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How Long Is The Ferry Ride From Seattle To Victoria


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Cleopatra Fleischman



Welcome aboard the Seattle to Victoria ferry, a scenic and convenient mode of transportation between two vibrant cities in the Pacific Northwest. This picturesque route offers a unique travel experience, combining the charm of a ferry ride with breathtaking views of the stunning coastal landscapes. Whether you’re a local resident looking for a weekend getaway or a tourist exploring the wonders of the region, the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria is a must-do activity.


The journey takes you across the international border, from the United States to Canada, providing an opportunity to witness the beauty of the Salish Sea and its surrounding islands. With comfortable seating, onboard amenities, and friendly staff, the ferry ride offers a relaxing and enjoyable way to reach your destination.


Throughout this article, we will delve into the details of this popular ferry route, including departure locations and schedules, the duration of the ride, the scenic views you can expect, the amenities available onboard, ticket prices and reservations, immigration and customs procedures, tips for arrival in Victoria, and alternative transportation options.


So, sit back, relax, and prepare to embark on a memorable journey as we explore the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria.


The Seattle to Victoria Ferry Route

The Seattle to Victoria ferry route is a popular and scenic way to travel between the United States and Canada. The journey takes you from the bustling city of Seattle, Washington, through the picturesque Puget Sound, and across the international border to the charming city of Victoria, British Columbia.


The ferry route offers a unique experience, allowing passengers to enjoy the beauty of the Salish Sea and its surrounding islands. During the journey, you will have the opportunity to witness stunning views of the Olympic Mountains, Mount Rainier, and the rugged coastal landscapes.


The ferry route operates year-round, with multiple sailings per day to accommodate varying schedules. Whether you’re planning a day trip or an extended stay, there are plenty of options to choose from. The ferry companies that service this route provide comfortable and well-equipped vessels to ensure a pleasant journey for all passengers.


The distance between Seattle and Victoria by ferry is approximately 40 miles (64 kilometers), and the duration of the ride typically ranges from 2 to 3 hours, depending on the conditions of the sea and the specific ferry operator. During the journey, you can relax on the deck, indulge in onboard amenities, or simply take in the stunning views of the surrounding landscape.


It’s important to note that the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria is not just a means of transportation; it’s an experience in itself. The journey allows you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest and provides a tranquil and enjoyable way to reach your destination.


Next, let’s explore the departure locations and schedules for the Seattle to Victoria ferry route, so you can plan your trip accordingly.


Departure Locations and Schedules

The Seattle to Victoria ferry route offers multiple departure locations to accommodate passengers from various areas. The main departure point is the Seattle Ferry Terminal, also known as Colman Dock, located in downtown Seattle. It is easily accessible by public transportation and offers convenient parking options for those driving to the terminal.


The ferry schedule varies depending on the time of year and the ferry operator. It is recommended to check the official websites of the ferry companies for the most up-to-date information. Generally, there are multiple sailings per day, providing flexibility for passengers to choose a departure time that suits their itinerary.


The duration of the ferry ride may also vary depending on the specific departure location. For example, there are direct sailings from Seattle to Victoria, as well as sailings that first stop at other destinations before reaching Victoria. It’s important to review the schedules to ensure you choose the most convenient option for your journey.


In addition to the Seattle Ferry Terminal, there are also departure locations in other nearby cities, such as Anacortes and Port Angeles. These routes may offer different sailing schedules and durations, so it’s essential to research and compare the options based on your preferences and travel plans.


When planning your trip, it is advisable to arrive at the departure terminal at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time to ensure a smooth boarding process. This will allow you to check-in, collect your tickets, and proceed through any necessary security or immigration procedures.


Now that you have an understanding of the departure locations and schedules, let’s delve into the duration of the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria and the scenic views you can expect along the way.


Duration of the Ferry Ride

The duration of the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria can vary depending on factors such as weather conditions, ferry operator, and the specific route taken. On average, the journey takes approximately 2 to 3 hours to complete.


It’s important to note that this timeframe accounts for the time spent on the water and does not include the time required for boarding and disembarking the ferry. It is advisable to factor in additional time for check-in, security procedures, and any immigration processes that may be required for international travel.


The ferry operators strive to provide a comfortable and smooth sailing experience for passengers. The vessels are equipped with modern amenities, including spacious seating areas, restrooms, and onboard cafes where you can enjoy a meal or grab a snack during the journey.


As you sail from Seattle to Victoria, you will have the opportunity to soak in the stunning natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. The route crosses the Salish Sea, offering panoramic views of the surrounding islands, mountains, and coastal landscapes.


