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“Great place to break from driving, but not a real destination. Watch the kids.”

South Coast Railroad Museum
Ranked #8 of 33 things to do in Goleta
Attraction details
Reviewed April 1, 2007

Not crowded even on a Saturday afternoon, which was nice. Wholesome historical ambiance, but it wasn't too overwhelming. The place has been there since 1901, but back in that time it actually was a functioning railroad depot.

Train rides are $1, and are not underpriced. The ride covers the entire property--the train is small, but kids love it. It's powered not by steam, but by a modified weed-whacker motor in a wooden 'train'. Extra tracks are scattered around the property, but do not seem to be more than a potential tripping hazard, less dangerous that the wildlife that surrounds the area. Watch that your kids don't eat the flowers, or the 'berries' from the trees, which might be poisonous. As long as one keeps to the designated walking area, one does not really run the chance of stepping on snakes, lizards, or the like. The wildflowers, however, when enjoyed from a safe distance from toddler's mouths, are beautiful, and the kids will love pointing out the tiny critters as they scatter from the train's path.

The gift shop is small but tidy, with the conventional gifts and souvineirs...plenty of Thomas the Tank Engine goods. The area is very peaceful--send your kids on a few rides around on the train while you relax on the shady park benches or picnic tables. The place is volunteer-managed, so they may not have the answers to all your train-related questions. All in all, the place was designed with kids in mind, but is not entirely kid proof. It was very clean for a train musuem, but since it only had about three historical exhibits, one model train to watch, and one train to ride, it's good that they don't charge admission. It's more of a place to bring a lunch and take a break from the road than somewhere to drive to from anywhere farther than five miles.

2  Thank xXblacksakuraXx
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