The San Francisco Bay Exploration tour begins in the unique waters of Sausalito, meaning “little willow” to the Miwok Indians who lived in tiny villages along the old shoreline. Waterfront history, eccentric houseboats, famous restaurants, and of course, frolicking Harbor Seals and diving pelicans will be among us. As the quiet waters of Sausalito fall behind, the dancing waters off Yellow Bluff will surround us as we make our way under the magnificent Golden Gate Bridge. This landscape offers one of the most dramatic urban panoramas in the world – the Marin Headlands. While you’re busy taking photos and catching glimpses of foraging Harbor Porpoises under the bridge, our naturalist will keep you intrigued with tales of historical biology among these abundant, nutrient rich waters.
As we pass beneath the South tower of the Golden Gate Bridge, the San Francisco city line comes into view. Here we will travel past the famous Maritime Museum and the Pier 39 waterfront where a couple thousand California Sea Lions rest and haul out on the docks. These giant males can weigh up to 850 pounds and bark loudly at one another to compete for space and hierarchy on the dock.
Leaving San Francisco behind, currents and tides in the bay swirl beneath our Schooner, the Freda B. Alcatraz, a.k.a. “The Rock” comes into full view. From notorious prison to bird sanctuary, “The Rock” is visited by one million people each year. Today, Alcatraz has been transformed into a lush, if lonely, fortress surrounded by gardens created by volunteers from the National Park Service.
Traveling east towards Angel Island, our naturalist will point out a variety of bird species flying and diving around with a rare chance of seeing a California Gray Whale blow off in the distance. We will explore Angel Island’s remarkable coastline while delving into the island’s impressive history which dates back to the Civil War era. This old immigration station, known as the Ellis Island of the West was the entry point for most of the Chinese people who came to the United States in the early 1900s. This one-mile-square island is a great destination for both outdoor enthusiasts and history buffs. About one mile from Angel Island, across the blue-green waters of Raccoon Strait lays the breathtaking city of Tiburon. Eelgrass beds support a plethora of native invertebrates along this shoreline. Our naturalist will point out marine creatures and native flora and fauna that support this edge of the San Francisco Bay.
Esoteric tales of bootlegging, Whaling Ships and lighthouse keepers will keep you intrigued as we sail our way back into the quiet waters of Sausalito. As we end our tour of the bay, you will leave with a better understanding of San Francisco Bay’s unique history from the Gold rush era to today. Walk away with the knowledge of how you can become a steward of the bay and help these unique waterways stay environmentally sound for generations to come!
Includes continental breakfast.
When & Where
SF Bay Adventures
SF Bay Adventures is the preeminent boating, event and outdoor experience resource for the San Francisco Bay. Our flagship sailboat, Schooner Freda B is the most comfortable and popular yacht for locals and visitors alike. We are headquartered on the northern side of Golden Gate Bridge, in the beautiful and historic town of Sausalito.