Alcatraz Tour Reviews

Alcatraz is one of the most famous landmarks in or around San Francisco Bay and a must-see for Bay Area Visitors. Getting to this exciting Landmark can be tricky especially during the busy tour season, tickets to Alcatraz sell out fast.

But luckily for you, we’ve put together a list of the best tours to the former maximum security prison. In addition, these tours combine a visit to Alcatraz with other activities within or around the Bay Area.

Make sure to read our reviews of Muir Woods tours and wine tours to Napa & Sonoma

Here is our list of the best Alcatraz Island tour reviews.

Table of Contents

1.Jail and sail: Alcatraz tour and San Francisco Bay cruise

  • Departure point: boarding gate on Pier 39.
  • Departure Time: The tour operator will confirm the time of departure
  • Duration: 1.5 hours (approx.)
  • Includes:  admission to Alcatraz Island, Guided narration ,Round trip ferry from San Francisco to Alcatraz Island, Food and drink (available for purchase)

We recommend this tour for someone who’s looking for a romantic night on the water. Also, this tour is a perfect option for Adults, and couples than for Families with younger children.

This Jail and Sail tour starts with a cruise across the San Francisco Bay, not once but twice. This includes sailing under The Golden Gate Bridge and around the notorious Alcatraz Island.

Once on the boat, you’ll cruise under The Golden Gate Bridge this offers great photo opportunities also there will be plenty of room to move around while watching the sunset.

Besides that enjoy an onboard buffet with a different selection of food and live music playing this will accompany you throughout the journey.

On this excursion, you’ll cruise full circle around Alcatraz Island allowing you to view every angle of the Island while hearing the stories of the criminals housed at the prison and their escape attempts to gain a clear picture of what life in this maximum prison was like. Last but not list this tour is well organized and the boat staff is attentive to the passengers’ needs.

2.San Francisco Water Front Guided Tour and Alcatraz Ticket                                                                                               

  • Departure point: Hotel pickup /North end of Fisherman’s Wharf
  • Departure Time: 9:30AM
  • Duration: 4 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: admission to Alcatraz Island , professional guide ,round trip ferry from San Francisco to Alcatraz Island, cell house audio tour of Alcatraz. .

We recommend this tour for those who want to see as much as possible during their stay in the Bay Area.

Enjoy this guided walking tour to some of San Francisco’s top attractions which include Ghirardelli Square, Fisherman’s Wharf, Pier39, and combine your ticket with a visit to Alcatraz prison.  This tour is great for Adults and Kids alike. Start the day by meeting your Guide at the north end of Fisherman’s Wharf then embark on a walking tour to enjoy amazing views of the Bay During your tour, your friendly Guide will provide interesting information on how San Francisco transformed from a sleep Village to a booming port and the life of the Italian chocolatier Domenico Ghirardelli. All the portions of the tour are guided and after Pier33 you’ll board your ferry and enjoy an audio tour of the Alcatraz maximum prison.                                                                                      



3.San Francisco Vista Helicopter and Alcatraz Tour

  • Departure point: Union Square, Fisherman’s Wharf, or Nob Hill
  • Departure Time: 10 a.m.
  • Duration: 20 minutes (approx.)
  • Includes: Hotel pick up from Union Square, Guided in-flight narration

We recommend this tour for someone who wants to experience a luxury flight and an exhilarating visit to Alcatraz.

 Get an aerial view of San Francisco and its most famous landmarks with the Bell jet helicopter.

During your flight, you’ll admire the city’s landscape and see the top landmarks like the ferry Building, AT&T park, Coit Tower, Golden Gate Bridge, and more. Throughout the flight enjoy the inspiring background music and live narration from your pilot the tour will conclude after touching down back at the launch pad.

4.San Francisco Urban Bike Tour and Alcatraz Ticket                                                                                                              

  • Departure point: 2661 Taylor Street                                                                                                                                        
  • Departure Time: 10 a.m.                                                                                                                                     
  • Duration: 4 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: admission to Alcatraz Island, Professional tour Guide, and Bike rental.

We recommend this tour for someone who wants to experience the urban side of San Francisco.

See the sights of San Francisco on a guided E-bike through 8 of the City’s unique districts and combine your ticket with a visit to the Alcatraz maximum prison. While at Alcatraz, You’ll take the award-winning 45-minute cell house audio tour with tales of those who lived in Alcatraz and the history of the prison.    

5.Alcatraz Tour+Muirwoods and Sausalito Day Trip                                                                                                                

  • Departure point: Union Square, 478 Post Street                                                                                                                   
  • Departure Time: Please check with the operator. 
  • Duration: 8 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: Professional tour Guide, Transport by Air-conditioned coach, Ferry ride to Alcatraz Island, and an audio walking tour of Alcatraz.                                                                                                                                     

We recommend this tour for those who want to see much of San Francisco Bay with a combined visit to Alcatraz in quick succession.

