Top San Francisco Sunset Cruises
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Although there’s no shortage of stunning scenery in San Francisco, one perspective you don’t want to miss is the view from the water at dusk. Here are some options for getting out onto the San Francisco Bay at sunset to experience the city’s sparkling skyline—and more.
Two of San Francisco’s most iconic sights, the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz, are best seen up close by boat. Sightseeing cruises take in these landmarks and more: Choose from flexible trips on larger vessels that grant an overview of the bay, or a more intimate experience aboard a luxury catamaran or sailboat. If you prefer your sightseeing done on land or by day, you can also opt to simply enjoy the bay at twilight on a relaxing sunset cruise.
San Francisco is world-renowned for its culinary scene, so it seems only natural to combine time on the water with a delicious meal. Twilight tours offer a 2-hour trip across the bay with light appetizers, while dinner and dance cruises up the romance and include a 4-course meal made on board. Many tours include the option to add wine or champagne.
A popular combination tour includes a sunset cruise on the bay alongside a guided visit to Alcatraz, for which it can be very difficult to obtain tickets. If you prefer to see the city from both the water and the air, combine a sunset cruise with a helicopter tour for breathtaking aerial views.
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Bypass the line and head directly to the gate with your prebooked tickets. This sunset cruise takes you across San Francisco Bay with outstanding views of the city skyline, Golden Gate Bridge, the San Francisco Bay Bridge, and Alcatraz Island. Relax while background music sets the tone. Watch the sunset or select a twilight cruise during winter months.
Sail across San Francisco Bay at twilight to admire the city skyline as it begins to light up for the night. With an experienced captain at the helm, you’ll glide past Alcatraz Island and cruise underneath the Golden Gate Bridge.
Explore one of California's most iconic settings from the beauty of San Francisco Bay. This narrated Golden Gate Bay cruise journeys alongside Alcatraz and Angel Island State Park, past the shores of Sausalito and beneath the Golden Gate Bridge. You can choose to view the sights from inside your boat or out on deck.
Spend an evening on the San Francisco Bay during this dinner cruise, including a 3-course gourmet meal of fresh, local ingredients prepared on board. After dinner, dance to the DJ's music or enjoy the nighttime views of Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the city skyline from the exterior deck.
Admire San Francisco and its surrounding sights from the water on a San Francisco Bay sailing cruise. Onboard a catamaran, sail past the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, legendary Alcatraz Island, and the hamlet of Sausalito. Take advantage of great photo ops while you soak up the sea breeze during this scenic tour.
Come aboard the Privateer for a beautiful sailing journey along the San Francisco Bay where you can enjoy sightseeing at the most beautiful time of day—sunset. Coast along as you spot out Alcatraz, the Sausalito shoreline, and the Golden Gate bridge, all with a drink of choice in your hand.
On this San Francisco bridge cruise, get an up-close look at the city’s two engineering marvels—the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay Bridge—as you travel across San Francisco Bay. See major city sights like Alcatraz, Coit Tower, and the Ferry Building, and listen to recorded commentary about the city's legendary architecture while you glide under both bridges.
Gain admission to the Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco, located at Pier 39 between Fisherman’s Wharf and the Alcatraz ferry landing. A general admission ticket provides direct access to all of the aquarium’s main exhibit areas, which house more than 20,000 sea creatures. Learn what is typically found in San Francisco Bay and the nearby Pacific, including sharks, river otters, and even octopuses. The aquarium features interactive exhibits, as well as walk-through glass tunnels where schools of anchovies and fluorescent jellyfish swim overhead and around you.
Escape to California’s famous wine country on this full-day tour from San Francisco. Taste regional varietals at multiple wineries in Napa and Sonoma, including both big-name and family-run estates. Learn about the winemaking process during guided tours of vineyards and barrel rooms, and savor the area’s gourmet culture with a stop for lunch in charming Sonoma Square Plaza.
Fly over San Francisco in a helicopter for stunning aerial views, then board a boat on San Francisco Bay for a sunset dinner cruise. This combo tour allows you to see the best of the city from the air and the water, including multiple views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Bay Bridge and Alcatraz. Pickup from select hotels is included.
What people are saying about Sunset Cruises in San Francisco
Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Bay Twilight or Sunset Cruise"At a great time should add in going by the giants park Very nice to see both bridges up close Cold make sure you bundle up"..."
San Francisco Dinner Dance Cruise"Wonderful service, friendly staff, staff worked like a well oil machine, very prompt, dj was great, good music , plenty of room for dancing great selection of drinks,"..."
Straight to the Gate Access: San Francisco Bridge-to-Bridge Cruise"We had a really great time on the cruise. The staff was accommodating when we had to switch the time and the process was very easy. It was a smooth ride and the boat was very clean! Bathrooms were very clean!"..."
San Francisco Helicopter Tour and Sunset Dinner Cruise"Thank you guys so much for giving us the opportunity to go on the helicopter and the dinner cruise last night. Your staff is awesome including the driver. This was the best experience me and my girlfriend have ever had and we’d love to do it again next time we’re in San Francisco. Thank you so much!!"..."
Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the best Sunset Cruises in San Francisco?
The best Sunset Cruises in San Francisco according to Viator travelers are:
What Sunset Cruises in San Francisco are taking additional safety precautions?
These San Francisco experiences are providing additional COVID-19 safety measures:
What Sunset Cruises in San Francisco are good for avoiding crowds?
These hidden gems in San Francisco may have limited interaction with crowds:
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