Current sailing times are:
DEP RATHLIN – 8.00 RE* – 9.00 SOR – 12.00 RE – 15.00 SOR – 16.30 RE
DEP BALLYCASTLE – 8.30 RE* – 10.30 SOR – 14.00 RE – 16.00 SOR – 17.00 RE
*8.00 & 8.30 RE operate Mon-Fri only, all other sailings operate daily
This will be under constant review and we will update our social media and website of any changes. You can call our office on 02820769299 for information.


Due to travel restrictions (capacity / frequency) and in the interest of our Employees and Passenger Safety pre-booking is mandatory for travel on the Rathlin Island Ferry until further notice.

Bookings must be made at least 30 minutes before departure.

RIFL reserve the right to make exceptions to the above Booking terms for emergency travel.

Bookings can be made by phone, email or in person at the ferry terminal front doors everyday between 08.30-12.30 & 13.30-17.00. Email booking sent after 17.00 will not be received until the following morning.

Our online booking facility has been deactivated due to the capacity restrictions.

Your booking will only be confirmed once you have provided us with card payment details, your card will not be charged until the time of travel. 

Refunds (effective from Saturday 22nd August 2020):

Considering our current operating restrictions in place due to COVID-19, and because of increasing number of ‘no shows/late cancellations’ RIFL have taken the difficult decision to introduce a new temporary REFUND POLICY. Please read the entire contents of this update as it is the customers responsibility to ensure they are familiar with our conditions of travel.


Full refund will be given providing the booking is cancelled by 4.30pm the day prior to your scheduled travel date.

Bookings can be cancelled by calling our office on 02820769299 or by emailing info@rathlinballycastleferry.com.

If you fail to cancel your booking within the timeframe detailed above or ‘no show’ then no refund will be given.

Those passengers in procession of an Island Pass are exempt from this refund policy, refunds can be issued to Island pass holders up to and including the day of travel but not beyond the day of travel


Tickets/Payments and Boarding:

RIFL continue to operate a ticketless service to help reduce contact between passengers and our staff. To secure your booking you will be asked to provide card payments details. Your card will not be charged until the time of travel.

You will check-in for your sailing with crew by giving your name.

Passengers will not be boarded until 10 minutes before departure.

Please follow signage for boarding.

Collection of information for Contact Tracing Purposes

RIFL are being proactive and collecting information to share with the relevant Public Health Authorities should there be a case of Covid-19. At the time of booking you will be asked for your Full Name and Phone number, if you are travelling as a family or group of more than 1 person you will be asked to provide a Lead Person’s Name and Contact Number.

When you provide our staff with these details, you are actively giving your permission for these details to be shared with a third-party organisation to the help track and trace the virus.

Failure to provide these details will result in your booking being rejected.

Additional Information:

  • Face coverings are required on public transport for passengers 13years +
  • The Ferry Terminal remains closed to public access, there are no sheltered waiting facilities.
  • Public Toilets are located at the rear of the carpark beside the Ferry Terminal, these facilities are operated by Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council.
  • RATHLIN EXPRESS – 20 passengers maximum per sailing
  • SPIRIT OF RATHLIN – 30 passengers maximum per sailing
  •  No indoor/sheltered waiting facilities are currently available at either harbour, please dress appropriately for the weather


RIFL will continue to monitor the ongoing situation and should we feel the need to reduce sailings or capacity in the interest of Health & Safety we will publish changes to our website and Facebook page. We aim to provide a minimum 24 hour notice of any chan

Welcome to Rathlin Island Ferry

Let us take you to Rathlin Island. A world away for a day!

Rathlin Island Ferry Ltd offers islanders, locals and tourists a friendly value for money ferry service from Ballycastle to Rathlin Island on the Causeway Coast and Glens route.  A world away for a day!

We aim to provide a safe, reliable, clean and effective service which meets the following standards:

  • Service reliability at least 100% (number of scheduled crossings made throughout the year as per the published timetable*).
  • Service punctuality at least 100% of all sailings leave within 30 minutes of the schedule time
  • Complaints dealt with within seven working days (target 100%)
Call us today:

Things to do on rathlin Island
(Seasonal opening)

Bird Watching

The Atlantic puffins, razorbills, guillemots, kittiwakes and more gather at the RSPB Seabird Centre Cliffs around April/ May.

Upside-down Lighthouse

The Seabird Centre and Lighthouse offers visitors a chance to explore a unique, fully operational ‘upside-down’ lighthouse,

Guided Walks

There are guided walking tours on Rathlin Island every Sunday from April to August. It's the perfect way to spend an afternoon.

Cycle Hire

Rathlin Island has seasonal cycle hire, explore the island on your own terms. Its advisable to book ahead of time.

Bus Tours

The tour includes local history and information about Rathlin including the well known myths and legends.

Rathlin Island Ferry Service

We provide a year round passenger and vehicle ferry service to and from the beautiful, historic island of Rathlin with its stunning rugged scenery, friendly local population and unique wildlife habitat. Tickets are available to purchase online, just follow the link below. Please note that vehicle restrictions apply and only a small percentage of spaces are available for online bookings.
If you’re interested in booking a trip to Rathlin Island don’t hesitate to get in touch using our contact form.

re and canna
swan sculpture Ballycastle

Ballycastle, The Causeway Coast

Ballycastle is located on the North Coast of Co Antrim, on the Causeway Coast and Glens scenic route. It is overlooked by Knocklayde Mountain (an extinct volcano) and has magnificent views of Fairhead, Rathlin Island, the Mull of Kintyre and the surrounding forests and valleys. The Ould Lammas Fair is held in Ballycastle each year on the last Monday and Tuesday of August and attracts thousands of visitors who visit the town to enjoy artisan markets, livestock sales, live music, fairground amusements and streets lined with stalls.

Ballycastle is known for it’s unique selection of boutique clothing stores, independent food stores, greengrocers, butchers, bakers, ice cream parlours, food markets and many other fabulous artisan craft stores selling locally produced food, gifts, homeware and art. Ballycastle Beach and Fairhead are iconic sights to see in Ballycastle. Guided Tours are available of Ballycastle Town and Fairhead, contact Ballycastle Tourist Information Office for details here https://discovernorthernireland.com/Ballycastle-Visitor-Information-Centre-Ballycastle-P9823/

Rathlin Island

Rathlin Island (Raghery) is just six miles from Ballycastle across the Sea of Moyle on the Causeway Coast and Glens scenic route. Just six miles long and 1 mile wide it has County Antrim to the South, the Inishowen Peninsula to the West, Islay to the North, and the Mull of Kintyre to the East. The island once had a population of over 1000 but now has a current population of approximately 150. Most will visit for a day trip but many stay a night or two and several have fell in love with island life and have never left.

Details of everything to see on Rathlin can be found at http://www.rathlincommunity.org

So visit Rathlin Island and see if you can bring yourself to leave.



our rathlin gallery