25 Best Trolley Rides in the World, Ranked
Trolley rides, trams and cable cars have largely become an antiquated form of transportation, but cities that still do run these operations are worth a visit.
25 Best Trolley Rides in the World, Ranked
Trolley rides, trams and cable cars have largely become an antiquated form of transportation — with more modern street cars and busses replacing the traditional trolley car experience. That’s why the cities and sightseeing opportunities that still do run tram operations are a sight to be seen — and a must-visit when traveling.
Whether you’re looking for an inexpensive way to get around a new city or you want to check out a sightseeing tour in something a little more charming than a tour bus, we’ve put together a list of some of the best trolley rides in the world — from Tennessee to Japan and everywhere in between.
25. Main Street Trolley
Location: Park City, Utah
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to take a ride is the fall if you want to witness the changing of the leaves — or winter to experience snowfall, view the town’s festive décor and enjoy the holiday spirit.
Where to stay: Montage Deer Valley
Why Main Street Trolley Is One of the Best
This intricate trolley system will take you anywhere you’d want to go in Park City for free. The sustainable system was built to allow visitors and locals alike to leave the car at home and get around town on foot.
Plus, it runs year round — even in the winter months.
24. Laguna Beach Trolley
Location: Laguna Beach, California
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to hop on the Laguna Beach Trolley is in the early fall — it’s still warm enough to savor the salty air breeze without getting too hot.
Where to stay: Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel
Why Laguna Beach Trolley Is One of the Best
Guests are invited to hop on this complimentary trolley and enjoy the long Coastal Route (about 10 minutes total).
The ride features unbeatable views of the Pacific Ocean and Laguna Canyon and makes for a wonderful sightseeing experience for the entire family (for free!).
23. Old Savannah Tours
Location: Savannah, Georgia
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to take the Old Savannah Tour is in March when the local azaleas are in full bloom.
Where to stay: The Marshall House
Why Old Savannah Tours Is One of the Best
This locally owned and operated trolley system is one of the most charming ways to see Savannah. The sightseeing tour offers the classic hop on-hop off for those who want an easy way to get around the city.
It also offers a 90-minute guided tour that allows visitors to take in all the fascinating historical spots around town in one afternoon.
22. Landmark Historic Trolley Tour
Location: Jekyll Island, Georgia
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to take the Jekyll Island Landmark Historic Trolley Tour is in mid-summer when island life is in full swing.
Where to stay: Jekyll Island Club Hotel
Why Landmark Historic Trolley Tour Is One of the Best
Jekyll Island features sprawling beaches, historic ruins, and dazzling fauna and flora — that can all be taken in on the Landmark Historic Trolley Tour.
The guided tour takes visitors through the 240-acre historic district and includes entry to the Mosaic Gallery, Faith Chapel and the Indian Mound Cottage (the former winter retreat of the Rockefeller family).
21. The Jolley Trolley
Location: Clearwater, Florida
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to hop on the Jolley Trolley is in the cooler months — the windows are open, and a nice, beachy breeze gives the trolley a cozy feel.
Where to stay: Sandpearl Resort
Why The Jolley Trolley Is One of the Best
Dating back to 1982, The Jolley Trolley is well known on Clearwater Beach for its ease of use and access to the beach.
Locals and visitors alike tend to opt for this charming mode of transportation as a simple way to go up and down the beach (all the way to Tarpon Springs) without having to worry about finding parking along the water’s edge.
20. Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley
Location: Sonoma, California
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to ride is during fall — it is harvest time in Sonoma, and you can enjoy crush pads and fresh-picked grapes at the wineries.
Where to stay: Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, Sonoma
Why the Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley Is One of the Best
The Sonoma Valley Wine Trolley takes passengers on a wine tasting tour all through Sonoma Valley.
The trolleys are hand-built replicas of classic California Street Cable Cars (circa-1890s San Francisco) and sure beat having to draw straws to choose a designated driver in wine country.
19. Memphis Main Street Trolley
Location: Memphis, Tennessee
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to hop on the Memphis Main Street Trolley is the late summer — the heat is wearing off, but it’s still warm enough to enjoy the ride without bundling up.
Where to stay: Hyatt Centric Beale Street Memphis
Why the Memphis Main Street Trolley Is One of the Best
While there are plenty of ways to explore downtown Memphis, one of the most popular and entertaining ways to see the downtown area is by trolley.
The recently restored vintage trolleys feature intricate woodwork, handcarved corbels and even the original antique lighting fixtures that will make passengers feel as if they’ve gone back in time.
18. Newtown Alive Trolley Tour
Location: Sarasota County, Florida
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to grab the Newtown Alive Trolley Tour is in the late summer months when Sarasota County is packed with seasonal attractions to do and see.
