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“A fun way to travel the streets of San Francisco”
Review of Cable Cars

Cable Cars
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San Francisco Experience - City Tour
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San Francisco Private Sightseeing Tour
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San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Ticket and Alcatraz Tour
Ranked #12 of 567 things to do in San Francisco
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Owner description: Since 1873, cable cars have run up and down the hilly city, though after the 1950s, these cars have been kept in operation more out of historic nostalgia. Seventeen miles of track remain and have been deemed a historical landmark.
Reviewed 8 October 2012

We've taken the cable car rides in San Fransisco on several of our trips to the city and still enjoy this historic form of transportation. This is a bit of a touristy activity that is quite pricey (US$6) and the queues can be too long. During our recent trip we bought tickets in the evening and still waiting almost 45 minutes to board the cable car after finishing our visit at the Wharf. Just something to be aware off is you are interested in riding the cable cars in SF.

When riding the cable car, try to find an outside positions where you can stand. If you are on the left side, you will have very nice views and you'll see other cable cars coming the opposite direction, surprising how close you come to them at times.

In addition to riding the cable car, you might want to stop at the very good Cable Car Museum (free entry) where you can learn a bit about the history of the various cable car companies and the evolution of this cable car right here in San Francisco. You can also see the massive underground cable and pulley system that keeps the SF Cable Cars moving along in the city.

Overall, the cable car is a bit touristy and expensive for the experience but it's classic San Fransisco stuff and memorable so why not?

For an equally interesting, if not better, historical transportation experience, consider also taking the historic F line street car (US$2) which makes its way up Market Street from Castro, along Embarcadero, all the way to Fisherman's Wharf as well. We actually prefer this to the cable car experience.

4  Thank BradJill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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10,799 - 10,803 of 18,661 reviews

Reviewed 8 October 2012

If you are visiting San Francisco be sure to take the time to jump on a cable car. They are not too convenient for getting around the city, but they are a fun way to take a ride through the city from one part of town to the other. If you want a one-way ride begin at one of the turn arounds. If you are planning on visiting several of the tourist spots in San Francisco, buy and all day pass and jump on and off in several locations.

1  Thank Shoots V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 October 2012

We waited a good 45 min to an hour to get on the cable car at hyde. The system was very inefficient as they had several cable cars but they took their time loading people up. Once we got on the cable car it was an enjoyable ride until you went downhill and they had to put the brakes on which gave off a nasty metal on metal smell. Also the one of the operators stopped the cable car in the middle of an intersection, got off, went to his car, and got something out of his car, got back on the cable car and we continued. Not really sure what that was about. Glad we checked this out but there are definitely other not so touristy cable cars in the city where you would probably have a better experience.

1  Thank fleetfeet954
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2012

I heard that this is the only cable car anywhere in the world and the only mobile national monument. Whatever it is, I would strongly recommend, that if you go to SF, then at least ride this cable car for a unique and amazing experience. We took the Hyde & Beach train from Powell St BART station. You will feel the thrill when the car goes through the steep uphill and then descend. Hats off to the drivers, who are known as gripman. One point to note that, you can buy a one-ride (no transfer) ticket in 6$ or buy a full day pass in 14$.

1  Thank AshimB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 October 2012 via mobile

We spent a lot of time trying to ride this, but the lines were hours long and did not seem to move. If you try it, alloe several hours to wait.

Thank SM510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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