Create a personalized day-by-day trip in moments

Today: 8:45am-9:25pm
This Week
Cost: $30.00 USD

The Island of the Pelicans

After riding the ferry from Pier 33, step off the boat and onto the island of Alcatraz. From the mid 1930s until the mid 1960s, Alcatraz was America 's primary maximum-security prison: the final destination for the country’s most troublesome inmates. Initially bearing the Spanish name "La Isla de los Alcatraces," ("The Island of the Pelicans,") the name was adapted over time to Alcatraz, the singular word for Pelican. The island contains the first lighthouse on the West Coast, housing for about 300 civilians, and the prison itself, which once housed folks like Al Capone, “The Birdman,” and of course the Anglin Brothers and Frank Morris: the only prisoners to escape the island.

Utrip Tips

*Buying tickets in advance for the ferry and the island are recommended.
*You can take a free, self-led audio guide tour (featuring voices of actual correctional officers and prisoners) or a guided tour.
*Be sure to eat ahead of time, there is no food available on the island.

Open in Google Maps: 1398, The Embarcadero (Pier 33)

More in San Francisco

1-2-3-4 Go! Records

Established in Seattle back in 2001 and headquartered in Oakland, the much-respected 1-2-3-4 Go!... Read more


At Smokestack it’s about two things: good drink and tasty barbecue. While there is a definite s... Read more