5 Things You Didn't Know About Alcatraz

April 20, 2016

Located on a small island surrounded by choppy waters, just off the coast of San Fran, lies a prison that has held the country’s most dangerous criminals...

Alcatraz -- like something out of a comic book, it’s no wonder it’s the most notorious incarceration facility in the country. Home to likes of Al Capone, George “Machine-Gun” Kelly, and Arthur “Doc” Barker, the high security federal building operated from 1934 to 1963, containing the murderous gangsters of the 1920s and 30s. In its 29 years of operation, the prison managed to rack up quite a colorful -- and sometimes violent -- history.

Here’s a quick look at some intriguing Alcatraz facts you may not know. If you don't get your fix here, read on to check out the activities we offer that will take you there to see it for yourself!

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    Mirror Maze

    "Dude. Duuuuuuuuuuude. Those colors are just...whoooooooa." Want to get to that point without the health and legal risks? Come to Magowan's Infinite Mirror Maze for an experience like no other! During this crazy attraction, you'll wind your way through a labyrinth of mirrors, set aglow by black lights. You'll completely lose track of where you are and where you're trying to go -- but that's the fun part! This psychedelic experience is completely mindblowing, so just let go and enjoy the ride. Or should we say trip?
    Mirror Maze

    Pier 39, San Francisco

    • Make your way through an intricate labyrinth of mirrors and try your best not to get lost!
    • See black lights, glowing mirrors, and crazy effects
    • Stay and trip out for as long as you want
    • Have the most psychedelic experience one can legally reach in San Francisco!
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    Monterey, Carmel & a 17-Mile Drive Day Trip

    Cruise along California's spectacular coastline on a relaxing day trip from San Francisco. You'll follow Highway 1 to the beautiful Monterey Peninsula home of the famous Monterey Bay Aquarium and Steinbeck's Cannery Row. Explore Monterey's charming shops or choose to add aquarium admission. See the stunning estates of 17-Mile Drive. Finish your day with a stop at the coastal town of Carmel by the Sea, before returning to San Francisco via famous Silicon Valley.

    Escape the big city on this scenic day-trip to Monterey and Carmel. Drive along the Highway 1 with breathtaking views of the Pacific Coast seascapes and narration as you may your way down to the Bay. You'll have time to shop and have lunch in Monterey, with the option of visiting the famous Monterey Bay Aquarium, and enjoy plenty of photo stops on this scenic day trip from San Francisco. No trip to California is complete with a drive along the famous 17-Mile Drive, home to the world-renowned Pebble Beach Golf Course, the Lone Cypress, magnificent mansions, playful wildlife along the coastline and breathtaking natural beauty.

    Then, you'll head to the enchanting Carmel-by-the-Sea, with a charming downtown shopping district, beautiful beaches and historic mission. On this last stop of the tour, you will have time to visit the many boutiques and art galleries.

    Highlights of this day trip include:

    • Pacific Ocean drive
    • Cannery Row
    • Lone Cypress
    • Pebble Beach Lodge and golf course
    • Carmel Mission
    • Monterey Bay
    • 17-Mile Drive
    • Seal Rock
    • Carmel by the Sea
    Monterey, Carmel & a 17-Mile Drive Day Trip

    2627 Taylor Street, San Francisco

    • Cruise along California's famous 17-Mile Drive on a relaxing day trip from San Francisco
    • Follow Highway 1 to the beautiful Monterey Peninsula to explore shops or visit the aquarium
    • Discover the enchanting Carmel-by-the-Sea's downtown shopping district and beautiful beaches
    • Enjoy plenty of stops and fantastic photo opportunities along the way.
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    Premium Sake Museum Tour and Tasting

    You love sake, but you can't travel all the way to Japan for a nice cup, and you only want the highest quality. How lucky, then, that Takara Sake has a place right here in California, with a premium tour and tasting! On this delightful tour, you'll get a fascinating tour of the Sake museum, featuring sake artifacts and implements, plus the history of sake-making in America. Then, enjoy a tasting of a variety of premium sake, including Sho Chiku Bai Sake and more! And there's no better place to get the full, authentic sake experience than at Takara’s The Tasting Room, measuring over 2,200 square feet and inspired by Japanese rice paddies. You'll be satisfying your sake cravings in no time!
    Premium Sake Museum Tour and Tasting

