Ferries are a convenient and popular transport option in the Baltic Sea region. They come in many different shapes and sizes; from half-hour rides on 50-seater boats, all the way to overnight journeys on boats holding 3000 passengers. We have compiled a list of all the ferry operators in the Baltic Sea, which you can find below. To the best of our knowledge, we have captured all the major ferry operators in the Baltic Sea region. There are undoubtably some smaller operators that slipped though, however we are fairly confident about capturing the majority of the actual passenger volume in the Baltic Sea.
The following list is in no particular order.
- St. Peter Line
- Viking Line
- Tallink Silja
- Eckerö Line
- Stena Line
- Unity Line
- Destination Gotland
- Birka Cruises (Defunct as of July 2020)
- Żegluga Gdańska
- Kołobrzeska Żegluga Pasażerska
- Kihnu Veeteed
- Tuule Liinid
- Saimaa Travel
St. Peter Line has a single ship, M/S Princess Anastasia, which makes a circular pattern though the Baltic Sea. Most notably, St. Peter Lines offers the only regular passenger ferry between Helsinki and Saint Petersburg. With this ferry, it is structured so that you can make a 72 hour Visa-Free visit of Russia's second largest city.
Finnlines operates three large routes in the Baltic Sea, linking Germany (Lübeck/Travemünde) to Finland (Helsinki), Lübeck/Travemünde to Malmö (Sweden) and Stockholm (Sweden) to Naantali (very near Turku, Finland). They have a larger focus on cargo and those travelling with cars/trucks will find Finnlines very welcoming. Their daily ferry between Lübeck/Travemünde and Helsinki can be a big time and money saver if travelling with a car or a lot of items.
Eckerö Line runs a single ship, M/S Finlandia, between Helsinki and Tallinn a few times per day. The ship is actually quite nice, and is often the cheapest last-minute fare for the journey between Helsinki and Tallinn. Note: this is a different company from Eckerö Linjen, although both Eckerö Line and Eckerö Linjen are owned by the same parent company.
Wasaline offers a ferry service between Vaasa in Finland, across the Gulf of Bothnia, to Umeå in Sweden. Their ship, M/S Wasa Express, has space for passengers and cargo loads.
DFDS is one of the largest passenger, cargo, and logistics companies in Europe. Their passenger routes on the Baltic Sea are a bit offbeat, but good for those with cars especially who are looking to make a crossing of the Baltic Sea, and to avoid traffic of the larger cities. DFDS has a lot of routes in the North Sea as well, but we haven't included them here.
- Paldiski to/from Hanko
- Kapellskär to/from Paldiski
- Klaipėda to/from Karlshamn
- Klaipėda to/from Kiel
Stena Line offers many ferry routes in the lower part of the Baltic Sea, as well as many ferries in the North Sea. Stena Line offers a lot of ferries, especially between Germany/Poland and Sweden.
- Ventspils to/from Nynäshamn
- Liepāja to/from Travemünde
- Gdynia to/from Karlskrona
- Sassnitz to/from Trelleborg
- Rostock to/from Trelleborg
- Kiel to/from Gothenburg
TT-Line is a medium-sized ferry operator based in Northern Germany (Lübeck). They generally offer ferries from Poland and Northern Germany to Trelleborg in Sweden.
- Świnoujście to/from Trelleborg
- Rostock to Klaipėda
- Rostock to Trelleborg
- Lübeck/Travemünde to Trelleborg
Unity Line is a Polish ferry company which currently offers ferries between Ystad in Sweden, and Świnoujście in Poland.
- Ystad to/from Świnoujście
Polferries is another Polish ferry company that connects Poland's northern ports with those in Sweden.
- Ystad to/from Świnoujście
- Gdańsk to/from Nynäshamn
- Świnoujście to Copenhagen via Ystad
Bornholmnslinjen connects ports on the Swedish, Danish, and German mainland to the Danish island of Bornholm.
- Bornholm to/from Ystad
- Bornholm to/from Køge
- Bornholm to/from Sassnitz
Eckerölinjen operates a single ferry connection between Grisslehamn in Sweden, and Eckerö in the Åland Islands. Not to be confused with Eckerö Line, which operates a route between Helsinki and Tallinn, and is also owned by the same parent company.
Destination Gotland operates a fleet of ferries between the Swedish mainland and Sweden's largest island, Gotland.
- Oskarshamn to/from Visby
- Nynäshamn to/from Visby
Defunct as of July 2020. Operated 21 hour round-trip cruises from Stockholm, with a night on board through the Stockholm Archipelago. Birka also operated some one-off multiple day cruises in the Baltic Sea for special events (e.g. Christmas). Also note that Birka Cruises was/is owned by the same company as Eckerölinjen and Eckerö Line.
- Stockholm Archipelago (round trip / "cruise")
A German ferry company linking the north coast of Germany (Rostock and Puttgarden) to Denmark (Gedser and Rødby) with multiple modern and moderately-sized roll-on roll-off passenger ferries.
- Rostock to/from Gedser
- Puttgarden to/from Rødby
Żegluga Gdańska operates smaller ferries throughout Northern Poland, as well as into Russian Kaliningrad.
- Gdynia to/from Bałtyjsk
- (and more within Poland itself)
Kołobrzeska Żegluga Pasażerska
Kołobrzeska Żegluga Pasażerska offers a year-round small ferry service between Kołobrzeg in North Poland, to Bornholm, the Danish island in the Baltic.
- Kołobrzeg to/from Bornholm
Praamid.ee connects the mainland of Estonia with two of Estonia's largest islands, Hiiumaa and Saaremaa.
- Rohuküla to/from Hiiumaa
- Virtsu to/from Muhu+Saaremaa
Kihnu Veeteed is a domestic ferry operator in Estonia, connecting many of its islands to the mainland. They offer many routes throughout the country, both on the Baltic Sea, and also on Lake Peipus.
- Tallinn to/from Aegna
- Laaksaare to/from Piirissaare
- Munalaid to/from Kihnu
- Munalaid to/from Manilaid
- Saaremaa (Triigi) to/from Hiiumaa (Sõru)
- Rohuküla to/from Vormsi (Sviby)
Tuule Liinid is another smaller Estonian operator, offering a single route connecting the mainland to Kelnase, a small island near Tallinn.
- Leppneeme to/from Kelnase
Saimaa Travel is a Finnish company from Leppävaara offering cruises through the Saimaa canal to Vyborg (Viipuri, Выборг) in Russia. Besides St. Peter Line, they are one of the few companies that can get you on a "Visa Free" cruise to Russia. Once reaching Vyborg, they offer guided connections to Saint Petersburg. They are, however, a seasonal operator.
- Leppävaara to/from Vyborg (and onwards to Saint Petersburg).