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Pier 39 Tours & Tickets

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25 Reviews
Pier 39
One of the most visited sights in San Francisco, the multilevel Pier 39 complex is home to shops, restaurants, street performers, and a video arcade. Its waterfront setting on the San Francisco Bay means visitors can take in panoramic bay views, breathe fresh sea air, and watch sunbathing California sea lions.
 
The Basics
Besides dining and shopping, another popular Pier 39 attraction is the Aquarium of the Bay, where you can watch sharks circle overhead and manta rays skate by. The glassed-in San Francisco Carousel is a hit with kids, as are the Musical Stairs and Magowan’s Infinite Mirror Maze. Pier 39 is also a popular jumping-off point for boat tours to Angel Island, Alcatraz Island, Sausalito, and the Golden Gate Bridge. Bay cruises focus on one of these attractions or all of them, some going as far out as the Farallon Islands in search of whales. 
 
City tours of San Francisco typically include a stop to Pier 39’s historic waterfront. A hop-on hop-off tour via double-decker bus allows you to disembark and explore the area’s arcades, restaurants, and shops at your leisure. 
 
Things to Know Before You Go
  • Cruises to Alcatraz Island leave from Pier 39 and tend to sell out far in advance. Be sure to buy tickets ahead of time.
  • The California Welcome Center offers luggage storage during the day for a fee.
  • Pets are allowed at Pier 39 outdoors in the common areas.
  • Ramps and elevators are located throughout Pier 39, and wheelchairs are available for rent at the California Welcome Center. 
 
How to Get There
Pier 39 is located at the edge of the Fisherman’s Wharf district, near the beginning of the Embarcadero. The pier is also close to North Beach, Chinatown, Ghirardelli Square, and Fort Mason. The area is easily accessible via the historic F-Market streetcars, buses, and cable cars. Parking in the area is possible, but be prepared to pay.
 
When to Get There
Although San Francisco’s weather is cold and foggy in the summer, that’s when Pier 39 is the busiest. Prepare for large crowds and sold-out activities during this time. Bring layers to fend off the chill, or visit in the fall for the best weather. The pier’s hours of operation change seasonally.

California Sea Lions
Pier 39’s most famous—and famously loud—visitors are California sea lions. Mostly between January and July, as many as 900 sea lions park themselves on the floating docks off of the pier. Since the early 1990s, every year these marine mammals put on a show of barking, lounging, and climbing over one another. Learn more about the playful pinnipeds at the Sea Lion Center.
Address: Beach Street and The Embarcadero, San Francisco 94119, USA
Hours: Open daily
Admission: Free
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62 Tours and Activities to Experience Pier 39

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PIER 39 Attraction PassSightseeing Passes

PIER 39 Attraction Pass

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Enjoy admission to the Pier 39 7D Experience and four other Pier 39 activities with this attraction pass. You’ll receive entry to the Aquarium of the Bay, The Flyer, and Magowan’s Infinite Mirror Maze, a 24-hour ticket for a San Francisco hop-on hop-off tour, a Chinatown walking tour, and a San Francisco Bay cruise. Plus, use provided coupons for discounts at shops and restaurants around Pier 39.
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  • 5 to 10 hours
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  • 5 to 10 hours
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  • Free Cancellation

Alcatraz Ticket + Fisherman's Wharf Walking TourWalking Tours

Alcatraz Ticket + Fisherman's Wharf Walking Tour

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If you're looking to see the sights on San Francisco's waterfront—but you don't have hours to tour the city—this quick walking tour is the perfect fit. Follow your guide to top attractions including Pier 39, Fisherman's Wharf, and Ghirardelli Square. History fans enjoy a quick look at the cable cars, and the USS Pampanito, a WWII submarine. To make the most of your day, upgrade with Alcatraz tickets to see San Francisco's infamous former prison.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes

San Francisco Golden Gate Whale-Watching TourDolphin & Whale Watching

San Francisco Golden Gate Whale-Watching Tour

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Go whale watching in San Francisco on this 2.5-hour cruise that departs from Pier 39. On an eco-friendly catamaran, glide through San Francisco Bay and under the Golden Gate Bridge to reach the open Pacific, where you’ll keep your eyes peeled for humpback and gray whales, as well as marine life like dolphins and seals. Learn about the history and geology of the area from an onboard naturalist, and admire the rugged California coast.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
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Big Bus San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off TourHop-on Hop-off Tours

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Big Bus San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Tour

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Ride a double-decker sightseeing bus to San Francisco's most famous landmarks with a choice of 3 different passes. Explore the city's 49 square miles, including stops at big-name attractions like Pier 39, the Palace of Fine Arts and Union Square. Go at your own pace, hopping off at any of 24 stops, exploring at your leisure, and then hopping back on when you're done. Your ticket includes a walking tour of Chinatown. Choose the Premium or Deluxe pass for additional upgrades including a night bus tour or a trolley tour in nearby Sausalito.
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  • 60 to 120 minutes
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  • 60 to 120 minutes
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Straight to the Gate Access: Golden Gate Bay CruiseDay Cruises

