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Visiting Brownsea Island from Poole Quay

Brownsea Island yellow ferry coming into dock on Brownsea Island
Catch a yellow ferry from Poole Quay over to Brownsea Island | © National Trust / Olivia Gruitt

Everything you need to know about visiting Brownsea Island from Poole Quay - No booking required.

Getting to Brownsea

If you're planning a trip to Brownsea, then you'll need to catch a foot ferry which runs every day from Poole Quay. Please note: there is now also a limited Sandbanks boat service in operation. You can find information on the Sandbanks service here.

Travelling from Poole Quay

  • You no longer need to pre-book if coming from Poole Quay (pre-booking only applies to the Sandbanks service for the 2023 season). All ferries from Poole Quay will be a walk-in service.
  • The ferries operate on a 'first come, first served' basis, so allow plenty of time if you are planning to catch a ferry at a specific time, as there is an hour wait between departures.
  • With the exception of large groups (15+), including groups staying on the campsite, there is no pre-booking facility for the Poole Quay service. If you are a group of 15 or more, please visit either the Group Booking guidance for groups or campsite visitors.

Ferry price from Poole Quay

All visitors, including members, will be required to pay the ferry fare either via the Fast Track option on the ferry which is only available during school holidays on the boats leaving at 10am, 11am and noon. Payment can also be made on arrival at Reception.

Ferry prices from Poole Quay 2023
Ticket typePrice
Child (aged 5+)£6.50
Family (2 adults and up to 3 children)£32.50
Family (1 adult and up to 3 children)£19.50

Island admission price

Island admission is free for members, so please bring your membership card with you.

Non members will need to pay admission along with the ferry fare either via the Fast Track service on the ferry which is only available during school holidays on the boats leaving at 10am, 11am and noon. Payment can also be made on arrival at Reception. See the homepage for island admission prices.

Ferry Information and timetables

  • The crossing takes approximately 20 minutes from Poole Quay.
  • You can return on whichever return ferry you choose. The only exception may be when we have large groups on island. On days such as these, we will be looking to allocate groups to a particular crossing so that we can inform our other day visitors on arrival of the busier service off the island, so that you may plan your visit accordingly.
  • Please bear in mind that the last ferry of the day leaving Brownsea and heading back to Poole Quay can be busy, so we advise catching an earlier ferry off, particularly at weekends and throughout the school holidays.
  • Please note that bringing large items aboard, such as pushchairs are the responsibility of the owner to carry on and off the ferry. No staff are available to help with this task.

2023 off peak ferry timetable from Poole Quay

Off peak timetable applies: 4 September to 29 October inclusive.

Poole to Brownsea Brownsea to Poole

Adverse weather

If we need to close the island due to the forecast, a decision to do so will be confirmed by 3pm the day before island closure. Please check the website before travelling.

How to find the ferry

Visitors wishing to travel to Brownsea via Poole Quay will need to head to the Brownsea Island Ferries (yellow) kiosk on Poole Quay on arrival.

Departure point

The departure point address is Brownsea Island Ferries (yellow kiosk), Poole Quay, Poole, Dorset, BH15 1HJ.

Staying safe onboard

To help keep everyone safe, please pay attention to instructions from staff, crew and skippers whilst boarding, on board and alighting the ferry.

A close up of a red squirrel climbing a tree on Brownsea Island, Poole Harbour, Dorset

Discover more at Brownsea Island

Find out when Brownsea Island is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

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