Explore some of the best parts of the San Francisco Bay in quick succession. On this tour, you’ll get to explore the Muir Woods monument, the beautiful coastal town of Sausalito, and Alcatraz Island. Your local guide/ driver while at Sausalito will take you to quaint shops, art galleries, waterfront restaurants, and more. Finally, you’ll head to Alcatraz Island with a round-trip boat ride. Take an audio-guided tour to learn about the history and secrets behind the former maximum prison. 

6.San Francisco Hop on Hop off Bus with ferry &Alcatraz Tour                                                                                              

  • Departure point: at the corner of Jefferson Street                                                                                                                
  • Departure Time: Varies per your preference                                                                                                                          
  • Duration:2 days (approx.)
  • Includes: 48-hour hop on hop off bus ticket, round trip ferry to and from Alcatraz Island, audio walking tour of Alcatraz, special 90-minute night tour.

We recommend this tour for adults and families and for those who prefer touring with a large group of fellow visitors.                                                                                                                                                                                 

Make the most of your San Francisco tour by combining a trip to Alcatraz with other key iconic Landmarks of the Bay Area which include The Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, The Palace of Fine Arts, and more. This 2-day tour is well-organized with no rush hour and helps you to visit all the key attractions without having to waste in planning an itinerary.  During this tour, you’ll explore the city in an open double-decker bus with a guide on each one. Lastly, this tour includes a special night tour.

7.Combo Tour: Alcatraz Island and San Francisco Grand City Tour                                                                                        

  • Departure point: : 478 Post Street, San Francisco, Gray Line Union Square.                                                                      
  • Departure Time: 8:40 a.m.                                                                                                                                                         
  • Duration: 7 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: Transport by air-conditioned Luxury Moto coach, round trip ferry from San Francisco to Alcatraz, Audio guided Walking tour of Alcatraz, and Local Guide.                                                                                      

We recommend this tour to someone who wants to combine two tours in one                                                             

If you’re looking for a 2in 1 tour it is worth choosing this combo tour that combines a visit to Alcatraz Maximum Prison with the best San Francisco attractions which include Golden Gate Bridge, China Town, Fisherman’s Wharf, North Beach and more.  Your day will start in the morning by taking in views of the San Francisco Bay before boarding a ferry ride to Alcatraz Island where you will enjoy the award-winning audio walking tour that lasts about 1.5 hours.   After the Alcatraz portion,   you’ll board a coach with a local guide on each to explore and learn about the City by the Bay on this tour you will make photo stops at Twin Peaks, the Palace of Fine Arts, and other famous city sights.

 8.San Francisco 1-Day Tour with Alcatraz Ticket                                                                                                                     

  • Departure point: 710 Beach Street, San Francisco.                                                                                                              
  • Departure Time: 8:30AM
  • Duration: 8 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: Professional Tour Guide, Alcatraz island Ticket, Live commentary on board                                                              

We recommend this tour for those who prefer to see more of the vibrant City of San Francisco                                           

This value-packed tour includes portions in San Francisco, Fisherman’s Wharf, Sausalito, Muir Woods, Alcatraz Island and more. The tour begins at Maritime National Park where you meet your local guide you’ll explore San Francisco Neighborhoods during this time learn about stories of the neighborhood and make several photo stops. After finishing the City portion, you’ll stop in Sausalito for a quick snack break before heading to Muir Woods you will have 1 hour to walk amongst the last remaining coastal redwoods. After that, you’ll board a ferry to Alcatraz Island, where you’ll enjoy a self-guided audio tour.                                                                                                                          

9.Alcatraz Tour with Fisherman’s Wharf lunch Credit                                                                                                              

  • Departure point: Pier 33 Landing                                                                                                                                            
  • Departure Time: 8:30 a.m.                                                                                                                                                          
  • Duration: 5 hours (approx.)
  • Includes: : A food voucher, Round trip boat to /from Alcatraz, and audio walking tour of Alcatraz.

We recommend this tour for someone whose interest is mainly in Alcatraz. It’s also a good choice for someone who wants to explore at his /her own pace without rushing.

This tour includes portions of Fisherman’s Wharf and Alcatraz Island.  Besides that, it’s a great way to get an overview of Alcatraz island efficiently without rush.  The tour begins when you board a ferry to Alcatraz Island. You’ll enjoy an award-winning audio tour of Alcatraz on your own.   After that, return to Fisherman’s Wharf to use your food voucher at a preselected restaurant.  Lastly, this excursion is a great way to guarantee Alcatraz tickets.            

  • Attractions
  • Tour Guides
  • Value

 The San Francisco Hop on Hop off Bus Tour with ferry and Alcatraz tour  is our best choice  for the Alcatraz tour based on its  combination of attractions, tour guides ,and value.                                                                                          

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