San Francisco, California, US
Hop-On / Hop-Off: San Francisco Highlights & Golden Gate Bay Cruise
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This tour combines San Francisco’s many highlights by bus with a scenic Golden Gate bay cruise. Enjoy San Francisco’s amazing sightseeing, museums, shopping, and restaurants as this fully narrated tour allows you to hop-on/hop-off the bus throughout the day with stops at 20 of the city’s most popular attractions. The full loop is 2 1/2 hours in duration. Highlights along the route include Fisherman’s Wharf, North Beach, Little Italy, the Embarcadero and Union Square—San Francisco’s premier destination for boutique shopping, high fashion, restaurants, and theater. The Civic Center includes the beautiful architectural masterpieces of City Hall, the Asian Art Museum, Central Library, Symphony Hall and the Opera House. Don’t miss Alamo Square with its picturesque Victorian row houses and the Haight-Ashbury district—once the epicenter of the 1960s Summer of Love hippy culture. The stop at Golden Gate Park includes the California Academy of Sciences, the Japanese Tea Garden, the De Young Museum, and the Botanic Gardens. Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge you’ll see the tremendous towers, sweeping main cables, and the signature International Orange color. Returning to the City Center via Presidio Park, there are stops at the Palace of Fine Arts, Lombard Street, Union Square North, Chinatown, and Steuart Street. The tour ends at the ship’s pier on Embarcadero Street located just a short distance from Pier 39, home to the Aquarium on the Bay and a favorite gathering spot for a large population of the California sea lion. The departure point for the Bay Cruise is located at pier 43 1/2—a short walk from the cruise ship terminal and starting/ending point of the bus tour route. You will cruise past the San Francisco skyline and view the lively neighborhood of North Beach, the famous swimming clubs of Aquatic Park, the historic vessels at Hyde Street Pier, the San Francisco Maritime National Park, and numerous other exciting sights. As you head west towards the Golden Gate Bridge, you’ll cruise along Fort Mason and the Marina District which was devastated in the 1989 earthquake. Next, enjoy views of Crissy Field and the lush hillsides of the Presidio—both former army installations—that are now part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Don’t miss incredible photo opportunities when motoring directly under the massive 4,200-foot span of the 746-foot tall Golden Gate Bridge. Heading back into the bay, travel past the wildlife reserves of the Marin Headlands and the legendary town of Sausalito, once home to the 1960s flower generation. With Angel Island State Park to your left, you’ll slowly cruise around the infamous island of Alcatraz. On your way back to Fisherman’s Wharf, see the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, and Coit Tower in the distance.
Notes: Your bus ticket is valid for the entire day. Half of the buses offer a live guided tour in English and half offer an audio tour in 10 different languages including English, Spanish, French, Brazilian, Portuguese, German, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Cantonese and Mandarin. Frequency of the buses is every 10 minutes in the summer and every 20 minutes in the winter. Admission to attractions is not included. Please refer to your tour ticket for your specific departure time. Hours of operation are from 8:30am to 6pm. The bay cruise is one hour in duration and is available every 45 to 60 minutes from 10am until 5pm.