In the afternoon, head to Pier 33 on the Embarcadero to board the ferry to Alcatraz. Enjoy views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the city skyline during the ride across the bay, and then disembark on the island to start your independent tour of ‘The Rock.’
With your provided headset on, explore the cellblock while listening to ‘Doing Time,’ the award-winning self-guided audio tour that includes narration by former prisoners and staff. Both a military prison and a federal penitentiary during its notorious past, Alcatraz is known for high-profile inmates like Al Capone and Machine Gun Kelly. You’ll learn about the history of the prison and some of the escape attempts while you peer into individual cells.
You can also explore the grounds and look for wildlife like Brandt’s cormorants, Canadian geese and other birds. When you’re ready to go back to the city, just hop on the ferry; they depart every 30 minutes or so. Typical visiting time at Alcatraz is about 2.5 hours.
After returning to the Embarcadero, walk along the waterfront to Pier 43 at Fisherman’s Wharf to start your next on-the-water adventure—a 2-hour sunset or twilight cruise with a provided glass of wine, beer or soft drink. Enjoy fantastic views of the waterfront from the exterior deck, and glide underneath both the Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge while snacking on appetizers and listening to the live guitarist and commentary from your captain. If you get cold, you can take shelter from the wind in the spacious interior deck.
Your memorable experience on San Francisco Bay concludes when you return to Fisherman’s Wharf.