SAN FRANCISCO—After being forced to close for a five month period due to the pandemic, Alcatraz will be reopening to the public on August 17.
While in the past tourists have had the opportunity to explore the inside of the once maximum security prison, they will only be able to have an outdoor experience when it first opens again in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Charles Strickfaden, a spokesperson for the National Park Service, told the Mercury News that this will be a great experience for visitors, regardless of the new restrictions.
“It’s an opportunity to take a walk on the wild side at Alcatraz,” Strickfaden said. “There are thousands of nesting birds out there. There are amazing views. There’s a lot to do.”
In the summer, the number of daily visitors can reach between 5,000 and 6,000 guests, however with the new regulations, that amount will sink down to around 750 per day according to Strickfaden.
The National Park Service has recently begun to open national parks including Yosemite, Sequoia-Kings Canyon, Muir Woods and others. All of these openings have also been accompanied by limitations and closed visiting centers.
On Monday, Alcatraz will be one of the last parts of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area to open. The indoor parts of the island will open once San Francisco city officials allow tourists to travel inside museums.