Washington State Ferries
Washington State Ferries
4.5
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2-3 hours
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The area
Address
Neighborhood: Downtown
How to get there
  • University St • 7 min walk
  • Pioneer Square • 8 min walk
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
8,560 reviews
Excellent
5,794
Very good
2,298
Average
325
Poor
71
Terrible
72

Ben F
Bloomington, IN1,373 contributions
Dec 2020
No trip to Seattle should be complete without a ride or two on the Washington State Ferries. They’re inexpensive, scenic, reliable, and a water experience unlike other ferries you might ride in other regions. I’ve taken the Bainbridge route multiple times so far, and it never gets old; the views of downtown Seattle, the thick evergreens of the Puget Sound islands hugging the shore, the occasional dolphin or two, and Mount Rainier on sunny days are all valid reasons to love these ferries.

Some tips: make sure you arrive plenty early to avoid rushing to the entry points when boarding begins. Remember, timeliness and efficiency is among the ferry system’s highest priorities. There’s no leeway for delayed departures in order to accommodate straggling passengers. Ferries run the same routes quite regularly throughout the day, though, even during COVID—so no real worry if you miss a ride.

Safety is always important to mention, but security is probably on the ferries, and I always feel incredibly safe from threats of any kind. That should be the least of your worries.

So don’t wait—book your ferry tickets NOW! It’s by far the best ferry network in the US!
Written October 24, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Karen C
7 contributions
Jun 2022 • Friends
My friend and I found ourselves with some time to kill after the American Society of Echocardiography’s 2022 Scientific Session that were held in Seattle ended, so on Tuesday, after a lovely breakfast at Bacco’s, we decided we wanted to enjoy a view of the city from the water. The WSF from Seattle to Bainbridge Island offered a easy and inexpensive option for a quick jaunt across the sound and back before our flight. The purchase process was easy, embarking and disembarking was a breeze, the ferry was well kept up and clean with great decks for enjoying the view and meeting nice people (including a handsome stranger who we later saw at the airport, as well - pity I only got his first name and not his phone number…but I digress). Anyway, looking for a fun little no frills cruise? I recommend the ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge.
Written June 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carmen R
San Antonio, TX66 contributions
Mar 2021 • Solo
My husband and I did a ferry ride to Bainbridge just before sunset when you could still see the Puget Sound. Due to time constraints we weren’t able to take a ferry ride during the day but the ferry ride at night did not disappoint. The views of the skyline at night are incredible. The ferry ride itself was smooth sailing. We plan on returning to Seattle and when we do we will definitely be doing a day trip. The price for the both of us was only $18 round trip I highly recommend to anyone wanting to see the Puget Sound to do it by way of ferry.
Written March 2, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hamilton
Seattle, WA1 contribution
Jun 2023 • Family
What’s the point of reservation for 18$ when you have to arrive 30-45 min early and then don’t even make it to the ferry. While the ferry you sign up for was late 20 minutes. This is a terrible service. We wanted to go to Orcas Island and ended up waiting for 2-3 hours. Even though we arrive 30 minutes before our scheduled reservation. Will never travel with this ferry again. Waisted our vacation.
Written June 2, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JCTRAVELMAN
San Jose, CA222 contributions
Nov 2021 • Friends
Worst hospitality during our wait on our way back from the island to the mainland. The guard on the way back at the 10pm ferry return. He was extremely rude. As a state ferry and paid service I felt that the attendant could of had better service and possibly needs additional training. Many locals and tourists use the service. The ferry itself was great but the attendant was unpleasant
Written December 23, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

todd d
1 contribution
Aug 2022 • Family
Notify when you cancel a boat, especially the last one of the day.

We were notified the ferry was cancelled and kept looking for update alerts, finally got one stating that there was going to be an added boat at 10:40pm so we were happy we were going to be able to return home with a truck full of perishable items.

We arrived at the Anacortes ferry booth, all of them were closed but one with an open sign on but no one was there, no note on the window, nothing. Only after I drove all the way in and walked up to the wall on terminal did I find an employee who told me the last sailing of 10:40 was cancelled!

No notice on the website, nor on the DOT website, nothing to let us know anything about the last boat being cancelled. The DOT app is useless if you don't update the info and alerts. Vessilwatch is a joke.

We had to stay overnight and catch the 06:00 am ferry.
Written August 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

31TravelingKat
Carlsbad, CA11 contributions
Aug 2021 • Family
The price was kinda high especially for us. We paid a total of $52 (it’s 4.50 for anyone under 18) and I think around $9.05 for adults. Once you are over to the town/island, you have to pay $20.40 to come back onto the boat. Once you pay, you wait in line for a while. If you want drinks, you have to get off the car and walk up a building to overpriced vending machines. But once you move the car onto the boat, you park and get off. That’s when the fun begins. The ferry has 4 levels. Coffee and vending machines were on the top levels. And the view was magnificent. You can walk around it all and it’s great for pictures. There’s the view of the whole city as you go away into the sea. We loved it. It was worth the price but you won’t realize that until you’re up there. When it’s time to get back into the cars to move them, the captain rings the bell. So you do have time to run down.
Written August 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Casey S
Denton, TX32 contributions
Mar 2023 • Family
My husband, my teenager and I took a trip to Seattle for a birthday. We decided to rent a car, drive up to Anacortes, and take the ferry over to San Juan Island. I would recommend getting your ferry pass two days in advance. We looked at only one day in advance, and all the times that worked for us we’re already booked and since it is an hour and a half drive from Seattle, we weren’t willing to try to Just drive up and see if they would let us on or if they had room. Also, you don’t really know how much your fairy fair will be until you get there. There were three of us in a jeep wrangler and it was $45 each way. That was a little higher than I was expecting, but it’s OK. The fairy was very clean. We took on our own food, had a really nice booth to sit and eat at. The fairies very quiet. It was not very crowded so maybe that also led to our great experience. We also had beautiful weather. It was partly cloudy about 50°. It was just really relaxing to sit and look out the windows at all the majesty around us. You could walk out on the deck and they were seats up at the front that you could have 180° view of all the different islands in houses and things around. We were a little disappointed that we did not see any whales, but we can’t help that. There was a problem with another fairy so our fairy had to take an extra stop. However, that was listed on the ferry schedule, so we already knew about that and honestly it was so peaceful I didn’t mind.
Written March 24, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jay H
Las Vegas, NV94 contributions
Jul 2022
We took the ferry from Bremerton back to Seattle and were greeted with clear skies and great views of the city. Mt Rainier in the distance was also amazing to see. It took over an hour but this was well worth it.
Written September 13, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GitchSup
Duluth, MN1,468 contributions
May 2022
We were sad that there were not more ferries operating while we visited, but I know that COVID decimated their captains, and replacing them is near impossible with the extensive amount of training required to operate the vessels. I have a feeling some of the services will not be replaced. We did take the ferry between Bainbridge and Seattle and it was fantastic! The whole operation is run like a well-oiled machine and you drive right onto the ferry. Once on you can get out of your vehicle and walk around, there are places to sit inside and watch the scenery go by the window, restrooms, and a convenience/deli area to get your morning coffee or afternoon treat. If the weather is nice you can go outside on the bow and watch the approach to your destination. The only thing I wish is that we got to ride it more than once.
Written August 21, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Washington State Ferries (Seattle) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Washington State Ferries

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