Alcatraz Island, San Francisco Attractions

San Francisco Attractions | Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz Island is a popular San Francisco Attraction that draws more than 1 million visitors each year.

One and a half miles off shore of San Francisco

Alcatraz Island is shrouded in rumors and legends, and that is 1 of the reasons that so many guests at our San Francisco Hotel want to visit this popular Attraction.

About Alcatraz Island:
Alcatraz Island is a well-known San Francisco Attraction. Its infamy was sealed through films such as The Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), Escape from Alcatraz (1979), and The Rock (1996). Today, Alcatraz is managed by the National Park Service, and it is a popular spot for both locals and tourists.

Before being used as a Federal Prison from 1934 to 1963, Alcatraz Island was home to a lighthouse, military fortifications, and a military prison. A few years after the prison closed for good, the Island became a National Recreation Area. More than 1 million people visit the San Francisco Attraction each year.

A short ferry ride is required to reach Alcatraz, and there are 4 tour options available. The Early Bird and Day Tour are $30 per person. The Night Tour, which is more inclusive and has features not available on the other tours, is $37.50 per person. A 4th option, which is available only seasonally, offers a visit to both Alcatraz and nearby Angel Island. Ferries depart every half hour, starting at 9 a.m.

When you visit Alcatraz Island, you will see the abandoned prison, the lighthouse, the ruins of the warden’s house, and former military buildings. It is of note that the lighthouse is the oldest operating lighthouse on the West Coast. It is interesting to imagine the now-abandoned Island as a once bustling town. Families of the prison guards lived on Alcatraz Island, so children once played in the shadow of the prison. In sharp contrast to the prison, visitors can also see lovely rock pools and the birds that make up a thriving seabird colony.

Because of the popularity of this San Francisco Attraction, tours often sell out. This is especially true during the summer and other peak times. For this reason, it is a good idea to book your tours in advance. This can be done online. The Concierge at our San Francisco Hotel will also be happy to assist you in reserving tickets to this and other Attractions during your stay at Hotel Union Square.

Open daily except Christmas, Thanksgiving, and New Year’s Day
First ferry departs at 9 a.m.

$30 to $63.50 per person depending on selected tour