Cable Cars
10:00 - 18:00
Monday
10:00 - 18:00
Tuesday
10:00 - 18:00
Wednesday
10:00 - 18:00
Thursday
10:00 - 18:00
Friday
10:00 - 18:00
Saturday
10:00 - 18:00
Sunday
10:00 - 18:00
About
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.
Duration: < 1 hour
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Top ways to experience Cable Cars and nearby attractions

The area
Neighbourhood: 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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See what travellers are saying
  • Honeylocket
    Wales, United Kingdom141 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Worth the queue! You must ride one of these
    Loved the trolley ride we took in the city. We took it from the turntable all the way to Market Street. Friendly staff, great views of San Francisco and quite exhilarating at times! Highly recommend
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 20 July 2023
  • happyfarmers
    Somerset, United Kingdom164 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    It has to be done while you are there
    What fun we had. We got on the wrong tram for a start trying to get to docks for our trip. That said the conductor was very funny and the driver my goodness they work non stop on the trip. Although we were on the wrong one we got a real sight seeing trip thrown in and dropped a few blocks from where we wanted to go to but that was not a problem at all. You really get to appreciate the hills and in fact if the driver didn't put the brakes on your mind starts to think just how much speed you would get up before getting to the bottom. Good trip and the family loved it.
    Visited February 2023
    Written 26 July 2023
  • philip w
    174 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Cable car San Francisco July 2023
    Hi this is a great activity. it’s $8 to do the trip one way. You can seat outside, inside or hang on the side it’s your choice. We went from the start near Union square to Fishermans wharf. Worth a visit.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 31 July 2023
  • SallyPembrokeshire
    Wales, United Kingdom129 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fun Cable Car Ride
    These are a wonderful way to get around and so much fun! We bought a one day Muni Pass for $8 each which was great value for money. Allowed us to come and go, hop on and hop off all day long! Top tip, go very early in the morning for no queues and top spot for the side seats which give you the best views along the route. We got on at Fisherman's Wharf and did the loop. All staff are incredibly friendly and want you to enjoy the experience. Alfonse was especially wonderful and happy to explain the working of the cable car and gave interesting historical facts about the unusual and unique mode of transport. Highly recommended experience in San Francisco!
    Visited July 2023
    Written 2 August 2023
  • Alan H
    Whitchurch, United Kingdom246 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Bucket list holiday
    The Cable cars are a must do. There are three rides and the most popular is Powell & Hyde this gives you the iconic views and pictures. This is the most popular of the three and you need to arrive early other wise there are long queues.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 8 August 2023
  • shy_kitten
    Saint Louis, Missouri162 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Worth the wait. Affordable fun!
    Had the opportunity to ride on outside (woo hoo!). Great for photos. Nice breeze. Hold on tight and tuck in when passing other cable cars. Enjoy the hills and views! Be sure to see the turnaround station. Friendly attendants.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 8 August 2023
  • Kate T
    12 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Ride the California line
    The wait for the Powell line (at Market St) was well over an hour at 10am so we chose to ride the California line. At 2pm (near the Ferry building) there was no line and tickets were only $5 - saved both time and money for a similar, if not, same experience. Great experience,even if you have to wait. We also went to the cable car museum (not the railway museum) to learn how the cable cars work. Well worth the walk and if was free.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 11 August 2023
  • Ilona H
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great ride, make time for queuing.
    The cable car ride was a great experience. We stayed near the terminal station downtown and rode on two lines. However, when you plan your cable care ride, make sure that you allow time to queue at the terminal station. Be specially careful in the evening, as the cable car goes ever half hour. We waited in a queue near Fishermen Wharf for over an hour in a cold wind. The best time to go is during the week and during the day.
    Visited July 2023
    Written 14 August 2023
  • Fraser N
    Glasgow, United Kingdom235 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Lovely Experience on the Cable Cars
    Had a trip on the cable cars as part of a walking trip of San Francisco, this ensured we got on ok as the queues can be quite long. The driver and grip on these cars are amazing characters and so friendly! Would highly recommend as part of a visit.
    Visited July 2023
    Written 22 August 2023
  • Rob121618
    West Malling, United Kingdom522 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A must when in San Francisco
    Although we rode the cable cars on a previous trip to SF, our daughter had not so we took the opportunity on this visit. It is a tourist attraction, so not the quickest way to get around the city but once on it, the ride is great. We got on board at the end of the line at Powell & Hyde at about 09:30 and waited in a queue for about 20 minutes. We rode to the cable car museum which is worth a visit. Riding the cable cars isn't cheap - $8 (per person) for one ride! However, if you've not been on the cable cars before, spend the $$ and do it.
    Visited August 2023
    Written 27 August 2023
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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles25,576 reviews
Excellent
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Very good
6,923
Average
2,611
Poor
685
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525

Angelface67
Redbank Plains, Australia23 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020 • Couples
Purchased a 3 day visitor pass on line using Muni mobile app, as I lost my paper copy plus online is cheaper but does run for 3 days consecutively, paper copy lasts over 12 months and you can pick which 3 days you want to use. Paper tickets cost $18 for one day where as online only $11 and paper ticket for 3 days is $36 online only $31. Both can be used on cable car, bus, and trams unlimited rides. Would highly recommend as a great and affordable way to get around San Fransisco as hiring a car and Parkin overnight is very expensive over $60 and also daytime parking can get very expensive when parking past one hour. Lots of car parking available which is where I am sure they are making a fortune from
Written 9 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Michelle G
Prien am Chiemsee, Germany22 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
Took the cable car from the piers to downtown. Excellent experience. Tickets can be purchased onboard for 8$ per person per trip. Online passes available. Would have loved to get one. However....muni app failed miserably! It doesn’t accept foreign credit cards as payment. Cash payments for the pass only available at the main office and are 10$ a person more expensive. Major disappointment. Other than that. It was very fun and a must for travelers of all ages. The cars are very loud, so don’t expect to do a lot of talking.
Written 21 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

