The Amtrak Trek and Beyond..

So, what do you do on a 17 hour trek? Read, watch videos, eat, and gaze out the window at the American scenery. Surprisingly, it goes fast.

And the accommodations are quite nice with much signage..

Bathrooms were maintained clean by both staff and customers with roomy handicapable units. Staff were particularly helpful to those needing assistance.

Conductors give updates throughout the trip explaining train location and why things occur such as smells in the car. “Well, folks, that smell is from a paper mill we are passing by.” At 12:15 a.m. there was a stop for passengers to smoke.

The seats were comfortable for sitting, however, reclining seats don’t afford optimum sleep needs. Bring a small pillow and light blanket for extra comfort.

Breakfast started at 6 a.m. with much fare. Coffee, tea, both caffeinated, and de, was available as was small bagels, cereal, milk, and juice. All free.

And before you know it, arrival…

Cars are driven off their train promptly by staff. Passengers wait in the terminal as car numbers are called and posted on a screen. Owners pick up their cars and on to destinations unknown. Mine was Buckroe Beach but not before a stop at the Virginia Visitor Center.

Once again friendly state employees loaded me with booklets on places to visit in Virginia. The building was clean with vending machines filled with a variety of foods and indoor picnic tables.

There even was a vending machine that dispensed Virginia is for Lovers t shirts!

Final Destination,

with more adventures to come..

Amtrak Auto Train

This is a great option for those traveling the east coast needing a break in their trek from DC to Central Florida and visa versa. While 17 hours in duration it provides relief from the challenging I 95 maneuvering, is scenic, comfortable, and priced reasonably. The cost for car and one individual is approximately $300., and all arrangements can be made easily on line. There are also sleeper cars for additional cost.

As you drive up to the terminal a friendly Amtrak staff member greets you and your vehicle confirming reservation. Then a short distance later the car is taken by another friendly agent for housing in the railroad car.

This will be the last time the car is seen for 17 hours so take all your needs for the trip. Amtrak no longer serves dinner, however a hefty free continental breakfast is available in the morning.

Once in the station register at the desk for your assigned seat and relax till boarding is called. Though seats are assigned movement to available seats is allowed depending on availability.

And it’s already time to get on…

and away we go..