Over the years, we’ve gained some of experience with train travel in Europe but had never ridden trains in Canada or the US. As such, we did not know what to expect when we got to the Montreal train station on the morning of our departure.
There is one advantage to AMTRAK trains, when compared to European trains: passenger space. Seats are huge and there is a lot of legroom. As we are not big people, this felt like luxury. The Adirondack train takes about 10.5 hours (including border crossing) to get you from Montreal to New York. This is a long time as this same trip takes about 7-8 hours by bus.
We knew from the start that this would be a long ride but were still excited about traveling the Adirondack’s famous scenic route. We were not disappointed. Most of the trip takes you through forested areas and along the Hudson river. This is a very beautiful train route and I understand why the fall is such a popular time to travel it. It was also a good way to prepare ourselves to long distance train travel as we would soon have to spend a long time on the trans-Siberian railway.
Arriving in New York was very sudden. As soon as the city can be seen in the distance, the train enters a network of underground tunnels which bring you directly to Penn station. We only really realized we had arrived once we got out of the station. 8th Avenue’s hectic environment soon brought us out of our Adirondack contemplative mood.
We decided to spend only one and a half day in New York. The city is not too far from Montreal so it’s quite easy for us to travel there. It’s also quite expensive and we preferred to spend our budget on other destinations. On that day, we visited the American Museum of Natural History and walked through Central Park. Since we were staying in China Town, we didn’t have a hard time finding affordable vegan food and even had the chance to go to Buddha Bodai, a vegetarian dim sum restaurant.