The sun setting on the sea at Fayerweather Island in Bridgeport, there is a lighthouse in the distance
LBSimms Photography/

Is There a Ferry from Long Island to Connecticut?

Published by Pat Dorri on July 17 2023

Long Island is located just off the coast of New York State and Connecticut. Even though it's part of the state of New York, Long Island actually runs parallel to the Connecticut coast for nearly 120 miles, separated by the Long Island Sound.

The quickest ferry from Long Island to Connecticut is a passenger service that takes 45 minutes to travel 18 miles across Long Island Sound. There's also a vehicle service taking 1 hour 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can drive via the Throgs Neck Bridge.

You can easily reach nearby New York City, which is only 5 miles away from Long Island, on the Subway. It's a longer trip if you want to cross the Long Island Sound to get to Connecticut, though, seeing as the channel is 21 miles wide at its widest point. Keep on reading to find out more about how to take the ferry between Long Island and Connecticut, as well as other options to make this trip.

Is there a ferry from Long Island to Connecticut?

Comparison of travel times and modes from Long Island to Connecticut
RouteModeOperatorTravel time
Orient Point to New LondonPassenger ferryCross Sounds High Speed Ferry45 minutes
Orient Point to New LondonCar ferryCross Sounds Ferry1 hour 15 minutes
Port Jefferson to BridgeportCar ferryBridgeport & Port Jefferson Steamboat Company1 hour 15 minutes

If you're traveling from Long Island to Connecticut, you have a number of options to choose from, including ferry routes starting from different points on Long Island.

The quickest way to cross Long Island Sound is to take the Cross Sounds High Speed Ferry between Orient Point on Long Island and New London, CT. This takes just 45 minutes, however, you can't board a vehicle on this service so it won't suit every traveler.

If you're driving between Long Island and Connecticut, the Cross Sounds Ferry also operates a slower vehicle service on the same route. Alternatively, you can travel between Port Jefferson, NY and Bridgeport, CT, with your car. Your choice of departure port will likely depend in part on which part of Long Island you're starting from, as well as your onward destination.

If the ferry crossing doesn't appeal, there's also the option to drive between Long Island and Connecticut via the Throgs Neck Bridge. This might appeal if you're starting out in the eastern part of Long Island, but works out to be a longer and slower journey for most travelers.

The buildings of Long Island in front of East River at twilight
Long Island, true to its name, is surrounded by water, so it has good ferry connections to the mainland that is separated from it by Long Island Sound.

Taking the ferry from Orient Point to New London, Connecticut

The Cross Sounds Ferry departs from Orient Point, which is at the eastern end of NY-25 on Long Island.

The ferry port is 2.5 miles from Orient Beach State Park and just over half a mile from 'The Point' at Orient Point, so if you have time to pause for a while you can stop here to enjoy the ocean breeze before boarding the ferry.

You can take your car on the Cross Sound Ferry, which operates up to 23 crossings daily between 7am and 9:15pm. It operates all year round except Christmas day, but the crossing can be rough and a little slower in bad weather.

You can also park for free at Orient Point to hop onto the passenger ferry, although spaces can fill up quickly so you're advised to take an early crossing if you plan on parking at the terminal.

Even if you leave your car behind on Long Island, you can still make an onward journey through Connecticut since there's a train station close to the arrival point in New London.

Once you've arrive in New London, you'll be less than half a mile from the Garde Arts Center, and Hempsted House is also around a 10-minute walk from the ferry terminal. Ocean Beach is just 4 miles away, and a popular summer spot.

Taking the ferry from Port Jefferson to Bridgeport, Connecticut

The Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Steamboat Company operates ferries between Port Jefferson on Long Island and Bridgeport, CT.

With Port Jefferson and Bridgeport both being located further west than Orient Point and New London, this route might be a better choice if you're starting out in the center of the island, or if you're traveling inland once you reach Connecticut rather than carrying on east.

This route also runs ferries year-round except Christmas day. There aren't quite as many crossings as the Cross Sounds Ferry, but with summer departures starting from 6am in both directions, early risers can make a prompt start and enjoy more of the day.

The ferries 'Park City' and 'Grand Republic' at dock in Port Jefferson on a sunny day
You can easily travel with your car on the ferry from Port Jefferson to Bridgeport.
Steve Cukrov/

Driving to Connecticut from Long Island

As we've mentioned, it's possible to drive to Connecticut from Long Island via the Throgs Neck Bridge. This route avoids the worst of the traffic of New York City, although you should still expect to hit heavy traffic if you're taking the interstate at busy times.

To reach the bridge, travel to the western end of Long Island via I-495, the Cross Island Parkway or Clearview Expressway. Approaching the bridge, join I-295 then bear right once you've crossed the East River to pick up I-95 heading north.

Although the bridge itself takes just a couple of minutes to cross, you'll have to allow more time on the interstate as you make your way to your destination in Connecticut.

It takes around 2 hours to drive the 100 miles between Port Jefferson, NY, and Bridgeport, CT, so once you've factored in the cost of the ferry crossing you might feel that it's a better option to drive rather than taking the ferry if you're starting out from the western end of Long Island.

The driving time increases to 3 hours 40 minutes from Orient Point to New London, so for most people, it's more convenient to take the ferry.

Even so, it's good to keep the Throgs Neck Bridge route in mind in case of bad weather, when ferry services can be delayed or canceled, or if you're worried about seasickness on a rough crossing.

