Alcatraz
Viewing Points

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Our most recommended Alcatraz Viewing Points

San Francisco: Escape from The Rock Bay Cruise

1. San Francisco: Escape from The Rock Bay Cruise

Hop on board a boat and cruise around Alcatraz Island and other sights of San Francisco Bay on this round trip journey. Benefit from a straight-to-the-gate access ticket and informative commentary as you go. Cruise San Francisco Bay and sail under the Golden Gate Bridge on a 90-minute narrated tour by boat around Alcatraz Island. Skip the box office line and go straight to the gate with your ticket. See Alcatraz island from the water while listening to accounts of the chilling escape attempts and the notorious criminals that called Alcatraz prison home. Enjoy a cruise with food and drink available to purchase onboard. Cruise full circle around Alcatraz Island, allowing you to view every angle of this mysterious island, which housed famous inmates such as Al Capone, Billy Cook the Killer, and Clyde Johnson, whose escape attempt is legendary. Gain a clear picture of what life in this maximum-security prison was like when it was the most feared institution in the American penal system.

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San Francisco Bay Sunset Cruise by Luxury Catamaran

2. San Francisco Bay Sunset Cruise by Luxury Catamaran

Take a relaxing 90-minute round trip boat trip onboard a luxury catamaran. See sea lions, famous sights, and sunset views of San Francisco as the sun dips below the Bay. Sail by Alcatraz Island, under the Golden Gate Bridge, and past Sausalito. Search for the famous Pier 39 sea lions and other kinds of sea life playing in the ocean. Cruise along the shore, gazing on the city skyline as you watch the magnificent sunset. Relax with a complimentary drink on board either a 55- or 65-foot catamaran. Both come complete with a protected viewing area, providing panoramic 360-degree viewing, in addition to canvas trampoline nets for the more adventurous who want to experience the sights in the bracing open air.

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San Francisco: City Sights, Muir Woods & Alcatraz Day Tour

3. San Francisco: City Sights, Muir Woods & Alcatraz Day Tour

Meet outside Fisherman’s Wharf at your chosen tour time. After a brief roll call, you’ll board the bus and travel to your first stop. Over the next 3 hours, you’ll be treated to stories about the neighborhoods, diversity, and geography of the area. You will exit the bus at several stops for photo opportunities and exploration. At the end of the adventure, you will be dropped off at Fisherman’s Wharf or North Beach, where you can enjoy a leisurely lunch and explore Lombard Street. You can also take in stunning views over the city from the Coit Tower or watch Pier 39 infamous sea lions. Your guide will recommend restaurants and must-see locations during your break. After lunch, walk over to Pier 33 to depart for Alcatraz. Upon arriving to Alcatraz Island you will take the official tour and have the opportunity to explore additional exhibits at your convenience. Lastly, return by ferry from Alcatraz back to Pier 33 where you are free to enjoy the rest of your evening. Here are the places you will explore (photo stops noted by *): • Alcatraz* - Used as a federal prison between 1933-1966, Alcatraz housed some of the most dangerous criminals of the time, including Al Capone, James "Whitey" Bulger, and George "Machine Gun" Kelly. Featuring unbelievable views of the San Francisco peninsula, a visit to the island is essential when in town • Fisherman's Wharf - One of San Francisco's most popular destinations - from beautiful old shipyards to Boudin's Bakery and of course, the sea lions of Pier 39, Fisherman's Wharf has it all • Fort Point* - Located just beneath the Golden Gate Bridge, Fort Point gives you a front-row seat to the San Francisco Bay. This former military fortification was used during both the Civil War and World War II • Golden Gate Bridge - Declared one of the 10 wonders of the modern world, the Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most recognized symbols of San Francisco • Pacific Heights* - Offering one of the most scenic outlooks in all of Northern California, Pacific Heights is home to Billionaire's Row, featuring the estates of politicians, tech titans, and other San Francisco celebrities • Chinatown - Boasting the largest Chinatown in the United States, this 24-block mecca is bustling with energy, amazing food, and unique shops that give this area its charm • North Beach - Voted as one of the USA's ten great neighborhoods, North Beach is best known as the home of Little Italy. From delicious restaurants to authentic sidewalk cafes and bakeries, you will feel the charm of San Francisco as soon as you arrive • Haight Ashbury* - The origin of the hippie culture and the birthplace of the “Summer of Love.” From the stunning Painted Ladies to the homes of music’s favorite 60’s bands, this district started the counter-culture movement across the USA • Tenderloin - Nestled near downtown San Francisco, the Tenderloin neighborhood continues to resist gentrification, all while spearheading the local arts movement. It’s a must-see in our modern-day city • Golden Gate Bridge - Declared “one of the 10 wonders of the modern world,” the Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most recognized symbols of San Francisco

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San Francisco: Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito Bike Tour

4. San Francisco: Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito Bike Tour

Experience San Francisco with the wind in your hair and the sun on your skin on this stunning city tour that takes you on a ride across the iconic Golden Gate Bridge. Truly the best way to see the bay, this tour is perfect for families and individuals seeking an up close and personal look at the city’s most celebrated landmark. Start the tour at the picturesque Aquatic Park in Fisherman’s Wharf, and then ride through the mostly flat National Park and through to Fort Mason, the Marina, Presidio National Park, and then onto the famous Golden Gate Bridge. Along the way, your local guide will share entertaining and educational information with you, including the history behind the Golden Gate Bridge and the city itself. Marvel at the stunning views across the bay as you cross the bridge on the sidewalk, followed by a 10-minute downhill ride into the charming bay side town of Sausalito. The tour ends here but your all-day bike rental allows you to explore the area at your own leisure and return the bike once you’ve explored it all. Why not grab a bite to eat, relax, shop, and enjoy Sausalito’s famously wonderful weather before taking your bike on the ferry back to San Francisco.

