Alcatraz

Alcatraz

Alcatraz: Our most recommended tours and activities

San Francisco: Golden Gate Bay Cruise

1. San Francisco: Golden Gate Bay Cruise

Cruise around the Golden Gate Bay on a boat tour. Enjoy informative commentary, see sights like Alcatraz Island, and purchase food and drink from the onboard bar. Launched in 1939 as part of the Golden Gate International Exposition, this 1-hour cruise has been a highlight of any visit to San Francisco for over 75 years. With 8-14 departures daily from Fisherman's Wharf, you will sail along San Francisco's breathtaking waterfront, under the majestic Golden Gate Bridge, and close to the notorious Alcatraz Island. Discover San Francisco's fascinating history, brought to life through audio commentary broadcast in 16 languages via personal audioguides. Look out for wildlife along the way, including pelicans, sea lions, and even dolphins and whales. Sail past the lively neighborhood of North Beach, the famous swimming clubs of Aquatic Park, the historic vessels at Hyde Street Pier, and San Francisco Maritime National Park, before heading west towards Golden Gate Bridge. Enjoy views of Crissy Field and the lush hillsides of the Presidio, before cruising under Golden Gate Bridge. Steam back into the Bay, traveling past the wildlife reserves of the Marin Headlands, and the legendary town of Sausalito, once home to the 1960s’ flower generation. With Angel Island State Park to your left, cruise around the infamous Alcatraz. After a full hour of exciting sights, the barking sea lions at Pier 39 welcome you back to Pier 43 1/2. A full bar with drinks, snacks, and merchandise, including logo wear, is available at reasonable prices on board the iconic Red and White vessels. Join us on our 5:30 departure for the "Happiest Hour on The Bay" enjoy discounted pricing on cocktails, beer, wine and non-alcoholic drinks. Finish your day or start your evening with Red and White for the best views on board a piece of San Francisco history.

San Francisco: Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour

2. San Francisco: Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour

Experience the best that the City by the Bay has to offer with the Big Bus San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off tour. This digitally-narrated tour takes you to the city's must-see landmarks and iconic attractions, providing a comprehensive and immersive experience of San Francisco. Hop aboard the bus and prepare to be captivated by the beauty of the Golden Gate Bridge, a true San Francisco icon. As you cross the bridge, take in the breathtaking views of the San Francisco Bay, Alcatraz Island, and the surrounding hills. This is a photo-opportunity not to be missed! As the tour continues, venture into the heart of the city and visit Union Square, the bustling shopping district. Here, you'll find an array of designer boutiques, high-end department stores, and trendy restaurants. Union Square is also home to the famous cable car turnaround, where you'll see the iconic cable cars in action. The tour also takes you through the historic Haight-Ashbury neighborhood, the birthplace of the hippie movement. As you walk through the streets, you'll be transported back to the 1960s, with colorful Victorian houses, vintage clothing stores, and murals celebrating the Summer of Love. No trip to San Francisco is complete without a visit to Fisherman’s Wharf. Take in the sights and sounds of this famous waterfront district, where you can sample fresh seafood, browse local shops, and watch the sea lions basking in the sun. From here, you can also catch a ferry to Alcatraz Island or take a cruise around the bay. With the Big Bus tour, you have the flexibility to hop on and off at any of the 20 stops along the route, allowing you to explore the city at your own pace. And with buses running every 10-15 minutes, you won’t have to wait long to continue your adventure. So whether you want to spend more time shopping in Union Square or exploring the Golden Gate Park, the Big Bus tour has got you covered. Complete your SF experience with a half-day guided bus tour to Muir Woods. See the redwoods up close and personal, cross the Golden Gate Bridge, and explore the seaside town of Sausalito on the way back.

San Francisco: California Sunset Boat Cruise

3. San Francisco: California Sunset Boat Cruise

Enjoy sunset views as you sail on beautiful San Francisco Bay. See important landmarks, including Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge. In the winter months, take in the serene twilight views instead. Along the way, view numerous National Historic landmarks and San Francisco sights, including Coit Tower, the Transamerica Pyramid, St. Peter, Paul's Church, and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. As the sun begins to set over the Marin Headlands, cruise past Alcatraz, Angel Island, and the shorelines of Tiburon, Belvedere, and Sausalito. Watch the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean, as you sail west towards the Golden Gate. On your way back to Fisherman’s Wharf, see many more famous sights, including the Presidio, the Marina District, and Fort Mason.

