Boat and Ferry Travel

If you are coming to Ireland from England, chances are you'll leave from Wales on a ferry bound for Rosslare Harbour, 19 km (12 miles) south of Wexford, one of Ireland's busiest ferry ports. There are two main companies that service Rosslare. Irish Ferries connects Rosslare to Pembroke, Wales (four hours). Stena Line sails directly between Rosslare Ferryport and Fishguard, Wales (three hours), and to Cherbourg in France (19½ hours). They both have small information kiosks in the ultramodern terminal, which also has lockers and a sprawling waiting room. Passage East Car Ferry is a shortcut across the Suir Estuary, connecting Ballyhack in Wexford with Passage East in Waterford. A new bypass and bridge around New Ross mean drive times to the rest of the Southeast have been cut by half an hour or more.

You can purchase ferry tickets at the terminal, but try to reserve a space in advance online to avoid the frequent sellouts, particularly in summer and anytime the Irish soccer team is playing in a major tournament abroad.

Reservations are a must if you're traveling by car or motorcycle because onboard parking space is at a premium. Eurail Pass holders get a discount on ferries from France. Departure times vary from season to season, so call ahead.

Contacts

Irish Ferries. www.irishferries.com.

Passage East Ferry Company. www.passageferry.ie.

Stena Line. www.stenaline.ie.

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