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Cable Car Museum

Certificate of Excellence
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Get directions
Address: 1201 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94108-1071
Phone Number:
+1 415-474-1887
10:00 - 18:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 10:00 - 18:00
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Fee: No

A museum to San Francisco's beloved cable cars, with a subterranean walkway...

A museum to San Francisco's beloved cable cars, with a subterranean walkway that lets you see the moving cable.

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Book In Advance
More Info
USD 234.88*
and up
Private Tour: San Francisco Sightseeing - 3 Hour
More Info
USD 239.95*
and up
San Francisco Sightseeing

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 2,723 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1243
  • 750
    Very good
  • 135
  • 13
  • 5
Take a Trip Back to Post-Gold Rush San Francisco

When visiting the city by the bay, do not forget to visit this wonderful working museum at the foot of Russian and Nob Hills. This unique museum not only holds amazing history... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 4 days ago
Sandra M
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2,723 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,146: English reviews
Smithfield, Utah
Level Contributor
19 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

This was very interesting to me as an adult but not my kids. The museum is loud and smells strongly of oil/grease. It was interesting to see the cable lines running. No bathrooms. Has a gift shop.

Thank Hollie834
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

When visiting the city by the bay, do not forget to visit this wonderful working museum at the foot of Russian and Nob Hills. This unique museum not only holds amazing history of the cable cars themselves, but also is the location of the machinery that runs the city's three main cable car lines. Check out the pictures from the... More 

Thank Sandra M
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
109 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

Let me just say that anything that has to do with San Francisco's legendary Cable Car's is a must see. Lots of special history behind them and well worth the visit!!

Thank 4JMP
Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
35 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We had no idea what we were walking into because we just hopped off the cable car route at this stop because we were intrigued. My engineer husband was very fascinated by all the working and moving parts inside the museum, so I'm glad we popped in for awhile to learn more about how the cable car system came about... More 

Thank Mandy Z
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

If you have an hour or two to spare whilst visiting San Francisco this is a small but very informative museum about Cable Cars. You also get to see the inner working of the cable cars system from within the museum - lots of wheels and cables. The best thing is that its a Free museum so no excuses from... More 

Thank MarkL12
Level Contributor
59 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

This museum is FREE. Go in to this small museum and learn 20 cool facts about cable cars. Did you know they use breaks made of pine blocks that need replacing every 2 to 4 days. Cable cars get their name from the underground cable that pulls them along at 9mph. A large part of the building is actually a... More 

Thank Wheelchair-Trvlr
Level Contributor
84 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Traveling to SF in December expect a shower of rain, however the cable Car Museum (on Mason just down from the Fairmont Hotel) is a fantastic place to spend an hour or so learning all about the history of the cable cars. Great informative experience and it really is a working power shed that you are viewing. There is a... More 

Thank CarTin10
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
26 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This is a very good overview of the inner workings of this unique transportation system. You will learn much that you did not know about the system and appreciate what transpires behind the scenes. Best of all, you can actually see this system at work. If you are curious about how this wonderful system operates, you must check this place... More 

Thank 745seattlescott
Knebworth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
140 reviews
64 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

My very quick previous trip 25 years ago to SF city took in visits to the main attractions, including the number one for me - a ride on a cable car. But I missed out on the Cable Car Museum, and bitterly regretted it ever since. So this time it was the first thing to visit, and I was not... More 

Thank John A
Bengaluru, India
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Great experience. Amazing stories about cable cars. Mechanical engineering at its best. Must see place to appreciate the historic cable cars of SF.

Thank ksvkumarji

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Typical questions asked:
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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?

Staying in Nob Hill

Neighbourhood Profile
Nob Hill
Swanky and stylish, Nob Hill sits in the heart of the city and is home to amazing architecture and views. The hike to the top can be a challenging workout for those who forego a cable car ride, but they will be rewarded with some of the city’s most beautiful architecture adorning its peak. Originally populated with mansions after the Gold Rush, most if not all were devastated in the 1906 earthquake and fire that followed. Luckily all is not lost; storied hotels and Grace Cathedral surround Huntington Park. Having a drink or dinner while taking in the sunset and views at the "top of the Mark" is tough to beat.
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