Angel Island is an island in the Bay of San Francisco. Originally home to a military installation, the island now offers picturesque views of the San Francisco skyline, the Marin County Headlands and Mount Tamalpais. The entire island is part of Angel Island State Park, administered by California State Parks. The island, the California Historical Landmark, has been used for a variety of purposes, including military forts, the U.S. Public Health Service Quarantine Station, and the U.S. Immigration and Detention Office.
Angel Island Immigration Station in the northeast corner of the island, where officials have detained, inspected, and examined approximately one million immigrants, has been designated a National Historic Landmark.
The movement to turn the island into a public park began in 1947 and 1948, when the federal government declared it surplus property. The National Park Service carried out a thorough study of the island's historical background, and in 1954, after various delays, a number of citizens' groups managed to persuade the State Park Commission to acquire some 37 acres of land around Ayala Cove. Meanwhile, the U.S. Army had chosen the island as the site for the Nike missile launch facility and the radar control station.
Despite this partial reoccupation of the island by the army, the State acquired additional acreage above the cove in 1958, and the mountain top itself was renamed Mount Caroline Livermore, in honor of the dedicated Marine County conservationist who led the campaign to create Angel Island State Park.
In 1962, the Nike missile base on the south side of the island was deactivated and the army left the island again. In December of that year, the entire island was transferred to the State of California for park purposes — with the sole exception of the unmanned Coast Guard stations at Point Blunt and Point Stuart, which are still active to this day.
The beaches at Quarry Point and Ayala Cove are both sandy and protected from the afternoon breezes that so often blow from the ocean through the Golden Gate. Quarry Beach is particularly pleasant for sunbathing. There are no lifeguards, and swimming can be dangerous because of the very strong currents that run past the island with every change of tide. The water at Perle 's Beach is much rougher and the beach is more exposed to wind and weather. The view, however, is spectacular, and Perle 's Beach is a delightful place for walking and beach-combing.
Foot trails and fire roads surround the entire island and climb to the 788-foot-high summit of Mount Caroline Livermore. Special caution should be used in relation to historic buildings and in the vicinity of bluffs, which tend to erode easily and provide an unreliable foundation. The main trails are well marked and are designed to avoid most hazards, including the poison oak native to the region. Bicycles can be used on the island-circling system of the main roads and can be transported by ferry to the island. The footpaths and the road to Mount Livermore are closed to bicycles for the protection of safety and resources.
This amazing landmark is located near the following amazing must-see sites in Oakland, California:
- Tilden Regional Park
- Oakland Zoo
- Lake Merritt
- Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park
- Children's Fairyland
- The University of California Botanical Garden
- Chabot Space & Science Center
- USS Hornet - Sea, Air and Space Museum
All of these wonderful points of interest are located just a short distance from our location, conveniently located just down the freeway at 1261 Locust St, Walnut Creek! Stop by for a visit anytime!