Facebook Page
Santa Barbara Car Free

Santa Barbara Car Free

Can you really enjoy 3 days in Santa Barbara without a car?  After all, this is California!

March 8 - 10, 2004

Carl Morrison,  

7031  7062  7076   7087  7098
Santa Barbara Car Free, California, USA

How I Got There:
Amtrak Train #763 Business Class
Fullerton, CA 8:16 a.m. Monday

Santa Barbara, CA, 11:35 a.m.
209 State Street

Leave: Amtrak Train #796 Business Class
Santa Barbara, CA, 7:05 p.m., Wednesday

Arrive Fullerton, CA, 10:42 p.m.

How I Traveled While There:
Santa Barbara Trolley
( )
Electric Trolley
Telephones/Internet Access:
Personal cell phone and
Free wireless Internet in the lobby at
Hotel Santa Barbara

Where I Stayed:
Hotel Santa Barbara
533 State Street
( )

Where I Ate:

Breakfast:  Amtrak Business Class
Lunch:  Enterprise Fish Company
    225 State Street
Dinner:  Joe's Cafe of Santa Barbara
    536 State St.

Breakfast:  Hotel Santa Barbara
Lunch:  Sambos
Dinner:  Uncle Rocco's N.Y. Pizza

Breakfast:  Hotel Santa Barbara
Lunch: Picnic included w/Wine Tour
Dinner:  Cold Stone Creamery and
 Snack on Amtrak Surfliner in
 Business Class

Expenses for Two:
Amtrak Business Class Round Trip
Fullerton to SantaBarbara to Fullerton
Full Faire:  $62 per person, incl.
    $24 add-on for Business Class.
    10% discount for AAA, ($58.20) or
    15% discount for Age 62 and over ($56.30)
Complimentary coffee, pastries, juices on Amtrak
Hotel Santa Barbara:  (Mar./Apr.) $258+tax
    Two nights Special Mid-Week 'Car Free' Rate
    Complimentary 90-min. Trolley Tour.
    Complimentary Breakfast Buffet.
Enterprise Fish Co. Lunch:  $30.87
Metro 4 Movies 5 p.m.:  $11
Joe's Cafe:  $15.30

Gas:  $0

For More Information:
or, 1-800-USA-RAIL

Your comments are welcome at:

The question of the hour is:

Can you really enjoy 3 days in Santa Barbara without a car?  After all, this is California!

YES!  From Monday morning until 10 p.m. Wednesday we traveled from Orange County, California (Fullerton Station), directly through downtown Los Angeles and on up the coast paralleling Hwy. 101 to Santa Barbara, and back to Fullerton, and never spent a penny on gas nor did I have the stress of driving...I took Amtrak's Pacific Surfliner all the way.  We enjoyed a city tour, the farmer's market, a whale watching cruise, and a six-hour, four-winery narrated tour with lunch, and never called a cab, nor drove a foot of the way!

What is the secret, you ask.  The secret is "Santa Barbara Car Free" an organization dedicated to making this happen for all of you, whether you arrive by plane or train.  Since I did not want the hassle nor delay of planes and airports, I took the train.

The only driving I did was 20 minutes between my home and the Fullerton Station, where I parked my car FREE for 3 days.

With the help of "Santa Barbara Car Free," I selected the Hotel Santa Barbara ( 533 State Street 805-957-9300 ( ) within walking distance, or 25-cent electric bus ride, of the Amtrak Station when we arrived in Santa Barbara.

 After settling into the hotel, we took the electric trolley back down State Street, past the train station, to Stearn's Wharf and caught the Santa Barbara Trolley (using complimentary passed from the Hotel Santa Barbara) for a 90-minute narrated tour of Santa Barbara and nearby movie star and millionaire residences in Montecito.  The tour driver dropped us off back at our hotel as well.  In the evening, we walked up State Street for a movie then had dinner at a local favorite, Joe's Cafe, right across from our hotel.

Tuesday I chose to walk to my whale watching tour, down State Street, giving me time to buy a sun hat for the trip.  Returning in the afternoon to the hotel, I found State Street full of vendors for the weekly Farmer's Market.  We casually walked through the market of flowers, vegetables, and music, right outside our hotel entrance, until we found a pleasant pizza place for dinner.

Wednesday,  Lloyd arrived promptly at 9:30 for our Wine'edventures tour of the Santa Ynez Valley Wineries.  We relaxed back in our room after Lloyd dropped us at our doorstep, until it was time to make our way back to the nearby Amtrak train station for our Business Class seats with computer table, ride through the late evening to Fullerton.

Photos and a more detailed travelogue follows.  Click NEXT, or any chapter you wish, from the following Menu.

[  Next ]

Table of Contents

A Timely Opportunity to Enjoy this Trip Yourself, with Discounts!:

By registering at , you can receive a choice of 2 for 1 Amtrak coupons on the Pacific Surfliner or Coast Starlight--AND a list of 17 hotels and 10 activities that give discounts in the Santa Barbara Car Free Vacation Package available through December 31, 2004.
~Laura Kath, Santa Barbara Car Free Promotions Coordinator

Pacific Surfliner Baggage Service

Checked baggage service is available on certain Pacific Surfliner trains between staffed stations.  When checked baggage is not available, passengers may carry their baggage on-board.  

--Information in onboard "Amtrak Califormia Timetable"

Pacific Business Class

Pacific Surfliner trains offer reserved, guaranteed seating in the comfortable Business Class car with outlets at every seat for laptop computers.  More legroom, complimentary snacks, beverages, and newspapers make Business Class the relaxed way to travel.

--Advertisement in onboard "Amtrak Califormia Timetable"

At the first winery on our Wednesday WIne Tasting tour, Sunstone Winery.

Winery Tour

Photo Credit:  Lloyd of Wine'edventures