This morning, January 1st, 2018, I left Palm Springs, CA and drove to the Citrus Metro Gold Rail station to take the Metro Rail to the Pasadena Tournament of Roses, New Year's Day Rose Parade. I decided to take the affordable, 20-25 mile train trip to Pasadena to avoid the traffic and high cost of parking near the parade. I also thought it would be fun, since I've never taken the Metro Rail before. Parking for the day was $3 and the fare was $1.75 each way. Senior fare is 75 cents each way. The entire trip was $6.50. Parking near the parade (if you can find it) would likely have been $25 to $100 for the day, so the Rail was a big savings.
I got off the line at Lake Street and walked two blocks to the parade route on Colorado Blvd. After the parade, I walked around Old Town Pasadena and did a little sightseeing before boarding the line at the Memorial Park station, for my trip back to the Citrus station. My day trip cost me very little, was easy and fun. The Metro Rail stations don't have restrooms and very few signs or directions to help first time travelers navigate, so allow extra time if you need to be somewhere at a set time. Trying to figure out how and where to pay for parking and the TAP card to ride the rail was not very user friendly. They could definitely use a few signs, arrows and simple, easy-to-use instructions to help first timers of any age. At least this was my experience. Feel free to share yours in the comments section.
The annual Rose Parade is one of the many free things to do in Pasadena, CA. Feel free to mention others in the comment section.