The wave organ is exactly as it sounds: an organ that produces sounds as waves go into its tubes.
It is a pretty strange experience but a lot of fun.
It is part of the Exploratorium and I would suggest people check it out.
How can it be part of the Exploratorium since it is about 2 miles away from the actual Exploratorium?
Let me answer that: The Exploratorium used to be housed in part of the Palace of Fine Arts before it moved to the Embarcadero a few years ago.
This outdoor exhibits was made by Peter Richards and George Gonzales and it has continued to survive through the years.
The Exploratorium has a number of other outdoor exhibits also and you can find out more by checking out the SF Tourism Tips Exploratorium page.
We walked out to the Wave Organ, located on a jetty in the bay, and hung out for about 10 minutes. We listened to the sounds and the music being made by this piece of art and the ocean and enjoyed it. We had to catch our bus back to Petaluma or we would have stayed longer. It is definitely a strange, but fun, way to hear music if you’ve never done it. It is also very relaxing and it affords a magnificent view of the bay, Alcatraz and the Marina District.
We were lucky enough to visit it when the tide was almost at its highest, since that is when the most noises are made and it is the loudest.
As we walked away towards our bus stop, two elderly Caucasian women were walking up. One of them, who looked to be in her 70s or 80s, said, “How is it today? Can you hear anything?”
Jill and I both answered that the high tide was coming and the music was getting louder.
The lady then said, “Great! My nephew designed this and I can’t wait to hear it!”
We would guess that it was Peter Richards that was her nephew and found it to be such a stroke of luck to be there at the time as a relative of one of the designers and artists.
This is why we love walking, exploring and talking to random people as we continue our journey around the world!