The ferry service from St. Marys, Georgia to Cumberland Island National Seashore during the spring and summer seasons operates 7 days a week from March 1st through September 30, 2019. The ferry ride takes 45 minutes to arrive on Cumberland Island.
The ferry to Cumberland Island leaves St. Marys, GA at 9 am and 11:45 am during March 1st through September 30, 2019. The return ferry for daytrippers departs Cumberland Island at 2:45 pm (*Monday through Saturday*), and 4:45 pm. There’s also a 10:15 am ferry departing the island, used by overnight campers.
Arrive 1 Hour Early
Traveling from Amelia Island, FL, take the 45 minute to an hour’s drive (depending on traffic), north to St. Marys, GA. The Park Service and ferry concessionaire advise ferry reservation holders to arrive one hour early before departure time, to check in. According to the NPS website, “All unclaimed ferry reservations will be cancelled 30 minutes prior to departure and those spots will be offered to walk-in visitors.”
Note that since Hurricane Irma, an alternative ferry dock (pictured above, the “Gateway Dock”) is being used. This requires a bit more time for parking and walking to the dock about three blocks away.
Watch the National Park Service video below explaining check in process and parking instructions.
Personal bicycles can be transported on ferry for $10 fee (but space is very limited, first come, first serve). Rent a bike for $16 from ferry company (also first come, first serve, adult-sized bikes only). Note that rented bikes are not allowed to be ridden on the beach.
How Much Are Ferry Tickets?
Ferry tickets cost $28 round trip plus tax per person, plus a $10 per adult park entry fee. Thus, figure $40 round trip per adult, without bikes.
While waiting for the ferry, those with a little extra time can wander the waterfront park along the St. Marys river. There are plenty of places to sit, from benches, picnic tables and even porch-type swings, perfect for two.
Read related article with travel tips about what to expect and how to prepare for this island adventure “Cumberland Island, Delightful Day Trip.”