There *might* be a new reason for locals and native San Franciscans to go to Fisherman's Wharf, and it's an "Escape Alcatraz" amusement ride that does not have anything to do with the actual prison on a rock in the middle of the Bay.
The Chronicle reports that the $2 million ride, created as a new addition to the San Francisco Dungeon, bills itself as an immersive theatrical experience meant to mimic an escape from the Rock that just so happens to include "an all-new exhilarating drop ride." Basically, actors pretend they're guards checking attendees into jail, and then riders have to bust out. The drop is meant to mimic the jump that a prisoner would have had to have made from the island into the Bay.
The ride opened over the weekend — just in time for Halloween — and promoters say it's the only underground drop ride in the country. At 11 feet, it's no Tower of Terror, but opening-day riders interviewed in the below embedded video seemed to think it was worth the price of admission ($16 for locals, $20 for tourists).
Alcatraz's famed reputation as an escape-proof maximum security prison has made the idea of escaping it a pop culture fixture. As the Mercury News reports, several people actually did escape from Alcatraz over the years. John Anglin, Clarence Anglin, and Frank Morris broke out of their cells in 1962, but are assumed to have died trying to swim across the Bay. John Paul Scott, a bank robber from Kentucky, fared a little better and actually made it to Fort Point in 1962, but the Chron tells us he was immediately captured.
None of those facts should stop you from enjoying the Escape From Alcatraz ride, however. And after, you get to try your hand at escaping San Francisco's most notorious tourist trap. Good luck.