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“Make time for this treasure island” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Angel Island State Park

Angel Island State Park
Pier 41, San Francisco, CA 94109
415 435 1915
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Top Rated
and up
San Francisco Golden Gate Seaplane Tour
Ranked #16 of 317 Attractions in San Francisco
Type: Historic Sites, Islands, Military Bases/ Facilities, Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Parks, State Parks, Hiking Trails, Outdoors
Activities: Biking, Hiking, Picnicking, Camping, Group tours/walking tour, Walking
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The largest island in San Francisco Bay features magnificent views of Marin County and San Francisco, while offering a wide variety of recreation for outdoor enthusiasts.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Portland, Oregon
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
“Make time for this treasure island”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2014

If you like spectacular views within a short ferry ride from San Francisco, Oakland or Tiburon, I highly recommend visiting Angel Island. I rented a bike for the day (www.blazingsaddles.com--negotiate the price--as they are more competitive than rentals on the island, which operate seasonally) and was able to leisurely circle the island, hike to the top of Mt Livermore (nearly 360 degree view) and stop at various historical and scenic sites. Another relaxing way to see the island is to take the tram tour.

I never knew that Angel Island served as a US Immigration and Station between 1910-40, a Quarantine station 1891-1946, a US Army Camp beginning with the Civil War and a Nike Missile site during the Cold War in the 1950's. Most of the island became a CA State Park in 1963. There are exhibits and videos that do an excellent job recreating what it was like for the largely Chinese population that were detained there before being granted entry. I suggest about 1 hour is needed to explore the Immigration area ($7/person for self-guided tour), which is about a 20 min bike ride or 30 min hike from where the ferry lands.

To make the most of your time here, I suggest catching the first ferry in the morning and the last one back (www.parks.ca.gov.angelisland). Definitely bring water and sun screen with you, as well as, food or snacks. There is a snack bar on the island but believe it is operated seasonally. There are also camping sites that can be reserved (www.parks.ca.gov).

Visited October 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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338 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Danish first
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English first
Sausalito, CA
Top Contributor
97 reviews 97 reviews
34 attraction reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Why don't more people go here? It's amazing...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

So much to see but yet also so serene and naturally quiet and beautiful. The historic sites on this island are so intriguing and informative. As a photographer and outdoor enthusiast, I love visiting this island. There is unusual history, things to see ~ one can ride bicycles or take walks. Also it's easy to find a secluded place for a picnic with a view. And all this is affordable with just the price of a ferry ticket unless lucky enough to arrive via private boat.

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“enjoyed visit to Angel Island”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2014

The ferry ride out to Angel Island is fun. We took the tram tour which is about 1 1/4 hours around the Island which highlighted the main attractions including the various structures dating back as far as Civil War. Also walked one of the trails a little ways. Very informative to hear about island's history and how it fits in to last 150 years. Great views of Tiburon, Sausalito, and San Fran. I enjoyed eating at the cafe at the landing, the cafe only has outdoor seating, no indoor so if on island on a cold day may be chilly unless you have proper outdoor clothing. It was chilly so come prepared. During the winter don't go to island in short-sleeves and a lightweight jacket-you will be uncomfortable.
Overall, a fun day outing and well worth the trip.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gosford, Australia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
19 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

We went on a weekend. Only 1 depart cruise each way 9.45 am to Island 4pm back to Bay . On weekend a cafe is open. We took 3 hours to walk the island. Bikes and segways are available. Also a tour bus at a cost. The first 20 mins is the hardest. But the rewards are the best views of the Golden Gate, Alcatraz , and the whole Bay Area

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fremont, California
Top Contributor
1,759 reviews 1,759 reviews
1,098 attraction reviews
Reviews in 396 cities Reviews in 396 cities
1,034 helpful votes 1,034 helpful votes
“Nice place for a hike and get out and see the Bay”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2014

Angel Island is a great place to take the ferry to, get off with a picnic lunch (enjoy it at the nearby tables) and then take a hike around the island seeing the various views and historic areas - such as Camp Reynolds, which was built by the U.S. Army in 1863 to help defend San Francisco Bay from Confederate raiders

Angel Islands was also a place to base troops, including hospital medical care, during WW1 and WW2.

Nice day - Plan on 1/2 day to full day dependent on if you just want to say you saw it or if you want to explore and walk the island.''

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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