Harwich Ferry Port

Harwich ferry port offers regular sailings to the Hook of Holland.

Catch a crossing to Harwich ferry terminal on these routes:

Harwich Ferry Terminal Map and Directions

Address: Harwich International Port, Parkeston, Harwich, Essex, CO12 4SR

About Harwich

Harwich ferry port is located to the south of Ipswich on the south east coast of England, opposite Felixstowe port. Harwich offers regular sailings to the Hook of Holland in the Netherlands.

Getting to Harwich Ferry Port

By Car

From the M25: Leave at junction 28 and follow the A12 (north) signposted Chelmsford and Colchester. At Colchester (Ardleigh Interchange) turn off the A12 onto the A120 following signs for Harwich. Continue for 6 miles until you reach Ramsey Hill Roundabout and from here follow signs for Harwich International Port.

Driving from the Midlands and the North: Use the A14 to Ipswich then join the A12 (South) heading in the direction of Colchester. At Colchester join the A120 and follow as above.

By Train

Abellio Greater Anglia trains take you direct to Harwich International station which is located next to the terminal building.

By Bus

Local buses serve Colchester and Clacton as well as the immediate Harwich, Port and Dovercourt area.

Harwich Ferry Port Facilities

Café/ Bar

The Quayside Café sells a range of hot and cold drinks and snacks as well as alcoholic beverages. There are also vending machines dispensing hot drinks & confectioner.

Car Hire

A Europecar Car and Van Hire outlet is located at the port.

Disabled Facilities

Unisex disabled toilet facilities are available on the first floor of the Ferry Terminal and the Departure Lounge after passing through controls. Ample wheelchairs are available at The Cruise Terminal. In addition, wheelchair-friendly ramps are fitted on all split-levels in the building. The walkways leading to cruise ships are also wheelchair friendly to provide easy access to your ship.

Tourist Information

An information point is located at the terminal.

Parking at Harwich Ferry Port

Both short and long stay parking is available at the port. The first 30 minutes is free. The car park machines accept payment by cash or credit card. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the car park is safe and secure vehicles are left at owner’s risk.

Port information is provided by Eurodrive for guidance only.

More About Harwich

Harwich Ferry Port, or to give it its correct name, Harwich International Port is located on the southern side of the River Stour in Essex and has excellent road links from London and the Southeast and from the Midlands. Harwich International Port is owned and operated by Hutchison Port Holdings, the world's largest independent port investor, operator and developer. Stena Line operates daily ferry services using HSS fastcraft and conventional ferry from Harwich to Hook of Holland.

Harwich Attractions

The old town of Harwich is a conservation area and has many historic buildings. There are guided tours of Harwich to suit most tastes and interests plus a DIY tour for you to print out and take with you – click here for Tours of Harwich. Harwich also has superb views across the River Stour toward Shotley and across the River Orwell toward the busy port of Felixstowe - always a favourite for watching the huge container vessels being manoeuvred into and out of port, plus myriads of other commercial and pleasure craft.

Harwich dining suggestions

For fabulous Thai food, try "Thai Up At The Quay" - they offer a wide range of excellent vegetarian and non-vegetarian Thai food, from mild to super-spicey. Or for those who just fancy an old fashioned fish and chip shop by the sea, try "Pieseas Chippy" not far from the beach. If you are after a quick and easy lunchtime option or even just a hot chocolate, there is the little "Rainbow Cafe" on Wick Street.

Harwich History

Harwich appeared around 1150 after the Rivers Orwell and Stour changed to their present course and the significance of the site on the promontory was realised. Harwich quickly became a thriving and important port offering the only safe anchorage between the Thames and the Humber. By 1253 Harwich had a market and in 1319 Harwich became a free borough. In the 14th and 15th centuries Harwich was used as a base for ships used in the sea battles against Holland and France. Harwich ships and men were also prominent in the battle against the Spanish Armada in 1588. The 17th century began with a rise in cod fishing and the bringing of coals from Newcastle, and Harwich seamen were prominent in the establishment of settlements in the New World. In 1604 Christopher Newport led the expedition that founded the first settlement at Jamestown, Virginia, and in 1620 Christopher Jones was captain of the Mayflower that sailed from Southampton with the Pilgrim Fathers and merchants who settled in New England.

During the three wars against the Dutch, Harwich was again prominent. During the latter part of the 17th century a packet boat service began. The 18th century was a time of great prosperity with packet boat captains and customs officers prominent in the control of the borough but it was not to continue in the 19th century when fishing was reduced and the packet boat service was transferred to Tilbury which had the railway connections that Harwich lacked. In 1808 the Redoubt fort was built to protect the town against possible invasion by the French. In 1883 Parkeston Quay (now Harwich International) by the Great Eastern Railway as a rail ferry port and saw a huge increase in traffic to the Continent.

Harwich was of immense importance during the two World Wars and in 1918 saw the surrender of German U-Boats to Admiral Tyrwhitt at Harwich. The first batch surrendered on 20th November and by 1st December 1918, 122 had been handed over at Harwich. In the Second World War Harwich was a base for destroyers, corvettes / minesweepers, and trawlers, including Dutch, French, and Polish ships, and the town accommodated soldiers from Czechoslovakia. Neighbouring Dovercourt is much older than Harwich and dates from prehistory with flints and bronze axe heads among relics that have survived. The Romans were also here in 1AD and relics of their camp on Beacon Hill have been preserved. At the beginning of the 9th century the area was invaded by the Vikings and by 878 the area became part of Danelaw. A battle was fought by King Alfred’s ships against the Danes off Shotley (opposite Harwich) in 885. Duvrecurt appears in the Domesday Book of 1086.

Find out more about Harwich and the Port of Harwich.