View of the bridge on a sunny day with trees in the foreground, framing the photo
If you opt to drive from Long Island to Connecticut, you will travel via Throgs Neck Bridge.
June Marie Sobrito/

How long does it take to reach Connecticut from Long Island?

As you've already read, the quickest route between Long Island and Connecticut is the Cross Sounds High Speed Ferry, which only takes 45 minutes.

To help speed up your journey even more, foot passengers only need to arrive 10 minutes before the scheduled departure time, taking the whole journey to 55 minutes.

If you're taking a vehicle onto the Cross Sounds Ferry, you'll need to arrive at least 30 minutes before departure if you don't have a reservation or if you're traveling with a motorcycle, truck, trailer or motorhome. Check-in time is reduced to 15 minutes if you've pre-booked a regular car ticket.

Once you've factored in the crossing time of 1 hour 20 minutes and allowed a few minutes to disembark the boat in New London, your trip will take at least 1 hour 50 minutes on the Cross Sounds Ferry.

The Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Ferry has slightly longer check in times, with 30 minutes recommended for all vehicles since you have to be checked in and ready to board the boat 15 minutes before departure time. Allowing 15 minutes to disembark, that takes journey time on this route to around 2 hours.

Whichever route you take, always double-check your ticket details with the booking agent or ferry operator to confirm timings for check-in and embarkation. And be sure to leave plenty of time to get to the ferry terminal in case congestion on the road slows you down.

If you decide to drive via Throgs Neck Bridge, then your journey time will vary significantly depending on your start and end point.

How much does it cost to travel to Connecticut?

Comparison of travel prices to Connecticut from Long Island
RouteModeAdult fareVehicle fare
Orient Point to New LondonPassenger ferry$27N/A
Orient Point to New LondonCar ferry$22$70
Port Jefferson to BridgeportCar ferry$22$75
Throgs Neck BridgeDirect driveN/A$6.55

*Prices are calculated at the time of writing for a single trip, the vehicle fare includes the driver

If you're taking the ferry from Long Island to Connecticut, prices are similar for both of the vehicle services and a little higher for the faster Cross Sounds High Speed Ferry.

Prices are based on peak fares for a standard saloon car, so might be a little lower if you travel at quieter times of year or Monday through to Thursday. If you're traveling in winter, check online for discounted deals.

For the Cross Sounds Ferry, add on around $5 for a larger vehicle such as an SUV or pickup truck, and $12 for a longer truck or caravan up to 23 feet. You can also opt to pay more for priority boarding. If you are taking the route regularly, there are offers for Reward Members.

Prices are calculated differently for non-standard vehicles on both ferry routes, so check ahead for prices if you're traveling in a motorhome longer than 23 feet or pulling a trailer.

If you decide to drive via the Throgs Neck Bridge, this is a toll road, so you'll currently pay $6.55 for a one-way crossing. Don't forget to factor in the cost of the additional gas that you'll use as you make your way along the Connecticut coastline.

Skyline of the city of New London, Connecticut on a sunny day
Taking the Cross Sounds Ferry? You will arrive at New London in Connecticut.
Laura Stone/

Things you need to know about traveling to Connecticut from Long Island

Taking the ferry to Connecticut from Long Island is usually a fairly straightforward trip, but there are a few things to keep in mind for the smoothest possible journey.

Here are our top tips when it comes to preparing for a ferry ride to Connecticut:

  • Leave time to get to the ferry terminal - the boat won't wait for you if you're late.
  • Consider traveling at off-peak times to get the best fares.
  • For some travelers, it might be quicker or better value to drive via Throgs Neck Bridge.

Best time to visit Connecticut

Ferries between Long Island and Connecticut run all year round. As you might expect, the trip is busier in the summer months, from June to August. Many visitors travel to Ocean Beach, CT, to enjoy the sunny weather, and you can expect to pay higher hotel prices at this time of year.

If you're planning on driving deeper into New England, then fall is another popular time to travel. Skip the New York traffic and head upstate or into Massachusetts to experience the unforgettable colors of the leaf-peeping season.

You can fall on good deals in winter, and the Cross Sounds Ferry often runs flash sales. However, in severe weather, the ferry crossing can be canceled at short notice so check ahead for confirmation that your service is operating as planned.

You might like to allow a little extra time to get to your destination in winter, just in case you have to detour via the Throgs Neck Bridge.

Dusk at the Pier, captured during the winter in Stony Creek
Connecticut gets quite a bit of snow in winter, so if you are traveling during the colder months, make sure to pack warm.

Things to see once you reach Connecticut

Even if you're visiting Connecticut for a day trip, there's plenty to see and do once you disembark the ferry. Here are a few ideas to get you started with planning your onward adventure.

  1. Ocean Beach Park - Enjoy a sandy beach and walk the boardwalk. There's family fun with swimming pools, waterslides and mini golf.
  2. Fort Trumbull State Park - See the historic fortification and learn of its role in the American Revolution and the War of 1812. Also great for river views.
  3. Monte Cristo Cottage - Go to the National Historic Landmark and childhood home of playwright Eugene O'Neill. Delve into his life and his works.
  4. United States Coast Guard Academy - You can tour the prestigious academy. As you tour the campus you'll gain an insight into the USA maritime defense.
  5. The Custom House Maritime Museum - Learn about New London's maritime heritage. Inside the historic building, you'll learn of the area's seafaring traditions, shipbuilding, and the U.S. Customs Service.

With just 20 miles separating most of Long Island from Connecticut, it's straightforward to take the ferry across Long Island Sound.