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How Long Is Ferry Ride From Boston To Provincetown


Modified: January 3, 2024

by Audie Tam



Welcome to Massachusetts, the historic and picturesque state known for its rich culture, stunning landscapes, and vibrant cities. One of the most popular destinations in the state is Provincetown, a charming coastal town located at the tip of Cape Cod. Provincetown offers a unique blend of natural beauty, art, and a thriving LGBTQ+ community that attracts visitors from all around the world.


For those planning a trip to Provincetown, one of the key considerations is the mode of transportation. While there are several options available, taking a ferry from Boston is a preferred choice for many travelers. This scenic and hassle-free journey not only provides convenience but also allows you to soak in the breathtaking views of the Massachusetts Bay and explore the surrounding waters.


In this article, we will delve into the details of taking a ferry from Boston to Provincetown, including the duration of the ferry ride, the sights and attractions along the way, as well as some essential tips for a smooth and enjoyable journey. So, sit back, relax, and let’s embark on this adventure together as we explore the beauty of Massachusetts and discover the magic of Provincetown.


Overview of Boston and Provincetown

Before we dive into the specifics of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown, let’s first get acquainted with these two captivating destinations.


Boston, the capital city of Massachusetts, is a vibrant metropolis steeped in history. It is home to famous landmarks such as the Freedom Trail, Fenway Park, and the renowned Institute of Contemporary Art. With its bustling streets, lively neighborhoods, and world-class dining scene, Boston offers an ideal blend of cultural attractions and modern amenities.


On the other hand, Provincetown, located at the northernmost tip of Cape Cod, provides a stark contrast with its serene coastal charm. This small town is known for its beautiful beaches, lighthouses, and a thriving arts community. Provincetown also has a rich history, particularly in relation to the Pilgrims’ first landing in the New World in 1620. Today, it attracts visitors with its vibrant LGBTQ+ scene, art galleries, and eclectic shops.


Both Boston and Provincetown offer unique experiences and are frequently visited by tourists looking for a dose of history, culture, and natural beauty. The ferry ride between these two destinations not only provides a convenient transportation option but also adds an extra touch of adventure to your journey.


Now that we have a basic understanding of both Boston and Provincetown, let’s move on to exploring the different modes of transportation available to reach Provincetown and why taking the ferry stands out as a popular choice.


Modes of Transportation to Provincetown

When it comes to traveling from Boston to Provincetown, there are a few options to consider. Each mode of transportation offers its own benefits and considerations, depending on your preferences and priorities.

  • Ferry: Taking a ferry is a popular and convenient way to reach Provincetown from Boston. Not only does it provide a scenic journey along the Massachusetts Bay, but it also eliminates the need for driving or parking. The ferry service operates regularly during the peak tourist season and offers a comfortable and enjoyable experience onboard.
  • Car: If you prefer the flexibility and convenience of having your own transportation, driving from Boston to Provincetown is an option. The distance between the two cities is approximately 116 miles, and the drive takes around two and a half to three hours, depending on traffic. However, keep in mind that parking can be limited and expensive in Provincetown, especially during peak season.
  • Bus: Another alternative is taking a bus from Boston to Provincetown. Various bus companies operate routes between the two cities, offering an affordable and comfortable mode of transportation. The journey takes around three to four hours, depending on traffic and the specific bus service.
  • Plane: For those looking to save time and prefer a quicker option, flying from Boston to Provincetown is available. The Provincetown Municipal Airport offers flights from Boston Logan International Airport, and the flight time is approximately 25 minutes. However, it’s important to note that flight availability and frequency may be limited.

Each mode of transportation to Provincetown has its advantages and considerations. While driving gives you flexibility, the ferry ride offers a unique experience and avoids the hassle of parking. Consider your preferences, budget, and time constraints when deciding which option suits you best.


Now, let’s explore the ferry option in more detail and discover the duration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown.


Taking the Ferry from Boston to Provincetown

Taking a ferry from Boston to Provincetown is not only a practical mode of transportation but also offers a delightful experience for travelers. The ferry ride allows you to sit back, relax, and enjoy captivating views of the Massachusetts Bay as you make your way to the charming town of Provincetown.


Several ferry companies operate between Boston and Provincetown, offering a range of services to cater to different preferences and budgets. Some popular ferry providers include Boston Harbor Cruises, Bay State Cruise Company, and Provincetown Fast Ferry. These companies provide regular departures during the peak tourist season, typically from late May to early October.


Most ferries depart from the Boston waterfront, specifically from Long Wharf or the Seaport District. The terminals are easily accessible by public transportation or car, with nearby parking options available for those driving.


Once on board the ferry, you can expect comfortable seating, onboard amenities, and a smooth ride. Some ferries offer indoor and outdoor seating options, allowing you to make the most of the scenic views. You may also find amenities such as restrooms, snack bars, and even Wi-Fi on certain vessels.


