San Francisco's Heritage Streetcars: Nostalgia From Around the World in California by Fiona Whiley
San Francisco has a collection of heritage streetcars that you can ride using the Muni system. They run along Market Street and Embarcadero, which is the Muni Metro F line. They are separate to the iconic cable cars and the more modern electric trams that service the other lines.
The heritage streetcars are an assortment of fully restored vintage streetcars, trolleys and trams from San Francisco and many other world cities including Milan, Melbourne, Japan, Portugal, England and Switzerland. There are also quite a few PCC streetcars from other American cities painted in tribute liveries for the cities that once operated them.
The heritage streetcars were commissioned as a Summer Trolley Festival to provide an alternative heritage tourism experience while the iconic cable car system was shut down for a major overhaul. Starting in 1982, the trolley festivals were so successful that a full-time historic streetcar service was continued after the cable cars were back in action.
We caught streetcar #1052 from the Mission District down to Fisherman’s Wharf. It felt like we were stepping back in time as we entered the old streetcar. It's a great way to experience a bit of nostalgia.