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Visit Alcatraz



Is there ever a bad time to visit San Francisco? Maybe not, but the stars are particularly aligned right now with perfect weather, radical art on Alcatraz, new restaurants, and a seaside hotel just across the Golden Gate Bridge. If that sounds right up your alley, read ahead for details on why the Bay Area should be on your radar this fall.

Here are several reasons why you should visit Alcatraz

Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz Island was once home to America’s most notorious criminals. Today, the former federal prison is an exceptionally popular tourist destination – it receives up to one million visitors annually!

Before the prison we know today was constructed, the first lighthouse on the West Coast was built on Alcatraz Island in 1854. It was damaged in an earthquake in 1906 so the lighthouse was replaced in 1909 and a modern beacon was later added to it in 1963, the year the penitentiary closed. The lighthouse still stands and can be visited today.

The Weather Is Incredible

The City by the Bay sees its best weather of the year in fall. From October to November, true Indian summer days mean highs in the upper 60s—sometimes climbing as high as the 80s and 90s. And unlike in summer when June gloom casts a chillier shadow, the city’s famous fog clears by fall and bluebird skies are the norm.

Art at Alcatraz

As well as being a former home to many notorious criminals and ne’er-do-wells, Alcatraz is used as a temporary home for other things, such as the exhibition by activist and artist Ai Weiwei. This exhibition has seven installations, inspired by Alcatraz’s history as a prison, fortress and site of Native American protest. It explores themes of human rights and freedom and it all looks amazing.

Ai Weiwei was rather famously under house arrest himself when he created these pieces. Thanks to this exhibition, visitors can explore areas of Alcatraz that would usually be off-limits. If you’re visiting San Francisco and Alcatraz, it’d definitely be worth checking out what exciting exhibitions are running, as you might get the opportunity to see something very special.


Success stories

Minnie Poole

Sep 09 at 12:15 pm
Toured Alcatraz and met former inmate Bill Baker

Kris Berrie

Aug 03 at 00:32 am
Visit SFO's famous "The Rock"