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How Long Is The Ferry Ride From Bayshore To Fire Island


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Bernie Bouchard



Welcome to the bustling waterfront town of Bayshore, located on the south shore of Long Island, New York. Known for its vibrant community, delicious seafood, and close proximity to the stunning Fire Island, Bayshore serves as a gateway to this picturesque barrier island.


Fire Island, a haven for nature lovers and beach enthusiasts, offers miles of pristine sandy beaches, charming communities, and diverse wildlife. To reach this idyllic island, many visitors choose to take a ferry ride from Bayshore, enjoying the scenic journey across the Great South Bay.


In this article, we will explore the duration of the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island, as well as the factors that can affect the travel time. Additionally, we will delve into the beautiful views you can expect during the journey and the amenities available on board the ferry.


So, sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the details of the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island.


Overview of Bayshore and Fire Island

Bayshore, a charming waterfront town on the south shore of Long Island, is a popular destination for both locals and tourists. With its rich history and vibrant community, Bayshore offers a diverse range of activities, including shopping, dining, and recreational opportunities.


Just a short ferry ride away lies the magnificent Fire Island, a barrier island stretching along the southern coast of Long Island. This 32-mile-long island is known for its pristine beaches, stunning sand dunes, and diverse ecosystems. It is home to several communities, including Ocean Beach, Cherry Grove, and Fire Island Pines, each with its own unique character and charm.


Fire Island is a designated national seashore, ensuring the preservation of its natural beauty and wildlife. Visitors can explore the island’s diverse landscapes, from tranquil beaches to marshlands and forests. With limited vehicle access, the island has a peaceful and relaxed atmosphere, making it a perfect retreat from the bustling city life.


Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a beach lover, or simply seeking a peaceful getaway, Bayshore and Fire Island offer the perfect combination of relaxation and adventure.


Ferry Schedule and Departure Points

The ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island is a convenient and popular way to reach the island. Several ferry companies operate services from Bayshore to various destinations on Fire Island, providing a range of departure times to suit different schedules.


The ferry schedule may vary depending on the season, so it’s recommended to check the official websites of the ferry companies or contact them directly for the most up-to-date information.


The departure points for the ferry rides are typically located along the waterfront in Bayshore. Some of the commonly used departure points include:

  • Bay Shore Marina: Situated at the end of Maple Avenue, this marina serves as a departure point for several ferry companies.
  • Bay Shore Ferry Terminal: Located on Maple Avenue, this terminal provides a convenient and central location for ferry departures.
  • Fire Island Pines Ferry Terminal: This departure point is specifically for those heading to Fire Island Pines, a popular destination on the island.
  • Ocean Beach Ferry Terminal: If you’re planning to visit Ocean Beach, this is where you’ll catch the ferry.

It’s essential to arrive at the departure point with plenty of time before the scheduled departure, especially during peak times when the ferries can get crowded. It’s recommended to arrive at least 15-30 minutes before the scheduled departure to ensure a smooth and hassle-free boarding process.


Some ferry companies offer online ticket booking, allowing you to secure your spot in advance. However, walk-ins are also typically accepted, although availability may be limited.


Now that you know about the schedule and departure points, let’s move on to the next section to discover the duration of the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island.


Duration of the Ferry Ride

The duration of the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island can vary depending on several factors, including the specific destination on Fire Island and the ferry company you choose. On average, the ferry ride takes approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour.


For destinations closer to Bayshore, such as Ocean Beach or Kismet, the ferry ride tends to be shorter, usually around 30 minutes. On the other hand, if you’re heading to communities further east, like Cherry Grove or Davis Park, the ferry ride can take closer to an hour.


It’s important to note that these durations are estimates, and actual travel times may be slightly longer or shorter depending on weather conditions, sea traffic, and other variables.


The ferry ride not only serves as a means of transportation but also offers a unique experience to enjoy the scenic beauty of the Great South Bay. As you glide across the calm waters, you’ll have the opportunity to take in breathtaking views of the bay, the coastline, and even glimpses of iconic landmarks like the Fire Island Lighthouse.


During the warmer months, you may also spot sailboats, kayakers, and even playful dolphins swimming alongside the ferry, adding to the enchanting journey.


Now that you have an idea of the duration of the ferry ride, let’s explore the factors that can affect the travel time in the next section.