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San Francisco: Luxury Van Tour with Snacks

5. San Francisco: Luxury Van Tour with Snacks

Explore the city on this luxury, air-conditioned van tour led by an expert local guide. Tours depart in small groups so you can enjoy a personal and friendly experience. Sit back, relax and avoid the crowds of bigger bus tours. Your tour starts at Fisherman’s Wharf, one of the city’s most beloved tourist destinations. The tour will stop for views over the Golden Gate Bridge and other popular sights such as Alcatraz. You'll have the chance to take it all in before heading over to lesser visited spots like Twin Peaks and Fort Point. Complimentary snacks and water are available as your guide takes you to local neighborhoods that the big tour buses don't visit. See the hustle and bustle of everyday life in the city and get to know the real San Francisco.

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San Francisco Grand City Tour + Muir Woods and Sausalito

6. San Francisco Grand City Tour + Muir Woods and Sausalito

Tour San Francisco from the Bay to the Ocean, with photo stops at key location. Enjoy great views and famous attractions such as the Golden Gate Bridge and the stop at Twin Peaks will give you a breathtaking view of the city from 1000 ft. above sea level. Travel through the Golden Gate Park and enjoy seasonal flower displays, bison grazing, and pass windmills overlooking the Pacific. Enjoy neighborhoods dotted with colorful Victorian homes. Learn about San Francisco’s early settlements, from Native Americans, to Spanish missionaries and the frenzied days of the Gold rush as you drive through the once infamous Barbary Coast. Scheduled stops on your tour include: • Vista Point at Golden Gate Bridge • Twin peaks - breath-taking hilltop panoramic views of the City (weather permitting) • Japanese Tea Garden at Golden Gate Park You will also make other stops and take advantage of photo opportunities as recommended by your tour guide. You will see many of the famous sights of San Francisco including Chinatown, Fisherman's Wharf, Presidio National Park, Alcatraz, City Hall and Nob Hill. Then it's off to Muir Woods and the Giant Redwood Trees! Cross the Golden Gate Bridge, and after you motor through the “Rainbow Tunnels” on Hwy. 101, Marin’s unique topography comes into view. Tidal flats along the bay segue into gentle undulating hills as they rise to meet Mt. Tamalpais, Marin’s 2,600-foot landmark. As your tour ascends Mt. Tam, breathtaking views abound at every turn. Descending into the valley toward Muir Woods, you will see a landscape that hasn’t changed since its original inhabitants, the Coast Miwok Indians, lived here centuries ago. You will have 1-1/4 hour to spend in Muir Woods, the most time offered on any sightseeing tour program. There will be ample time to stroll the Nature Trail along picturesque Redwood Creek, and through Cathedral and Bohemian Groves, filled with 500 to 800-year-old redwoods. Be sure to stop at the Visitors Center and Gift Shop. The next stop on your tour is beautiful Sausalito, a Mediterranean-like community with elegant hillside homes facing the bay and a unique colony of floating homes moored along the waterfront. You will have time to stroll Downtown Sausalito, a National Historical Landmark District offering many fine shops, galleries and restaurants. If you want to spend additional time here you can stay and take a ferry back to Fisherman’s Wharf or the San Francisco Ferry Building at the foot of Market Street (ferry fare not included). Your return to San Francisco by motorcoach will be via the Golden Gate Bridge and through San Francisco’s Marina District.

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San Francisco: Muir Woods and Marin by Land, Air and Sea

7. San Francisco: Muir Woods and Marin by Land, Air and Sea

Discover the scenery of Muir Woods, the Marin Headlands, and San Francisco Bay by land, air, and sea. Savor an included lunch with sparkling wine, then wander around Sausalito at your own pace before taking the ferry back to San Francisco. After pickup at your hotel, drive over the Golden Gate Bridge to the nearby wilderness of Marin County. Arrive early at Muir Woods National Monument, before most visitors, to experience the serenity of the grove. Spend at least an hour under the canopy of redwoods in Muir Woods, and marvel at trees over 250 feet (76 meters) tall and more than 1,000 years old. By going early, enjoy a better chance of seeing black-tailed deer, chipmunks, coyotes, or even wild turkeys. Next, drive back out through the rolling green hills of the Tamalpais valley into the Marin Headlands, where roads cling to the cliffs and red-tailed hawks soar in the sky. Explore abandoned military bunkers with beautiful views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the San Francisco skyline in the background. Then, head to the seaplane base in Sausalito for a 30-minute seaplane flight along the coast. Soar over the Golden Gate National Recreation, retracing your morning adventure over the Marin Headlands, then turn left over the legendary Golden Gate Bridge. Continue on above Crissy Field, Downtown San Francisco, Oracle Park, and the infamous island prison of Alcatraz. Finally, end your flight passing by the historic Angel Island – the Immigrant Gateway to the West – before landing back in Sausalito’s Richardson Bay. On your return to solid ground, pop the cork on a sparkling wine toast and enjoy a locally sourced, organic lunch in the Marin sunshine. After lunch, get dropped off in Sausalito to discover the village’s arty shops, funky houseboats, and charming cafes on your own before boarding a ferry back to San Francisco’s Pier 39.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Alcatraz

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What people are saying about Alcatraz

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 182 reviews

This was a spur of the moment activity while we were visiting California and ended up being one of the most exciting activities we did while visit. Everything was perfect. The staff were amazing!! I HIGHLY recommend doing this.

Very nice relaxing fun cruise around the bay. Just kick back and have a couple of beverages. We really enjoyed it.

Perfect experience. Just as advertised with a bonus trip around Alcatraz. Perfect end to the day.

The tour group was very friendly and made the entire tour a great experience.

What an amazing experience with an incredible team !