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Angel Island State Park, San Francisco

4.5
#5 of 10 in Nature in San Francisco
State Park Nature / Park
The second largest island in San Francisco Bay, Angel Island State Park was once an immigration point and a quarantine island. Take a public ferry or private boats from the city to the island, where you can capture photos of the city across the bay. Along with biking and hiking trails, the park is home to the Angel Island Immigration Station, which operated from 1910 to 1940. The military used the island in the 19th century, when the entire island was known as Fort McDowell, the East Garrison. Arrange your visit to Angel Island State Park and discover more family-friendly attractions in San Francisco using our San Francisco itinerary builder.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
779 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Like a few other reviewers only went to Angel Island as part of a joint ticket to Alcatraz. Total trip was about 5 and a half hours (both Alcatraz and Angel ISland). Enjoyed Alcatraz but Angel Island ...  more »
  • Leave on a ferry from the Embarcadaro or from Tiburon for the short ride to the island. Nice hike around island to the immigration center for a historical look at immigrant arrival to California. Beau...  more »
  • We were not initially planning on a trip to Angel Island, but struggled to get Alcatraz tickets so ended up with a duo ticket and I was so pleased we did. We did Alcatraz first, which was the perfect ...  more »
Google
  • Beautiful state park full of historical sites and great scenery and views. You need to take the ferry out here, but it is not overcrowded like nearby Alcatraz. Most people walk along the shoreline but there many very scenic hiking trails through the interior part of the island and great views of the San Francisco Bay from the summit.
  • Excellent city viewing spot, hiking area, wIth picnic areas and a history tour at the immigration station (Ellis island of the west).
  • Great shot of history on this island! Love walking around the perimeter road - 5-mile loop. Very well maintained for both walking and biking. If you bike, watch out for that one big hill on the south side, though! Can also take several dirt paths to the top for 360-degree views of the bay - awesome vantage point! Nice deli in the cove with covered picnic tables outside in summer and warm weekends in the winter - live music on summer weekends. Lots of picnic areas outside the very interesting (small) visitor's center - some with charcoal grills. Bring your own charcoal. Come by ferry from SF or Tiburon, or bring your own boat and dock for $15 day use only (no overnight docking) or $30 for mooring balls per night. The mooring balls are new - no more tires with cages!
  • When I was a teacher in Oakland I would take my class to Angel Island for field trips. The kids loved that island. Lots of history and great views of the Bay area.
  • This place is wonderful for camping and also exploring. It is rich in history (both military base and former immigration station are worth a visit) and most of all the views of the city and the bridges cannot be beat. Highly recommended!

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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.
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