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Classic Cable Car Sightseeing - Private Tours
Taylor and Jefferson Streets, Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA 94133
415-596-9929
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Ranked #201 of 394 Activities in San Francisco
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Owner description: Tour San Francisco on a Classic Cable Car. Our 2 hour city highlights tour includes a ride over the Golden Gate Bridge. All vehicles are crafted with solid oak and brass and designed from the original cable car blueprints.
Cobham, Surrey
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
12 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“wow!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2013

I am of the age where "the streets of san Francisco" with Karl Malden and Michael douglas kept me in on a Saturday night during the 70s - if you are of the age, then remember the iconic little cable trams that went up and down the streets there. Believe me, the streets are STEEP - but just to jump on one of the gorgeous iconic trams that they still have is fantastic - you can "hang off" but only two allowed, so I couldn't But the nice man let me stand on the back so I could see the world passing by me as we went up and up and up. So worth it for US$ 6 each person. Such fun! Still some lovely old chap with a rubber glove on the brake .....

Visited May 2013
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Sacramento
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88 reviews 88 reviews
29 attraction reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“No Customer Service.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

We had bought advance tickets, and made several attempts to get seats for four to see the Holiday Lights. The woman answering the phone was rude, and not helpful. I was able to use two of our tickets, and if it wasn't for Robert the tour guide, this would have been an absolute waste of money.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
USA
Top Contributor
125 reviews 125 reviews
29 attraction reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
“Holiday Lights Tour”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2012

Well, I can see by some other posts that we were not alone in our disappointment!

This was something that we were really looking forward to and unfortunately left very disappointed. Honestly – there weren’t that many lights to see and with the condition of the roads and the vehicle it was a bumpy ride that pretty much blew by any spots that you might have wanted to get a good picture of at night. Driver asked how many locals were on board. Apparently many hands went up because she then commented “Good. Now I don’t have to give you all the history.” And, she did not. We are not locals, but visitors there for the holiday.

Tip: If you decide to go, sit on the ride side or face right. There’s not a heck of a lot on the left side except Macy’s.

The driver would careen down the hills with hands off the wheel and would start/stop a few times for ‘entertainment’ purposes going up the hills. It was a cold night and about 60 minutes into the tour you begin to feel it. There is a 15-minute stop at the Fairmont (which of course lasts longer because people are not courteous of others) for a relief break and to see their interior lobby directions. If you are mobility impaired you might not be able to get off the cable car due to the height of the step v the pavement (As was my case. If you need a step stool to get ON the trolley at the loading area, chances are you are going to need it if you get OFF the trolley before returning to the ticketing area).

There is holiday music playing during the tour that you can sing along to however if the tour is 90 minutes, a 90-minute tape of different songs should be made instead of replaying the same ones over and over again. Not too many passengers were singing. And the driver didn’t encourage anyone to sing either.

Speaking of the 90-minute tour – it was late. Very late. Both leaving and returning. If you have other commitments at specific times, you may not want to cut your times too close. Luckily (if you want to call it that) our Super Shuttle transport to the airport was late and our flight was delayed so this late tour didn’t affect us… this time. Bonus – everyone receives a felt Santa hat. This did come in handy keeping our ears warm! Unfortunately the lights on our cable car were out most of the trip as was pointed out to our driver by many other tour drivers throughout the evening.

Perhaps a better plan would be to not travel to areas of the city that aren't decorated and spend more time in areas that are. Especially since this is a holiday light tour and not a city tour. A second stop at Union Square would be more appreciated than a drive around Russian Hill where the decorations were sparse at best.

Would we take this tour or recommend it? We both agreed that no, we would not.

Visited December 2012
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1 review
“A great way to see SF at night!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2012 via mobile

We took the Holiday Lights Tour and it was a blast. Our driver Craig was very knowledgeable. I'm from the Bay Area so I'm familiar with most of the must see spots, but Craig was full of info and hilarious. Bummer, few people put Christmas lights up in SF, but businesses do and a lot where awesomely lit up. Lucky the homes themselves are so beautiful anyways. I totally dug this ride through town with our tour guide.

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1 review
“The NO lights light tour!!!!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

My family and I paid $200 to drive around on a fake cable car and view the Christmas lights of SF. There were 2 or 3 houses, 3 huge Christmas trees, and a fake front half of a ginger bread house. NOT what we expected and NOT worth it!!!!!! Do NOT waste your money!!! This is NOT for kids!!! Its a nice tour but they should not advertise this as a Christmas activity.

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Jonathan D, Guest Relations Manager at Classic Cable Car Sightseeing - Private Tours, responded to this review, December 12, 2012
To our valued guests:
The Holiday Lights Night Tour/Classic Cable Day Tours are separate tours experiences.

The Holiday Lights and Sights tour is a timeless experience that highlights the holiday spirit that San Francisco has to offer. We provide a tour based on designated routes that our guests have requested over the many years and that have the most opportunities for lights and sights. Each season the decor varies and we strive to display areas of San Francisco that have been known to encourage the holiday spirit. The tour is about seeing the the city of San Francisco, caroling with friends; and enjoying the holiday festivities.

We here at Classic Cable Car strive to provide tours that fit the needs of all of our guests. If at any time our guests are not satisfied with our products; please feel free to email myself at "jdubois@sanfranciscoducks.com" and we will make it right!
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