    708 Addison St, Berkeley

    • Taste a variety of premium sakes in an authentic setting
    • Learn about sake production and see sake artifacts and implements collected by Takara
    • Feel like you’re on an exotic and unforgettable journey to Japan
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    Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure (San Francisco)

    Price is for a group of 2-5 people Looking for a way to turn San Francisco into a giant game board? Urban Adventure Quest has created an interactive scavenger hunt that combines the fun of the amazing race with a three-hour sightseeing tour of SF highlights! Guided from any smartphone, you'll make your way among well-known and overlooked gems of the city, solving clues and completing challenges while learning local history. Answer questions to uncover the next, secret location. Your adventure takes you through the Union Square area, which houses some of the city's finest designer shopping and cafes, through the bustling Chinatown and other historical neighborhoods as you make your way down through the famous Wharf District. Traverse its contoured landscape both on foot and by Cable Car, as you gain an entirely new perspective ol San Francisco and learn to see the city by the Bay in a whole new way!
    Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure (San Francisco)

    Yerba Buena Park, San Francisco

    • Embark on a tour that allows you to experience San Francisco as if it were a scavenger hunt
    • Answer fun trivia questions to uncover the next secret location and advance in your journey
    • Explore the most iconic SF neighborhoods, such as Union Square, Chinatown, and the Wharf District
    • Snap breathtaking photos of the city from above as you ride through the sky in a cable car
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    Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

    Think you've got what it takes to survive the zombie apocalypse? Put your survival skills to the test during this escape room challenge! Escape room games lock you in a room and pit you against the clock, leaving you just one hour to locate a series of clues, unravel an overarching puzzle, and make your escape! You'll have to work successfully with a small group of fellow players, making this a great team-building challenge. Use your brain--or it's zombie chow!
    Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

    660 Bryant St, San Francisco

    • Immerse yourself in an interactive game where you must find a way to escape a locked room
    • Exercise your critical thinking skills to piece together clues in order to solve the mystery
    • Work with a small team to better your odds of completing the task within the allotted time
    • Feel the rush as you race against the clock -- and the zombies!
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    1 positive reviews
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    San Francisco Bay Sunset Cruise

    Take the ultimate sunset cruise, California-style! Relax as you enjoy amazing views of San Francisco and a hearty appetizer buffet during this casual two-hour cruise of San Francisco Bay. The sailings are timed to coincide with sunsets; the Sunset Bay Cruise departure time and route will differ to the Twilight Cruise which sails during the winter months. With live commentary by the captain and cool background music, this cruise is a wonderful way to explore San Francisco Bay at twilight during late March through early November.

    As the sun begins to set over the Marin Headlands, you'll cruise past Alcatraz, Angel Island and the shorelines of Tiburon, Belvedere and Sausalito. Watch the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean as you sail west toward the Golden Gate Bridge. On your way back to Fisherman's Wharf you'll see many more famous sights, including the Presidio, the Marina District and Fort Mason.

    During the cruise, enjoy an assortment of vegetarian, turkey and roast beef sandwiches, antipasti, crudité with dip, potato and Caesar salads, seasonal fruits, freshly baked miniature desserts, and a complimentary beverage.

    A full bar with drinks and merchandise is available aboard. All cruise vessels offer indoor and outdoor seating, and restrooms. There is no assigned seating or formal dress required, come as you are for an evening of relaxed sunset sailing! Vessels operate on bio-diesel, a renewable energy source. In the winter, the cruise changes its itinerary to make the most of the spectacular city lights view of San Francisco. As the sun sets over the horizon, you'll sail past San Francisco's modern skyscrapers, historic landmarks, the infamous island of Alcatraz and both the Bay Bridge and Golden Gate Bridge.

    Your evening of breathtaking San Francisco views will be accompanied with live guitar entertainment, hearty buffet of sandwiches, salads, dessert, and a beverage from the bar.

