Just north of San Francisco is an adorable, picturesque town named Tiburon. One can easily spend the day dining in the upscale restaurants with amazing water views, or perusing the boutique shops in Tiburon. Yet, if you have the opportunity, hop aboard the ferry to Angel Island, a quick 10 minute ride away. The ferry ride in and of itself is an experience, especially if you have water loving children.
Angel Island offers amazing views of San Francisco (which also has a ferry running in between), the Marin County Headlands, and Mount Tamalpais. The entire island is a state park. Ferries only run at limited times, and you are advised not to miss the last one back to Tiburon, as paying for a private charter can be quite costly.
There are many activities on the island, including hiking, biking, camping, swimming, segway or tram tours, and the US Immigration Station. Due to our limited time and collective health status, we decided to see the most we could by hopping on the last tram tour of the day. It proved to be a good choice, as we saw as much of Angel Island as we could before the last ferry departed. Our tour guide made a few stops, allowing us to stretch and take photos along the way. With a 22 month old in tow, this was certainly the best way to go!
The US Immigration Station has a broad history, as it was known as the “Ellis Island of the West”; however, it differed in that the majority of immigrants processed on Angel Island were from Asian countries. Unlike Ellis Island which welcomed immigrants, Angel Island isolated immigrants, with many living on the island for years before gaining entry. During our next visit, this is definitely a place I will explore in more detail.