the M20, M25 and M3 motorways to Southampton and then Red Funnel's vehicle ferry to East Cowes on the Island. This makes the Isle of Wight much closer than Cornwall and the perfect destination for a holiday or short-break travelling by public transport or by car.
Dover to the Isle of Wight by train
South Eastern Railway operate 140 mph high speed trains from Dover to London St Pancras with journey times of just over 1 hour. On arrival at St Pancras you need to make your way to London Waterloo (bus or Underground) and catch a South West Trains service to Southampton Central. The combined rail journey can take as little as 3 hours 25 minutes. When connecting with Red Funnel's Red Jet Hi-Speed services to West Cowes, you can reach the Isle of Wight in 4 hours.
Through rail tickets which include the ferry to Cowes East or Cowes West on the Isle of Wight can be purchased from Dover Priory station ticket office and many rail ticket machines.
First and standard class coaches are available on the Southampton route and most trains offer a trolley buffet service and WiFi. All services are non-smoking. Cycles are carried subject to availability.
Dover to the Isle of Wight by coach
National Express operate frequent coach services from Dover Ferry Port to Southampton coach station via London Victoria coach station (change here for the connecting Southampton service).
The fastest combined journey time is in the region of 5hrs 35 mins. When connecting with Red Funnel's Red Jet Hi-Speed services to West Cowes, you can reach the Isle of Wight in just over 6 hours.
Dover to the Isle of Wight by car
The 155 mile journey from the Dover Ferry Port to Southampton by car using the A20, M20, M25 and M3 takes about 2 hours 30 minutes depending on the traffic.
This is a much shorter journey than travelling to Devon or Cornwall or across to Ireland via Holyhead.
For information on how to find our car ferry terminal in Southampton click here or see the map below.
Dover to the Isle of Wight by bicycle
If you don't fancy cycling for 13.5 hours to cover the 158 miles coastal route from the Dover Ferry Port to Southampton (see route map below) here are the options:-
Small Foldable Cycles (fold in-half by means of a special link in the main frame and carried in a padded bag or hard case, suitable for the purpose) are carried FREE but space is subject to availability (first come first served) on National Express coach services from Dover to Southampton via London.
Standard cycles are carried FREE on South Eastern Railways services from Dover to London St Pancras and on South West Trains services from London Waterloo to Southampton. Check with the train operator whether a reservation is required.
Foldable cycles are carried (FREE) on Red Funnel's Southampton to West Cowes service. Standard and foldable cycles are also carried FREE on the Southampton to East Cowes ferry service.
Arriving in Southampton by Public Transport
The FREE Quayconnect Shuttle Bus connects Southampton's Central Rail Station (short walk from the coach station) to Red Funnel's ferry ports for IoW ferry sailings to East and West Cowes. Alternatively, there is a taxi rank at the station for the 5-8 minute journey to the ferry terminals. It's about a 12-15 minute walk.