    Whether you are enjoying the skyline views from the ship's heated indoor spaces or out on the outdoor viewing decks, the city lights are an unmissable San Francisco attraction.
    San Francisco Bay Sunset Cruise

    Pier 43, San Francisco

    • Sail on a cruise along the spectacular San Francisco city skyline under the setting sun
    • Take superb photos of the historic Alcatraz Island, Sausalito and the Golden Gate Bridge
    • Indulge in a hearty hors d'oeuvres buffet of different assortments, along with complimentary drinks
    • Hear live commentary by the captain and enjoy the smooth background music
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    2 positive reviews
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    Brewery Tour & Tasting

    You’re not in your early twenties anymore -- put the water-based beer down and learn about tasty craft beers. Tour through the Independent Brewing Company’s facility and learn how they turn the freshest hops into delicious beers on site. You'll get to taste the delicious craft beers in the brewing company’s tasting room where you can chat with other beer lovers. Feel free to bring the kids and your furry friends along to make it a family affair. A quality person like yourself deserves a quality beer. Drink up!
    Brewery Tour & Tasting

    444 Harrison St, Oakland

    • Taste delicious craft beers brewed on site at Independent Brewing Company
    • Learn about the amazing process that goes into creating the perfect beer
    • Meander around the brewing company’s tasting room and chat with the staff
    • Unwind and relax as you drink some of the finest craft beers in the area
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    1 positive reviews
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    Helicopter Tour and Dinner Cruise

    Views from above, views from the water! Savor the breathtaking aerial views of San Francisco on a helicopter tour. Take in well-known landmarks from above, such as Alcatraz Island and the spectacular Golden Gate and Bay Bridges spanning the bay. After your flight, end your day in style aboard a dinner cruise on San Francisco Bay as the sun sets.

    Enjoy the sights of San Francisco on the way to the heliport. Once onboard your quiet and smooth reliable helicopter seating 4 to 6 passengers, the exhilarating adventure begins. Musical background accompanies spontaneous narration by your professionally trained pilot. During your 20-minute flight, see the famous hills of San Francisco and the striking cityscape. Admire aerial views of Alcatraz Island, Golden Gate Bridge and more. Upon landing, the shuttle drops guests for boarding on the yacht where delightful views of San Francisco from the water await. On your 2.5 hour cruise, savor an elegant 4-course dinner, enjoy live music entertainment and stroll the outer decks for incomparable views of the glittering San Francisco skyline. Your evening concludes at Pier 3.

    Helicopter Tour and Dinner Cruise

    333 O'Farrell St, San Francisco

    • Admire the beauty of the skyline and the bay as you go for a 20 minute helicopter ride and dinner cruise
    • Soar over San Francisco and capture breathtaking views from the vantage point of a helicopter
    • Savor a 4-course dinner aboard a yacht passing landmarks like Alcatraz Island and the Golden Gate Bridge
    • Enjoy live music and stroll the outer decks for incomparable views of the glittering skyline
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    The Magic Bus Experience

    Discover your inner Hippie and be transported to 1960s San Francisco aboard the Magic Bus for a fun-filled historical city tour! Enjoy entertaining commentary from your expert guide as you sing along to classic tunes from a bygone era. Become a part of the Beatnik generation, see Haight-Ashbury in the Summer of Love and visit San Francisco's Chinatown, from which eastern philosophy spread in the 1960s. Discover the landmarks and secrets of iconic neighborhoods as they are now with your own eyes, and see the past come alive with retractable projection screens that occasionally cover the windows, giving you a realistic look back in time!
    The Magic Bus Experience

    280 Geary Street, San Francisco

    • Discover your inner Hippie as you're transported to 1960s San Francisco aboard the Magic Bus
    • Enjoy entertaining commentary from your expert guide as you sing along to tunes from a bygone era
    • Become a part of the Beatnik generation and see Haight-Ashbury in the Summer of Love
    • See the past come alive with retractable projection screens that occasionally cover the windows.
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    9 positive reviews
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    California Academy of Sciences

    The California Academy of Sciences is among the largest museums of natural history in the world, housing over 26 million specimens! Just one ticket allows you to explore an aquarium, planetarium, natural history museum, rainforest, 40,000 live animals, and more — all under one living roof! No matter your interest, CAS has something for everyone. If you love exploration and the amazing biodiversity of Earth, you should check out the lush, four-story rainforest that’s teeming with life from the world’s richest tropical regions. Or maybe you’re more into the mysteries and awesome size of our universe, in which case you should definitely visit the Morrison Planetarium. With a completely digital dome that measures 90 feet in diameter, plus a 75-foot screen, you'll feel like you’re up among the stars. The point is, you can't go wrong with a trip to the CAS.
    California Academy of Sciences

    55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco

    • Take a trip to one of the largest museums of natural history in the world
    • Explore an aquarium, planetarium, rainforest, and much more with just one ticket
    • Gaze up at the stars in the Morrison Planetarium, fully equipped with a 75 foot digital screen
    • Learn a little bit more about the beautiful planet we call home
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    1 positive reviews

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