Explore the hidden gems of the magnificent Central California Coast

Welcome aboard the Central Coast Flyer!

See what California looked like 200 years ago.

We'll travel far from Highway 101 from Santa Barbara to San Luis Obispo round-trip with a brief stop in San Luis Obispo.

Enjoy fantastic views of some of California's last original native coastal landscapes, the legendary surfing beaches of Hollister, Cojo-Jalama and Sudden ranches, Point Conception, the massive rocket launch sites of Vandenberg Air Force Base, historic Honda Point, marine, avian, terrestrial wildlife and much more.

Portions of the rails run adjacent to the historic trails etched by Spanish explorers Gaspar de Portola and Juan Bautista de Anza on their epic journeys through Alta California.

Invite your pals, bring a picnic lunch and plan on a fun and relaxing day riding the rails on the Central Coast Flyer. Our privately owned, vintage railcars are a pleasurable remembrance of American passenger trains from the 40s and 50s. The special cars are pulled by Amtrak. Seating is limited and reservations are required. Actual travel time is about five hours with a 10:00 a.m. check-in for tickets at the Santa Barbara station with return to Santa Barbara at approximately 4:30 p.m. The stop in San Luis Obispo is approximately 50 minutes.

Basic fares start at just $85 per person (some trips priced higher with premium services/events).

Enjoy scenic highlights that can be seen only by train along the route of the famed Coast Daylight.

1949 Lounge Car Overland Trail

Individually owned private rail cars make up our special Central Coast Flyer and Vino Train. The Overland Trail is a 1940s era, former Southern Pacific club lounge that was built as a 1st class lounge for the San Francisco Overland. The car features a stunning Streamline Moderne interior, a most gracious quarter-circle bar, a very comfortable ride, and expansive picture windows.

1950 Long-distance Coach Pacific Trail

Built as a long-distance chair car, the car featured plenty of leg room. Each pair of seats had its own window, venetian blind, reading lights, and decorative curtain on the pier panel between each window, quite nice for a coach!

For more information, tickets, schedules and fares, call Conductor Bill Hatrick at (800) KEY-RAIL


photos by – Mark Sanchez, Alex Gillman and Brian Bothun

"This trip completed the missing "California geography puzzle piece" for me. Seeing the rural coastal terrain, Vandenberg AFB and the varied landmarks of this section of central California was an experience I will always cherish."


"We agree that anyone with the time to take this trip will be rewarded with fantastic memories of the awesome scenery hidden from the freeway and contemporary California life."

M. L. and Family