Syndicat Mixte des Traversées du Delta du Rhône

The History of Ferries

Barcarin ferry

The Rhône an obstacle to all access

Salin de Giraud, which had existed for several decades, was exclusively connected to Arles by road and the departmental railway.
The Rhône was an obstacle to any access to the east of the Bouches du Rhône.

A new method of crossing

The creation of the crossing service dates from the 1st adjudication of the fermage de la Losne (Chamone) in 1827 which will exist until 1841. It was a large boat measuring 10m by 3m.
In 1855 a ferry based at the foot of the Saint Louis Tower in de Port-Saint-Louis-du-Rhône was awarded and connecting this village to the Domaine de la Palissade hunting territory.
The 1st ferry entered service in 1933, replacing the barque “Bette”.

The construction of a chain ferry

The construction of a chain ferry approximately fifteen meters long was adopted.
In Salin de Giraud, on October 8, 1933, in the presence of notables and the local population, the first ferry was inaugurated as well as a large ocher building, still existing, where the boatmen lived.

The arrival of modernity

In 1944, during the retreat, German troops sank Barcarin 1. It was not until 1956 that the public crossing service resumed. With the arrival of Barcarin 2 then Barcarin 3 in 1967, a modern type of ship was selected: amphidrome, self-propelled and very maneuverable thanks to the two Voith thrusters (1 at each end), hull with sufficient hollowness for good hold in the waves created when the sea comes in or the Mistral is violent.
In 1987, Barcarin 4 replaced B2 and in 2011 Barcarin 5 started its service on new infrastructures.

Sauvage's Ferry

1st leased in 1826, this is also a large boat/raft type vehicle which crossed at Sylveréal. Just after WWI, a trolley ferry operated by human power was installed. The current Sauvage 3 ferry entered service in 1972.

État du trafic

Bac de Barcarin


Statistical estimation

Bac du Sauvage


Statistical estimation


Pas ou peu d'attente


Sûrement un peu d'attente​

Très chargé

Attente supérieure ou égale à 30 minutes


Trafic à l'arrêt

Ces informations sont représentatives du trafic au moment où elles sont mises à jour. Le SMTDR ne pourra être tenu responsable de l’évolution parfois rapide de l’affluence ou de la météo.

Traffic conditions

Barcarin ferry


Statistical estimation

Sauvage's Ferry


Statistical estimation


Little or no waiting


Probably a bit of a wait


Waiting greater than or equal to 30 minutes


Traffic stopped

This information is representative of traffic at the time it is updated. The SMTDR cannot be held responsible for the sometimes rapid change in attendance or the weather.