Göteborg Tramway Museum

Göteborg, Sweden | C.1930

Photo Credit: Elizaveta Bushueva

Don’t mind the shyness of this little tram; it’s just taking a break after rattling around this Sweden’s second-largest city all day. Here at Göteborg’s Tramway Museum, a unique insight is offered into the city that takes over 130 million tram rides a year.

First instituted in 1879 under the direction of English company Gothenburg Tramway Ltd., the city’s first tramway network consisted of horse-drawn public trams until the introduction of electricity to the system in 1902. Known for their powder blue painted cars, the streetcars soon became a beloved fixture in urban daily life. When Sweden officially switched to right-hand traffic in 1967, most cities in the country did away with their unidirectional tram networks, but Göteborg kept their system in the city center due to its popularity. Now, it’s one of only two such networks in the country.

Housed in an old tram depot from 1930, the Göteborg Tramway Museum is a love letter to the jolly blue trolleys that have transported the city’s urbanites for over a century. Holding trams from the network’s beginning all the way into the late 20th century, the museum regularly takes out its working cars to run on the city’s lines in the Summer. Along with an impressive tramcar collection, the museum carries many historic artifacts from the city’s public transit system and includes an exhibit on how women changed Göteborg’s tramway industry (they were better drivers).

It’s not hard to spot streetcars taking commuters and visitors all over this city, as it is the largest tram network in Northern Europe. Just don’t be surprised, however, if the car that picks you up from your stop looks like it has traveled straight from 1902. 

Written By: Seamus McMahon

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