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Alcatraz Island

San Francisco Travel Guide Alcatraz Island, located in San Francisco Bay, has a rich history that draws in visitors from around the world. Once a military fort, it became a notorious federal prison in 1934, housing some of the country's most dangerous criminals such as Al Capone and "Birdman" Robert Stroud.

Today, Alcatraz Island is a popular tourist destination, offering visitors the opportunity to explore the decaying prison and learn about its dark past. The tour includes a ferry ride across the bay to the island, a guided walk through the cellblocks, and a visit to the prison's former dining area and exercise yard. Visitors can also view the iconic lighthouse and enjoy stunning views of San Francisco from the island.

In addition to its role as a prison, Alcatraz Island also holds a significant place in Native American history. The island was occupied by Native American activists for 19 months in the early 1970s, as a protest against the government's treatment of indigenous peoples. This occupation shed light on the injustices faced by Native Americans and eventually led to the island's designation as a National Historic Landmark. Alcatraz Island continues to be a powerful and educational destination, offering visitors a unique glimpse into a significant part of American history.

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