Fort Morgan is a beautiful location with a rich history, located on the southern coast of Alabama on the Pelican Bay. It's only 3 miles away from Dauphin Island, which sits off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, at the entrance to Mobile Bay. Their proximity might have you wondering whether there is a ferry between the two.
There is a direct vehicle ferry that runs between Dauphin Island and Fort Morgan in Alabama. This quick 40-minute ferry crossing is convenient and straightforward, with magnificent views of the beautiful coastline and clear waters along the way.
Although the ferry crossing is easy, there are some things to keep in mind to make the journey even easier. Read on below to learn more about the ferry services, distance, cost, the best time to visit, and what to do when you get to Fort Morgan.
Is there a ferry from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan?
|Vehicle ferry||Mobile Bay Ferry||40 minutes|
|Direct drive||N/A||2 hours 15 minutes|
*The travel time does not include the time required to board the ferry
If you are looking to reach Fort Morgan from Dauphin Island via a ferry, you are in luck, as there is a direct ferry service between these two places. Mobile Bay Ferry provides this service 7 days a week year-round, with the exception of Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.
While you can travel as a pedestrian on this ferry, you can also take your car or bike on board, given that you have booked the appropriate tickets beforehand.
Alternatively, you can drive directly from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan via the Dauphin Island Bridge and around Mobile Bay.
Taking the ferry from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan
From Dauphin Island's Dauphin Island Landing on the west to Fort Morgan on the east, you can travel via Mobile Bay Ferry's convenient and reliable car ferry service.
There are between 7 and 15 crossings per day, depending on the time of year. The only exception is Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year's Day, when the ferries don't run during the holidays.
From the 12th of March to the 25th of May and the 5th of September to the 4th of November shoulder seasons, there are usually 8 trips per day. The earliest is at 8am and the latest is at 6:30pm.
During the peak summer season, from the 26th of May to the 4the of September, there are 15 crossings per day. The first one makes the voyage at 8am and the last one at 6:30pm.
During the low season in late fall and winter, from the 5th of November to the 9th of March, there are 7 per day. These run from 8am to 5pm.
Please keep in mind that these times and schedules are subject to change, and check the operator's website for the most up-to-date information.
Driving from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan
The only other alternative to taking the ferry is to drive from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan. This will mean driving across the Dauphin Island Bridge and Bayway Mobile Bay. From port to port you'll travel around Mobile Bay in a 2 hour 15 minute drive covering 105 miles.
Setting off from Dauphin Island, drive north across the Dauphin Island Bridge on the Dauphin Island Parkway. You will drive through Alabama Port and Mon Louis before you merge onto Interstate 10 (I-10) past Cypress Shores.
The interstate will take you through Mobile and across Bayway Mobile Way before you reach Spanish Fort across the bay. From here, take US-98 south past Daphne and Fairhope. Follow this highway until you reach Foley.
From here, heading south on AL-59 and then West on AL-180 will take you to your destination in Fort Morgan.
How long does it take to reach Fort Morgan from Dauphin Island?
Because Dauphin Island and Fort Morgan are so close to each other, you can expect a short journey of just 40 minutes via ferry.
However, the weather and tides can affect the crossing times. Sometimes, you will experience slight delays but very few cancellations throughout the year.
There are certain times of year that experience worse weather than others and have a higher chance of getting delayed. For example, the hurricane season runs from June to November. Although rare, these storms may interrupt your vacation and ferry crossing.
Winter storms lead to rougher seas, which can force the Mobile Bay Ferry company to delay the crossing until the weather calms down.
If you choose to drive from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan, your journey will take 2 hours and 15 minutes to complete.
How much does it cost to travel from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan?
*Prices are calculated at the time of writing, for a car under 22 feet
The ferry from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan is very affordable, making it a good option if you want to explore more of the beautiful Alabama coastline. Also, you can expect to pay the same fares throughout the year.
The fare for passengers is $6, and all same-day returns are free with a receipt. You can expect to pay $15 for a car that is under 22 feet one-way. This price does not include the ticket for the driver.
Same-day return with the same car will cost $15 with a receipt, but keep in mind that passengers will travel free same-day as long as they keep their receipts.
You will need to get a ticket for each passenger traveling with you, while children 3 and under and your furry friends will travel free of charge.
Things you need to know about traveling from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan
Although easy and affordable, there are some things to know to make your journey easier. Please find our recommendations below to make your journey from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan smoother:
- The ferry runs year-round. However, there are no crossings on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, or New Year's Day.
- According to the official website, you must be at the departure point between 30 minutes and 1 hour to board the Mobile Bay Ferry from Dauphin island.
- In summer, account for extra time due to the popularity of the service. Please keep in mind that this is general information and it is always a good idea to double-check exact check-in and embarkation times with the ferry operator or booking agent.
- Entrance to the Fort Morgan National Historic Landmark is $8 year-round.
- You can take your car on the ferry However, keep in mind that the ticket for your vehicle does not include the tickets for the passengers, which will need to be purchased separately.
Best time to visit Fort Morgan
Fort Morgan is a year-round destination. You can expect mild winters and hot summers as well as shoulder seasons with perfect temperatures.
June to August is the most popular time to visit Fort Morgan. This is when many people, including kids on summer break, choose to come here.
The beaches in the summer offer perfect weather to sunbathe and swim. Water temperatures are perfect around this time and sea turtles arrive to nest.
Spring and fall experience near-perfect weather without the extreme heat. Also, accommodation is cheaper with attractions and beaches less crowded with tourists.
Yet, like anywhere near the Gulf of Mexico and the shores of the Atlantic Ocean, spring break will prove to be a busy time to travel. Check ahead and ask your hotel or accommodation when they recommend visiting to avoid the crowds and parties.
While the ferry cost and entrance to the National Historic Landmark stay the same, hotel prices are lower at certain times of the year. November, December, January and February are the cheapest months to get budget-friendly accommodations on Fort Morgan and Dauphin Island.
Things to see once you reach Fort Morgan
Fort Morgan is full of beautiful beaches and historical sights well worth a visit. Below, we've compiled a list of our favorites to help you plan your stay.
- Fort Morgan Historic Site - Explore the well-preserved Civil War-era masonry fort. Take a guided tour to learn how the fort played a significant role in US history and see fantastic views of Mobile Bay at the same time.
- Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge - Spot wildlife at the Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. As you follow the hiking trails, you can spot birds and see the nesting sea turtles in the summer.
- Gulf Shores Beaches - The Gulf Coast is known for its pristine white sandy beaches. Spend some time relaxing on the shore and enjoying a swim or kayak in the Gulf of Mexico.
- Fishing and Water Activities - Head to Fort Morgan Marina. Whether you're an avid angler or want to jet ski across the bay, there's a rental for you.
Taking the ferry from Dauphin Island to Fort Morgan is one of the most convenient ways to travel between these places. No matter when you travel, you'll be able to take the beautiful ferry ride across and enjoy some of the best landmarks of Southern Alabama.