Where to stay: The Sarasota Modern, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel
Why the Newtown Alive Trolley Tour Is One of the Best
This Black-owned and -operated Sarasota County trolley experience is a unique experience in that it places the emphasis on local African American history.
The two-hour tour takes passengers throughout town while highlighting the plight of Sarasota’s earliest African American pioneers.
17. Old Town Trolley
Location: Saint Augustine, Florida
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to hop on is throughout the summer and fall.
Where to stay: The Saint Augustine Beach House
Why the Old Town Trolley Is One of the Best
The Old Town Trolley in Saint Augustine, Florida, serves as both a sightseeing tour and a legitimate mode of transportation.
The hop on-hop off tour includes 23 different stops and takes passengers through 500 years of history — including rule by Spain and Britain.
16. Ghosts & Gravestones Trolley
Location: Saint Augustine, Florida
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to check out this trolley is in the fall — especially if you’re big into the Halloween season.
Where to stay: Carriage Way Inn
Why the Ghosts & Gravestones Trolley Is One of the Best
While you’re in Saint Augustine, also check out the Ghosts & Gravestones Trolley. This experience was made for those who enjoy a little paranormal adventure.
The “frightseeing” trolley is guided by an expert “Ghost Host” who shares true stories about Saint Augustine’s past — including insights into the Tolomato Cemetery and ghost sightings all over the city.
15. Trolley de Ville
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to hop on this trolley is the late summer when the days are still long but the heat is on its way out.
Where to stay: The Grady Hotel
Why the Trolley de Ville Is One of the Best
The old-time Trolley de Ville allows passengers to get a sense of Louisville in just 75 minutes. The historic tour takes guests through all the highlights and history of the city in comfort and retro style.
The trolley also offers a Bourbon-specific tour, which takes thirsty guests through some of the state’s best Bourbon distilleries.
14. The Fort Collins Trolley
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado
Best time of year to take a ride: The Fort Collins Trolley runs during the summer only (May through to September).
Where to stay: Edwards House
Why the Fort Collins Trolley Is One of the Best
The Fort Collins Trolley system uses authentic Birney cars that date back to the 1920s — which is pretty special in and of itself, as there are only about a dozen Birneys left in operation around the world.
The trolley takes passengers down Mountain Avenue from Old Town to City Park (about a half-hour ride) and is equally great for sightseeing or just getting from Point A to Point B without the need for a car.
13. Trolley Pub
Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to hop on the Trolley Pub is in autumn when you can comfortably pedal without working up too much of a sweat.
Where to stay: Hyatt Place North Raleigh-Midtown
Why the Trolley Pub Is One of the Best
The Trolley Pub is a pedal-powered pub crawl and party trolley in Raleigh. The trolley offers a fun and colorful way to see the city while enjoying a couple of bar and restaurant pit stops along the way.
Every tour will include a designated tour guide to ensure safety, and guests are encouraged to curate the stops based on their personal preferences and interests.
12. Eureka Trolley
Location: Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time of year to grab the Eureka Trolley is during the fall, especially if you like to catch the beautiful autumn colors and foliage.
Where to stay: 1886 Crescent Hotel & Spa
Why the Eureka Trolley Is One of the Best
The Eureka Trolley is one of the easiest ways to get around Eureka Springs thanks to the comprehensive route featuring over 100 stops along the way.
The trolley also offers 90-minute tram tours that take passengers through the Victorian town and into the mountain ranges.
11. The 501 Queen Streetcar
Location: Toronto, Canada
Best time of year to take a ride: You’ll want to catch the 501 Queen Streetcar in the late summer or early fall when the heatwaves have passed and the cold winter months are still far on the horizon.
Where to stay: Fairmont Royal York
Why the 501 Queen Streetcar Is One of the Best
The 501 Queen Streetcar in downtown Toronto is run by the city’s TTC transport company and operates as a regular mode of public transit — but it’s well worth experiencing.
The tram is actually the longest streetcar route in North America and takes commuters and travelers alike all through the downtown core to the Beaches neighborhood.
10. The Istanbul Tram
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to catch the Istanbul Tram is in the summer when the city is full of life.
Where to stay: Somerset Maslak Istanbul
Why the Istanbul Tram Is One of the Best
Istanbul is packed to the gills with European and Eastern culture and history — and the local tram lines are one of the easiest ways to see the city on a budget.
The tram even takes passengers around the old city and stops at almost every relevant landmark and attraction along the way.
9. The Prague Tramway
Location: Prague, Czechia
Best time of year to take a ride: Your best bet is to hop on the tramway in the spring and early fall — there are far less tourists, but the weather is still temperate.
