A trip to California is a trip worth taking. A traveler can’t just stop in one city and experience the whole of California’s unique culture. Amtrak California makes it possible to see the wide variety of sites and sample the extensive culture. Sample the best of this state with Amtrak California’s “California’s Dreamin’” tour: http://bit.ly/CAdreamin
I agree the CA is a great trip, and every city offers something vastly different. But it's a bummer that Amtrak's trains and buses can't deal with pets. I travel with my dog to San Fran and would love to go by train. Who needs a car in SF? How wild that we can ride the cable cars and cross the Golden Gate, but can't buy a seat for man's best friend!
It is unfortunate about the pets. I agree. At least you can bring your pet along on BART, once you arrive to the city. I was there with a couple of friends a few months ago and saw a man with his dog, hopping onto the train. The dog didn't have a leash. It was amazing though because this dog was really this man's buddy. The dog would wait until the guy started walking and would sit there just looking around when the man stopped to look at something! It was pretty novel how laid back that dog was.
San Francisco is really a walking kind of town. When I don't take Amtrak in I usually just find a BART station and ride that in and get around using BART. It's not a bad way to go. Much better than the battle for parking!
Yeah, I never would have thought dogs were allowed either, but it is San Francisco. They think a little differently over there (all in good humor).
Sacramento is a fine place to visit. A tour of the state capitol perhaps? A stop at the rail road museum? If you happened to take the train you could just turn the corner and visit "Old Sac." Downtown is a nice place to be. Some good places to eat and an up and coming art scene. Every second Saturday of the month people flock to downtown and take a walk around 'the grid' and view the collections of local artists with wine samples and other simple attractions. It's a good time.
If you plan on stopping by in the summer there is always Folsom Lake which is north of Sacramento.
Oh! Mystery dinner theater on the Delta King (in old Sac)! That's fun. It's a live, interactive murder mystery show. Very entertaining.
Sacramento is a slow-paced kind of town. But it's not a bad place to be because it's within reasonable distance of the mountains and the coast. I think I've rambled on long enough now, but hopefully I have been helpful!