USA 2013 – Sept 8th Day 8 – SF – Alcatraz and Fog

View from our hotel room at 7am

No miles travelled. Didn’t even see the car today. If we are paying $51 to park a car, then it is going to stay put and get all our moneys worth!!

Guess what, another early start!! Up at 7, to be out by 8 so we could get to Pier 33 to catch our ferry to Alcatraz Island. The weather started off foggy, and got only slightly better through the day, as you will see.

We arrived in good time to grab a bit of breakfast in a little place next to the port. San Francisco is sooooo expensive!! We boarded the boat for the 15 minute crossing, the view to the right blue skies and sunshine, with Bay Bridge in the distance. The view to the left, dense fog.

We arrived at the island, and took the audio tour, which explained the history of the prison, comments from both ex guards and ex prisoners. It told us about some famous prisoners in detail, such as Al Capone and “The Birdman”

It also explained about attempted prison breaks, and the only one that was successful, but they think the three drowned trying to get to shore.

All in all, a good morning.

The bridge, view from the bus

In the afternoon, we got tickets for the hop on hop off bus that took us around the island, including going over the bridge. The biggest disappointed so far as it was still shrouded in mist, which apparently is the norm according to the guide. The wind and cold going across the bridge was like riding a motorbike, in England, in January… a pair of speedos!!! It was bitter. At one point Suzanne had to duck down behind the seats for shelter.

The bus continued the journey, and we made plans to visit the bridge again tomorrow, keeping fingers crossed for better weather.

We finished the journey, and after a quick walk around Pier 39, seeing the shops and watching the sea lions sunbathe, we headed for the cable car back to our hotel.

Previously, the bus tour guide had said the later in the day you get the cable car, the longer the queues. He was right, we had to queue for an hour, but it was worth it to hang off the side for the (cold) ride back to the hotel.

We then went out for dinner to a place called Scalas, before hitting the sack, ready for more driving tomorrow.

View from Alcatraz boat to Bay Bridge


View from Alcatraz boat to Alcatraz


Us on the Island


One of the ruins


The prison from the Recreation yard


The Recreation yard


View from Alcatraz to the Golden Gate Bridge…can you see it??


Another shot from the Yard


Our Hilton Hotel room was not what we expected…!!!


Alcatraz Library


View of the GG Bridge from the top of the tour bus


Suzanne taking shelter


On the Cable Car




    • That was my biggest disappointment, the fog covered San Fran GG bridge. The tour guide liked it. He said it is the ‘real’ San Francisco. Great. If I wanted to see fog, I would have stayed in London!! :S Stay tuned to my blog. Somewhere we have a video camera clip of going across that foggy bridge…on an open top bus! May get to post it one day!

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