I just returned from a business trip to San Diego where I spent a little bit of time walking around and seeing the sites. The Santa Fe Depot ended up only being about 5 blocks from the hotel I was staying at. The building sits back about a block or so from the waterway where you can visit a maritime museum as well as take a tour of the US aircraft carrier "Midway".
From the outside, the Santa Fe Depot building is downright incredible, it seems just like it would fit into any southwestern desert motif layout, except it's sitting pretty much right in the middle of a city. Outside there is a really nice fountain (seems like a recent addition) and the bell towers are really incredible to look at.
From the inside, the building still has fantastic features such as the older style wooden benches and incredible archways for each doorway. The ceiling must be 30-40 feet high and there are really neat chandelier lights hanging to provide light should you find yourself visiting in the night time. The walls still have ceramic tiles on them with the classic Santa Fe designs, overall entering the building really feels like taking a step back in time.
Outside the building there were a couple Amtrak trains (The Surfliner and the Coaster) as well as the San Diego "Trolley" lite-rail passed through many times while I was walking around.
Overall it was a fantastic place to spend an hour or so, poking around and taking pictures. I regret the quality of the pictures isn't fantastic, they are a mix of iPhone and point-and-shoot pictures. This post will be the first of three posts, the second will be of a visit to "Frank the Trainman", and the third will be of a visit to the "San Diego Model Railroad Museum".
Additional pictures can be found at the following link:
All the best...Rich Murnane