Trip Planner:   USA  /  California  /  San Francisco  /  Nature  /  Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz Island, San Francisco

4.7
#1 of 3,748 in Nature in United States
Island National Park
Tour the infamous former maximum-security penitentiary on Alcatraz Island. Nicknamed The Rock, this small island in the San Francisco Bay is now a national park. After taking a ferry to the island, follow the audio guide, available in ten languages. You'll go through the inside of the old prison's facilities, which include a lighthouse, military fortifications, and cellblocks. Though long considered escape-proof, the prison suffered an irreparable blow to its reputation in 1962, when three inmates mysteriously disappeared using a makeshift raft. Explore the protected recreation area with a park ranger, who can enhance your visit with little-known information about the island's current inhabitants: the black-crested night herons and western gulls. To visit Alcatraz Island and get the most from your holiday in San Francisco, create itinerary details personal to you using our San Francisco vacation planner.
Create an itinerary including Alcatraz Island
map
Related Tours to Book
View more tours
Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
42,298 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • We did the night tour and it was wonderful. Creepy informative Erie and enlightening this is definitely the number one tourist attraction in San Francisco plan to spend about 2 to 3 hours and you can ...  more »
  • A must do visit. Very well organised and engaging audio tour. Remember you can pause it to let the hordes go ahead and then take your own time.  more »
  • This is a place that you have to visit when in SF. The audio tour is fantastic and gives great first hand insight into what life on the island was like. Take layers and possible a wind proof layer as ...  more »
Google
  • Great history! It's great seeing the historic Alcatraz Penitentiary in person. Recommend buying tickets early because I think they sell out quickly. A must see if you're visiting San Francisco! Will definitely be back. Also has a great bookstore / gift shop at the end of the tour.
  • Alcatraz was an absolutely amazing experience. I did the night tour, which is definitely worth the extra money. Getting on the ferry was a quick and easy process. During the night tour you get to go all the way around the island, which was a nice touch! The tour guides were all friendly and incredibly knowledgeable. Views of San Francisco from the main road are beautiful. Following the audio tour was a very cool way to experience the facility. Highly recommended
  • Terrific Audio Tour Included - Whilst the weather wasn't very kind on the day this place is definitely not to be missed regardless of the conditions. The audio commentary was very interesting and can be followed at your own pace. Plenty of opportunities to take photos. Make sure you don't leave without going to the exercise yard. It is tucked away a bit but still an easy walk up about 40 steps.
  • One of the most iconic tourist stops in the city and is highly recommended. Tickets sell quickly and it is recommended to purchase tickets well in-advance of your visit to San Francisco. The island is filled with history and the audio guide provided with your ticket does an excellent job at bringing you back in time to life as an inmate. One of the best audio guides I've ever heard, and I am not usually a fan of audio guides.
  • Great time! How could you not enjoy getting to know America's most famous prison? You get a fantastic boat ride out to the island. You can tour yourself with headphones (audio guides included) and their are plenty of guides tours by rangers. Also the help desk was fantastic in helping us change our times. Do not miss!!

Plan your trip to San Francisco

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in San Francisco

From inexpensive hostels in quiet residential areas to high-end hotels near the city center, San Francisco has accommodations for every budget. Key consideration is what kind of neighborhood you want to stay in. You'll find luxury hotels in Union Square, which has prime shopping, is near theaters, and is on the cable car line. Many hotels are in the northeastern portion of the city, near the tourist-driven neighborhoods of Chinatown and Fisherman's Wharf, both easily explored on foot. To get away from the tourist crowds, consider the smaller inns and family-run bed and breakfasts in some of the city's more charming neighborhoods, such as Noe Valley or Pacific Heights. There are also boutique hotels scattered around town. Avoid staying in the Tenderloin. If you plan to have a car with you, ask about parking availability and fees. Parking is often difficult and expensive.
CHECK IN - CHECK OUT
TripAdvisor
Millions of travel reviews
on TripAdvisor

Plans in San Francisco by other users

10 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in California BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 16 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 8 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 11 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in San Francisco BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE October, popular PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in San Francisco BY A USER FROM INDIA August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 14 days in Las Vegas & California BY A USER FROM CHILE October, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: October, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 16 days in United States BY A USER FROM INDIA March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 37 days in United States BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans