Monday, April 18, 2011

Montreal to New York by train

Crossing the US border by train was the only mode of transport that I have not attempted and hence I decided to do it his time. The expectations were high. I have heard a lot of people talk about the wonderful route between Montreal and NY.

Here are some reasons why you might consider traveling by train on this route:
1. AMTRAK's service is good - Announcements are entertaining. On my way to NY, the attendant proudly announced that this is a 19th century route and hence no WiFi. This may not be the right example here though!!
2. The route is scenic in the portion in US between Plattsburgh and Whitehall for 2.5 hrs or so. The train travels along a big lake all this while.
3. Lots of time to think as you have nothing else to do ! This might end up being an introspective trip if you are one of those hard thinkers.
4. Food is decent - much better than some other travel options I have had. Try out the chicken teriyaki rice bowl - it's nice!
5. The attendants are considerate enough to offer smoking stops as well..

However, I must say that I am not entirely satisfied with this journey. Here are the reasons why:
1. No WiFi on the train
2. No sleeper coaches - it is a 11hr+ journey. The seats were certainly comfortable but 11hrs is still a long time.
3. Border crossing takes up almost 1.5 hrs of the 11hr journey - the good thing is that you don't have to get down from the train.
4. The views were good but only for the portion mentioned above. The rest was pretty ordinary. My expectations were really high due to the heavy hype around this. The Pune-Mumbai route (3.5hrs) in India is much better I would say.
5. Sky high expectations. The whole trip would have been different otherwise.

So, travel with minimal expectations and you will be pleasantly surprised with this route.

I have asked for photos from a fellow traveller - they will be here once I receive them.

NOTE: This blog has been written real-time(during travel). However, courtesy AMTRAK, it has come online only after I reached home.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:AMTRAK train 69 (NY to Montreal)

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