Ferryboat — The Cape May-Lewes Ferry

This is a brief photo essay of the Cape May-Lewes Ferry’s crossing at the mouth of the Delaware Bay between Lewes, Del., and Cape May, N.J. The ferryboats make several trips daily, year-round. A one-way voyage takes approximately an hour and a half. Lewes, a Dutch name, is pronounced “Lewis.”

CL001W Dock Pilings

Dock pilings at the ferry berth on the Delaware side.

Ferry Ramp & Breakwater

Ferry ramp.

CL002W Cape May-Lewes Ferry

Here comes the ferry.

Boarding & CM Coast

Ferry unloading travelers from Cape May.

Boarding & CM Coast 1

Waiting to sail.

Ferry Ramp & Breakwater 1

Sailing out alongside the breakwater.

CL004W Breakwater Beacon-Lewes Del

Lighthouse marking the end of the breakwater and the channel.


Ferry route and map of surrounding area where I live.

Passing Ferry 1

Passing ferry coming from Cape May.

Passing Ferry

Passing ferry wake.

Coming into Cape May

Coming into Cape May.

Coming into Cape May 1

Coming into our berth.

CL005W Ferry Wake

Ferry wake.

Happy Travels.

–Samantha Mozart

18 Responses to Ferryboat — The Cape May-Lewes Ferry

  1. Tom Hodukavich says:

    From a site called overfalls.org: William J. Miller, Jr. was born in Wilmington in 1917. After graduating from Drexel University as a Civil Engineer and distinguishing himself during World War II, Mr. Miller returned to Delaware. In 1963 he was appointed the first Executive Director of the Delaware River and Bay Authority, and served until 1991.
    Under his guidance and in 1968, the “Twin Span” of the Delaware Memorial Bridge was opened in 1968 connecting northern Delaware and New Jersey.
    Ferry service began in 1964 under Mr. Miller’s leadership. The first ferry was secured from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel District. Five new world-class vessels would later make the Cape May-Lewes Ferry System not only a transportation link but a major tourist attraction for the entire Delaware Bay.
    Bill Miller was chosen Drexel’s Man of the Year, Delaware Outstanding Professional Engineer, President of the Delaware Society of Professional Engineers, President of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association. He has served as Chairman of the March of Dimes, Board of the Blood Bank of Delaware, Delaware AAA, Delaware Safety Council and first chairman of the Council of the Laity of the Diocese of Wilmington.
    He is a distinguished author of two books, Crossing the Delaware and A Ferry Tale. The Cape May Lewes Ferry has carried 13,800,000 vehicles and 42,000,000 passengers since its inception.
    Bill Miller’s efforts have promoted tourism and commerce and he has left a legacy of service to residents along the shores of the Delaware River and Bay.

    • sammozart says:

      This is very interesting, Tom. Thank you. I went to the website and read all about the lightship Overfalls. Although I had heard of the Overfalls and knew it was a tourist attraction, I didn’t know what a lightship was. So, I’m glad to have learned about that as well as about Bill Miller’s books and activities. I know mariners have been glad to have lightships around.

  2. Tom Hodukavich says:

    Carol, nice ferry pics, I ride the boats often. In the gift shop you may have seen a book for sale called “A Ferry Tale” that relates the history of this ferry service. It was written by the dad of one of my classmates at Holy Cross Elementary in Dover – he was instrumental in getting the ferry started.

    • sammozart says:

      I don’t ride the ferry as much as I’d like, Tom, disappointingly. Glad you ride it often. Is your friend’s dad’s name William J. Miller, Jr.? I see the book on Amazon, if that’s the one. It would be interesting to read. There is a recent video documentary on the ferry — “Billion Mile Journey, the Cape May-Lewes Ferry,” celebrating 50 years of operation begun July 1, 1964, that I watched just recently on WHYY (PBS). The story is fascinating. I donated one of my photos to the Cape May-Lewes Ferry website about 15 years ago, the last one on this post, that I call “Ferry Wake.” I’m so happy your friend’s dad was instrumental in getting the ferry started — much needed and much fun. Stay tuned for my blog post, “Victorians and Menhadens,” photos of the Cape May Victorian houses and of course the menhaden fishing boats, both of which are so photogenic.

      Thank you for visiting, reading my post and commenting. I appreciate it.

  3. Red says:

    Aw, thank you! This was so nostalgic for me. I lived in Lewes, DE, and took that ferry trip – maybe three or four times (so, six or eight, including return). If you go during the heat of summer, you can see jellyfish over the side.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank goodness I didn’t take the ferry during jellyfish season, Red. Ick. But I am fascinated by the seagulls who follow the boat to get all the passengers’ food. 🙂


  4. susan scott says:

    ha ha re: me watching the animals go by (if a hippos or croc doesn’t get me) xx

  5. susan scott says:

    O to sail on a ferry boat and watch the world go by! These are lovely photos Samantha thank you so much!

    • sammozart says:

      Won’t you be sailing down some river in Botswana soon, Susan, as the wild animals watch you go buy…? 🙂


  6. Love those photos. I want to ride a ferry.

    • sammozart says:

      Next year, Sheena-kay, I’ll see what I can do about providing an actual ferryboat ride on the A-Zs. That would be cool, huh. 🙂

  7. A most enjoyable photo essay, Samantha. The map helps in giving a good understanding of the area. This west coast girl only sees such scenes in movies – car and passenger traveling together yet separate. Might have to add such a trip to the list. Thank you.

    • sammozart says:

      When I was little, Silvia, my grandfather took me for round-trip rides on a passenger ferry that crossed the Delaware River between Phila. and Camden, N.J. That started the whole thing with me, I think. Nearer to you, of course, are the ferries in Seattle. Our friend Gwynn rides the ferry all the time, as you probably know.

  8. Mary Burris says:

    Call me crazy, but I’m a sucker for Ferry Boat rides. Whenever I visit my brother in Staten Island, I make sure I get at least one ride to and from Manhatten on the ferry.

    #AtoZChallenge F is for Fitzgerald

    • sammozart says:

      Yeah, I like ferries, too, Mary. Always have since I was a kid. There’s something exciting about riding on a ferryboat.

  9. Gwynn Rogers says:

    You have a beautiful area. Your ferry is much smaller than ours. Most of our ferry trips to town are about 20 minutes except the Bremerton/Seattle run, which is about an hour. Then of course going up to Vancouver or Orcas Island in the San Juans is longer. I love your pictures.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. I thought you’d appreciate the ferry story. I have loved ferries since I was a child. My grandfather used to take me on a round-trip passenger ferry ride across the Delaware River between Phila. and Camden, N.J., when I was quite young.