San Francisco: Inside Alcatraz Tour with Bay Cruise

4. San Francisco: Inside Alcatraz Tour with Bay Cruise

You will explore INSIDE the Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary on Alcatraz Island with America’s most ruthless criminals, including Al Capone. The ferry will leave on time at the specific time you booked. You have to arrive 30 minutes before your scheduled departure time at Pier 33. Walk, bike, take public transportation, or drive (as a last resort as it can be challenging to find parking), with easy access from anywhere around the Bay! On the island follow the Cellhouse audio tour “Doing Time” 45 minutes available in Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Also included is an amazing 1 hour SF Bay Cruise. Sail past the famous PIER 39 sea lions and along San Francisco’s historic waterfront, revealing the city’s fascinating skyline.You have the flexibility to go on your cruise on any day at any available departure. You will receive the schedule. Those are 2 separates tours.

San Francisco: Alcatraz with San Francisco Bay Cruise

5. San Francisco: Alcatraz with San Francisco Bay Cruise

Explore the Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary on Alcatraz Island to learn about America’s most ruthless criminals, including Al Capone and George "Machine Gun" Kelly. Enjoy a ferry transfer from San Francisco and an admission ticket to the famous prison. Embark on a scenic 1-hour cruise of San Francisco Bay before or after your visit. Board the ferry and arrive on Alcatraz Island to begin your visit. Take advantage of an insightful and award-winning audio guide in multiple languages to immerse yourself in the dark history of Alcatraz and learn all about its old inmates and the many fateful escape attempts. Spend as much time as you'd like before taking the ferry back to the pier. Additionally, enjoy a 1-hour narrated sightseeing cruise of San Francisco Bay in a comfortable boat with both indoor and outdoor seating. Take in the scenic views and sail past famous San Francisco landmarks, such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman's Wharf, the Bay Bridge and much more. Sail along the historic waterfront, past the famous Pier 39 sea lions and take in the city’s fascinating skyline from the unique vantage point of the San Francisco Bay.

San Francisco: Bridge to Bridge Cruise

6. San Francisco: Bridge to Bridge Cruise

See both the Golden Gate Bridge and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge on a single boat tour with personal headphone audio included. Explore San Francisco's famous landmarks, history, natural history, architecture, and Native American culture on board this unique bay cruise. During the 90-minute round trip cruise you'll depart from Fisherman's Wharf, one of the city's busiest tourist attractions. From there, sail under the Golden Gate Bridge. Completed in 1937, the Golden Gate is one of the world's most famous and beautiful bridges, and was at one point the largest suspension bridge in the world. Cruise past Alcatraz Island, once home of one of the world's most infamous prisons, and take the chance to enjoy the stunning San Francisco waterfront. The boat will pass along the harbor before heading under the colossal San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. Then it's time to head back to the charming city of San Francisco by the sea. For a limited time, all San Francisco Bridge to Bridge Cruises have a Buy One, Get One (BOGO) offer for the bar! Double the delight as you sip and savor the beauty of the San Francisco Bay while toasting to memorable moments.

San Francisco: Muir Woods, Sausalito & Alcatraz Guided Tour

7. San Francisco: Muir Woods, Sausalito & Alcatraz Guided Tour

Spend a day with a San Francisco local as you embark on a boutique, small-group tour to area highlights. Enjoy a unique blend of nature and history as you stroll through ancient Redwood trees, visit Sausalito, and board a ferry to Alcatraz. Choose your route option to visit Muir Woods or Alcatraz first. Begin your tour when you meet your guide in San Francisco. Depart for your chosen first destination, Muir Woods National Monument Park or Alcatraz. Note that if you choose the 8:30am departure time, you will visit Muir Woods and Sausalito first followed by Alcatraz and if you choose the 9:10am departure time, you will visit Alcatraz first followed by Muir Woods and Sausalito. If you've chosen Muir Woods first, you will be picked up in a luxury Mercedes Sprinter van. Once you arrive in Muir Woods, admire the breathtaking majesty and fresh air of the ancient redwood forest. You will then visit the seaside community of Sausalito. Admire the Mediterranean flair and the large assortment of houseboats. You will then be dropped off at Pier 33, where you will travel by ferry to reach Alcatraz Island and enter the prison. While you explore, listen to the award-winning Cellhouse audio tour. If you've chosen to visit Alcatraz first, you will board a ferry at Pier 33 to visit the famous island prison. Wander the halls with your audio guide and explore the island. Learn about the famous criminals who were incarcerated here, like Al Capone and George "Machine Gun" Kelly. Then you will be picked up at 12:50pm in a luxury Mercedes Sprinter van to visit the Muir Woods National Monument Park and the colorful town of Sausalito.

