If you’re wondering if there’s a train from San Diego to Disneyland, the answer is yes. I’ve taken Amtrak to Anaheim Station multiple times, and it is much easier than driving to Disneyland.

I’ll address frequently asked questions below that I receive from readers when they’re trying to decide whether to drive or go by rail. They typically want to know how long the journey takes, what it’s like onboard, how to get to Disneyland from the train station, and more. Based on personal experience, I’ll lay out what I know here.

The Easy Process

Start, of course, by heading to Amtrak.com to purchase your train tickets. You’ll find quite a bit of daily availability with the Pacific Surfliner trains running multiple times per day between San Diego and Anaheim.

AT The Station

In theory, you don’t need to get to the train station until right before the train arrives. I would only suggest that if it’s a station you are familiar with because some, like Solana Beach, require taking an elevator to the tracks, making it hard to run to your train if you’re late. Plus, you need to ensure you are on the right side of the tracks for catching your train northbound or southbound. You can’t just walk across the tracks. Bridges, tunnels, and elevators take passengers from one track to the other.


Once you’re on board, it’s an easy ride with free WiFi, luggage racks, a cafe car, and more. Conductors will scan your ticket once you’re in your seat so have it ready for them right after you sit down. You will need to pay attention to where you stop is because there’s no illuminated signage or anything like that. The conductor announces stops over the loud speaker but they talk quickly and the sound quality isn’t great so you might miss it.

Collect your belongings a few minutes before the train stops and head to the exit before it physically stops. The train doors are only open for a minute or two so if you’re not there, you might miss your stop. And, that’s really it!

San Diego to Disneyland Train FAQs

How far is Anaheim CA from San Diego?

Anaheim is about 95 miles from downtown San Diego.

How long does it take to get to Disneyland from San Diego?

Exterior shot of Santa Fe Depot's Mission Revival style bell tower and exterior set against modern buildings.

It takes about 2 hours on the train. The exact time depends on where you catch the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train and how many stops the train you choose makes, as not all trains stop at every station along the way.

Your station options for catching the train to Disneyland in San Diego are Santa Fe Depot (downtown), Old Town, Solana Beach, and Oceanside.

Tip: Santa Fe Depot and Old Town stations are fairly close to each other. The train starts at Santa Fe Depot, which means that you’ll have a better chance of securing the best seats by boarding here.

How do I offset the cost of train tickets?

Buy discount Disneyland tickets from an authorized seller. Keep in mind that you’ll avoid paying for parking at your hotel near Disneyland or for day parking in one of the Disneyland parking lots.

You will save money on gas and by not having a rental car. At least one person can relax (perhaps with a glass of wine in hand) on the train in lieu of driving.


It’s about 3.5 miles between the train station and Disneyland. The drive takes roughly 10 minutes.

What is the easiest way to get from the train station to Disneyland?

Uber works very well in Anaheim and will be the quickest option. However, you can present your valid Amtrak ticket (paper or mobile) and take a bus for free.

Anaheim Resort Transit Route 14 or 15 bus (there is a bus stop at the station) will take you directly to the Disneyland Resort. This bus trip will take about 30 minutes.

Can you take Metrolink to Disneyland?

The Orange County Metrolink Line actually starts in Oceanside. From here, it stops at multiple stations (conveniently near some of our favorite Orange County hotels) before reaching Anaheim.

Rail 2 Rail® Metrolink monthly pass holders can take most Amtrak Pacific Surfliner trains or buses at no additional charge but will need to adhere to the trip limits of their pass.

What are the best seats on the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train?

Seats in Amtrak business class on the Pacific Surfliner from San Diego to Santa Barbara.

You want to sit on the west side of the train because the ocean views as the train roars up the coast are stunning. I prefer Amtrak business class simply because the seats offer more space and the cars are quieter.

How early do I need to arrive at the train station?

All you need to do is be at the platform exactly when the train arrives. I try to get there a little early so I have time to figure out which platform I need to be on and walk to it (this can be a little confusing at Old Town Station, for example, where there’s an underground walkway to the opposite track).

The conductor scans tickets on the train but will check business class passenger tickets before allowing them onto the business class car.

What else can I expect onboard?

Wine and a snack pack given out in Amtrak business class on the Pacific Surfliner train.

Free WiFi is a nice benefit of taking the train from San Diego to Disneyland. You can get a little work done or catch up on email. Note that it’s not the fastest and can cut out intermittently. Every window seat in coach and business class has a surge-protected electrical outlet.

If you’re carrying luggage, a standard carry-on can fit on the racks above each seat. Space is tight, so if you’re used to pushing the limits of your airplane carry-on, that bag might be too big. I have a carry-on suitcase that is 21.5 x 15.8 x 9.1,” and it fits fine. The dimension you have to pay attention to is the depth. I’ve seen plenty of people have issues with suitcases that are too fat.

Larger luggage can be placed on luggage racks in each train car. You’ll need to be comfortable with the fact that it will be out of your sightline. Lots of people leave large luggage here. Just be sure that yours is locked and labeled with your contact details.

Head over to the cafe car with items for purchase if you’d like a sandwich, snacks, or a beverage. Yes, they do serve wine and beer. Business class passengers receive a complimentary beverage and a snack box. These are handed out at certain times in the journey. I’ve received it in San Diego and not until Los Angeles during other trips. If you sense that the snack box isn’t coming your way, ask the staff member who patrols your cabin.

Does the train get delayed?

The train is the most reliable way to skip San Diego and Orange County traffic at any time of the day. The train is efficient and very rarely delayed by more than a few minutes.

I will say that I was delayed by a few hours once on a train from San Diego to Santa Barbara due to a car on the tracks. So, while can’t guarantee you’ll arrive on time with 100% certainty, it’s more reliable than driving which is why many San Diegans use it to get to Los Angeles and Orange County.

How long is the drive from San Diego to Disneyland?

Without traffic, the drive should take about 90 minutes. The drive time depends on where your starting point in San Diego is, of course. From Carlsbad hotels, the drive from San Diego to Disneyland is shorter at around 75 minutes. From La Jolla and downtown San Diego, you’re looking at about 90 minutes.

There can be a considerable amount of traffic in North County San Diego, around Oceanside, and it can also start in south Orange County in Mission Viejo. If you are driving to Disneyland, leave before or after morning rush hour traffic or in the evening after 7 p.m. for your best chances for a speedy drive. It’s not uncommon for traffic accidents to throw off a drive at any time of the day, however.considerable

Download the Amtrak App

You can check to see exactly what time your train is arriving, to the minute, on the Amtrak app. I often refresh it along the way to see what stations we’re approaching because sometimes it’s hard to understand the conductors.

Don’t pay full price for tickets:

Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide, like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai, that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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