Hyde Street Pier is the perfect attraction for any history buffs or anyone that loves ships. Located in the Fisherman’s Wharf area, Hyde Street Pier is part of the National Park Service-Operated Maritime National Historical Park. Hundreds of thousands of people visit Hyde Street Pier each year to experience maritime history hands on.
Hyde Street Pier used to be the primary ferry pier for the San Francisco Bay. Today it is no longer a ferry pier but home to several historical ships. There are over 100 crafts berthed at Hyde Street Pier, though not all of them are open to tours.
When visiting Hyde Street Pier, stopping at the visitor’s center is a good idea. You can get a map as well as purchase things like books or souvenirs. Visitors looking for a more informative experience can book guided tours. Once you have a map, you can explore several of the historical ships berthed at the pier.
One of the oldest ships dates back to 1886. The Balclutha is a three-masted cargo ship that originally launched near Glasgow, Scotland. Another ship named Eureka, was made in 1890. This ship has a side wheel paddle and the original steam engine. Another from the 1800s is the Alma. Made in 1891, the Alma is an 80 foot schooner cargo ship and represents many identical schooners that were used in the San Francisco bay in the 19th century.
Balclutha Ship Wheel Credit: David Ohmer
The Hercules is a large ship spanning 151 feet. The Hercules is a steam tug made in 1907. This steam tug was used for ocean tugging. The Eppleton Hall, a steel tug, was built in England in 1914. This ship was used to tow coal barges.
Because Hyde Street Pier is located in the Fisherman’s Wharf, it is close to several other attractions. After visiting Hyde Street Pier, you can meander to the Fisherman’s Wharf. Hyde Street Pier is also close to the famous prison Alcatraz.
Simply seeing the size of the ships berthed at Hyde Street Pier in San Francisco can inspire awe. Being on board such a historical ship and smelling the salty air can stir the adventurer in all of us. Visiting Hyde Street is an enjoyable way to learn about the history and culture that made San Francisco Bay what it is today. Hyde Street Pier is among the must see attractions of San Francisco.