Friday, August 03, 2007

Traveling by train to Santa Barbara

A smooch from my husband and we're off!
We took Amtrak's double-decker Pacific Surfliner train to Santa Barbara with the special $40 round trip offer.

On the way to Santa Barbara we sat downstairs (and on the way back to Los Angeles we sat upstairs. In SB they announced over the loudspeaker that the downstairs area was reserved for the elderly and wheelchair bound, and that all able bodied persons needed to be seated upstairs.)
This was our first time traveling by train on the west coast. (We've traveled by train on the east coast and in Europe, but somehow never in our own state before.)

Traveling by train is the way to go. Large windows, foot rests, tray tables, and reclining chairs. No traffic and stress free.

There's a lounge car with a snack bar/cafe as well. We had red wine with chocolate as we sat back and relaxed and enjoyed the ride/view. We departed from beautiful Union Station in downtown, Los Angeles.

It was neat to travel under the LA bridge, along the LA River, and even zoom by our own neighborhood in LA and see landmarks from the train window.

The train stops several times along the way including Glendale, Burbank (Airport), Ventura (Ventura County Fair), but still only takes 2.5 hours to get to Santa Barbara. The train travels along the coast.
It's a scenic ride, with a view of the ocean and shoreline. And here we are in Santa Barbara.

We're staying at a bed and breakfast that's within walking distance (2 blocks) of the train station.

Tonight we're going to Bouchon (a French restaurant touted as the best restaurant in Santa Barbara) for dinner, and then in the morning we're off on a wine tasting tour. This is our first weekend getaway together without the baby in 2.3 years. It feels a bit strange to be traveling without our daughter, yet it's like a second honeymoon as well.

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