Safe Harbor Essex Island



Day Trip
First-Come, First-Served
11 Ferry St
Essex, CT 06426
Check-in after 01:00 PM
Check-out before 11:00 AM

Book faster with the free Dockwa app

351 Reviews

by John D. - Verified user on Jul 18, 2024
Only problem was the ladies room by the office had no air conditioning for our 3-night visit. Otherwise the facilities were clean, the staff was very friendly and accommodating.

by Stephen P. - Verified user on Jul 18, 2024
Great facility and really helpful dockhands.

by Mary C. - Verified user on Jul 17, 2024
The staff were very helpful both with docking and information at a very busy time. The facilities were clean, the town is nearby and our stay was very enjoyable.

by Diana T. - Verified user on Jul 17, 2024
We enjoyed 4 days at Essex Island. The grounds are well maintained, the facilities were clean, the pool was a joy in the heat, and the restaurant was delicious. TY for a nice stay.

by James A. - Verified user on Jul 17, 2024
We were part of a rendezvous of the Marine Trawler Owners Association (MTOA), a 25 boat flotilla from July 14th - 17th. I cannot say enough about the SH Essex Island location. It was awesome, and I really didn't want to leave. I am looking forward to my return soon. The dock staff there were outstanding. Not only were they friendly and helpful as I would have expected. But their professionalism was outstanding as well. It was quite apparent that they were well trained. I know this sounds small to some, but for me it was a big deal and an indicator of their professionalism. For the very first time in my history of boating and staying at marinas, I did not have to alter the docklines after the crew initially tied us up. They tied perfect cleat hitches and the length of each one of the lines was perfect. They were also very attentive and helpful when attaching the power cables as well. I cannot say enough about the dock staff at this marina. Well done!!! The marina itself was outstanding as well. They take up the entire island in Essex and have a 30 second ferry (literally) to the main town. Lots of fun. The facilities were top notch as well. I strongly recommend them.

by jeff i. - Verified user on Jul 17, 2024
Excellent facility, friendly staff Lost thrusters while docking and there was immediate help from the staff. I will definitely return anytime traveling north.

by FRANK B. - Verified user on Jul 15, 2024

by Marcella A. - Verified user on Jul 14, 2024
Great location, clean and beautiful. Excellent marina staff. We had a great visit.

by Peter D. on Jul 13, 2024
Facility with on site restaurant is top notch. Clean, nice docks, friendly staff, great location for classic New England town of Essex. However, not one of the electric plugs for our 50amp cord worked, after numerous requests the staff said it must be our cord, not their own power box. On this topic the lacks customer support as they never came back to our boat to inform us or suggest moving us to another dock. We had to go back into dock office to find out we have no electricity. Luckily we have a generator and ran it all night. Cut our stay short and left next morning. Once back at our home port, also a Safe Harbor marina we plugged in and instantly had dock electricity. Shame on Essex Island

by Simon C. on Jul 12, 2024
Fantastic facilities! Friendliest staff who are always looking to help! I can’t say enough good things!

by Laura I. - Verified user on Jul 09, 2024
Booked at SH Essex Island; SH Dauntless now takes care of the moorings. It was problematic. Received a reservation confirmation from SH Essex Island with no mooring ball assignment, which instructed to call on CH 68, then were told on 68 to call 67, then on 67 to call 9, then 9 said to call 68 ... finally on CH 68, they gave confusing instructions to a ball ----1, had to call back twice more until the launch driver showed us the ball, which was not marked ----1, when that was pointed out, he said, "well we call it #1." Had a two day reservation, on day 2 we were asked to move to a different mooring ball - #36, which was located right in the channel. We did move even though we were busy. Once on ball #36, our catamaran spun more than 270 degrees in one direction, then reversed, each nauseating spin taking less than 45 seconds. We were dangerously close to another boat. After complaining and sending video to the marina manager, we were permitted to move back to ball #1. The current was so strong that we bent out boat hook. For all our troubles, the Marina Manager graciously gave us @25% off one night stay. This mooring cost $85/night and is in the upper price range for mooring. Pros - Gorgeous town Beautiful View Clean,new bathrooms/showers Great launch drivers and dock hands Cons- Poor communication Ridiculous to request us to move after a day - onerous and cut into our day Laughable discount for our trouble - our boat hook cost more Marina Manager knew we were a cat and yet put us in the channel without the forethought of how we would spin and swing - very unsafe No hot water in the showers Not able to use facilities on Essex Island, even though reservation stated Essex Island. Expensive
Marina Response:
We apologize that your stay did not meet expectations. We recognize that merging our Dockwa pages has caused some confusion in terms of who to hail upon arrival and have modified our arrival emails for added clarity. We make all of our mooring assignments, first and foremost, with the safety of our customers in mind, and occasionally do request customers to relocate if we feel their boat is swinging in a manner inconsistent with the boats around it. While not ideal, it is, unfortunately, a consequence of mooring in a harbor where the current can change swiftly, especially with an onslaught of wind and rain like we had last weekend. Please check your messages for further communication.

