Rated Top 9 California Wine Tour Company for Learning, Sipping, and Sightseeing by Travel + Leisure. Book your exclusive Private Tour of Paso Robles Wine Country today!

Central Coast Hearst Castle & Wine Tour FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What time does the train depart and arrive?

  • Los Angeles Getaway:
    • Day 1: Depart 10:10 from Los Angeles
    • Day 1: Arrive 4:37pm in Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Depart 1:38pm from Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Arrive 9:00pm in Los Angeles
  • San Francisco Getaway:
    • Day 1: Depart 8:50am from Oakland, Jack London Square
    • Day 1: Arrive 1:38pm in Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Depart 4:37pm from Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Arrive 9:24pm in Oakland, Jack London Square
  • San Francisco to Paso Robles to Los Angeles:
    • Day 1: Depart 8:50am from Oakland, Jack London Square
    • Day 1: Arrive 1:38pm in Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Depart 1:38pm from Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Arrive 9:00pm in Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles to Paso Robles to San Francisco:
    • Day 1: Depart 10:10 from Los Angeles
    • Day 1: Arrive 4:37pm in Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Depart 4:37pm from Paso Robles
    • Day 3: Arrive 9:24pm in Oakland, Jack London Square

We recommend arriving to the train station 30 minutes to 1 hour before your scheduled departure time.
Please keep in mind, the Coast Starlight is a grand West Coast Train Adventure, en route daily between Los Angeles and Seattle and is frequently subject to delays. If your train is delayed, you will leave or arrive later, but it should not affect your guided Hearst Castle & Wine tour which is on Day 2 of the trip.

How long is the train ride?

Paso Robles is halfway in between San Francisco and Los Angeles, but depending on the direction and the leg travel time is different.

You can expect the following travel times:

  • The travel time between Oakland (San Francisco) and Paso Robles by train is about 5 hours (Coast Starlight Train 11).
  • The travel time between Paso Robles and Los Angeles is about 7.5 hours (Coast Starlight Train 11).
  • The travel time between Los Angeles and Paso Robles is about 6.5 hours (Coast Starlight Train 14).
  • The travel time between Paso Robles and Oakland (San Francisco) is about 5 hours (Coast Starlight Train 14).

All connections are direct.

How much luggage can I bring?

On the Amtrak Train luggage is limited to 2 personal items, 14x11x7 inches (35 x 28 x 18 cm) / 25lbs (11 kg) per item, and 2 bags, 28x22x14 inches (71 x 56 x 36 cm) / 50lbs (23 kg) per bag, per passenger.

You may be charged a baggage fee or denied boarding if your items exceed these limitations.

The Amtrak website has specific carry-on baggage information.

Please note: There is no checked bag service at the Paso Robles train station, so you must carry your bags onto the train with you.

What if the train is delayed?

The Coast Starlight is a grand West Coast Train Adventure, en route daily between Los Angeles and Seattle and is frequently subject to delays.

If your train is delayed, you will arrive later at your destination, but it should not affect your tour which is on Day 2 of the trip.

Be sure to check updated train information and plan accordingly. You can check the train status at: traintracker.toasttours.com.

For the most accurate time, you may also download the Amtrak App.

In the event of a severe delay or train cancellation, please contact us immediately and we will work to find an alternative solution.

Do I have an assigned seat on the train?

No. Seats are not assigned and you will be able to choose your seat upon boarding the train. Amtrak cannot guarantee that you will be able to sit with other members in your party, unless you are traveling with a child.

What travel class do I have on the train?

You will have a seat reserved in Coach Class, unless you choose to upgrade to the Business Class seat option.

What is the benefit of the Business Class seat option?

With business class seats you will be seated in a dedicated Business Class train car.

Upon boarding, you will receive a complimentary bottle of water and an on-board credit which may be redeemed in the dining or lounge cars.

In Los Angeles, you will have access to the Metropolitan Lounge (Hours of Operation: 5:00am – 10:00pm) located on the second floor, above the ticket office.

Amenities in the lounge include comfortable, quiet lounge seating, complimentary non-alcoholic beverages, snacks and free WiFi.

Can I get food on the train?

Yes. The café car is always available for to enjoy a snack or to grab items for takeaway.

Seated dining is also a fun and memorable option on the train and is available by reservation for lunch or dinner. You can make reservations ON THE TRAIN only for seated dining in the dining car.

Breakfast is available without a reservation.

You can check the Amtrak Website for more information and hours offered.

Do you have WiFi?

No, there is no WiFi available in the train or our mini-bus. There is free WiFi in your hotel room.

What are the check-in and check-out times at the hotel?

Hotel check-in time is at 4:00 pm. Your luggage can be stored prior to 4:00pm. Hotel check-out time is 11:00 am. Arrangements may be made for late check-out.

Where do we have breakfast before our tour?

Breakfast is included with your hotel stay and is available in the hotel starting at 6:00am Monday – Friday and 7:00am on Saturday & Sunday.

What should I wear?

It is a good idea to bring layers and sunscreen. The coastal weather at San Simeon and Cambria can be very cool and foggy, and Paso Robles can be much warmer with sunny hot weather in the summer.