The ferry ride itself is an experience to savor. As you leave Boston behind, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the city skyline gradually giving way to the vast expanse of the ocean. Keep an eye out for various landmarks along the way, such as the Harbor Islands and the iconic Cape Cod Canal. If you’re lucky, you might even spot some marine wildlife, including dolphins or whales, making their appearances during the journey.


The duration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown can vary depending on the company and weather conditions. On average, the journey takes around 90 minutes to 2 hours. The time spent on the ferry allows you to relax, enjoy the scenery, and perhaps plan your itinerary for your time in Provincetown.


Now that you have an understanding of what to expect when taking the ferry from Boston to Provincetown, let’s explore the scenic views and points of interest you can encounter during this delightful journey.


Duration of Ferry Ride from Boston to Provincetown

The duration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown can vary depending on several factors, including the ferry service provider, weather conditions, and the type of vessel being used. On average, the journey takes around 90 minutes to 2 hours.


Some of the ferry companies, such as Boston Harbor Cruises and Bay State Cruise Company, offer high-speed ferries that can complete the trip in approximately 90 minutes. These vessels are designed for efficiency and provide a quick and smooth ride across the Massachusetts Bay.


Other ferry options may take slightly longer, with some routes ranging from 1.5 to 2 hours. While the journey may be a bit longer, it allows for a more leisurely experience, giving you ample time to appreciate the stunning views and take in the refreshing sea breeze.


It’s important to note that the duration of the ferry ride might be affected by weather conditions, especially during periods of inclement weather or high winds. If severe weather is expected, ferry services may be temporarily suspended or delayed for safety reasons. It’s always advisable to check with the ferry company or their website prior to departure for any weather-related updates or schedule changes.


While the duration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown may vary slightly, the journey itself is part of the adventure. As you glide across the Massachusetts Bay, you’ll have the opportunity to marvel at the breathtaking scenery, including the beautiful coastline, historic lighthouses, and even possibly catch glimpses of marine wildlife such as seals or birds.


Whether you choose a high-speed ferry for a quick and efficient journey or opt for a more leisurely ride to enjoy the scenic views, the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown offers a delightful experience that serves as the gateway to your exploration of this picturesque coastal town.


Now that we have an understanding of the duration of the ferry ride, let’s dive into the scenic views and points of interest that await you during this memorable journey.


Scenic Views and Points of Interest during the Ferry Ride

The ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown is not only a means of transportation but also a picturesque journey offering unforgettable views and intriguing landmarks along the way. As you sail across the Massachusetts Bay, keep your eyes peeled for these scenic highlights and points of interest:

  • Boston Harbor Islands: The ferry ride begins in the heart of Boston’s bustling waterfront, providing glimpses of the Boston Harbor Islands. These picturesque islands, including Spectacle Island and George’s Island, offer a unique natural beauty and rich history worth exploring.
  • Historic Lighthouses: As you venture further into the bay, you’ll encounter iconic lighthouses perched on rocky outcrops. Long Island Head Light, Boston Light, and Graves Light are just a few of the captivating lighthouses that dot the coastline, serving as both navigational aids and picturesque landmarks.
  • Cape Cod Canal: The ferry route takes you near the entrance of the Cape Cod Canal, a man-made waterway that connects Cape Cod Bay to Buzzards Bay. The canal offers a fascinating glimpse into the engineering marvels that allow for more efficient maritime navigation.
  • Marine Wildlife: Keep a lookout for the playful dolphins that often ride the ferry’s wake or gracefully swim alongside the boat. If you’re lucky, you might also spot majestic whales breaching the surface, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle.
  • Provincetown Harbor: As you approach Provincetown, you’ll be greeted by the picturesque Provincetown Harbor. The scenic beauty of the harbor, with its colorful fishing boats and charming waterfront, sets the stage for your arrival in this unique and welcoming town.

These scenic views and points of interest add a touch of magic to your ferry ride, creating lasting memories before you even set foot in Provincetown. Capture the breathtaking sights on camera or simply take a moment to soak in the natural beauty that surrounds you.


Now that we have explored the scenic highlights, let’s discover the ferry schedule and find out how to plan your journey to Provincetown.


Ferry Schedule and Ticket Information

When planning your trip from Boston to Provincetown by ferry, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the ferry schedule and ticket information to ensure a seamless journey.


The ferry service from Boston to Provincetown generally operates during the peak tourist season, from late May to early October. However, it’s important to note that schedules may vary depending on the ferry company and specific dates.


Several ferry companies offer daily departures from Boston to Provincetown, with multiple departure times throughout the day. It’s advisable to check the respective ferry company’s website or contact their customer service to obtain the most up-to-date schedule.


