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Getting there & away

As the nation's capital, getting to Běijīng is straightforward. Rail and air connections link the capital to virtually every point in China, and fleets of buses head to abundant destinations from Běijīng. Using Běijīng as a starting point to explore the rest of the land makes perfect sense.

Bus

No international buses serve Běijīng, but there are plenty of long-distance domestic routes served by national highways radiating from Běijīng.

Běijīng has numerous long-distance bus stations (chángtú qìchēzhàn), positioned roughly on the city perimeter in the direction you want to go.

Buses from Bawangfen long-distance bus station (Bāwángfén Chángtú Kèyùnzhàn)八王坟长途客运站 in the east of town serve Tiānjīn (Y35 to Y40), Bāotóu (sleeper Y150, 12 hours, 6pm) and Qínhuángdǎo (Y85, 3? hours, 7.30am to 6pm), plus destinations in the northeast including Chángchūn (Y291, 12 hours, four daily), Shěnyáng (Y199, 7? hours), Dàlián (Y276, 8? hours, 11am, 2pm and 10pm) and Hā’ěrbīn (Y341, 14 hours, 6pm and 8pm).

The nearby Sihui long-distance bus station (Sìhuì Chángtú Qìchēzhàn) 四惠长途客运站has departures to Tiānjīn (Y23, hourly 6.30am to 4.30pm), Chéngdé (Y56 to Y74, four hours), Qǐnhuángdǎo (Y78, 3? hours, five per day), Bāotóu (Y150, 12 hours, 9.30am and 2.30pm), Chángchūn (Y240, 12 hours, 5pm), Dàlián (Y275 to Y282, 10 hours, 4.30pm and 6.30pm) and Dāndōng (Y224, one daily).

Liuliqiao long-distance bus station (Liùlǐqiáo Chángtúzhàn; 8383 1716),六里桥长途站 southwest of Beijing West train station, has buses north, south and west of town including Dàtóng (Y125 regular), Bāotóu (Y150, three daily), Shāchéng (Y45, two hours, 11.50am and 2pm), Shíjiāzhuāng (Y75 regular), Chéngdé (Y60 regular), Luòyáng (Y248, four daily), Xī’ān (Y180), Héféi (Y180), Yínchuān (Y237), Dàlián (Y282, 4pm) and Xiàmén (Y880, 11.30am every other day).

The nearby Lianhuachi long-distance bus station (Liánhuāchí Chángtú Qìchēzhàn) has buses south to Shíjiāzhuāng (Y50 regular), Luòyáng (Y165, once daily), ānyáng (Y105, twice daily), Jǐ’nán (Y100, once daily) and Yán’ān (Y245, once daily).

Another important station is Zhaogongkou long-distance bus station赵公口长途汽车站 (6722 9491, 6723 7328) in the south (useful for buses to Tiānjīn).

Train

Travellers arrive and depart by train at Beijing train station (Běijīng Huǒchēzhàn; 5101 9999), southeast of the Forbidden City, or the colossal Beijing West train station (Běijīng Xīzhàn; 5182 6273) in the southwest. Beijing train station is served by its own underground station, making access simple. International trains to Moscow, Pyongyang (North Korea) and Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia) arrive at and leave from Beijing train station; trains for Vietnam leave from Beijing West train station. Buses 122 and 721 connect Beijing train station with Beijing West train station.

The queues at Beijing train station can be overwhelming. At the time of writing, an English-speaking service was available at ticket window 26. Information is available at window 29. A foreigners ticketing office (24hr) can be found on the 2nd floor of Beijing West train station. If you can’t face the queues, ask your hotel to book your ticket or try one of the train ticket offices around town where you pay a Y5 commission for your ticket. One train ticket office (6316 5558; 8.30am-10pm) can be found just west of the Lao She Teahouse; another train ticket office (6618 9978; 9 Zhengjue Hutong; 8am-10.30pm) can be found east of Xinjiekou Nandajie.

From Beijing train station From Beijing train station, ‘Z’ class overnight soft-sleeper express trains (zhítè) trains do the trip to Shànghǎi in 12 hours, with several trains (Z1, Z5, Z7, Z13 and Z21; 7.56pm, 8.02pm, 7.44pm, 7.38pm and 7.32pm respectively, lower/upper bunk Y499/478) departing nightly. In the reverse direction, trains (Z2, Z6, Z8, Z14, Z22) depart for Běijīng from Shànghǎi at similar times.

Other fast express trains from Beijing train station include Sūzhōu (Z85, 7.50pm, hard sleeper Y309, 10 hours 50 minutes), Hángzhōu (Z9, 7.26pm, soft sleeper only Y554, 12 hours 50 minutes), Héféi (Z73, 9.30pm, hard sleeper Y263, nine hours 20 minutes), Chángchūn (Z61, 10.40pm, hard seat Y116, hard sleeper Y215, seven hours 50 minutes), Hā’ěrbīn (Z15, 9.20pm, nine hours 15 minutes) and Nánjīng (Z49, 9.42pm, nine hours 10 minutes).