On clear days, passengers may be treated to breathtaking views of the Olympic Mountains and Mount Rainier, providing a picture-perfect backdrop for your journey. From the deck of the ferry, you can capture memorable photos or simply enjoy the serene environment as you glide through the water.


During the ferry ride, you will also have the chance to spot marine wildlife, such as seals, sea lions, and various seabirds. Keep your eyes peeled as you traverse the Salish Sea, as these beautiful creatures often make appearances along the route.


Overall, the duration of the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria offers a perfect balance of time to relax, enjoy the scenic views, and prepare for your arrival in the charming city of Victoria. As we continue exploring the journey, let’s uncover the amenities and services available onboard the ferry.


Scenic Views During the Journey

The ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria offers passengers an opportunity to indulge in breathtaking scenic views of the Pacific Northwest. As you traverse the Salish Sea, you’ll be treated to a tapestry of natural beauty that will captivate your senses.


One of the highlights of the journey is the panoramic views of the surrounding islands, which dot the Salish Sea. These picturesque islands, including the San Juan Islands, offer stunning vistas as you sail towards Victoria. The rugged and untouched landscapes create a sense of tranquility, and you may even catch glimpses of quaint coastal communities nestled on the shores.


The journey also provides marvelous views of the majestic Olympic Mountains, which rise dramatically on the horizon. These snow-capped peaks create a stunning backdrop, especially on clear days, when the sun reflects off the snow and illuminates the scenery.


Mount Rainier, a dormant volcano known for its iconic summit, can often be spotted during the ferry ride. The mountain’s towering presence and its reflection on the calm waters of the Salish Sea create a postcard-worthy sight, leaving an indelible impression on passengers.


Throughout the journey, keep your eyes peeled for marine wildlife that frequent the area. Seals, sea lions, and even whales are known to make appearances in these waters. Spotting these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat adds an extra touch of wonder to the experience and ensures memories that will last a lifetime.


As you near the end of the journey and approach Victoria, the beautiful skyline of the city begins to take shape. The vibrant harbor, framed by historic buildings and modern architecture, provides a scenic welcome to this charming destination.


Whether you choose to enjoy the scenic views from the outdoor decks or through the large windows of the ferry’s cabins, be prepared to be awed by the natural beauty that unfolds during the journey from Seattle to Victoria.


Now that we have explored the scenic views, let’s move on to the amenities and services available onboard the ferry to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable journey.


Amenities and Services

The Seattle to Victoria ferry offers a range of amenities and services to enhance the comfort and enjoyment of passengers during their journey. Whether you’re looking to relax, grab a bite to eat, or stay connected, you’ll find everything you need on board.


The ferry vessels are equipped with spacious seating areas, providing ample room to sit back and unwind during the voyage. Comfortable seating options include traditional seats, as well as more relaxed lounge-style seating, allowing passengers to choose what suits their preferences.


For those who prefer a meal or a snack, onboard cafes are available, offering a selection of food and beverages. Whether you’re craving a hot cup of coffee in the morning, a light sandwich for lunch, or a refreshing beverage to enjoy with the scenic views, the onboard cafes have you covered.


For travelers who want to stay connected while on the journey, the ferry provides Wi-Fi access, allowing passengers to browse the internet, check emails, or share their travel experiences with friends and family. This service ensures that you can stay connected even as you sail across the Salish Sea.


Restrooms are conveniently located throughout the ferry, ensuring passengers have easy access to facilities during the journey. These facilities are well-maintained, clean, and equipped with all the necessary amenities.


Additionally, the ferry crew is always available to assist and ensure a comfortable experience for all passengers. Whether you have a question, need guidance, or require any assistance during the journey, the friendly and knowledgeable staff is there to help.


It’s important to note that specific amenities and services may vary depending on the ferry operator and the vessel being used for the journey. To get the most accurate and up-to-date information about the amenities available on your specific ferry, it’s recommended to visit the official website or contact the ferry company directly.


Now that we have explored the amenities and services offered onboard the Seattle to Victoria ferry, let’s move on to the important topic of ticket prices and reservations.


Ticket Prices and Reservations

When planning your journey from Seattle to Victoria on the ferry, it’s important to consider ticket prices and make reservations in advance to secure your spot. The cost of tickets may vary depending on factors such as the ferry operator, the time of year, and the type of ticket you choose.


It’s recommended to visit the official websites of the ferry companies that serve this route to obtain accurate and up-to-date information about ticket prices. These websites often provide a booking platform where you can select your preferred departure date, time, and seating option.


