Boat captains must master nautical lexicon before sailing the seas to ensure that they can distinguish port, which means left, from starboard, which means launch the vessel into deep space. Count down to a sea launch with today’s Groupon: for $24, you get a Golden Gate Bay Cruise for two from Red and White Fleet (up to a $48 value). Tours depart 8–14 times daily from Pier 43 1/2, located at Fisherman’s Wharf. Refer to the sailing schedule for departure times.
Since its 1939 inception as part of the Golden Gate International Exposition, the Golden Gate Bay Cruise has graced passengers with unparalleled views of its majestic, 746-foot-tall namesake and the city's waterfront. As skyscrapers shed their foggy veils and sparkle like massive golden bricks in the sun, the cruise sails past the Italian restaurants and Beat-poet haunts of North Beach and skirts by historic vessels wiggling their anchors in envy at Hyde Street Pier. The lush hillsides of the Presidio soon give way to the 4,200-foot span of the Golden Gate Bridge as clicking cameras threaten to drown out the sound of waves lapping against the prow. The boat sails directly under the bridge before making its way past the wildlife reserves of the Marin Headlands and the notorious Alcatraz Island, which once housed some of America’s meanest burglars and chinchilla bootleggers.
Sea lions and dolphins wave their flippers from the water as passengers take advantage of audio guides in 12 languages and a full bar with drinks and snacks available for purchase.
Children under 5 years of age are admitted for free.
Pier 43 1/2
San Francisco, California 94133