Straight to the Gate Access: Golden Gate Bay Cruise

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Explore one of California's most iconic settings from the beauty of San Francisco Bay. This narrated Golden Gate Bay cruise journeys alongside Alcatraz and Angel Island State Park, past the shores of Sausalito and beneath the Golden Gate Bridge. You can choose to view the sights from inside your boat or out on deck.
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  • 1 hour
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  • 1 hour
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San Francisco Cable Car City Trolley Tour From Fishermans WharfCity Tours

San Francisco Cable Car City Trolley Tour From Fishermans Wharf

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Explore San Francisco on this city tour that provides the chance to ride on a classic-style cable car without having to stick to the limited route of the city's tracks. As you travel aboard the cable car retrofitted with wheels, hop off at three locations to take guided walking tours of the Civic Center, Alamo Square, and Golden Gate Bridge areas. Blankets (it gets cold in the City by the Bay) are included. Select a morning or afternoon departure time when booking. 
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  • 3 hours
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  • 3 hours
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Gray Whale Watching TourDolphin & Whale Watching

Gray Whale Watching Tour

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Nature enthusiasts shouldn't miss the opportunity to see the majestic gray whale in its natural habitat, off the coast of San Francisco. On this half-day tour from Pier 39, cruise toward the chilly Pacific waters—or around San Francisco Bay—to spot migrating whales feasting on the plentiful anchovy. After a few hours on the water, return by early afternoon, so you can make the most of your day on the waterfront.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
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Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Bay Cruise AdventureDay Cruises

Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Bay Cruise Adventure

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Enjoy a relaxing outing on San Francisco Bay with a cruise. Take in panoramic views of the city skyline, marvel at Alcatraz Island, and journey beneath the Golden Gate Bridge. Choose to sit indoors or savor cool bay breezes from an outdoor deck and experience San Francisco in a whole new way from the water. You can even learn about the sights that you're seeing from a free audio tour—available on any personal wifi-enabled device. This ticket allows you to skip the box office line and go straight to the gate.
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  • 1 hour
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  • 1 hour
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Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Escape from the Rock CruiseDay Cruises

Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Escape from the Rock Cruise

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Learn stories behind the Bay Area's most notorious former federal penitentiary on a fascinating 'Escape from the Rock' cruise. Board a boat for a journey through the bay while listening to audio recordings (available in several languages) from ex-prisoners and guards about daily life on 'The Rock.' Learn about the Birdman of Alcatraz and the infamous 1962 'Alcatraz Escape,' and come to know why Alcatraz instilled fear into the hearts of even the worst-of-the-worst criminals. Tours are accessible on any of your own wifi-enabled iPads, smartphones or other devices. This ticket allows you to skip the box office line and go straight to the gate.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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San Francisco Bay Sunset Catamaran CruiseCatamaran Cruises

San Francisco Bay Sunset Catamaran Cruise

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What better way to end a day in San Francisco than a sunset catamaran cruise? Sail across San Francisco Bay at twilight to admire the city skyline as it begins to light up for the night. With an experienced captain at the helm, you’ll glide past Alcatraz Island and cruise underneath the Golden Gate Bridge. Light hors d’oeuvres and two drinks are included.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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Skip The Bus: San Francisco By Luxury Minivan TourBus & Minivan Tours

Skip The Bus: San Francisco By Luxury Minivan Tour

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Avoid the crowds, confusion, and limitations of large buses and discover San Francisco by private luxury minivan. The 4-hour tour takes you to parts of the city where buses aren’t allowed.  With maximum five passengers, you’re guaranteed a window seat, while you listen to live commentary. Stop for photo opportunities at six of the city’s most popular attractions, including the Golden Gate Bridge and Twin Peaks.
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  • 4 hours
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  • 4 hours
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San Francisco Cable Car City Trolley Tour from Union SquareCity Tours

San Francisco Cable Car City Trolley Tour from Union Square

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Avoid the hours-long wait at San Francisco’s cable car lines, while still getting a classic cable car experience during this city tour by converted cable car from Union Square. In addition to pointing out landmarks that visitors often miss, your guide also provides walking tours at City Hall, Alamo Square Park, and the Golden Gate Bridge. Plus, blankets and refreshments are included to make sure you stay comfortable during the ride.
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  • 180 to 210 minutes
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  • 180 to 210 minutes
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Small-Group Full-Day Tour of San Francisco with AlcatrazHistorical & Heritage Tours

Small-Group Full-Day Tour of San Francisco with Alcatraz

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Explore San Francisco on a small-group full-day tour that covers top attractions including Chinatown, Fisherman's Wharf, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Alcatraz. Get great views of the San Francisco Bay Area during the short ferry ride to Alcatraz Island, where you then take a self-guided audio tour of the infamous prison. Return to shore for your bus tour of destinations such as Nob Hill, the Haight-Ashbury, the Castro, the Mission, and Golden Gate Park. Includes hotel pickup and drop-off in San Francisco.
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  • 10 to 11 hours
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  • 10 to 11 hours