San Francisco: Alcatraz Ticket with 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Bus

8. San Francisco: Alcatraz Ticket with 2-Day Hop-On Hop-Off Bus

Discover the best of San Francisco with this combined ticket that includes a visit to Alcatraz Island, a 2-day hop-on-hop-off bus pass, and a Chinatown walking tour. Plus, experience the thrill of either The Flyer or the 7D Experience, both located at Pier 39. Step foot on the notorious Alcatraz Island and immerse yourself in the captivating world of the iconic prison. As you explore the cells and grounds, listen to the gripping audio guide that reveals the tales of daring escape attempts and the lives of the inmates. With your 2-day Big Bus hop-on-hop-off pass, have the freedom to explore San Francisco at your own pace. Hop on and off the bus as many times as you like and enjoy the informative and entertaining digital audio commentary. During your adventure, take a leisurely guided walking tour through the vibrant streets of Chinatown. Discover the rich culture and fascinating history of this unique neighborhood. Plus, this combo includes your choice of a thrill attraction at Pier 39: The Flyer or the 7D Experience. The Flyer takes you on a virtual journey across San Francisco's landmarks from a 50-foot screen with motion seats. Glide over the Golden Gate Bridge, China Town, Lombard Street, and the stunning Redwood National Forest. The 7D Experience is a high-tech ride combining a rollercoaster and a laser game. In a 20-person theater, you'll enter new dimensions on a massive 3D screen. Top sights: - North Beach - Chinatown - Embarcadero Center - Fisherman’s Wharf - Ferry Building - Union Square - Redemption Center - Civic Center - Alamo Square - Haight Ashbury - Golden Gate Bridge - Golden Gate Park - Palace of Fine Arts - Marina - Lombard Street - Pier 35 - Pier 39

San Francisco: Waterfront Guided Tour and Alcatraz Ticket

9. San Francisco: Waterfront Guided Tour and Alcatraz Ticket

See the best of San Francisco on an English speaking walking tour and learn the history behind each turn from your guide. Take in the views of the skyline on your ferry to Alcatraz before exploring this notorious prison. Meet your guide at the north end of Fisherman's Wharf and start your experience by taking in the amazing views of the bay, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Alcatraz. Hear how San Francisco transformed from a sleepy village to a booming port city when gold fever swept the nation in 1849. Learn about the life of the Italian chocolatier Domenico Ghirardelli at the famous former chocolate factory in Ghirardelli Square. Stroll along the fog-lined waterfront and drool over the numerous stalls selling crab and clam chowder in sourdough bread bowls. Walk a portion of the historic Barbary Coast trail while your guide tells you about its colorful past. You and your group will then make your way to Pier 39 and admire historic ships in the harbor. Witness the colony of sea lions that have taken over many of its docks. Continue along the Embarcadero Promenade and learn about its evolution from a traditional maritime port to a modern urban waterfront filled with trendy restaurants and amusement piers. The walking tour concludes at Pier 33, where you will present your photo ID to receive your Alcatraz tickets. Board your ferry and enjoy a self-guided tour of Alcatraz upon the island.  Learn about the history of the cell house and its former residents with an award-winning audio tour available in multiple languages. You can expect to be done with the whole experience in the late afternoon.

San Francisco: Skip-the-Line Escape from The Rock Bay Cruise

10. San Francisco: Skip-the-Line 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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What people are saying about Alcatraz

Overall rating

4.6
(7,753 reviews)

An excellent boat cruise out to both bridges. The boat was very clean & the windows were sparkly clean which made viewing from inside more enjoyable. The two for one drinks deal made our time aboard a very pleasant cruise. Loved it.

This tour was amazing from beginning to the end. The staff were excellent and very friendly.

It was amazing! Mark was an excellent guide! We had a great time and learned so much!

Great way to see all the sights and get off and back on!

Great tour, excellent guide! Would highly recommend.