It’s important to note that fares may differ for adults, seniors, children, and vehicles. Some ferry operators also offer discounted fares for round-trip bookings or special promotions that may be available at certain times of the year.


Booking your tickets in advance is highly advisable, especially during peak travel seasons and holidays when demand is high. By securing your tickets early, you can ensure availability and avoid any last-minute disappointments.


Many ferry companies offer the convenience of online ticket reservations, allowing you to book and pay for your tickets from the comfort of your own home. Once your reservation is confirmed, you will receive a confirmation email with the details of your booking, including your departure time and any additional instructions or requirements.


It is important to arrive at the ferry terminal with your reservation confirmation or tickets in hand. This will streamline the check-in process and facilitate a smooth boarding experience. It’s also advisable to arrive at the terminal well in advance of your departure time to allow for any necessary procedures, such as checking in with your vehicle if you are bringing one onboard.


Keep in mind that ticket prices and reservation policies may change, so it’s always a good idea to double-check the information before making your booking. The official websites of the ferry companies usually provide the most reliable and up-to-date information regarding ticket prices, reservations, and any associated terms and conditions.


Now that you have an understanding of ticket prices and reservations, let’s move on to discussing the immigration and customs procedures you should be aware of for your journey across the international border.


Immigration and Customs Procedures

As the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria crosses the international border between the United States and Canada, passengers are required to go through immigration and customs procedures to ensure a smooth entry into the respective countries.


Before boarding the ferry, it’s essential to carry all necessary travel documents, including a valid passport or appropriate identification, such as an enhanced driver’s license or a NEXUS card. These documents will be checked by the immigration authorities during the boarding process.


Upon arriving at the Canadian port of entry in Victoria, all passengers will go through Canadian immigrations and customs. As a visitor to Canada, you may be asked a few routine questions by the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) officers, such as the purpose of your visit, the duration of your stay, and any items you are bringing into the country.


It is important to accurately declare any goods or items that you are bringing into Canada, including any purchases made abroad or items exceeding the personal duty exemptions. Be prepared to provide receipts or documentation to support your declaration if requested by the CBSA officers.


It’s worth noting that there are duty-free exemptions for certain goods, which vary depending on your travel duration and country of residence. These exemptions allow you to bring in a certain value of goods without having to pay duties or taxes.


Upon entering Canada, you will also need to comply with any customs regulations regarding restricted or prohibited items. Be aware of any items you are carrying that may be subject to regulations, such as firearms, certain types of food, or controlled substances.


Similarly, when returning to the United States from Victoria, passengers will go through U.S. immigration and customs procedures. U.S. citizens will need to present a valid passport or appropriate identification, while non-U.S. citizens should ensure they have the necessary travel documents, such as a visa or ESTA authorization.


It’s important to familiarize yourself with the specific immigration and customs requirements of both the United States and Canada before your journey. This will ensure a smooth and hassle-free process and help you avoid any unnecessary delays or complications.


Now that we have covered the immigration and customs procedures, let’s move on to discussing what to expect upon arriving in Victoria and exploring alternative transportation options in the city.


Arrival in Victoria

After a scenic and enjoyable ferry ride, you will arrive in the charming city of Victoria, British Columbia. Upon disembarking from the ferry, you will find yourself in the heart of the city’s bustling harbor area, surrounded by stunning waterfront views and a vibrant atmosphere.


Victoria offers a host of attractions and activities for visitors to explore. From historic landmarks and museums to beautiful gardens and outdoor adventures, there is something for everyone in this picturesque city.


One of the city’s iconic landmarks is the impressive British Columbia Legislature, located just a short walk from the ferry terminal. This stunning architectural masterpiece is surrounded by beautifully manicured gardens and is worth a visit to admire its grandeur.


From there, you can wander along the Inner Harbour, where you’ll find an array of shops, restaurants, and street performers. Take in the sights and sounds of the bustling harbor and perhaps even enjoy a relaxing stroll along the waterfront.


If you’re interested in history and culture, make a stop at the Royal BC Museum. Here, you can delve into the fascinating stories of British Columbia’s indigenous people, explore exhibitions on natural history, and learn about the province’s rich heritage.


Victoria is also famous for its beautiful gardens, the most famous being Butchart Gardens. Just a short drive from the city center, this stunning garden oasis showcases a variety of meticulously maintained landscapes, including vibrant flower displays, tranquil ponds, and ornate statues.


Exploring the city is made easy with a variety of transportation options available. You can choose to walk around the downtown area, as most of the popular attractions are within a reasonable distance from each other. Alternatively, you can rent a bicycle or utilize the city’s efficient public transportation system.