Factors Affecting the Duration

While the average duration of the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island is relatively consistent, there are several factors that can affect the travel time and cause variations in the duration.


1. Distance to Destination: The specific destination on Fire Island can impact the duration of the ferry ride. Communities closer to Bayshore, such as Ocean Beach and Kismet, tend to have shorter travel times, while those further east, like Cherry Grove or Davis Park, may require a longer ferry ride.


2. Ferry Schedule: The frequency of ferry departures can also impact the duration. During peak times, such as weekends and holidays, there may be more frequent departures, reducing the waiting time and potentially shortening the overall ferry ride duration.


3. Weather Conditions: Inclement weather, such as strong winds or rough seas, can potentially slow down the ferry and result in a longer travel time. Ferry companies prioritize passenger safety, and if weather conditions are unfavorable, they may adjust the speed or delay the departure for the safety of all passengers.


4. Sea Traffic: The presence of other boats, including commercial vessels, private boats, and other ferries, can affect the ferry ride duration. During busier times, there may be increased sea traffic, which can lead to slower travel times.


5. Passenger Load: The number of passengers on board can also impact the duration of the ferry ride. A high passenger load may require additional time for embarkation and disembarkation, potentially extending the overall travel time.


While these factors can contribute to variations in the duration of the ferry ride, it’s important to remember that the experience of the journey is just as valuable as reaching your destination. Sit back, relax, and embrace the tranquil beauty of the Great South Bay as you make your way to Fire Island.


Next, let’s explore the scenic views you can expect during the ferry ride.


Scenic Views during the Ferry Ride

The ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island offers stunning scenic views that make the journey a memorable part of your visit. As you sail across the Great South Bay, you’ll be treated to breathtaking sights that highlight the natural beauty of the area.


One of the most captivating views during the ferry ride is the expansive coastline. You’ll have the opportunity to witness the picturesque shoreline of both Bayshore and Fire Island, with pristine sandy beaches stretching as far as the eye can see. The contrast between the turquoise waters and the golden sand creates a postcard-worthy panorama.


As you venture further into the bay, keep an eye out for wildlife encounters. The Great South Bay is home to an array of marine creatures, including seals, various species of fish, and migratory birds. If you’re lucky, you might even catch sight of playful dolphins gracefully leaping through the water.


The ferry ride also offers glimpses of iconic landmarks along the way. One notable landmark is the Fire Island Lighthouse, an iconic structure that stands tall at the western end of the island. The lighthouse provides a historic backdrop against the natural beauty of the bay and is a sight to behold from the ferry.


Throughout the journey, you’ll have ample opportunities to capture stunning photographs and create lasting memories. The changing hues of the sky during sunset can create a breathtaking canvas during the evening ferry rides.


It’s worth noting that the scenery may vary depending on the specific route and destination. Each community on Fire Island offers its own unique coastal charm and stunning views, providing a diverse visual experience during the ferry ride.


So, keep your camera ready, and allow yourself to be captivated by the natural splendor that surrounds you as you embark on this scenic journey from Bayshore to Fire Island.


Next, let’s explore the amenities and services available on board the ferry.


Amenities and Services onboard the Ferry

While enjoying the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island, you’ll find that the ferries offer a range of amenities and services to enhance your journey and ensure a comfortable experience for passengers.


Seating Options: Most ferries provide both indoor and outdoor seating options, allowing you to choose the atmosphere that suits your preference. Indoor seating areas are equipped with comfortable seating arrangements, perfect for those who prefer a climate-controlled environment. Outdoor seating options, such as open-air decks, are ideal for soaking up the sun and enjoying the fresh sea breeze.


Snack Bar and Refreshments: If you are feeling peckish or craving a cold beverage, many ferries have snack bars or onboard cafes where you can purchase a variety of refreshments. From light snacks like sandwiches and chips to hot coffee, cold drinks, and even ice cream, these options ensure you won’t go hungry during the ride.


Restrooms: To ensure passenger comfort, ferries are equipped with restrooms onboard. These facilities are clean and well-maintained, providing a convenient option for any necessary breaks during the journey.


Bicycle and Stroller Accommodation: If you plan to bring your bicycle or have a stroller with you, most ferries have designated areas to accommodate these items. This makes it easy to explore Fire Island upon arrival, whether you prefer biking or strolling.


