After living in San Francisco for 5 years, one would think that I would have visited Alcatraz already, nope! Funny enough, many “San Franciscans” have never visited this iconic National Park either. When I decided to play tourist in my own city, Alcatraz was high on my list of places to go to.
There are many ways to book your ticket to Alcatraz but I highly recommend booking direct with Alcatraz Cruises for best pricing and convenience. We got to Pier 33 for our 1 o’clock departure and enjoyed waiting in the lovely seating area. We had amazing weather, so cruising over was a relaxing time on the sun deck of the Alcatraz Cruise ship. Getting over to the island took less then 15 minutes, but each minute had a stunning view looking back at the city. You could see the top of Sutro Tower, Downtown, the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay Bridge. The boat was great, it had drinks and snacks for purchase, and a comfortable indoor/outdoor seating area.
As we arrived to the “rock,” the history was apparent in the old buildings filled with character. The Ai Weiwei exhibit was there so we went straight to see the art pieces. The space in which the art was in was absolutely captivating. It was one of the most unique, yet stunning art exhibits I had seen in a long time – I highly recommend you go to Alcatraz to see it before it finishes. After exploring the art, we walked over to do the audio tour of the prison. I was skeptical of doing this audio tour but everyone we spoke to said it was a must do.
The audio tour was fascinating! I loved the narrated tour from the viewpoint of the prisoners and the guards. It was captivating and brought the prison to life. When you go to Alcatraz, the audio tour is most certainly a must. Overall visiting Alcatraz with Alcatraz Cruises was an incredible adventure to step into rich history and iconic landmarks.
Bon Traveler’s Tips
*Must pre-book your tickets weeks in advance
*Allow for 3 hours to fully experience Alcatraz
*Wear good walking shoes
*Bon Traveler was welcomed as a guest of Alcatraz Cruises. As always, all opinions are own.