Hovertravel hovercraft arriving on the beachSouthsea to Ryde Hovercraft

Experience the thrill of hovercraft travel with the Southsea to Isle of Wight service, operated by Hovertravel. This fast and convenient mode of transportation will get you to the Isle of Wight in just a matter of minutes.

Route Summary

  • Route: Southsea (Portsmouth) to Ryde
  • Crossing Time: 10 minutes
  • Check-In time: 10 minutes
  • Operates year round.
  • Prices: Around £22 single, £28 return, discounts for children, concessions and families.
  • Times: Every 30 minutes from around 06:15 (weekends 07:45) to 18:15 and then hourly until 20:15.
Hovercraft arriving at Ryde

Hovercraft arriving at Ryde, Isle of Wight from Southsea.

Route Description

The hovercraft, also known as an air-cushion vehicle (ACV), is a unique mode of transportation that utilises air pressure to create a cushion of air beneath the vehicle, allowing it to “hover” above the surface of the ground or water.

The Southsea to Ryde hovercraft service has a rich history, dating back to the 1960s. The service was initiated as an experiment by British Hovercraft Corporation, in order to test the feasibility of hovercrafts as a mode of transportation. The first hovercraft on this route was the SR.N1, which carried passengers and vehicles across the Solent between Southsea and Ryde. The route proved to be successful and it was later taken over by Hovertravel, the only commercial hovercraft operator in the UK.

The journey from Southsea to Ryde takes just 10 minutes, making it the fastest and most efficient way to travel between the two locations. The hovercraft is able to travel over both land and water, making it a versatile mode of transportation.

The hovercraft used on the Southsea to Ryde route are the SRN6, which is the largest hovercraft in the world. The SRN6 can carry up to 300 passengers at a time, and is capable of speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.

The Southsea to Ryde route is particularly useful for residents of the Isle of Wight, as it provides a quick and convenient way to travel to and from the mainland. The hovercraft departs from Southsea Hoverport and arrives at Ryde Hoverport, located just a short distance from the Isle of Wight’s main town, Ryde.

One of the main advantages of the hovercraft is its ability to travel over water, making it an ideal mode of transportation during times of high tide or flooding. The hovercraft is able to navigate over shallow water and other obstacles that would prevent other types of vessels from passing. This makes the Southsea to Ryde route a reliable option for travellers, even during inclement weather.

The Southsea to Ryde hovercraft service also offers a range of amenities for passengers, including a café and gift shop at the terminal, and comfortable seating on board. The hovercraft is also wheelchair accessible, making it a suitable option for travellers with mobility impairments.

Overall, the Southsea to Ryde hovercraft service is a unique and efficient way to travel between the mainland and the Isle of Wight. Its ability to travel over both land and water, combined with its speed and convenience, make it a popular choice for both residents and visitors to the area. With a long history of operation and a range of amenities for passengers, the Southsea to Ryde hovercraft route is a must-try for anyone looking for a unique and exciting travel experience.