Take a Guided Walk Through History

Stroll through 142 years of Naval Shipyard history. We offer a standing 10am tour on the first and third Saturday of every month: advanced registration required. Subject to docent availability, we can sometimes accommodate alternative times. And inquire for your group or bus: we can handle it all. See a Tour Overview or check out the stops below.

St. Peter's Chapel

The Admiral's Mansion

The USS Vallejo Submarine Sail Memorial

We’re now offering tours for groups and individuals.

Book a Tour

Tour Overview

Tours can be just the Chapel, or can be enhanced to extend to a walk of the Island through Admiral’s and sail.

Option 1 - 45 Minutes

The Chapel only: $10

Both versions of the tour begin at St. Peter’s Chapel. Meet your docent amidst the soaring eucalyptus trees of picturesque Chapel Park, and enter the historic doors of St. Peter’s Chapel, the oldest Navy Chapel in the nation (built 1901). Learn the about Farragut’s founding of the Island in 1854 and the Island’s incredible contribution to American history as you soak in the brilliance of the Chapel, including the stained glass collection. This section of the tour is approximately 45 minutes. You can then end your tour, explore the Island on your own, or continue on with the docent for the second (extended/walking) part of the tour.

Option 2 - 1 Hour 45 Minutes

The Chapel, Admiral’s Mansion, and Sail: $20

Extended walking tour: After the Chapel, walk (or drive a few blocks to meet the group) and join your docent on an outdoor stroll (approximately 60 min) through Mare Island history, including stops at the Foundation's other landmarks: The Admiral’s Mansion and the USS Vallejo Submarine Sail memorial. Along the way, see “Captain’s Row,” the lushness and incredible tree collection (and bunkers!) of Alden Park, the original Admin Building, the original Pipe Shop, the launching of the USS California, the dry docks…The stories of the Island are brought to life.

Stop #1

St. Peter’s Chapel

A museum by itself, St. Peter Chapel, built in 1901, is known for its large collection of stunning Tiffany windows, vaulted ceilings with exposed redwood beams, and historic plaques, you’ll find yourself in awe of the craftsmanship on display. Learn about Mare Island through the lense of the oldest Navy Chapel in the country.

Stop #2

The Admiral’s Mansion

Lay your eyes on the opulence of a mansion of the Victorian era that features an abundance of exquisite details. While we currently cannot take anyone inside the mansion during restoration, we will stroll the grounds and its private garden. Learn about the famous leaders who called this place home and their impact on American history.

Stop #3

Alden Park

Alden park is a beautiful, tree-filled park at the very center of the historic section of the Island. Learn about how Alden himself requested that the sailors from Mare Island bring back tree seedlings and saplings from all over the world to plant in this park. See the bunkers built immediately after Pearl Harbor to protect against what was seen as an imminent Japanese invasion. Sprinkled throughout the park are historic artifacts that will bring the Island history to life.

Stop #4

The Historic Core

The focal point of history on the waterfront itself, you can see the first dry docks built on the West Coast (completed after 19 years of work in 1919), the soaring cranes that built the ships and submarines that Mare Island is known for, and learn stories of the building and launching of those vessels from the “ways” with their intricate gantries that tower above you. It is here you’ll also find the Sail of the USS Vallejo.

Stop #5

The USS Vallejo Submarine Sail Memorial

From 1959 – 1967 the Navy commissioned 41 US Navy Fleet ballistic missile submarines under a new classification of boats known as the “SSBN” and nicknamed the “41 for Freedom.” 14 of these were built on Mare Island, including the USS Mariano G. Vallejo. In 2019 the Mare Island Historic Park Foundation hosted a celebration to commemorate the permanent installation of the sail memorial of the Mariano G. Vallejo SSBN 658 (MGV), returning the sail to the place of its original building and launching.

Join A Tour

Tours are offered on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month at 10am.

You must book at least three days in advance. The tour price for Option 1 (45 min Chapel only) is $10/person, and Option 2 (1hr 45min Chapel plus historic walking tour) is $20/person. Children 12 and under always free.

If you can't make one of our standard tours, please inquire: we can sometimes accommodate other times (subject to docent availability).

Book a Tour

Contact Us

Questions or comments about the foundation? Leave us a message and we’ll respond as quickly as possible.

1100 Railroad Ave, Vallejo, CA 94592
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