The 92km ferry between Wellington and Picton takes 3 and a half hours, and has been described by many as "one of the most beautiful ferry rides in the world". InterCity buses in Wellington and Picton connect with the two daily ferry crossings and ferry tickets can be purchased as part of your booking.


Interislander Ferry Timetable:

 Service Depart Arrive
II6521 Wellington to Picton (Kaitaki)  8:45 am  12:15 pm
II6527 Wellington to Picton (Kaiarahi)  1:00 pm  4:30pm
II6523 Wellington to Picton (Aratere)  4:00 pm  7:30 pm
II6522 Picton to Wellington (Aratere)  11:00 am  2:15 pm
II6524 Picton to Wellington (Kaitaki)  2:15 pm  5:45 pm
II6526 Picton to Wellington (Aratere)  6:30pm  10:00 pm

Not all services depart daily. Timetables are subject to change. Please visit the Interislander Arrivals and Departures page for up-to-date information.

Getting to the Interislander Ferry Terminal

Interislander runs a shuttle bus between Platform 9, Wellington Railway Station (InterCity's main Wellington bus stop) and the Interislander Ferry Terminal at Aotea Quay. Ferry shuttle buses leave the railway station 75 minutes before the departure of each ferry sailing, and return from the ferry terminal after each sailing.

Booking Interislander ferry travel

If you're booking your ferry travel on a FlexiPass or TravelPass, bookings, changes or cancellations need to be made at least 26 hours before departure.

About the Kaitaki Interislander Ferry

Kaitaki is a Māori word meaning "challenger". With the capacity to carry up to 1600 passengers, it is both the largest ship in Interislander's fleet and the largest ferry operating in New Zealand waters. Kaitaki offers a unique tourism and travel experience.

There are nurseries and play areas on board for children, and during school holidays and peak seasons, you may even spot magicians and clowns as part of your onboard entertainment.

About the Aratere Interislander Ferry

Aratere is a Māori word meaning "quick path". It is one of the most modern, high-tech vessels operating in New Zealand waters.

This ship provides top-quality facilities to ensure a memorable cruise. Including a food court, bar, Wi-Fi internet, cinema and Aratere Plus Lounge, the extensive onboard facilities mean there is plenty for everyone to do on their journey through the Marlborough Sounds.

About the Kaiarahi Interislander Ferry

Kaiarahi is a Māori word meaning leader, guide or guardian. It is named in honour of the famous dolphin Pelorus Jack, who is immortalised in the Interislander logo. For 20 years, this inquisitive dolphin guided ships through Cook Strait and the Marlborough Sounds. 

Kaiarahi is the newest of the Interislander fleet with outdoor viewing decks, lounges, plenty of food and drink options, a nursery and a children's play area.