by John R. - Verified user on Jul 09, 2024
What a great experience! Stared off with Adam the dock master greeting us and helping tie us up with another dock hand. The grounds were immaculate. The restaurant on the grounds called Siren Kitchen & Bar was fantastic. The owner greeted us and had no problems with our two service dogs Piper and Suzy. Do yourself a favor and start off with the Hot Dog Bloody Mary! Best dog EVER! WORTH THE LITTLE EXTRA WAIT TIME.

by Matthew G. - Verified user on Jul 08, 2024
We have a wonderful time at Essex safe Harbor. Facilities are clean and well-maintained and it is pet friendly. We look forward to our return trip.

by Anonymous on Jul 08, 2024
Love this dog people friendly place. Neat well maintained facility for family and friends. BBQ grills through out premises Corn hole and shuffle board ready.

by Anthony C. - Verified user on Jul 08, 2024
Staff is so polite and helpful, dock hands were superb. Nice peaceful marina that we love and recommend

by Kevin O. - Verified user on Jul 07, 2024
Thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Professional staff. Very helpful.

by David H. - Verified user on Jul 07, 2024
It had been a we since we visited this wonderful harbor of Essex. The Connecticut River Valley is a must see by boat. Rachel and her crew, Hailey, Matt, Maddie-to name a few- were amazing. They made our visit all the better. And a special shout out to Russell and Phoebe.
Marina Response:
Thank you, David! You and your family were an absolute pleasure to host (seriously we loved having you here!). Safe travels, and please come see us again soon!

by Robert W. - Verified user on Jul 07, 2024
Having gone here for forty years it is better than ever. Safe harbor and Adam do everything possible to accommodate

by Albert M. - Verified user on Jul 06, 2024
Amazing and very helpful staff! Clean facilities. We are definitely coming back Thank you for great stay!
Marina Response:
Thank you, Albert! It was great having you here, and we look forward to seeing you again!

by charlie d. - Verified user on Jul 03, 2024
Great crew. Nice showers and a pretty spot on the river

by Raymond S. - Verified user on Jul 01, 2024
Staff great and clean facilities The restaurant on the property food was awful

by Neil H. - Verified user on Jul 01, 2024
Great experience, the staff were exceptional.

by ANDREW S. - Verified user on Jul 01, 2024
Love the location and all it has to offer. The staff goes above and well beyond expectations.

by Peter H. - Verified user on Jul 01, 2024
We have stayed here before and have always enjoyed the staff, views of the Connecticut River and overall facility. The staff who assisted in our docking were very competent and friendly. All in all a fine stay. The WIFI at Safe Harbor locations has always been a plus. Clean rest rooms, a dock layout available on the website, very helpful manager and the Town of Essex make Safe Harbor Essex Island a must stay.

by Bill M. - Verified user on Jun 30, 2024
Your dock staff was terrific!!
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About Safe Harbor Essex Island


We have merged Dockwa profiles and Safe Harbor Dauntless + Safe Harbor Essex Island reservations will ALL be made through Safe Harbor Essex Island. That includes ALL moorings + slips for Safe Harbor Dauntless. Though we share a Dockwa profile for the purposes of reservations, access to amenities is limited to the location you've requested your reservation--transients at Dauntless Shipyard and Dauntless Marina do not have access to Essex Island amenities.

*For mooring reservations at Safe Harbor Dauntless, please make them here and be sure to select 'mooring' from the drop down when making your reservation. Also, please make a note in your reservation that you are requesting a mooring.

*For transient slip reservations at Safe Harbor Dauntless, please make them here and be sure to select 'slip' from the drop down when making your reservation as well as adding in a big note stating your request for a slip at Safe Harbor Dauntless.

Safe Harbor Essex Island is a true boating retreat for rendezvous gatherings, yacht club festivities, and more. Quietly placed on its own 13-acre island, Safe Harbor Essex Island is a waterfront destination for locals and cruisers alike. Unwind by the oversized pool, enjoy a game of volleyball with family, or explore the vibrant village atmosphere in nearby Essex.

ALL special requests (slip preference, boats you are traveling with, special electric needs, handicap needs, boat accessibility, etc.) NEED to be told to marina staff BEFORE your arrival. Day of arrival changes/add-ons may not be able to be accommodated. Thank you!


  • Diesel
  • Gas
  • Water Hookup
  • Electrical

Listed Pump Prices

Last Updated on 07/18/2024 at 10:48AM

  • Regular Gas: $5.19

  • Diesel: $4.09


  • Captains Lounge
  • Dog Park
  • Floating Docks
  • Ice
  • Wireless Internet
  • Launch Service
  • Laundry
  • Service & Maintenance
  • Oil Recycling
  • Pet Friendly
  • Swimming Pool
  • Pumpout
  • Restrooms
  • Ship Store
  • Showers
  • Travel Lift
  • Groceries
  • Medical Facilities w/in 5 Miles
  • Hotel/Lodging
  • Restaurant
  • Land Storage



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