Where to stay: BoHo Prague Hotel
Why the Prague Tramway Is One of the Best
The Czech capital feels like a storybook by way of its historic attractions and Old Town — and its tramway is no exception.
The Prague Tramway dates back to the 19th century but continues to be the most efficient form of transport in the city.
8. Vienna Ring Tram Sightseeing
Location: Vienna, Austria
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to grab the Vienna Ring Tram Sightseeing tour is either spring or late fall.
Where to stay: Hotel Kaiserhof Wien
Why the Vienna Ring Tram Sightseeing Is One of the Best
The Vienna Ring Tram Sightseeing tour is going to be your easiest way to see Vienna’s grand boulevard — the Ringstrasse — which is peppered with museums, monuments and palaces that make the capital of Austria what it is.
There are regular commuter trams in the city as well, but this one offers an expedited path to the city’s best attractions.
7. Tram Route 3
Location: Rome, Italy
Best time of year to take a ride: You'll want to grab the Tram Route 3 during the late fall to avoid tourist season.
Where to stay: NH Collection Roma Palazzo Cinquecento
Why Tram Route 3 Is One of the Best
Looking for an affordable sightseeing option in the capital of Italy? Rome’s Tram Route 3 is one of the longest-running trams in the city and happens to travel through some of the top sites in town.
You’ll have a front row seat as you pass by the Colosseum, the Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem and Porta Maggiore — all for the price of a bus ticket.
6. Tram Number 96
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to grab the Tram Number 96 is between March and May — it’s shoulder season for tourists, but the weather is quite temperate.
Where to stay: Next Hotel Melbourne
Why Tram Number 96 Is One of the Best
Operating from Brunswick East to St Kilda Beach, this 8-mile tram line is one of Melbourne’s busiest tram lines — but it’s well worth the fare if you’re looking for a quick and easy way to see the city.
The tram runs every five minutes and passes by some of the city’s top attractions, including the Melbourne Museum, the Carlton Gardens and the State Parliament.
5. Tokyu-Setagaya Line
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to hop on the Tokyu-Setagaya Line is between March and April when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom.
Where to stay: Shibuya Stream Excel Hotel Tokyu
Why the Tokyu-Setagaya Line Is One of the Best
Tokyo might be known for its high-speed trains and futuristic public transit system, but the Tokyu-Setagaya Line feels like stepping back in time. The tram runs through the Sangenjaya and Shimo-Takaido wards and makes for a great sightseeing opportunity.
The Kofuku-no-Manekineko Densha train also runs on this line; it’s a tram devoted exclusively to the maneki-neko (lucky cat) figure.
4. Blackpool Tramway
Location: Lancashire, England
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to take the Blackpool Tramway is in June when the weather is warm and relatively dry.
Where to stay: Bradburys of Blackpool
Why the Blackpool Tramway Is One of the Best
Tucked in between the Fylde Coast and the Irish Sea, the Blackpool Tramway is one of the world’s oldest tramways still in operation.
The 10-mile tram line was first opened in 1885 and continues to be one of the best ways to commute and sightsee along the coast.
3. Ding Ding Tram
Location: Hong Kong
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to catch a ride on the Ding Ding is in early December when the weather is dry and temperate.
Where to stay: The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong
Why the Ding Ding Is One of the Best
Colloquially named for the double-bell ring used to warn pedestrians of the approaching tram cars, these double-decker tram cars are slow and bumpy — but by far one of the most iconic aspects of life in Hong Kong.
The tramline dates back over a hundred years and makes for incredible sightseeing given their slow moving pace and cheap fare (a ticket costs under $3).
2. Lisbon Tramway Network
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to ride the Lisbon Tramway Network is in the early spring when Portugal begins waking back up after the winter months.
Where to stay: Hotel do Chiado
Why the Lisbon Tramway Network Is One of the Best
When you think about Lisbon, what comes to mind? For most people it’s the bright-yellow tram cars that cut through the city’s cobblestone roads. The iconic 1930s-era tramcars transport locals and visitors alike through over 30 stops across the city.
There are 24-hour tickets available, which allow passengers to hop on and off at their leisure.
1. San Francisco Cable Cars
Location: San Francisco, California
Best time of year to take a ride: The best time to ride the San Francisco Cable Cars is in the autumn — it’s the warmest time of year and doesn’t draw as many tourists.
Where to stay: Harbor Court Hotel
Why the San Francisco Cable Car Is One of the Best
There’s no better way to experience San Francisco than one of its iconic cable cars. The tram network was first launched over 150 years ago, was named a national landmark in 1964 and is still one of the best ways to get around the city.
In fact, the cable car network is particularly appreciated for climbing the city’s many steep hills!