When it comes to purchasing tickets for the ferry, it’s recommended to book in advance, especially during the busy summer months. This guarantees your spot on the desired departure and helps avoid last-minute availability issues. Ticket prices may vary depending on the ferry company, vessel type, and any additional services or amenities provided onboard.


In addition to individual tickets, some ferry companies offer package deals or round-trip tickets, providing convenience and potential cost savings. These options are worth exploring if you plan to visit Provincetown for an extended period or intend to return to Boston within a specific timeframe.


Most ferry companies provide online ticket purchasing options, allowing you to secure your tickets from the comfort of your own home. Alternatively, you can also purchase tickets at the ferry terminals on the day of departure, but availability might be limited during busier periods.


It’s important to arrive at the ferry terminal at least 30 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time to allow for check-in and boarding procedures. This will ensure a stress-free experience and provide sufficient time to settle in before embarking on your journey to Provincetown.


Lastly, it’s recommended to periodically check the ferry company’s website or contact their customer service in case of any schedule changes, particularly due to inclement weather or other unforeseen circumstances. Stay informed to avoid any potential inconvenience.


Now that you have the necessary information about the ferry schedule and ticketing process, let’s explore some essential tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable ferry ride experience.


Tips for a Smooth Ferry Ride Experience

As you prepare to embark on your ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown, consider these helpful tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey:

  • Arrive early: Plan to arrive at the ferry terminal at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time. This allows ample time for check-in, security procedures, and boarding, ensuring a stress-free start to your journey.
  • Check the weather: Stay updated on the weather conditions for the day of your ferry ride. It’s advisable to dress in layers and bring appropriate outerwear, as it can be cooler on the water, especially during the early morning or evening.
  • Pack snacks and water: While some ferries offer onboard snack bars, it’s a good idea to bring your own snacks and beverages, especially if you have dietary restrictions or prefer specific items. Having nibbles and water on hand will keep you refreshed throughout the journey.
  • Bring entertainment: Consider bringing a book, headphones, or any other form of entertainment to keep yourself occupied during the ferry ride. Alternatively, you can simply sit back and enjoy the scenic views and the peaceful ambiance.
  • Charge your devices: If you plan to use electronic devices during the ferry ride, ensure they are adequately charged beforehand. Bringing a portable charger is also advisable, especially for longer journeys or if you rely heavily on your devices.
  • Respect fellow passengers: Be mindful of others during the ferry ride by keeping noise levels to a minimum and respecting personal space. Remember that everyone onboard is looking to enjoy a peaceful and pleasant journey.
  • Take photos: Capture the stunning views and memorable moments during the ferry ride. Whether you have a camera or simply use your smartphone, these photos will serve as cherished memories of your journey from Boston to Provincetown.
  • Stay informed: Keep an eye on the ferry company’s website or contact their customer service for any updates or changes regarding the ferry schedule or any other important information. Staying informed will help you avoid any unexpected surprises.

By following these tips, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable ferry ride experience from Boston to Provincetown. Sit back, relax, and embrace the beauty of the Massachusetts Bay as you make your way to the captivating town of Provincetown.


As our journey comes to an end, it’s time to conclude our exploration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown and the incredible experiences that await you in this charming coastal town.



As we conclude our exploration of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown, we hope you now have a comprehensive understanding of this scenic and convenient mode of transportation. The journey from Boston to Provincetown not only provides a practical means of reaching this enchanting coastal town but also allows you to immerse yourself in the beauty of the Massachusetts Bay.


From the historical landmarks of Boston to the serene charm of Provincetown, Massachusetts offers a diverse range of experiences for travelers. Whether you choose to drive, take a bus, or opt for the memorable ferry ride, each mode of transportation has its own appeal.


The ferry ride offers a delightful journey with picturesque views of the coastline, lighthouses, and the possibility of spotting marine wildlife along the way. It provides an opportunity to relax, unwind, and soak in the natural beauty that surrounds you.


Remember to plan your journey in advance by checking the ferry schedule, booking tickets early, and staying informed about any weather-related updates. Arrive early, pack snacks, and bring entertainment to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable ride.


Whether you’re visiting for the pristine beaches, vibrant art scene, or the welcoming LGBTQ+ community, Provincetown promises a memorable and fulfilling experience. Explore the charming streets, savor local cuisine, and immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere that sets Provincetown apart.


As you disembark from the ferry and step foot in Provincetown, prepare to create lasting memories in this unique coastal town. Whether you’re strolling along Commercial Street, visiting the Pilgrim Monument, or simply enjoying the stunning sunsets from the beach, Provincetown will leave an indelible mark on your heart.


So, venture forth, embrace the adventure, and let the magic of the ferry ride from Boston to Provincetown transport you to a world of beauty, charm, and unforgettable experiences in the coastal paradise of Provincetown, Massachusetts.