We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Loved it!”
Review of Coast Starlight

Coast Starlight
Ranked #1,049 of 8,808 things to do in California
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: This Amtrak route goes from Seattle, WA., to Los Angeles.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
58 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Loved it!”
Reviewed September 24, 2012

My husband and I took the Coast Starlight from LA to Portland. We had a roomette as we wanted to be able to lie down to sleep at night. We both had a good night's sleep. The meals were included in the price, which made it a good deal we thought. A truck ran into a bridge on our journey and we were initially delayed 2 hours while the engineer checked to see if it was safe for the train to go on it. That stuffed up the schedule - freight trains get priority so we had to stop in places and wait for them to pass. We were 6 hours late getting into Portland in the end, but had a wonderful journey. The scenery was beautiful, and we didn't have to concentrate on driving.

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Sharyn1958
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amtrak O, Public Relations Manager at Coast Starlight, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Dear Sharyn1958,
Thank you for being understanding during any delays. We're glad you and your husband enjoyed traveling with us, especially all of the beautiful scenery. We hope to see you onboard again very soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

484 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    168
    175
    75
    34
    32
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
532 reviews
145 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 352 helpful votes
“Champagne on ice-what da??”
Reviewed September 23, 2012 via mobile

Yes a bourgy way to start the journey.."Champagne" (included)-on ice..glasses-fully compostable and down the hall from your private sleeper cabin with ensuite bathroom-it's not the Queen Mary but you didn't get frisked, x-rayed, cavity checked or screened and you can roll around listening to a jazzy version of la vie en rose sweetly playing in the background.
There's a wine and cheese tasting with a pair of decent Cabernets, a movie theater, endless scenery. I could get used to this..I'm a huge fan of training around and appreciate the slow comfortable vibe of the Coast Starlight. Food is well..a small step above meh domestic first class airline but they DO have Haagen Dazs and Kosher Hot Dogs :)
Oooo and smart people from the National Parks giving talks, diverse mix of travelers from all over the planet. It's fun it's slow and you get to see a lot of cows-but it sure beats the crab outta most air travel and car trips up and down the coast.
It's fun to get seated with strangers and share a meal or a glass of wine. It pushes the boundaries of the well bred
privileged traveler-they knoweth not what they miss.

Helpful?
3 Thank Challenger007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amtrak O, Public Relations Manager at Coast Starlight, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Dear Challenger007,
Thank you for taking the time to write a review. We're glad you enjoyed all of the amenities of traveling by train, and we hope to see you back onboard very soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fullerton, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Leisurely, generally enjoyable, great views.”
Reviewed September 17, 2012

We took the Coast Starlight from Los Angeles Union Station to Vancouver BC. In the travel party were my wife and three kids and we opted for the family bedroom. The train boarded on time at Los Angeles (on Saturday Sept 9) and we arrived a little early to Seattle (on Sunday Sept 10). Our bus from there to Vancouver departed on time but we did arrive at our final destination in Vancouver about an hour late. All in all - good on-time performance.

Now, on to more of the review: the family bedroom is actually quite large and was plenty big enough for the five of us (the kids are ages 11,9,5). The long couch-like seat spans the entire width of the car and there is another seat as well...plenty of sitting room. There are two fold out tables on both ends, there is a small closet to hang maybe 3 to 5 items, there are reading lights, ventilation vents, a nightlight, etc......all in all, nicely equiped, including having two windows, one on the left and one on the right. The night configuration of the room extends the couch into a rather large bed (plenty big enough for two adults), and then there are two pull-down bunks (one large enough for an adult and one large enough for a child or a shorter adult) and finally there is another bed that adjoins the large bed (large enough for a child or a shorter adult). In other words, my family of 2 adults and 3 kids had plenty of sleeping room and everything was generally comfortable! There are three nearby bathrooms and one nearby shower which works out fine, though the bathrooms were not kept as clean as they should have been during the trip. You have a sleeping car attendant that is there to help ready your room for night and offer assistance as needed. Our attendant was courteous and helpful. Now, the one problem with our room (and I think many sleeper accomodations)......the noise. Not noisy people, not the train horn, none of that. The noise of the train cars rubbing together (where they join each car both at the hitch down low and the walkway between cars up high). It was loud, unpleasant and annoying as all get out! Bring earplugs for sure! Better yet, Amtrak - please do some acoustic work to reduce that noise! Thanks! :)

OK - that was the worst part of the trip, everything else was really quite nice. The food in the dining car was actually quite tasty, no issues with it at all (and its included if you have a sleeper car). The service staff in the dining car are a but hurried and are only average at attention to detail (they mixed up things some), but overall - being provided table dining service with good food while looking out the window at amazing views, well, that is a nice experience! There is also a snack bar for more routine food and beverage purchases.