Typical train fares and approximate travel times for hard-sleeper tickets to destinations from Beijing train station include: Chángchūn (Y239, 9? hours), Dàlián (Y257, 12 hours), Dàtóng (Y70, 5? hours), Hángzhōu (Y363, 15 hours), Hā’ěrbīn (Y281, 11? hours), Jǐ’nán (Y137, 4? hours), Jílín (Y263, 12 hours), Nánjīng (Y274, 11 hours), Qīngdǎo (Y215, nine hours), Shànghǎi (Y327, 13? hours, soft-sleeper express 12 hours), Sūzhōu (Y309, 11 hours), Tiānjīn (Y30, 80 minutes, hard seat) and ürümqi (Y652, 44 hours).

From Beijing West train station Fast ‘Z’ class express trains from Beijing West train station include Fúzhōu (Z59, 5.38pm, hard seat Y253, hard sleeper Y458, 19 hours 40 minutes), Chángshā (Z17, 6.16pm, 13 hours), Nánchāng (Z65, 7.34pm, hard sleeper Y319, 11? hours), Wǔchāng (Z11, 9.06pm, hard sleeper Y281, 10 hours), Hànkǒu (Z77, 9.18pm, Y281, 10 hours) and Xī’ān (Z19, 9.24pm, Y417, 11 hours).

Other typical train fares and approximate travel times for hard-sleeper tickets to destinations from Beijing West train station include: Chángshā (Y345, 14 hours), Chéngdū (Y418, 26 hours), Chóngqìng (Y430, 25 hours), Guǎngzhōu (Y458, 22 hours), Guìyáng (Y490, 29 hours), Hànkǒu (Y281, 10 hours 20 minutes), Kūnmíng (Y578, 40 hours), Lánzhōu (Y390, 20? hours), Shēnzhèn (Y467, 23? hours), Shíjiāzhuāng (hard seat Y50, two hours 45 minutes), Kowloon (Y480, 24 hours 23 minutes), ürümqi (Y652, 44 hours), Yínchuān (Y262, 19 hours), Xī’ān (Y274, 12 hours), Yíchāng (Y319) and Xīníng (Y430, 24? hours).

For Lhasa in Tibet, the T27 (hard seat Y389, hard/soft sleeper Y813/1262, 48 hours) leaves Beijing West train station at 9.30pm, taking just under two days. In the return direction, the T28 departs Lhasa at 8.30am.

From Beijing South train station Beijing’s brand-new Beijing South train station (Běijīng Nánzhàn) opened in August 2008. High-speed trains – the world’s fastest intercity trains – depart from here for the 30-minute journey to Tiānjīn.

From Beijing North train station Inner Mongolia is served by trains from Beijing North train station (Běijīng Běizhàn; 5186 6223).

Air

Běijīng has direct air connections to most major cities in the world.

Purchase tickets for Chinese carriers flying from Běijīng at CAAC in the Aviation Building (Mínháng Yíngyè Dàshà; 6656 9118, domestic 6601 3336, international 6601 6667; 15 Xichang’an Jie; 7am-midnight) or from one of the numerous other ticket outlets and service counters around Běijīng, and through most midrange and top-end hotels. Discounts are generally available, so it is important to ask. For online bookings, Ctrip (www.ctrip.com.cn) can deliver your ticket to you.

You can make inquiries for all airlines at Běijīng’s Capital Airport (PEK; from Běijīng only 962 580). Call 6454 1100 for information on international and domestic arrivals and departures.

Daily flights connect Běijīng to every major city in China. There should be at least one flight a week to smaller cities throughout China

 


Daily Seat-In-Coach Tours small vehicle in good condition
 Great Wall at Badaling and Ming Tomb 200 RMB p/p.
 Great Wall at Mutianyu and Ming Tomb 250 RMB p/p.
 Great Wall hiking tour from JingShanLing to SiMaTai 300 RMB p/p.
 Forbidden City ; Summer Palace and Temple of Heaven one day tour 300 RMB p/p.


Acrobatics Show Discount Price

 China Puppet Theatre Acrobatics Kingdom 140 RMB p/p.
 Tiandi Theatre 140 RMB p/p.
 Tianqiao Acrobatic Theatre 140 RMB p/p.
 Chaoyang Theatre Acrobatic show 150 RMB p/p.


Beijing Opera Show
Discount Price
 Liyuan Theatre Opera show 140 RMB p/p.
 Huguang Guild Hall Opera show 140 RMB p/p.
 Forbidden Love Opera at Nationalities Culture Palace 140 RMB p/p.


Kungfu Show
Discount Price
 Red Theatre Legend of Kungfu 140 RMB p/p.


Private Tours private driver and tour guide
 Great Wall at Badaling and Ming Tomb one day tour.
 Great Wall at Mutianyu and Ming Tomb one day tour.
 Great Wall from Jinshanling to Simatai hiking one day tour.
 Forbidden City; Summer Palace and Temple of Heaven one day tour.
 Mutianyu Great Wall half day tour.
 Temple of Heaven and Summer Palace one day tour.
 Hutong Tour by rickshaw.

Date: 05/20/2009


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