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Transport & Getting Around in China

China is a vast country and it is important to make the right choices regarding internal transport when planning your China tour to maximise your experience in the country. Below you will find the four broad categories of transport in China – overnight trains, the new bullet train routes, river cruises and flights. Many of our China holidays will use a mix of these which we think is all part of the experience of China. Of course, if you have any particular preference then just let us know so that we can incorporate that into your trip.


Overnight Sleeper Trains

We often include at least one overnight train journey on our China tours, particularly with our Self-Guided Adventures as we feel that they are an essential and exciting part of any China trip and, of course, they help lower costs and are often an efficient use of time. We almost always use the 4 berth soft sleeper compartments with lockable doors and plenty of luggage room. On request we can buy out additional berths in a cabin giving you sole occupancy of that cabin. Standards on Chinese trains are good and constantly improving.

Click Here to Learn More About Trains

chinese sleeper train cabin

China’s Bullet Trains

China has been expanding its bullet train routes at an extraordinary pace in recent years with a new line opening up every few months. What used to be an overnight train trip can often be done in a matter of hours with total travel time becoming comparable to flying the same route. We are Increasingly including bullet train routes into our trips and expect this trend to continue. The trains themselves are good value and even second class is more comfortable than an economy flight.

chinese bullet train

River Cruises in China

There are two popular cruise routes in China. The first is the famous 3 to 7 night Yangtze River Cruises to and from Chongqing to either Yichang or all the way to Shanghai with several stops for day trips along the way. The second is the day cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo which passes through some of China’s most beautiful and iconic scenery finishing in relaxed and beautiful Yangshuo. Both these routes are extremely popular with one or both appearing on many itineraries.

yangtze cruise ship

Internal Flights in China

China is a huge country and for most people getting between the main destinations will involve flying. The good news is that most of China’s airports are recently built and the aircraft fleets consist of new Boeings and Airbuses with high safety standards. Most destinations tend to have at least one daily flight with the major destinations having a dozen or more departing throughout the day.

beijing airport
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