Accessibility: Many ferry companies strive to make their vessels accessible to all passengers. This includes providing ramps or lifts for passengers with mobility challenges and ensuring that the ferries are wheelchair-friendly. It’s always advisable to contact the ferry company in advance to inquire about specific accessibility options if needed.


Knowledgeable Crew: The crew members on board the ferries are generally friendly and knowledgeable about Fire Island and the surrounding area. They can provide helpful information, answer questions, and offer suggestions for activities and attractions to explore on the island.


It’s important to remember that the availability of specific amenities and services may vary depending on the ferry company and the vessel being used. Checking the ferry company’s website or contacting them directly will provide more detailed information about the amenities and services available on your specific ferry.


Now that you know about the amenities and services on board the ferry, let’s discover some tips for a comfortable ferry ride.


Tips for a Comfortable Ferry Ride

When embarking on a ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island, there are several tips to keep in mind to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience:


1. Arrive Early: To avoid any last-minute stress, arrive at the departure point with ample time before the scheduled departure. This will give you enough time to check-in, purchase tickets if needed, and ensure a smooth boarding process.


2. Dress Appropriately: Consider the weather conditions and dress accordingly. Layered clothing is always a good option, as temperatures can change throughout the ferry ride. Additionally, wearing comfortable shoes is advisable, particularly if you plan to explore Fire Island on foot.


3. Sun Protection: If you’ll be seated on the outdoor deck or planning to spend time outside during the ferry ride, don’t forget to bring and apply sunscreen. Wearing a hat and sunglasses can also provide additional protection against the sun’s rays.


4. Bring Snacks and Drinks: While most ferries have onboard snack bars or cafes, it’s a good idea to bring some snacks and drinks, especially if you have specific dietary preferences or restrictions. Having your own refreshments can also be convenient during peak times when the snack bar might be busier.


5. Pack Lightly: Consider carrying a small bag or backpack with essentials such as sunscreen, sunglasses, a hat, a camera, and any other personal items you may need during the ferry ride or upon disembarking on Fire Island. Avoid bringing bulky or unnecessary items to ensure comfortable seating arrangements.


6. Secure Valuables: Keep an eye on your personal belongings throughout the journey and make sure to secure any valuable items such as wallets, phones, and cameras. It’s always better to be cautious and prevent any potential loss or damage.


7. Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water before and during the ferry ride, particularly on hot and humid days. Hydration is important, especially if you’re planning to spend time under the sun on Fire Island.


8. Observe Safety Instructions: Pay attention to any safety announcements or instructions provided by the crew members. It’s important to be aware of the emergency exits, life jackets, and other safety measures in case of any unforeseen situations.


By following these tips, you’ll be well-prepared for a comfortable and enjoyable ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island.


Now, armed with all the information you need, it’s time to embark on your journey and experience the magic of Fire Island.



The ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island is not just a means of transportation, but an exciting and scenic experience in itself. This journey allows visitors to leave behind the hustle and bustle of Bayshore and embark on a tranquil adventure to the pristine beaches and charming communities of Fire Island.


Throughout the ferry ride, passengers can enjoy breathtaking views of the Great South Bay, with its shimmering waters, sandy shores, and fascinating wildlife. The duration of the ferry ride varies depending on the destination on Fire Island, but on average, it takes around 30 minutes to 1 hour, providing ample time to soak in the beauty of the surroundings.


Onboard the ferry, passengers have access to various amenities and services, including indoor and outdoor seating, snack bars, restrooms, and accommodations for bicycles and strollers. The knowledgeable crew members are always ready to assist and provide valuable information about Fire Island and its attractions.


To ensure a comfortable ferry ride, it is recommended to arrive early, dress appropriately, pack light, and bring your own snacks and drinks. Sun protection and staying hydrated are essential, especially during the warm and sunny days.


As you step off the ferry onto the sandy shores of Fire Island, you’ll be greeted by a vibrant and natural paradise. Whether you’re looking to relax on the beaches, explore the charming communities, or take part in outdoor activities, Fire Island has something for everyone.


In conclusion, the ferry ride from Bayshore to Fire Island is a fantastic way to begin your adventure on this picturesque barrier island. So, grab your sunscreen, camera, and sense of adventure, and get ready to experience the magic of Fire Island on this memorable journey from Bayshore.