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“Amtrak Cascades”

Pacific Central Station
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Coach Transfer from Vancouver International Airport to Whistler
Reviewed April 28, 2013

Amtrak was still using the super liner as of April 12, 2013. We had round trip tickets from Seattle to Vancouver. Going to Vancouver from Seattle on the 510, we had to take a bus to Everett as there were landslides affecting the tracks. We left Seattle right on time and the train was arriving as we came into Everett so we literally walked right off the bus and onto the train. Having used only planes to travel in 15 years we were impressed with how comfortable and relaxing the train was. The scenery on this route is beautiful, even through rain. Our trip coming back was slower. The passenger train has to yield to freight trains at switches. We left at train "rush hour" so it took about an hour to get out of Vancouver. We stopped again before Everett while another freight train changed crew. We arrived an hour late in seattle. However, because the train is so comfortable it didn't bother us. Sure beats circling an airport. The crew was great and customs was very short. We good see the lines of cars through the window so this was another added benefit of taking the train.. There was no wi-fi. Great reading time, playing cards in the dining car or just sight seeing. Loved it and the price could not be beat.

13  Thank Mary v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 30, 2013

Amtrak trains 510 and 517, providing service between Seattle and
Vancouver, BC are using Superliner equipment "for another couple of months" (through March 2013? Folks traveling will want to check with Amtrak on exactly how long the Superliner equipment will be on these routes) while refurbishment of the regular equipment is underway. Superliners provide two levels of seating and thus an elevated view. The seats were large and comfy and there is indeed beautiful scenery to behold. An added bonus, rather than stopping at border immigration is was performed at the station in Vancouver, unlike my experience crossing the border in eastern Canada coming from Montreal -- train was boarded by officials and the process took about an hour. No wifi on board.

11  Thank Rdi2Go
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2013

This should be a great place to catch Grey Hound buses and trains going to almost anywhere in Canada and US. However, if you're waiting for your trip, there aren't many choices of restaurants. Just McDonald's and one or two cafes. Ample parking is great if you're driving but you can't leave your car and come back for it a few days later. It's not safe. The location is along Main Street and it's not very safe. If you're catching your bus at night, you have to be careful as you cross the park to the station. Taking the sky train is the best option to reach this place. Taxi could be expensive depending on where you're coming from due to traffic. But again, by sky train, you have to cross the park to reach the station and some people could approach you for money or anything else they need and that could be challenging for you. If you want to go down stairs with your heavy luggage, either take the stairs, which is near the station, or the elevator or escalator and that's quite a few meters away from the station.

7  Thank clarionsite
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 12, 2012

This building is improperly named. It gives visitors the impression that it is the Pacific Railway station, when in actuality it is the Greyhound Bus depot, and historically the Canadian National Railroad station. The Pacific station is on the far end of Gastown.

5  Thank Lee W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 5, 2012

Our welcome route to Canada was by coming in from Seattle on the Amtrak Cascades train. Customs was pleasant enough, taking only about 5 minutes. Because we had a 10-hr overlay, we stored our luggage with the station attendant, but only after she made us repack our luggage to ensure the 3 items complied with the tough dimension & weight standards. We finally cleared by a fraction of an inch. We advise travelers on the Canadian train to pack lightly and carefully, observant of the regs. See the VIA website for details.

The attractive and cavernous neo-classical Pacific Central Rail Station once united the termini of both the Canadian Pacific and Canadian National transcontinental trains prior to railroad reorganization in the 1980s. Free to wander the City, we caught a taxi for Granville Island where we explored shops and took our dinner. Be sure to return to the station by dark, as we were warned that the surrounding neighborhood is not the safest part of town.

Bottom line: The station is warm and safe if you remain there until your departure. Some food and snacks are available and a gift shop serves travelers. You'll be glad when you are finally allowed to board your connecting train or transit.

6  Thank MonkeyOnTheWing
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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