San Francisco Railway Museum

San Francisco Railway Museum

San Francisco Railway Museum
4
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Friday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
12:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The San Francisco Railway museum is the place to learn about the antique streetcars and national landmark cable cars that regularly run along the city's main arteries, and how rail transportation shaped development of the city. The museum is located at the Steuart Street F-line stop, half a block south of Market St., catty-corner from the Ferry Building, and only steps away from the California St. Cable Car terminal. Admission to the museum is free.
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: South Beach
How to get there
  • Embarcadero • 3 min walk
  • Embarcadero • 4 min walk
Reach out directly
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.0
113 reviews
Excellent
38
Very good
46
Average
21
Poor
6
Terrible
2

zendude
New Jersey55 contributions
Oct 2022
Small cozy museum and gift shop. Great for taking your time exploring the history of S.F. railways. Very friendly staff. Highly recommend for train lovers of all ages.
Written 5 February 2023
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.

Arun K
Nagpur District, India2,933 contributions
Jul 2022 • Solo
San Francisco’s vintage streetcars & cable cars are an integral part of one of America’s great public transit systems.
In fact SF’s Cable cars& Vintage streetcars are true museums in motion.
The free San Francisco Railway Museum speaks the story of how streetcars & cable cars helped build & still energise one of world’s great cities.
Models of various cars , system, uniforms, ticketing machines display the history in chronological order.
Full-size replica streetcar platform for visitors is unique.
Small gift shop is attached to the museum.
Very small but educational museum.
Written 18 July 2022
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.

JustDriving71
Fort Myers, FL725 contributions
Dec 2019
This is a nice little free museum and gift shop for all you trolley fans out there. They have a very good selection of gifts and collectibles at decent prices. There are lots of great displays to look at with great history attached.
Written 6 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.

mini
Fremont, CA1,79,524 contributions
Jan 2020
I made a repeat visit to the San Francisco Railway Museum. Its a free museum, close to the Ferry Building area, which tells the story about San Francisco's street cars. There are exhibits and some movies to watch. There is also some store items. Staff is nice.
Written 31 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.

rickmen
89 contributions
Sep 2019 • Couples
Not much bigger than a gift shop the displays were informative and the manager was every helpful in explaining the difference between a streetcar and trolley. I learnt something new today. Free entry always a bonus.
Written 3 September 2019
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.

charlie1107
Cornwall65 contributions
Aug 2019
What a great find this was! Came across the museum by chance as we had stopped at One Market for lunch and saw the museum when waiting for a streetcar back to Fisherman’s Wharf.

It is only small but has loads of information about the streetcar system in San Francisco and also the streetcars from around the world now running along Embarcadero and Market.

There’s a mock-up of the controls which you can experience: perfect for kids both big and small where the staff explain everything and encourage use of the bell.

The biggest plus point for the museum are without doubt the staff who are all really friendly, extremely knowledgable and available to guide you wherever and whenever required without bein* at all overbearing.

Even picked up some tips for our drive south on highway 1 and a great little train ride from Santa Cruz.

Definitely worth a visit whether you are mad about streetcars or just have an interest.
Written 10 August 2019
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.

Roger B
Kent, UK146 contributions
Feb 2019 • Couples
Well presented with knowledgeable staff, plenty to see within the one room display area, including the re-creation of the driving end of a tram car. Plenty of information boards, photo's and models of various scales.
Glad we visited.
Written 7 March 2019
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.

Steve40_12
Worcester, UK178 contributions
Feb 2019 • Couples
We visited the railway museum to have a look at the history of the trams and cable cars of San Francisco.

Very disappointing to say the least it has a number of old photographs on the wall and some text telling you about the history and that was that. Oh they did have a cab of a street car. We were in and out in 5 minutes it was really disappointing.
Written 3 March 2019
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.
Thanks for your comment. Our organization's focus has always been on enabling visitors and residents to actually EXPERIENCE AND RIDE real vintage streetcars in their natural habitat -- the street -- rather than merely gazing at them as static displays in a room. These "museums in motion" run by our front door every day, and we use our modest space to interpret their history and meaning to our city. We are sorry that you didn't find our free museum of adequate interest to you. We hope you rode the actual streetcars (and cable cars, which we also support). That's why we exist.
Written 4 March 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Henry G
Kingston-upon-Hull, UK15 contributions
Dec 2018 • Solo
This museum tell the story of San Francisco's street car history using photo's, videos, artifacts and in particular the friendly volunteers running the museum all complimenting the amazing restoration of streetcars on the F and E lines. Well worth a visit and it's free!
Written 17 December 2018
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.

LennandLorraine K
Kamloops, Canada106 contributions
Nov 2018 • Couples
If you’re a fan of trains, subway cars, streetcars or cable cars, this place is for you. This little shop is full of interesting tidbits of information, as well as unique gifts and souvenirs.
We popped in just to buy our 3 day travel pass, and left with a lot more than we came for - thanks to friendly and knowledgeable Frank.
Written 8 November 2018
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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