Mersey Ferries

314 Reviews

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Date of travel

July, 2015

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Travelled with

Adult family

Reasons for trip

Family holiday

As the song says, there is a “Ferry Cross the Mersey,” and after countless trips to Liverpool I finally took one the other day. The ferry times are set for commuters in the morning and later afternoon, but in-between 10:00 and 4:30, tourists can go on the River Explorer, a continual loop between Pier Head in Liverpool and Seacombe (20 minutes past the hour) and Woodside (Birkenhead at 30 minutes past the hour) on the Wirral Peninsula. The cost is £10 for adults and £8.50 for concessions. There are family tickets available and a ticket that includes the Spaceport at Seacombe. You can easily spend the day hopping on and off to take in some attractions at each dock. From Seacombe you can walk along the river to New Brighton.

The day we went, they were having technical difficulties with the whistle and the staff were busy issuing refunds for the 11:00 am sailing. However by the 2:00 pm sailing all was well. We got off at Woodside and checked out the German U-Boat exhibit. Usually the entrance fee is £7.50 but if you arrive by ferry, it is included in your ferry ticket. Just show your ticket at the entrance to the exhibit and they will give you a token to get in. The U-Boat has been cut into four separate pieces and you can see the inner workings of the submarine. Inside the dock building you can learn the story of this U-Boat, its sinking in WWII, and its removal to Seacombe as a visitor attraction.

Every time you leave one of the docks, you hear the song “Ferry Cross the Mersey” and a guided description of the buildings along the river. From the river you get a very good view of the three graces in Liverpool (The Liver Building, The Cunard Building and the Port of Liverpool Building), The Museum of Liverpool, Albert Dock, The 02 Arena and Convention Centre, the Wheel of Liverpool, and the Anglican Cathedral. Don’t forget your jacket because the wind is always chilly on the river, despite the sunshine.

Each dock has a café. At the Beatles Café at Pier Head, they continually play Beatles tunes in keeping with the Beatles Story exhibit upstairs. The Home café at Birkenhead has all locally sourced food and the latte was the best one I’ve had in ages. We sat on the terrace and watched the progress of the colourful Dazzle Ferry as it wound its way back to pick us up for the last trip of the day before being called back into commuter duty. When we got back to the Pier Head the tide was almost out so it was quite a steep walk up the gangplank, however if you need assistance, there was a golf cart on standby.


Denise Bridge

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