David W
Newcastle upon Tyne, UK149 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020 • Couples
Just a short review about these iconic cable cars . We were lucky enough that the turn around station was just a short walk from the hotel .
They are very old , slightly uncomfortable when full But this is to be expected due to their age etc .
A ticket costs $8 each way and it doesn't matter if you travel 3 stops or 20 stops .
You can buy a "return" ticket , but this is just 2 single trip tickets and you MUST get off at the end then re-embark .
My advice if you can use your mobile phone is as follows :-
1. Download the muni app which covers the whole san Francisco transportation
2. Buy a day ticket on the app .....costs $13 but covers the cable cars , trams and the F line buses as well .
If your planning on using public transport a lot while your here it will save you a fortune .
Written 1 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Philip D
Tucson, Arizona372 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
They only sell single (one-way) tickets and they are $7 each. Then you wait at the
Powell Street turnaround for over an hour as they are so popular. Fortunately, on the
day we visited there was a decent busker but I've seen Disneyland (ride) lines move
faster than this. There is nowhere to sit whilst waiting. The cable car trip is OK. The
shocking things was the paucity of cars ... Jeez, just buy/build some more cable cars
or stop taking $7 for what is a poor experience. Since there were 4 of us, a Lyft back to
the hotel from Ghiradelli Square was just as much fun. Yeah, it's that good.
Written 12 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alfred O
Amsterdam, The Netherlands32 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2019 • Family
My first time to Sanfrancisco i took a ride on these cable cars . It was worth it then . The fare used to be a quarter then too and this City didnt have any Ugly Modern Highrise buildings yet to mess up our Citys Sky-line . Now we are off the scale with terrible ugiest Crap . And the monthly rent or Condo fees on one of them is $4,000.00 a month . SAN Francisco didnt have any buildings back then thats rent was that much yet . Now a One bedroom Apartment costs that much a month . I went to Europe in 1987 and rent for a One bedroom was $800 a month for a 3 bedroom apartment in Paris . What happened to our Values in this World ??? This city of Sanfrancisco Stinks to high heaven . Now these Cable cars cost over $5.00 to ride .And these cars arent maintained good anymore either . The Views from the top of one of the hills can be great from one of these Cable car rides too .And now their really crowded too .
Written 6 June 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GordyBGone
San Francisco, CA19 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
Because I am encorporating my feelings under this encompassing San Francisco landmark. Cable cars are grand ... but. I am a former resident of many years. Up until this year, for the past ten years I have traversed across the country 2 or 3 times a year to visit The City. No more. The patina of San Francisco has been scuffed away. Particularily, the past five years have shown astronomical price rises while delivering a dramatic decline in a safe and appealing environment. I miss the view. I miss the feel. I miss the people. I have my memories. I will now spend my dollars where I am valued and appreciated as a person. It's not the cable cars; it's where they take you. That's why "1" star is for San Francisco.
Ps: I remember when a cable car ride was 15 cents, not today's 7 dollars.
Written 2 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

amandallam
Lakewood, CO39 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
I thought that hanging off of the cable car was something of days past and in movies, but you can really do that here. You absolutely cannot leave SF without riding at least once. Tickets are $7 each per way. We got a MUNI pass (public transportation system of SF) that allowed us unlimited rides on the buses, trains, and cable cars. If you plan to ride at least twice, this makes for an excellent value. Beware that lines can get long, even in the dead of winter, especially at the terminal stops. We waited around 40 mins at Fisherman's Wharf one night to catch a cable car. I would recommend you head to one of the intermediary stops to shorten wait time.
Written 3 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

markandsian
Chester, UK190 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
We spent a whole day just travelling on the 4 lines up & down & jumping off & on. What a fun day. You think you are going to fall off (on the open seating) but you don't. A lovely slow way to ride & see the city. The Cable Car Museum has free admission and is a must as well to see how they work. Just get a clipper card (from Walgreens) to enjoy the rides which give you unlimited rides on buses/cable cars for the day/3 days as opposed to $8 per ride.
Written 9 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

maryjanelk
Pleasant Valley, NY51 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
We waited about 20 minutes in order to board the cable car. As it was later in the day, it was a bit chilly (60) but we rode outside for the full experience. Our driver slowed down and told us when and where the views were and we loved the trip from the Wharf area to Union Station. (we traveled through China Town up the steep cobbled streets) On our return we took a different route because it was closer to our hotel $8 per trip - a bit more expensive than a taxi, but a lot more fun!
Written 27 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vivienne G
Melbourne, Australia22 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Would suggest you try to “off peak” you cable car trip. It’s not cheap and so many passengers were packed in that my sight seeing consisted of the sweater of the guy standing in front of me!
A little better on the way back but still pretty crowded. This was on Super Bowl Sunday in lovely weather so everyone was out and about. Just bad luck but something to consider.
Written 4 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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CABLE CARS: All You MUST Know Before You Go (2024)

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