7D DarkRide Admission at Pier 39Attraction Tickets

7D DarkRide Admission at Pier 39

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Battle fearsome zombies, oversize monsters or robot bandits — all without leaving San Francisco — at the DarkRide 7D Experience on Pier 39. Choose your own adventure, then buckle up and grab a laser blaster for for an immersive virtual reality quest to take down your opponents. 3D glasses plus sound and motion effects turn an ordinary trip to Fisherman’s Wharf into a thrilling, high-definition challenge.
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  • 10 to 50 minutes
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  • 10 to 50 minutes
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Golden Gate Bay Cruise + Fisherman's Wharf Walking TourDay Cruises

Golden Gate Bay Cruise + Fisherman's Wharf Walking Tour

Discover top sights along San Francisco's iconic waterfront during this time-saver guided tour. Learn about the evolution of the picturesque waterfront city, from the gold rush frenzy to the advent of the cable-car. Highlights include the sea lions on Pier 39, stunning views overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge, and a stop at the historic Old Del Monte Fruit Cannery. Upgrade to include a sightseeing cruise along the water.
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  • 2 hours
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  • 2 hours
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Early Access to Alcatraz and Cable Car Sightseeing TourDay Trips

Early Access to Alcatraz and Cable Car Sightseeing Tour

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Visit Alcatraz Island before most visitors arrive and tour San Francisco on a motorized classic cable car. You’ll head to Alcatraz early to enter this National Historic Landmark District. Explore the former prison via the award-winning audio guide, and enjoy a sightseeing tour of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Palace of Fine Arts, and Fort Point on a cable car retrofitted with wheels, so you can see more of the city.
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  • 7 hours
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  • 7 hours

City and Sea Adventure: 1 Day Hop-On Hop Off Pass and San Francisco Bay CruiseHop-on Hop-off Tours

City and Sea Adventure: 1 Day Hop-On Hop Off Pass and San Francisco Bay Cruise

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  • 1 day
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  • 1 day
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  • Free Cancellation

Skyline Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off ToursBus & Minivan Tours

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Skyline Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Tours

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The Hop-On Hop-Off tours are a fun way to see San Francisco! They show you all major sights in the city, with unlimited Hop-On Hop-Off access for 3 different tour routes. Chose between a 1-day or 2-day ticket and explore San Francisco on your own pace! Enjoy the live commentary from our entertaining live tour guides, or listen to the audio guide in various foreign languages. Be sure to bring your camera, there will be plenty of photo opportunities from the open top Double Decker bus - a great way to remember your visit to the beautiful City by The Bay.
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  • 60 to 120 minutes
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  • 60 to 120 minutes
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San Francisco Bay Sailing CruiseSailing Trips

San Francisco Bay Sailing Cruise

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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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San Francisco Bay Adventure Sightseeing Boat CruiseDay Cruises

San Francisco Bay Adventure Sightseeing Boat Cruise

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See San Francisco’s top attractions from the water on this 1.5-hour tour by rigid inflatable boat. Your guide will provide gear to keep you dry and warm as you take off from Pier 39. Pass the infamous prison of Alcatraz, Coit Tower, the Presidio and glide under the Golden Gate Bridge while your captain provides insightful narration. Numbers are limited to 12 people to keep this small-group tour as intimate as possible.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes

San Francisco Independent Bike Tour with RentalBike Rentals

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San Francisco Independent Bike Tour with Rental

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  • 1 to 24 hours
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  • Free Cancellation
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$32
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  • 1 to 24 hours
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  • Free Cancellation

San Francisco All-Day Electric Bike RentalBike Rentals

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San Francisco All-Day Electric Bike Rental

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Discover San Francisco on your own schedule with a 1-day electric bike rental. Hop on a regular bike or an electric bike, for an easier ride, and pedal past all of the sites on the top of your list. Visit the crooked path of Lombard Street, North Beach, Haight-Ashbury, the Golden Gate Bridge and more. This self-guided trip gives you the opportunity to create your own itinerary as you explore the beloved City by the Bay.
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  • 1 to 24 hours
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  • 1 to 24 hours
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San Francisco Golden Gate Seaplane TourAir Tours

San Francisco Golden Gate Seaplane Tour

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Admire San Francisco from the air on this seaplane adventure from Sausalito. Aboard a 6-passenger plane, you’ll fly over the bay, taking in views of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Muir Woods and more. See downtown San Francisco and Fisherman’s Wharf, and soar past Angel Island. Everyone gets a window seat on this 30-minute flight, and transportation is available from Fisherman's Wharf.
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  • 30 minutes
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  • 30 minutes
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San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour + Night Tour + Sausalito + Madame TussaudsBus & Minivan Tours

San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour + Night Tour + Sausalito + Madame Tussauds

Explore San Francisco at your own pace. Make the most of your time in San Francisco with our flexible hop-on, hop-off sightseeing tours. Explore the city's sights at your own pace - you'll have the freedom to hop off the tour at any of our conveniently located stops, and rejoin when you're ready.Golden Gate BridgeFisherman's Wharf, Pier 39Union SquareFerry Building Market PlaceChinatownLittle ItalyNob Hill, Russian HillCivic CenterHaight Ashbury (the Hippies Street)Golden Gate ParkTreasure IslandBay BridgeSausalito
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  • 60 to 120 minutes
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