Cable Car Museum, San Francisco

4.6
Specialty Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
A free museum, Cable Car Museum gives visitors a peek inside the history of cable cars. Several cable cars are on display, as well as a few exhibits. Be sure to check out the viewing platforms in the power station. After viewing the power station from above, descend into the cavern at the junction of Washington and Mason streets, where the cables are routed. The power station is the working hub of the cable cars and still maintains the daily runs. PutCable Car Museum into our San Francisco journey planner and find out what's close by, where to stay, and where to head next.
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Cable Car Museum reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,701 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Stumbled on this gem and glad we did! Great history lesson and an amazing engineering feat back in its day. Great its still operational.  more »
  • I'm not usually one for museums or have a particular passion for trains/trams, but I found it interesting to learn how the cable cars actually work here, and to see the mechanics in action! There's a....  more »
  • A really interesting museum to see how the cars are pulled all around San Francisco. Considering it’s free it’s well worth a visit.  more »
Google
  • Very interesting! See the motors that pull the cable cars. Many diagrams describe how the system works. See models and full size cars. See the machine shop where repairs are made. Great way to spend an hour, then catch a cable car to the wharf or back to Market St.
  • The cable cars stop outside and it only takes 30-40 minutes to look around. The main feature is the spinning wheels continually pulling the cables around the city. There is a very clear explanation of how the cars are controlled- I really appreciated the work the guys running the cars do after the visit. Also an interesting information section about the earthquake and fight to stop the cars being abandoned. There is a nice gift shop. The visit made me appreciate what an impressive system the cars are.
  • It's not just a museum. It's the place that houses the working machinery which makes the famed Cable Cars move up and down the hills and streets of San Francisco. You can look down into the actual workings of amazing machinery which continuously moves miles of huge cables under the streets! There are interesting explanations of how it all works along with artifacts of the nearly 150 year-old system. A great place for adults, kids, tweens and teens who are interested in the mechanics of things.
  • We took a cable car to the museum because we really were interested in the topic. The museum was a bit smaller than we hat expected but it was great to see the system working. Plus it was free! I would recommend it to everybody who really wants to learn about the mechanism and the system of the cable cars. It also has an interesting insight into history of the cable cars. But I would only recommend it to people who are really interested in the topic. I wouldn’t have want to miss it!!
  • The cable cars get the attention, but it is really neat to get a up close look at how they work. I enjoy learning about the history more than most, especially kids, but it is free to check out and you should! They also have good values in the gift shop!

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