Yunnan to Guilin

Oct 9th, 2015, 02:07 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2015
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Yunnan to Guilin

Hi everyone,

I am planning to travel with a friend to China in December, for three weeks. We are planning to enter China from Vietnam via Hekou, travel in Yunnan for about 10 days, and then head on east to Guilin and Yangshou, and finally Hong Kong. For both of us, this is our first trip to China.

We were checking how to get to Guilin from Yunnan, and found the most direct way that is not by flight (we will be on a budget...) is by rail from Kunming. However, we saw that it is at least 18 hours of travel, so we were wondering - would you recommend some non direct way of travelling to Guilin?

I saw a suggested intinerary here:…

that more or less fits what we were looking for, but I have no idea how much time this would take...

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
roibl is offline  
Oct 9th, 2015, 04:17 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
No content in that link. But what exactly is your question? You want a shorter duration overland trip, or want to visit some places enroute? Yunnan is quite isolated geographically due to its hilly terrain, and no high-speed rail so far.
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 9th, 2015, 05:03 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2015
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I hope the link works now:

Anyway, to answer your question, I think I would prefer visiting some places enroute - it seems more interesting and just better than spending so much time in a train. That being said, we do want to spend the appropriate time in the Guilin area (from what I gather about 3-4 days), and leave some time for Hong Kong (and perhaps Macau) - probably another 3-4 days. I would be happy for some advice on how to make an interesting but not too long a trip out of it.
roibl is offline  
Oct 9th, 2015, 06:14 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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It's quite apparent from that link it's going to take many many hours (some on trains, others on bus) to do that overland. Including the visits to Huanguoshu and Kaili, you are talking about 3-4 days. You should really think if that's worth your time.

Flying is relatively cheap in China. Or the 17.5hr train from Kunming to Guilin is not bad at all. Departs at 3:40pm and arrives next morning at 9:09am. Save you a night of hotel as well.
rkkwan is offline  
Oct 9th, 2015, 01:52 PM
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 9,178
In my experience you can find better deals on hotels & flights within China by using Chinese booking sites such as and You can probably find an affordable flight from Kunming to Guilin by using these and avoiding non-Chinese sites. I've had good luck with both.
MmePerdu is online now  
Oct 13th, 2015, 09:01 AM
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 34
You could go via Guiyang. I only used Guiyang as an interchange so not sure if it is worth spending any time there.

But kunming to Guiyang is around 8 hours.

From Guiyang to can get to Guilin in 2.5 hours but most of the fast trains go from Guiyang North.

But if you are on a budget perhaps taking the long journey on the night train isn't too bad. The soft sleepers are comfortable, buffet cart is ok and there is also trolly service, plus it saves on a nights accommodation!

I've lost count of how many night trains we have taken over our last 50 day trip in China, it has definetly added to the experience
theecoquest is offline  
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