The Parlour Car is a classy place with its own bar, comfortable seating, wi-fi (that did not work consistently), and a wine and cheese tasting (free). Wow, what a great experience! They also show a couple of movies in a theater on the first floor of this car. What a great touch, my kids loved it and the seats are true theater style and quite comfortable. You can also dine in the Parlour Car if you prefer, though the menu is more limited than the dining car.

The Observation/Viewing Car was great, with expansive views and comfortable seating. There are guides that join along the California Coast that hilight the sights of the area - a great touch!

At some stops, there is enough time to step off for a few minutes to stretch out. The people on board are generally nice (and note that in the dining car, you will be seated with fellow passengers at your table......but don't worry, everyone my family dined with were very pleasant). The views are unbeatable.....truly amazing!

I have to say, it was a great experience and overall, Amtrak delivered with wonderful amenities and on-time performance.

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank DarrenJonesOC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amtrak O, Public Relations Manager at Coast Starlight, responded to this review, September 20, 2012
Dear DarrenJonesOC,
We're so excited to hear that your family enjoyed traveling with us. We're glad you found our sleeping car accommodations to be the perfect fit for your family, and that you enjoyed the views, dining, and more. Your comments are very important to us, and we hope to see the whole family back onboard soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide Australia
Level Contributor
50 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Coast Sotarlight LA to Seattle 1 Sept 2012”
Reviewed September 3, 2012

Wife and I had a super liner roomette. Much smaller than we expected and top bed a bit claustrophobic but comfortable. Cabin staff service excellent but couldn't say the same for some staff in the dining car. 2 or 3 were professional, the others had couldn't care a less attitude and gave the impression they were doing us a favour by being there. Plates "shoved" on tables in front of us, one "waiter" chewing gum (and sharing the size and color of it with us) while serving. Very unprofessional and unfair on the good staff. Scenery etc fantastic. Other problem was overuse of microphone through cabins and conflicting times for meals. One one occasion after being told meal time was 12mid day we wandered down at about 12.30 to see what was going on and were told to go back and wait until called. Our visit led to one of the staff giving a lecture to all over the microphone on "rules to go dining" rule one wait to you are called, do not come at the time you were told. The trip itself is well worth doing.

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Retiree9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amtrak O, Public Relations Manager at Coast Starlight, responded to this review, September 11, 2012
Dear Retiree9,
Thank you for writing a review. We're glad you enjoyed traveling in one of our roomettes and the beautiful scenery, too. We apologize for any trouble or confusion with dining. Your thoughts and insights are very important to us, and we look forward to seeing you onboard again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Escape to the old world charm of train travel”
Reviewed August 30, 2012

We recently went on a trip from Los Angeles to Portland on the Coast Starlight. Not sure what to expect for a 30 hour trip, we were a bit skeptical of how the trip would turn out. I'm happy to say that it was one of the most relaxing, stress free trips we have taken.

If you are travelling overnight, you should plan on getting sleeping accommodations. While an added cost, they include all meals and two wine tastings, as well as entrance into the magnificent Pacific Parlour Car. If travelling by coach, you will have access to the observation car, however it is difficult to find a seat. The Parlour car combines a lounge area, dining area, and bar area, and theater in one car. While I wouldn't suggest eating all of your meals in the Parlour car, we spent most of our time there.

The staff were amazing. From the time you boarded to the time you departed they were there. The champagne welcome was a very nice touch.

The views on this route are breathtaking. Don't forget your camera!

We look forward to doing this trip again. Next time we'll go all the way up to Seattle.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Ryan M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amtrak O, Public Relations Manager at Coast Starlight, responded to this review, September 11, 2012
Dear lbguy76,
We're so happy that you enjoyed your trip on the Coast Starlight. It sounds like you were able to relax and enjoy the scenery while onboard. Thank you for taking the time to share your review, and we look forward to seeing you onboard again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Coast Starlight also viewed

California, United States
California, United States
 
California, United States
California, United States
 

Been to Coast Starlight? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing