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Musee Mecanique

By February 25, 2020February 26th, 2022Travel
If you are in San Francisco and are looking for something fun and inexpensive to do with the kids, I have got the place for you.  Right at the end of Taylor street at Pier 45 on Fishermans’ Wharf  is a unique little family owned museum which is as fun as it is interesting.  The Musee Mecanique is an antique coin operated penny arcade. It is home to more than 300  antique mechanical musical instruments, arcade games and other amusements.  What truly makes this museum appealing  to both the young and old of heart is that you can drop a quarter in any of these machines and experience them in their original working order.

Fun for All Ages

The museum is full of fascinating artifacts and amusements dating back as early as the late 1800s.  In addition to all the older exhibits and games, there are newer, yet still very retro, arcade games located toward the back of the museum.  I think my son spent most of his quarters playing Donkey Kong and The Simpsons, while my daughter couldn’t get enough of the older “win a prize every time” games.

Claw machine

We visited the arcade with my sister-in-law and kids over our last school break.  Having lived in San Francisco for quite a few years, my sister-in-law has a knack for finding the best “off the beaten path” things to do in the city.  The Musee Mecanique is definitely worth a visit if you are headed into the Fishermans’ Wharf area.  The best part about this little gem of a place is that it has free admission 365 days a year.  Here in San Francisco, “free” is not always easy to come by.  Most machines and games take just a quarter, but a few of them require two. Either way they are well worth the splurge.  To get more information on the arcade you can check out their at

Bimbo box
Crane game

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