The most intriguing attraction that San Francisco offers is a tour around the famous Alcatraz rock on which a prison house used to function. This is such an interesting site that it attracts attention not only from tourists but from media as well. I’m sure you remember Sean Connery and Nicholas Cage get some action in their movie The Rock, which was based and partly set on Alcatraz.
One reason why this is such a famous attraction is that it housed the criminal icon Al Capone. In the 1920’s, as the boss of the Chicago Outfit, he fronted as a furniture dealer when the public knows that the Chicago Outfit is a criminal organization that engages in illegal activity including the smuggling of liquor to say the least. Al Capone was caught, but what made him a legend is that he was convicted only for tax evasion and not for any of the numerous crimes that was publicly known. Visit Alcatraz and see more famous inmates Al Capone had.
The rock is famous also because of its controversial nature. Aside from cruel treatment of prisoners, the jail house was shut down because of the inhumane condition of isolation that both prisoners and wardens had to endure. Not only policemen but also plenty of staff members such as cooks and priests had to live on the rock which was separated from the city coastline by miles of cold sea water. This means that workers were no less prisoners than the convicts. Everyone on the rock was separated from their families and the everyday opportunities of the progressive city.
Another intrigue surrounding the Alcatraz is the escape. There were many attempts but only a pair made it pass the walls and were not brought back in. They did it by making a hole through their cell walls with utensils, mainly spoons. No one knows if they actually made it pass the sea. The water is ice cold. They could have swam and freed themselves or they could have died battling the waves and temperature of the sea. Survived or not, they were the only ones who actually escaped the rock. This story was even made into a movie starring Clint Eastwood, Escape from Alcatraz.
It is a sin not to take the Alcatraz tour when in San Francisco. It is surprisingly more touching than educational. You’ll be taken around the cells and function rooms. You can even enter an isolation cell just so you can get a feel of what it’s like to be a prisoner in extreme isolation. You will also be surprised at how talented and educated the prisoners were. With nothing to do, they painted and read most of the time. Most importantly, you’ll get a view of the vibrant city from the jailhouse’s small windows, which will surely make you feel a deep and sublime compassion for anyone who had to stay there.
Alcatraz is one of the most interesting sites around the world. Take a chance to fly to San Francisco and tour this amazing rock. You do not have to spend as much!