Alcatraz Island, San Francisco

4.7
#1 of 6,049 in Nature in United States
Must see · 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. Using our custom trip planner, San Francisco attractions like Alcatraz Island can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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Alcatraz Island reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
55,318 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • I'd really give 3.5 stars, but this is a must see attraction/bucket list, so I'm giving 4. First, I went during the pandemic so it was an outside tour only. The only building we could go into was a...  more »
  • Historic place to visit and awesome location to explore, however the cells/main complex was closed so you cannot see as much as you would expect. I would encourage anyone to wait till it’s fully open.  more »
  • Not the experience I had hoped for as the cell block was closed due to COVID. Would have been good to know before getting there so that we could have made the decision as to whether it would have...  more »
Google
  • What an amazing experience. My family of 6 thoroughly enjoyed citing Alcatraz. Even with a 5 year old and a 1 year old in a stroller we found almost everything accessible. From the historical storytelling to the magnificent views you will have an enjoyable time. BOOK ON ADVANCE, this is a must if you plan to visit, especially if you want to do the night tour. 5 Stars 🌟
  • After watching and loving the movie, "The Rock", I had to go visit and tour the island when the opportunity presented itself. Definitely worth a few hours of your time and the $40 ferry ride. Self-guided audio tour is great and right to the point. Maybe 45 minutes or so. You can stay as long as you like on Alcatraz island, but the last ferry leaves at 4:30pm. Definitely check it out!
  • Brilliant! The volunteers are knowledgeable and friendly and the island itself is such an interesting place to visit. I didn't think I was going to like an old jail - but it is so much more. Top 3 things to know 1) It is steep. If you have difficulty walking up steep hills, take a ride from the bottom (where you get off the ferry). 2) The audio tour is incredible - but you don't need to rush to get it. We stopped half way and watched a movie so, when we did get to the audio tour, the crowds had dispersed and it didn't take that long to pick up our headsets and get going. There is a lift available for people who can't access the stairs. 3) The atmosphere is hard to describe. I really felt like I was walking in the footsteps of the inmates. The history is brought alive through some great narration by both past inmates and guards. More There is a large gift store here and you get some stunning views of the bay, the Golden Gate Bridge and the city skyline. Definitely worth a visit!
  • A member of the National Park club, Alcatraz is a great place to go if you're in San Francisco and want to experience some lesser known history. While some of the island is roped off because of erosion, the cell block is open to the public and they have excellently made audio tours available that explain each section of the facility. The boat ride to the island can be a bit choppy but the views are incredible and you can get some amazing pictures of the island and the San Francisco skyline.
  • Great Place to Visit when you are in San Francisco. The cruise ride to the island via the bay is beautiful. It's better the buy the tickets early because it fills up pretty fast. The Alcatraz prison tour is worthwhile and the Audio tour is very informative. The view of the SF skyline and Bridges are worth to check :)

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