About Us

Dittisham Ferries - Your Friendly Connection on the River Dart

Looking for a friendly and personalised way to explore the River Dart? Look no further than Dittisham Ferries. Dittisham Ferries has been proudly carrying passengers along the River Dart for over 40 years. Our small boats, with a maximum capacity of 12 passengers, allow us to provide a unique and unforgettable experience for everyone on board. 


Dittisham Ferries & Skippers

We started with a different fleet of boats and in 2018 we welcomed the innovative Sandpiper, a purpose-built ferry designed with the environment in mind by G.Smyth Boats in Ireland.


The Sandpiper is a testament to our commitment to a greener future. It's hydrogen-assisted, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by a staggering 60%! In just six months, this translates to a reduction of 1.1 tonnes of emissions – a significant contribution to protecting the beauty of the River Dart we all cherish.

Sandpiper Dittisham Ferries
(Sandpiper of Dartmouth)

Sandpiper's Skipper is Stephen Norvill 

“I have worked on the river Dart since 2007 initially operating a water taxi ferrying passengers to and from their boats. Then I became custodian of The Original Dittisham Ferries 12 years ago. After 17 years of working on the river, I'm still not bored with it. Every day at work I'm meeting and conversing with people from all backgrounds, the picturesque scenery constantly changing as the seasons change, seeing the wildlife including the seals on the pontoons and also taking up residency in people's tenders. Every single day on the river Dart is a pleasure, winter and summer.“


Steve Norvill dittisham ferry skipper
(Steve Norvill - Sandpiper Skipper)


The Carlina is a classic fishing vessel built in 1968 by Mashfords in Cornwall. She’s a carvel-planked boat that was converted to a ferry around 15 years ago. 

Carlina Dittisham Ferries


Carlina's Skipper is Simon Rendle

A true Dartmouthian, Simon has spent most of his life connected to the River Dart. He began his career in the 80s as a crab fisherman alongside his brother. After a seafaring accident forced him to change course, he honed his skills at Britannia Royal Naval College. After a decade, Simon returned to the river and found a new calling at the Dartmouth Fuel Barge. Over 19 years, he rose through the ranks to become the manager. Public service is also close to Simon's heart. Following in the footsteps of his father and great-uncle who together volunteered for 75 years, Simon joined the Dartmouth Fire Station. He dedicated 31 years to the department, retiring as Station Commander and receiving the prestigious "Town Plaque" in recognition of his service.

While his career took him on various paths, the River Dart remained a constant. He continued the family's love of boating through crab fishing, boat hire, and even working on nautical training camps. The opportunity to join Dittisham Ferries in 2023 felt like a perfect homecoming, allowing him to share his passion for the river and its surroundings with others. When he's not working, Simon enjoys the simple beauty of the area. From the seals basking on pontoons to the friendly waves exchanged with fellow passengers, every trip up the River Dart feels like a new adventure. As he says, "Sometimes you have to take a step back to remind yourself just how lucky we are to have this river right on our doorstep."

(Simon Rendle - Carlina's Skipper)


About Dittisham Ferries

Over the years, some things have never changed. We remain a friendly, independent operator dedicated to making your journey on the River Dart special. Unlike larger ferries, our boats seat a maximum of 12 passengers, allowing us to provide a friendly experience for each guest or group.

Passenger safety is our top priority. We adhere to strict regulations and keep our operations up-to-date with the latest safety standards.

Dittisham Ferries is proud to be part of the River Dart community. We actively support the RNLI, a vital lifesaving charity. Last year alone, thanks to the generosity of our passengers, we were able to contribute over £800 to their essential work.

Dittisham Ferries is committed to providing a reliable, comfortable, and scenic ferry experience for all. We're constantly exploring ways to improve our service while staying true to our core values of sustainability, friendliness, and community spirit.

Look out for the red boats on the river and give us a wave! To book your trip please call SANDPIPER - 07907528201 or CARLINA - 07818001108.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often do ferries run?

During peak season (May 1st - October 31st), ferries run daily between Dartmouth and Dittisham every half an hour. During the off-season boats are every hour. The first ferry leaves Dartmouth at 10:00am and the last departs Dittisham Quay at 17:00pm, seven days a week.

How long does the ferry ride take?

The journey takes approximately 20-25 minutes depending on the tide.

Where do ferries depart from in Dartmouth?

From the North Embankment adjacent to our red kiosk.

Where do ferries depart from in Dittisham?

From the Dittisham Pontoon, look for the red boats on the right hand side.

Can I book tickets in advance?

Yes, booking via the phone is recommended, especially during peak season. You can also purchase tickets directly at our red kiosk on the embankment before your departure.

Do I need to purchase a ticket for children?

Yes, children require tickets as well. Infants under 4 years travel free with a parent or guardian.

How can I pay for my tickets?

We take cash or contactless card payments on the boat. We are able to take all major cards including Amex.

Is Dittisham Ferries accessible for wheelchairs?

The Dartmouth pontoon has approximately 25 steps from the Embankment and we are always happy to assist with wheelchairs and mobility issues. The Dittisham pontoon has ramps but please be aware that passengers need to step into the boat from the pontoon - please call us if you have any concerns.

What happens if I miss my ferry?

Don't worry! If you miss a direct ferry from Dittisham to Dartmouth - just give us a call and we will find an alternative arrangement for you.

Where do I park in Dartmouth?

You can use the nearby Mayor's Avenue carpark, or the park and ride. The bus for the park and ride is right next to the entrace to the pontoon where you board the Dittisham Ferry.

Can I bring a picnic on board?

Picnics are only suitable for private hire trips, sorry.

Is Dittisham worth a visit?

Dittisham is stunning village with two pubs, a seafood restaurant, playpark and lots of short walks and scenery.

Are dogs allowed on the ferry?

Yes, dogs on leads are welcome on Dittisham Ferries.

Is there luggage storage on the ferry?

There is no designated luggage storage, however, there is usually space on board for backpacks, small suitcases and bags.

Can I bring my bicycle on the ferry?

We can fit two bicycles per journey. Please call us to make sure we can accommodate your bike.

Are your ferries safe?

Yes, we are fully insured, carry lifejackets and all required safety equipment under licence by Dart Harbour Authority.

Can I hire a boat for my special occasion?

Private hire for birthdays, celebrations or special occasions is available in the evenings - We can take private hire passengers anywhere from Dartmouth Castle all the way up to Totnes, depending on tide times. There are lots of places to stop on the journey including the Ferry Boat Inn, The Maltsters Arms, Sharpham Estate, Stoke Gabriel, or Totnes Quay.