United States California San Francisco San Francisco Guide Things To Do Essentials Restaurants Nightlife Where to Stay Neighborhoods Events Getaways All San Francisco Cable Car Museum in San Francisco Written by Betsy Malloy Facebook Twitter Betsy has been writing about California for nearly more than two decades as TripSavvy's expert on the state. Tripsavvy's Editorial Guidelines Betsy Malloy Updated 09/20/18 Share Pin Email Melissa Zink / TripSavvy View Map San Francisco Cable Car Museum Address 1201 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94108, USA Get directions Phone +1 415-474-1887 Web Visit website The Cable Car Museum in San Francisco is an often-overlooked stop in San Francisco. It's free to visit, doesn't take long, and is a good place to learn more about the city's trademark method of transportation. It is housed in the old Ferries and Cliff House Railway Co. Building, which was built in 1887. The museum isn't just a boring collection of static cable car artifacts and facts, either. Besides being a museum, it's the hub for all the machinery that keeps San Francisco's moving landmarks running. Cable cars work by grabbing onto a constantly-moving cable that runs beneath the city streets. At the museum, you can see the machines that pull the cables and the system of pulleys that send them out into the city. You can watch the cable-pulling machinery in action from an elevated gallery and then go downstairs to see that moving cable passing through a series of "sheaves" as it enters and leaves the building. Other displays at the Cable Car Museum include antique cable cars and photographs taken during the system's reconstruction from 1982 to 1984. You can also pick up a more interesting than usual souvenir at the Cable Car Museum, made from sections of cable car track and cable. Museum Review We rate the Cable Car Museum 4 out of 5. It doesn't take long, but it's a fun way to find out a little bit more about what goes on under the streets and how the cable cars work. We polled about 150 of our readers to find out what they think about the Cable Car Museum. 61% of them say it's great or awesome and 24% give it the lowest rating. In other online reviews, people give the museum high marks. In fact, it's one of the highest rated places to visit in San Francisco on Yelp. People love the fact the admission is free and almost everyone ends up thinking it was more than they expected. The museum is especially interesting for history geeks, gearheads, and engineers, but everyone finds something there to keep them interested. The only complaint they have is that it's noisy, something that can't be avoided if the cable cars are going to keep running. What You Need to Know The museum is located at 1201 Mason Street in San Francisco. It is open every day except Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and January 1. Admission is free and it will take you about half an hour to view the exhibits. The best way to get to the Cable Car Museum is the most obvious - by riding a cable car. If you're on foot instead, you don't need a map, just follow the Powell-Hyde or Powell-Mason cable car tracks. Street parking is nearly non-existent near the Cable Car Museum, and the nearest public parking lots are in North Beach. The closest MUNI bus lines are the 1 and 30. Was this page helpful? Thanks for letting us know! Share Pin Email Tell us why! Submit The Top 11 Things to Do in Downtown San Francisco How to See San Francisco the Best Way - by Cable Car 15 Best Museums in San Francisco Visit San Francisco's Historic USS Pampanito Submarine How to Ride a San Francisco Cable Car: 6 Easy Steps Fun Things to Do in San Francisco, California With Kids The 9 Best San Francisco Hotels of 2021 Tour San Francisco's Chinatown How to See San Francisco's Top Sights in Just One Day Union Square: How to Find Shopping Bliss in the Heart of San Francisco Alcatraz Island Tours: How to Plan Your Trip to Prison San Francisco Guide: Planning Your Trip 7 Simple Ways Ways to Make a San Francisco Trip Cheaper (and More Fun) The Truth About Popular San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf A Peek at the Pier: San Francisco's Pier 39, That Is What Are the Best Attractions to Visit in San Francisco?