Thursday, May 22, 2014

Train To Portland

We just got back from our daughter's wedding/vacation trip, and it is time to recap our journey. Avril and I  boarded the Amtrak Coast Starlight in Emeryville,  en route to Portland. This is a familiar train to us, having ridden it many times. This journey was different because we headed north instead of south to Los Angeles. The train leaves Emeryville at 10 p.m. and arrives in Portland at 3:30 p.m. the following day. We booked reserved coach seats and planned on sleeping all night. I must admit that sleeping was problematic, while the seats are super comfortable, the light and noise of passengers boarding slowed the flow. The snack bar on board sells a "passenger comfort kit" that includes ear plugs, eye shade, blow up pillow and blanket for $8. I purchased a miniature bottle of Jack Daniels which had a sleeping effect on me. At dawn the next morning we had crossed over the mountains into Oregon were there was some great scenery. I snapped shots  on my cell phone.
Amtrak Coast Starlight Oregon (IPhone 4) 

We arrived in Portland spot on time and cabbed it to the Marriott Residence Inn Downtown/River Place.  More like an apartment than a hotel room, they included free breakfast, internet and on this night a free picnic style dinner of Bratwurst. Just at that moment Avril's dressy shoes decided to separate sole from top. We boarded the cool Portland Street Car, where a dollar a day gets you around downtown. We ended up at Macy's and found a cute pair of  Aerosoles shoes that gave Avril some height but also comfort.
Avril's Aerosoles Shoes

Back at the hotel we decided to miss the free dinner and headed towards the river. We spotted a cute restaurant( Newport Seafood Grill - Riverplace) that floated on the Willamette River. It was early and the restaurant was pretty empty so we scored a great table with a view. On the dock next to the restaurant groups of people practiced on colorful Dragon Boats.
Dragon Boats Willamette River Portland Or.

Dinner arrived and was delicious!
Newport Seafood Grill Riverplace Portland Or. 
Just outside the window, in what was planned as planter, wild geese had nested.

Talk about dinner with a show! Happily exhausted we headed back to the hotel. Next we rent a car and drive to Astoria.


Zoomie said...

Sounds like fun, except for the lost sleep.

Greg said...

It was fun. On the return leg we got a roomette. More on that later.

Chilebrown said...

I love Portland. I guess you did not make it to Voodoo dognuts. Portland has a great weekend market. The Ringside Steak House is my all time favorite place to eat. I want to return.

Maybe a sleeper car may be worth it.
Riding the train is fun and scenic.

Greg said...

Chilebrown- We had such a short time in Portland but we really loved it. We did not make it to Voodoo but someone brought a box to the wedding..huge! We booked a roomette on our return trip. So much better!