Taxis and rideshare services are also readily available for convenient and comfortable travel within the city. Additionally, organized tours are available for those who prefer a guided experience and an opportunity to learn about the city’s history and culture.


With its blend of natural beauty, colonial architecture, and friendly atmosphere, Victoria is a destination that will captivate your heart. Whether you’re interested in exploring rich history, immersing yourself in nature, or simply enjoying the city’s vibrant atmosphere, Victoria has something for everyone.


As we conclude our journey through the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria, we hope you’ve gained valuable insights that will help you plan your own memorable trip. Enjoy your time in Victoria and savor every moment of your Pacific Northwest adventure.


Alternative Transportation Options

While the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria is a popular and scenic mode of transportation, there are alternative options available for those who prefer different means of travel or want to explore additional transportation choices during their time in Victoria.


If you prefer a quicker and more direct route, you can consider flying from Seattle to Victoria. Several airlines offer daily flights between the two cities, providing a convenient and efficient way to reach your destination in a fraction of the time it takes by ferry. Flights typically operate from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Victoria International Airport, offering a hassle-free travel experience.


Another alternative transportation option is driving from Seattle to Victoria. This can be a great choice for those who want the freedom and flexibility of having their own vehicles during their time in Victoria. The journey includes driving to the Washington State Ferry terminal in Anacortes and boarding a ferry to Sidney, just outside of Victoria. From there, it is a short drive into the city center.


For those who enjoy outdoor adventures, cycling from Seattle to Victoria is also a thrilling option. The route follows scenic coastal roads and offers stunning views along the way. However, it’s important to note that this option requires careful planning, as it involves a multi-day journey with overnight stops and accommodations along the route.


Once you have arrived in Victoria, there are various transportation options to help you get around the city. The public transportation system, including buses, provides a convenient and cost-effective way to explore different areas of Victoria and its surrounding regions. Additionally, taxis, rideshare services, and rental cars are readily available for those who prefer more flexibility in their transportation choices.


If you’re interested in exploring the scenic beauty of the area, consider renting a bicycle or scooter to navigate the city’s bike lanes and take advantage of Victoria’s extensive network of cycling paths. This eco-friendly transportation option allows you to enjoy the fresh air and soak in the sights at your own pace.


Lastly, Victoria’s compact downtown area makes it an ideal city for walking. Many of the main attractions, shops, and restaurants are within comfortable walking distance from each other. With its pedestrian-friendly streets and picturesque surroundings, exploring Victoria on foot can be a delightful and immersive experience.


With these alternative transportation options available, you can choose the method that best suits your preferences, schedule, and sense of adventure. Whether you opt for the scenic ferry ride, take to the skies, hit the road, or explore the city by foot, you’re sure to have a memorable and enjoyable time in Victoria.


As we conclude our guide to the alternative transportation options, we hope this information helps you make informed decisions for your journey. Prepare for an exciting and unforgettable exploration of Victoria, where natural beauty meets historic charm.



Embarking on the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria is an extraordinary experience that offers a captivating blend of natural beauty and seamless travel. As you journey across the Salish Sea, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of the surrounding islands, majestic mountains, and picturesque coastal landscapes.


The convenience and comfort of the ferry, coupled with the amenities and services available onboard, ensure a pleasant and enjoyable trip. From comfortable seating arrangements to onboard cafes and Wi-Fi access, you’ll have everything you need to make your journey as relaxing and convenient as possible.


Arriving in Victoria, you’ll find yourself captivated by the charm and vibrancy of the city. Explore historic landmarks, immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage, or simply indulge in the natural beauty of the gardens and waterfront areas.


While the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria is a popular option, there are alternative transportation choices available, such as flying, driving, cycling, or utilizing public transportation. These options allow you to add your own flair to your journey and explore different aspects of Victoria and its surrounding regions.


Whichever method of transportation you choose, the stunning scenery, warm hospitality, and captivating atmosphere of Victoria are sure to leave a lasting impression. Embrace every moment of your Pacific Northwest adventure and create memories that will stay with you for a lifetime.


So, whether you’re a local seeking a weekend getaway or a visitor exploring the wonders of the Pacific Northwest, embark on the ferry ride from Seattle to Victoria and let the beauty of the journey and the allure of this charming city leave you enchanted.


As our journey comes to an end, we hope this comprehensive guide has provided you with valuable insights and useful information to plan your own memorable trip. Prepare to immerse yourself in the natural wonders, cultural delights, and captivating moments that await you in Victoria.


Safe travels, and may your time in Victoria be filled with awe-inspiring experiences and unforgettable adventures!