Bridge to Bridge Cruises San Francisco

Jill at the Golden Gate Bridge

by Jill Loeffler  •

The Bridge to Bridge cruises in San Francisco are ninety-minute tours on the SF Bay. On this boat tour, you will get the chance to cruise under both the Golden Gate and the Bay Bridge.

You'll also get the chance to pass by Alcatraz Island, the Ferry Building and the Palace of Fine Arts. The cruise offers open seating, so you can roam around the boat and catch the views from all sides.

Disclaimer: I receive a small commission from some of the links on this page.

Our boat for the SF Bridge to Bridge CruiseThe Harbor King was our ride for the cruise

The tickets for this SF bay cruise are valid for up to 365 days after purchase. This means you can buy your ticket in advance, but then select later which day you want to enjoy this cruise. 

My bridge to bridge ticket in SF

After you board the boat, you will pick up your audio tour. The entire 90 minutes includes narration through these audio players.

The audio player for the bridge to bridge cruise in San Francisco

You can find narration in 12 languages including English, Spanish, French and Italian. Other languages include Chinese, Japanese and Korean.

Tour Departs

After everyone boards, the boat departs Fisherman's Wharf. The first 60 minutes of the cruise follows along exactly with the Golden Gate Bay Cruise (learn more about this cruise). 

There is no need to take both the Golden Gate Bay Cruise and the Bridge to Bridge cruise, since the first part is exactly the same. If you want to take two cruises, check out this list for some other great options

From Fisherman's Wharf, you will head west along the San Francisco waterfront. You will pass the Hyde Street Pier, Fort Mason and the Marina Green.

A look at Fort Mason from the SF Bay

You will then continue along the waterfront on your way to the Golden Gate Bridge. On your way, you will get a great view of the Palace of Fine Arts (learn more).

The Palace of Fine Arts looking from the SF Bay

You will then start to get a clear view of the Fort Point National Historic Site (learn more). The plans for the Golden Gate Bridge were redesigned in order to save this historic military building.

A view of Fort Point from the SF Bridge to Bridge Cruise

You will then continue on to the main attraction - the Golden Gate Bridge. Here are a few photos as we approach it and cruise underneath.

The north tower of the Golden Gate Bridge from an SF Cruise Boat
Cruising under the Golden Gate Bridge
Under the Golden Gate Bridge on the Bridge to Bridge Cruise

After you cruise under it, your boat turns, heads back under the bridge and makes its way to Alcatraz Island. On the way, you will see the seaside town of Sausalito in Marin County, as well as Angel Island (learn more).

On these Bridge to Bridge cruises San Francisco, you are taken very close to Alcatraz Island. You go almost all the way around the island too, so you can take a look at it from a few different angles.

The western side of Alcatraz Island from the water

You'll first approach Alcatraz from the west. The big building on the top of the island is the main cell house.

The northern side of Alcatraz Island from a Bay Cruise

You'll then head past the northern side of the island.

The lighthouse on the southern end of Alcatraz Island

You'll also pass by the eastern side, where you can get a great view of the Alcatraz Island lighthouse.

From here, you will continue to cross the bay southward, past both Treasure and Yerba Buena Islands. 

Treasure and Yerba Buena Islands in SFYerba Buena is the larger hill in the water on the right. Treasure Island is long, but flat and is on the left side of the picture.

You will then get the chance to cruise under the Bay Bridge. You'll notice that the eastern span, which connects Yerba Buena Island to Oakland, has a completely different architectural design.

That's because in 2013 the elegant, white, new suspension bridge replaced the seismically unsafe bridge that partially collapsed in the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake.

Here are a few photos of this attraction.

The bay bridge looking east toward Yerba Buena IslandLooking east toward Buena Vista Island
Under the Bay Bridge looking toward San FranciscoThe western side of the Bay Bridge, looking at San Francisco

After you pass under it, you make a turn and head back under a second time. From here, you will cruise close to the SF waterfront past both the Ferry Building (learn more) and Coit Tower (learn more).

The ferry building from the waterThe clock tower in the middle is the Ferry Building
Coit Tower from one of the SF Bay CruisesThe tall skinny building on the top of the hill is Coit Tower

After you pass these two SF landmarks, you will arrive back at Pier 43 1/2 in Fisherman's Wharf. Here is a map of the route for all of the Bridge to Bridge San Francisco cruises.

The star on the map is Pier 43 1/2 - the start and end point for your cruise.

The route map for the Bridge to Bridge Tour

Disclaimer: I receive a small commission from some of the links on this page.

Tour Times and Ticketing Information

This cruise runs one to two times a day in the busy summer and fall months. It runs just a few times a week during the cooler winter months. 

Are you ready to book this cruise? When you book your tickets online, you will need to select a specific date. However, as I mentioned above, you can use the ticket for any of these tours for 365 days after you purchase it.

Get additional details and book your tickets online today!

My Experience on Other SF Tours

Movie Tour: If you love movies, you must go on this movie tour of the city. This well-timed adventure drives you past the spots used in famous movies. You will see where scenes from movies such as The Rock, Vertigo and The Princess Diaries were filmed. 

Muir Woods Day Tour: This is also another wonderful tour from San Francisco. Our huge Coastal Redwoods are an amazing sight and draw in crowds from around the world. This wonderful tour offers you a ride to this famous national monument with some great information about it. You will also get to spend some time in Sausalito. Find out more about visiting Muir Woods.

Walking Tours: One of the best ways to explore San Francisco is on foot. The great news is you don't have to do it alone! You will find dozens of walking tours from those that focus on our interesting history to those where you get to sample local treats. Find out more here.

Bridge to Bridge Cruise: See Both the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay Bridge on One Tour

Comments? Questions? Suggestions?

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