Cook Strait ferry

Cook Strait ferries

The Cook Strait is the body of water that separates the North and the South Island of New Zealand. Ferries across the Cook Strait are the most direct way to cross between the two main islands and is the cheapest option especially if you travel with your car.

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Cook Strait ferry Operators

  • Interislander
    • 20 Sailings Weekly 3 hr 10 min
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  • Bluebridge
    • 4 Sailings Daily 3 hr 30 min
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Cook Strait ferry routes

How long is the Cook Strait?

At the narrowest point, the strait is roughly 22 kilometres (or 14 miles) wide. The capital of New Zealand, Wellington, lies in Fitzroy Bay at the north shore of the Cook Strait while Cloudy Bay and Clifford Bay form the southern coast.

Ferries across the Cook Strait

The ferry services run between Wellington on the North Island and Picton on the South Island and are an essential part of New Zealand’s transport system. 2 ferry operators, Bluebridge and Interislander together offer up to 7 crossings a day.

How long does the Cook Strait ferry take?

The crossing time takes between 3 hours and 10 minutes and 3 hours and 30 minutes. Sailings are offered 7 days a week, all year round.

Please be aware that the latest check-in time for ferries across the Cook Strait is 60 minutes before the departure.

With the car on the Cook Strait ferry

The ferries across the Cook Strait are car ferries, meaning you can both take you vehicle with you or travel as a foot passenger. Please be aware, that many rental car companies don’t allow you to take their cars from one island to the other. Please make sure you checked the terms and conditions regarding your rental car before you book a ticket with vehicle fare.

Book cheap Cook Strait ferry tickets

With Direct Ferries you can compare Bluebridge and Interislander and their timetables and prices. You can plan your journey and book cheap tickets easy and quick online. Get the best prices with our price finder.