Often compared to Ellis Island in the East, this island was used to quarantine new arrivals to the United States from most of Asia, South America and Canada. Today, the National Park Service is restoring many of the hospitals and barracks that were home for immigrants, often for months at a time. This heavily wooded island was a military base and housed the missiles that protected the heavily populated Bay Area during the Cold War. Ferries from San Francisco and Tiburon bring visitors to a dock at Ayala Cove were you can wander the island, take tours with small trams or bicycle the winding roads that surround the island. Information for Angel Island State Park at 415-435-1915. Blue and Gold ferries at www.blueandgoldfleet.com.