Convert a tensor to numpy array in Tensorflow?

Any tensor returned by or eval is a NumPy array.

>>> print(type(tf.Session().run(tf.constant([1,2,3]))))
<class 'numpy.ndarray'>


>>> sess = tf.InteractiveSession()
>>> print(type(tf.constant([1,2,3]).eval()))
<class 'numpy.ndarray'>

Or, equivalently:

>>> sess = tf.Session()
>>> with sess.as_default():
>>>    print(type(tf.constant([1,2,3]).eval()))
<class 'numpy.ndarray'>

EDIT: Not any tensor returned by or eval() is a NumPy array. Sparse Tensors for example are returned as SparseTensorValue:

>>> print(type(tf.Session().run(tf.SparseTensor([[0, 0]],[1],[1,2]))))
<class 'tensorflow.python.framework.sparse_tensor.SparseTensorValue'>

TensorFlow 2.x

Eager Execution is enabled by default, so just call .numpy() on the Tensor object.

import tensorflow as tf

a = tf.constant([[1, 2], [3, 4]])                 
b = tf.add(a, 1)

# array([[1, 2],
#        [3, 4]], dtype=int32)

# array([[2, 3],
#        [4, 5]], dtype=int32)

tf.multiply(a, b).numpy()
# array([[ 2,  6],
#        [12, 20]], dtype=int32)

See NumPy Compatibility for more. It is worth noting (from the docs),

Numpy array may share a memory with the Tensor object. Any changes to one may be reflected in the other.

Bold emphasis mine. A copy may or may not be returned, and this is an implementation detail based on whether the data is in CPU or GPU (in the latter case, a copy has to be made from GPU to host memory).

But why am I getting the AttributeError: 'Tensor' object has no attribute 'numpy'?.
A lot of folks have commented about this issue, there are a couple of possible reasons:

  • TF 2.0 is not correctly installed (in which case, try re-installing), or
  • TF 2.0 is installed, but eager execution is disabled for some reason. In such cases, call tf.compat.v1.enable_eager_execution() to enable it, or see below.

If Eager Execution is disabled, you can build a graph and then run it through tf.compat.v1.Session:

a = tf.constant([[1, 2], [3, 4]])                 
b = tf.add(a, 1)
out = tf.multiply(a, b)

# array([[ 2,  6],
#        [12, 20]], dtype=int32)

See also TF 2.0 Symbols Map for a mapping of the old API to the new one.

To convert back from tensor to numpy array you can simply run .eval() on the transformed tensor.