• Mill Bay Ferry, Mill Bay, BC, YYJ, Brentwood Bay Ferry, Visitor in Victoria



Driving ‘up-island’ on the Malahat is one of the most scenic drives on the island.  I would certainly recommend driving north from Victoria up the Malahat to whatever destination you have planned … but if you want something different on the way back, you might try taking the Mill Bay Ferry which runs from the community of Mill Bay (just before the southern section of the Malahat) across Saanich Inlet to the community of Brentwood Bay and then down to Victoria from there.

History of The Malahat Drive

‘The Malahat’ is the term commonly applied to the Malahat Drive, a 25 km (15.5 mi) portion of the Trans Canada Highway #1 running along the west side of Saanich Inlet and to the region surrounding it. The road was first cut as a cattle trail in 1861, and was then upgraded to wagon road standards in 1884. It became a paved road in 1911. Its name comes from the Malahat First Nation, whose ancestors used the caves for spiritual enhancement.

The Malahat Drive climbs to a summit of 356 m (1,156 ft), and the mountain is considered one of the most sacred sites on southern Vancouver Island.


MV Mill Bay was a Canadian ferry. At 37.49 metres (123 ft) long, it was BC Ferries’ second smallest ship. It holds 16 vehicles (tied with the MV Nimpkish), 138 passengers and crew, and its maximum speed is 9 knots (17 km/h). The Mill Bay operated in the Brentwood Bay-Mill Bay route across Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island.

MV Mill Bay is equipped with three lanes for cars, two with no height restriction and one lane that passes under the superstructure for the wheelhouse. Since the trip across the inlet takes only 20 minutesMill Bay does not have very many amenities. She does have restrooms for passengers but they are not accessible to handicapped persons.

The Mill Bay is powered by an L. Gardner and Sons model 8L3 straight-eight engine that generates 152 hp (113 kW) . She burns diesel fuel at the rate of 14 litres/hour (3.7 gallons/hour) and is the most fuel efficient active vessel in the BC Ferries fleet.


Leave Brentwood Bay                                                          Leave Mill Bay

7:30 am Daily except Sun
8:40 am Daily
9:50 am Daily
11:00 am Daily
1:15 pm Daily
2:25 pm Daily
3:35 pm Daily
4:45 pm Daily
5:55 pm Daily
8:05 am Daily except Sun
9:15 am Daily
10:25 am Daily
11:35 am Daily
1:50 pm Daily
3:00 pm Daily
4:10 pm Daily
5:20 pm Daily
6:30 pm Daily
Effective November 1, 2015


Service Between
One Way
(Foot or Vehicle)
12 years or older $7.85
5 to 11 years old $3.95
Under 5 years old FREE
Student (school event)
12 to 18 years old FREE
5 to 11 years old FREE
Permanently Disabled & Escort
12 years or older $3.95
5 to 11 years old $2.00
Senior (Monday to Thursday excluding Statutory Holidays) $3.95
STANDARD VEHICLE (Excludes Driver & Passengers)
e.g. Cars, Trucks, Motorhomes –
Vehicle Length up to 20 Feet $18.15
– extra length rate over 20 Feet (per foot) $2.05
Motorcycle $9.10
BUS – per foot (licensed to carry 16 or more passengers) $1.55
COMMERCIAL – per foot (vehicles over 5500 kg/GVW) $2.05
12 years or older $4.90
5 to 11 years old $2.45
Senior $2.45
Standard Vehicle (up to 20 Feet) $11.70
Motorcycle $5.85
* A 1.0% Fuel Rebate will be applied at time of payment to the Net Fares listed above
on the BC RESIDENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM & the Bicycle/Stowage fares.
LOAD LIMIT not to EXCEED 8,000 kg G.V.W. & LENGTH not to EXCEED 40 feet, or 12 metres.
– Prepaid paper tickets available for purchase for travel on this route.
Find Out More.
– Cash, Travellers Cheque or Prepaid Paper Ticket Only.
– Credit and Debit Card and Experience CardTM are NOT accepted at this time.

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About the Author:

I've lived in Victoria over 30 years and I still can't believe how great this city really is! My husband, Bruce, and I have traveled the world but coming home to Victoria is still quite often a celebration. Together, we want to share our love of the city and the area by giving you an 'insider's' insights of where to go - what to do - and how to get there!


  1. Sophie Braker May 19, 2017 at 5:50 am - Reply

    Where can I pre purchase ferry tickets in Brentwood bay

    • Linda May 19, 2017 at 7:10 am - Reply

      I don’t believe you can pre-book on this ferry. It’s a small ferry and operates on a first-come/first-serve basis. It runs about (more or less) every hour. You can check the schedule here: http://www.bcferries.com/schedules/mainland/bbmb-current.php
      Cheers! Linda

    • Carol Halliwell August 2, 2017 at 1:42 pm - Reply

      You can pre-purchase discounted ferry tickets at Thrifty’s grocery stores in Sydney (for Brentwood ferry) and Mill Bay for that ferry, and use credit cards. It should be noted that you can’t use credit cards to purchase when you’re actually on the ferry. It’s advisable to have cash.

  2. Ross S October 2, 2017 at 4:35 pm - Reply

    Thanks so much for this info on where to buy the prepaid paper ticket for Brentwood bay because I was surprised that the BC Ferry web side dose not say where you can buy the cheaper paper ticket…

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