The ultra-efficient MTR train network connects Kowloon to the eastern and western New Territories. Trains run every five to eight minutes, and connections to the subway are relatively quick. This is a commuter service and, like the subway, has sparkling-clean trains and stations—smoking, eating, and drinking are strictly forbidden.
The train network has three main lines. The East Rail line begins at Hung Hom, with notable stops at Mong Kok, Kowloon Tong, Sha Tin, Racecourse, Chinese University, and Tai Po on its way to Lo Wu at the mainland Chinese border. East Rail is the fastest way to get to Shenzhen—it's a 40-minute trip from Hung Hom to Lo Wu. The Hung Hom train station terminus connects via a series of walkways with East Tsim Sha Tsui; you can also transfer to the MTR at Kowloon Tong.
The short Ma On Shan Rail service starts at Tai Wai and has eight stops in the northeastern New Territories.
West Rail starts at East Tsim Sha Tsui, moves on to Tsim Sha Tsui for a possible connection to the subway, then extends westward through 10 more stops to Tuen Mun, in the New Territories. Here West Rail connects with the local Light Rail Transit, an aboveground train serving mainly residential and industrial areas in the western New Territories.
The regular fare from Central to Lo Wu is HK$47.50, while a first-class ticket will set you back HK$85. You can pay by Octopus Card or buy tickets from the Customer Service Centres or ticket machines inside MTR stations.
Trains have television screens that constantly barrage you with news and advertisements. To avoid this, avail yourself of the cars marked "Quiet."