Angel Island – The Best Bay Area Adventure
Looking for an adventure that combines stunning natural scenery and a glimpse into California’s history? After living in the Bay Area for almost four years, I finally checked out Angel Island off the coast of San Francisco. Check out this blog to discover the island’s breathtaking vistas, lush forests, and fascinating military past as you explore its many trails. With insider tips on where to go and what to see, our guide is the perfect companion for anyone seeking an unforgettable outdoor experience in the Bay Area.
Angel Island is a former U.S. Immigration station off the coast of San Francisco. Today, the island hosts a history museum for the story of the island, as well as beautiful hiking and biking paths. You can only access Angel Island via boat.
Taking the Ferry:
There are ferries that run from both San Francisco and Tiburon. You can check the ferry schedules here. Make sure if you are going on the weekend to check the ferry schedule for the weekend, not the weekdays. Remember that there are only 4 departure times from the island per day, so make sure you plan accordingly!
On Saturdays, the ferry building hosts the SF farmers market and gets incredibly busy. Make sure you plan accordingly for parking and for making your way through the crowds or buying food.
You can use your clipper card or buy a ticket online to pay for your ferry ride which costs $9 each way. The ferry has stunning views of the bay and the city and is worth the $9 itself! You can bring your bike on the ferry, and they also sell snacks and drinks.
What to Do on the Island:
Once you arrive, decide which ferry you want to catch to head back, and plan your day accordingly from there. The 2hr 20mins between ferries was a perfect amount for us to do the 5 mile North Ridge and Sunset Trail Loop. This hike offers stunning views of the bay. Be prepared for a bit of a climb which gets you situated for 360 degree ocean views.
If hiking isn’t your thing, you could bike around the perimeter road of the island. Angel Island Company rents bikes on the island, but inventory is limited and first come first serve. You can also bring your bike with you on the ferry!
You can also explore the museum or enjoy a picnic by the water. Angel Island offers something for everyone!