There are extreme temperature swings from day to night, so mornings and evenings can be much colder as well, with a possible 40F degree temperature swing between day and night.

Wear comfortable shoes, as The Grand Rooms Tour is 60 minutes long and includes approximately 160 steps, both up and down, and a 2/3 mile walk.

Can we choose which Hearst Castle Tour we do?

Sorry, no. This tour includes The Grand Rooms tour of Hearst Castle since it is the best option for first-time visitors and provides a great introduction to the Castle and William Randolph Hearst.

The tour walks you through the stunning grounds before entering the main building, called Casa Grande, where you visit the Assembly Room, Refectory, Morning Room, Billiard Room and Theater.

If you would prefer to do a different Hearst Castle Tour, please contact us regarding a Private Tour and we can work to put together your ideal itinerary.

Will we have time to watch the “Building the Dream” video at the Hearst Castle Theater?

Sorry, no. In order to have enough time to visit the charming town of Cambria and visit three fun wineries throughout the day we have to limit our time at Hearst Castle to the tour itself.

They have copies of the video available for sale at Hearst Castle if you wish to view the documentary at a later date.

Which wineries will we visit?

There is no set schedule of wineries.

We will visit wineries on Paso Robles’ west side and like to visit boutique, family owned wineries when possible.

How do you determine which wineries would be best for our group?

  • Smaller, non-touristy locations
  • Excellent wines, moderately priced
  • Warm & friendly service
  • Family-friendly

Any beverages provided?

Yes. Chilled, bottled water is served on the bus.

May we drink alcohol on the bus?

Yes, if enjoyed responsibly.

However, please keep in mind that tasting rooms can refuse to serve intoxicated guests (even if you do have a driver), and that wouldn’t be a lot of fun!

Additionally, if a guest does become too intoxicated, they may need to be removed from the tour early, at their own expense.

Ultimately, we want to ensure that each tour is successful, with all the guests having a great experience!

Will you add any taxes or fuel fees to our tour price?

No taxes and no additional fees. The price you see is the price you pay.

Are wine tasting fees included?

Wine tastings are included at the first two wineries we’ll be visiting in the day.

If you choose to do a tasting in Tin City, this will be at your own expense.

May I share a tasting?

Yes. Almost any of the wineries we visit will allow our guests to share a tasting.

Am I required to taste at all of the wineries?

You are not required to taste at the wineries.

If you are not planning to taste wine at any of the wineries, you can purchase the ‘Non Drinker’ ticket which doesn’t include tastings.

If I buy wine, can I store it on the vehicle?

Yes! Our vehicle has plenty of safe storage space for holding your wine and other purchases.

I don’t live locally – can I get my wine purchases home safely?

Yes! We sell insulated, styrofoam padded wine shipping boxes that hold a case (12 bottles) of wine.

These boxes can be carried-on the train as one of your two allowed large carry-on bags, and can be safely checked on the airplane as a checked bag.

For individual bottles, we sell padded Wine Skins to safely store your wine bottles in your checked baggage during travel.

*Please check with your airline for specific baggage requirements and restrictions.

Are your tours dog friendly?

We love dogs, but unfortunately, can’t allow them on our shared group tours, unless it is a service animal.

We do welcome well-behaved dogs on our private tours, and are happy to work with you to build your perfect dog-friendly wine country day.
Check out our Private Tour FAQ to learn more about bringing your pooch out on tour!

Is Driver Gratuity included in the Tour Cost?

For parties of fewer than 5 guests, gratuity for your Tour Guide is not included on our group tours.

Gratuities are based on your guides’ performance, and are greatly appreciated. For a good performance, it is standard to give a 15-20% gratuity.

For parties of 5 or more on our group tours, an 18% gratuity will be added to your tour price.

What is your cancellation policy?

For our public Central Coast Hearst Castle & Wine group tours all cancellations and changes will be subject to a 10% per person fee.

Any cancellations with less than 14 days notice before the scheduled departure time will not be entitled to any refunds.

Are children allowed on the tour?

Yes! Children of all ages are welcome on the tour though drinking alcohol is not permitted for those under the age of 21. This tour is not recommended for children under the age of 8 years old.

By California law, any children under the age of 8 years old, as well as any children shorter than 4’9” must be secured in a car seat or booster seat.

Toast Tours DOES NOT provide a car seat or booster seat, and it is your responsibility to provide this yourself.

Children under the age of 8 years old will not be allowed on the vehicle if you do not have a car seat or booster seat.

Please bring a valid photo ID.

Lost or Stolen Items?

Toast Tours is not responsible for any items lost or stolen on our tour or in the wineries.

Please take care to collect all of your belongings when you leave, including any wine or merchandise purchased throughout the day.

Any items left behind which are found can be returned to the guests at their request and expense.

Are you fully licensed and insured?

Yes. We are registered, regulated, and licensed by the State of California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).

The CPUC requires insurance and vehicle inspections as a condition of licensing.
Our license # is TCP38039A.

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