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

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    "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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    Earn Your Wings (SF)

    Have you always wanted to feel the thrill of free falling without having to... well, jump out of an airplane?! What if you could feel the adrenaline rush of skydiving MINUS your totally understandable fear of heights? Well, here's your chance! iFLY is an indoor skydiving facility that creates true free fall conditions. You'll float inside iFLY's 1,000 hp vertical wind tunnel -- with absolutely NOTHING attaching you to planet earth. And with the Earn Your Wings package, you'll get the ultimate beginner-level package for a great introduction to indoor skydiving: 2 unforgettable one-minute flights, plus hands-on assistance and a comprehensive training session from your personal flight instructor. You'll even get to take home a personalized flight certificate to show off to your friends. This is one indoor aerial experience you don't want to miss! Note: The total duration of the activity is 2 hours, which includes 1 hour of training. Includes use of all the flight gear. If you have had a prior shoulder dislocation, back, or neck problems or if you are pregnant, you should not fly. Those less than 6 feet tall must weigh less than 230 pounds, and those over 6 feet must weigh less than 250 pounds. Flyers can be as young as 3 years of age; there is no upper age limit. Participants under 18 years must have parent or legal guardian present to sign Release of Liability.
    Earn Your Wings (SF)

    31310 Alvarado-Niles Rd, Union City

    • Experience the adrenaline rush of skydiving without having to jump out of an airplane
    • Benefit from the ultimate beginner's package, with everything you need to have a great first flight
    • Feel safe and prepared with hands-on assistance from your personal flight instructor
    • Channel your inner super hero as you float in iFLY San Francisco's 1,000 hp vertical wind tunnel
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    Haight-Ashbury, a Musical Trip of the 60's Tour

    If you've got a thing for the quirky, you'll love this musical trip back to the 60s! Armed with a mini-guitar, your witty troubadour and historian tour guide is sure to keep you entertained as you walk around the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood, enjoying wailing tales of Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead, Hell's Angels, and more! Learn about Ken Kesey's Acid Tests, the Summer of Love, and the psychedelic substances that rocked conservative America into a technicolor wonderland. Trust us -- you've never been on a tour like this one!
    Haight-Ashbury, a Musical Trip of the 60's Tour

    Haight Ashbury, San Francisco

    • Visit San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury and hear stories along the way, including the history of its glory days, from the Summer of Love to the Diggers' days
    • Explore Haight Street and the surrounding area, including the homes of Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead, Charles Manson and more
    • Enjoy the music -- your knowledgeable guide comes equipped with a mini guitar to provide you with accompanying hippie songs along your wonder-filled walk
    • Make 7-9 stops along the way, exploring the funky shops, local hangouts and other neighborhood favorites
    • Hear about the history of the 1960s and 70s, and the influential community organizations that helped give the neighborhood its free flowing vibes
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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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    Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

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    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 City Lights Evening Bus Tour

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    There are lots of ways to get to know San Francisco. But nothing quite illuminates it like this tour! This two-hour ride takes place just as the city is gearing up for the nightlife. And, perched above a double-decker bus, you'll have a perfect view of all the action around you! You'll depart from Union Square and travel up and down some of San Francisco's most famous hills. Bustling neighborhoods like Chinatown and Marina are on the itinerary, as is a Golden Gate Bridge photo op. You'll also head across the bridge to Treasure Island for a look back at the city skyline. As your ride around the city, you'll enjoy humorous and historic insights into all that you see, getting to know the city's background. This bus even provides wifi, in case you want to show everybody how much fun you're having while you're having it! We live in strange times.
    San Francisco City Lights Evening Bus Tour

    323 Geary St, San Francisco

    • Get to know San Francisco during a 2-hour twilight tour
    • Travel the city aboard a comfortable double decker tour bus
    • Visit Chinatown, Marina, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Treasure Island
    • Enjoy insights and anecdotes about the city's culture and history
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    1 positive reviews
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    San Francisco Bay Sunset Cruise

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    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, crudite 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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    Sunset Catamaran Cruise

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    Enjoy the serene San Francisco Bay at sunset on this evening with the Sunset Cruise aboard a luxurious catamaran. Sail by Alcatraz Island, under the Golden Gate Bridge and look for sea lions, then cruise down the city skyline.

    On this unforgettable evening cruise, you will:

    • Enjoy light hors d'oeuvres and two complimentary drinks
    • Sail by the historic Alcatraz Island, Sausalito and the Golden Gate Bridge
    • Cruise by the spectacular San Francisco city skyline from under the setting sun
    • Experience a colony of grunting sea lions and other sea critters

    Both the Adventure Cat 55' or 65' catamaran are complete with a 360-degree, protected viewing area for those who don't like the wind in their faces as well as canvas trampoline nets where you can experience the ocean and sights in the open sea air.

    Sunset Catamaran Cruise

    Embarcadero, San Francisco

    • Sail along the spectacular San Francisco city skyline under the setting sun aboard a luxurious catamaran
    • Enjoy light hors d'oeuvres and two complimentary drinks to keep you both entertained and refreshed
    • Take superb photos of the historic Alcatraz Island, Sausalito and the Golden Gate Bridge
    • Pass by colonies of sea lions and other sea critters while taking in the gorgeous sunset
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    2 positive reviews
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    Pacific Coast Airplane Tour

    Ever wondered what it would be like to fly an airplane around for fun? This SkyTour was designed with you in mind! This exciting flight allows you the unique opportunity to sit behind the controls in the pilot's seat. At a safe altitude, you will feel the thrill and freedom of cruising effortlessly through the clouds as you soar over Crystal Springs reservoir towards the Pacific Coast along highway 92. Take in panoramic vistas of the picturesque coastal town of Half Moon Bay and then fly south along the shore to explore the stunning Pacific Ocean coastline with its breathtaking cliffs and sea shore. Make your way towards Pescadero and Pigeon Point crossing over the Woodside area for a bird's eye view of the magnificent redwood forests before returning to the San Carlos Airport. Take to the skies for an incredible San Francisco experience you'll never want to forget!
    Pacific Coast Airplane Tour

    620 Airport Way, Suite 7, San Carlos

    • Enjoy the exhillarating experience of flying a plane on this sky adventure
    • Explore the stunning Pacific Ocean coastline with its breathtaking cliffs and sea shore
    • Take in panoramic vistas of the picturesque coastal town of Half Moon Bay from the pilot's seat
    • Embrace a one of a kind way to explore the sky
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    Chinatown Food Tour

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    Explore San Francisco's iconic Chinatown on this guided walking food tour! Enjoy the best and most authentic food the neighborhood has to offer, where any gourmand would be ecstatic to spend a few hours. As you learn about the area's history and unique cultures from your expert local guide, sample the delicious treats that Chinatown is famous for. You'll be delighted by the bustling Dim Sum houses, small cafes, and tea shops, along with the fortune cookie factory and off-the-beaten-path eateries, some that don't even have a sign denoting their existence, you just have to know that they are there. Go behind-the-scenes to explore the many local shops, temples, and museums and explore local culture in a way others often miss out on!
    Chinatown Food Tour

    Chinatown, San Francisco

    • Explore the history of one of San Francisco's most famous neighborhoods on a guided walking food tour
    • Follow your expert guide to special 'in-the-know' locations only locals know about
    • Enjoy delicious samples of the best and most authentic foods Chinatown has to offer
    • Get a behind-the-scenes look at the many local shops, temples, and museums you may otherwise miss
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    2 positive reviews

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