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Xian to Datong by train

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Cebu City...
posts: 49
reviews: 4
Xian to Datong by train

I'll be spending a few weeks in China: 6 days in Beijing then a fast train to Xian. Xian for 4 days or so then either train to Beijing then train to Datong or a train straight to Datong from Xian. I know the train to Datong is slow, but it seems to make sense to go straight there from Xian rather than go to Beijing and spend a night then go the next morning to Datong. I welcome any advice on my plans. Thanks!

Beijing, China
Destination Expert
for Beijing
posts: 5,000
reviews: 82
1. Re: Xian to Datong by train

You could stop off at Pingyao instead for a day and overnight then pick up a train from Taiyuan to Datong next afternoon-evening. Obviously you'd have to juggle your time about.

Cebu City...
posts: 49
reviews: 4
2. Re: Xian to Datong by train

Is there something special in Pingyao, Qupnicely? I have no trouble with a long train ride, I'm simply asking if taking the train direct to Datong rather than going to Beijing 1st makes sense.

Beijing, China
Destination Expert
for Beijing
posts: 5,000
reviews: 82
3. Re: Xian to Datong by train

Pingyao is an old walled city. There are other attractions around it. Look on that forum for more info. I only mentioned it because its on the route from Xi'an to Datong and you would arrive first thing in the morning there rather than spending most of the rest of the day on the train to Datong. I suppose it depends how you would travel to Beijing and then on to Datong whether or not it would make sense.

xi an
posts: 253
reviews: 6
4. Re: Xian to Datong by train

i could not agree more .

ping yao is your choice .this is a very very ancient .you can climb up to the city wall .a lot of old buildings .try many types of food .and it is not too far from ping yao to datong .

beijing
posts: 3,292
reviews: 5
5. Re: Xian to Datong by train

Yeah, if going to be poking around in this region, don't miss Pingyao. Cut Xi'an by a day if you have to.

If Datong is a must-do, then definitely better to go from Xi'an rather than going back to Beijing first. Might be tough getting sleeper berth though, esp on the Xi'an-Pingyao route. Often there are very cheap flights Xi'an to Taiyuan, from where one can bus or seat-on-train to Pingyao---keep info in hip pocket in case needing a Plan B.

Edited: 2:57 am, February 15, 2013
Cebu City...
posts: 49
reviews: 4
6. Re: Xian to Datong by train

I've been reading about Pingyao for a few hours now and am so glad y'all made these suggestions! It looks like a great stop-over for a few days and the Mianshan Mountain looks great! I retired at 53 last year so I can have time to do this stuff! Thoughts on my timing: Beijing 6 days, train to Mt Huashan, 1 night, see the mountain the next day then train to Xian, Xian for about 4 days, train to Pingyao, 2 nights there then train to Datong. 1 night there then train to Beijing for a few more days. Comments please...

beijing
posts: 3,292
reviews: 5
7. Re: Xian to Datong by train

Better plan. But why so much time in Beijing? It sounds like you have between 2 and 3 weeks in country. Seems like you could see/do more in this amount of time, even if you just want to stay in the general north central region and keep everything on ground transport. I realize you may have specific tasks/activities you are involved with that may require chunks of time in Beijing...but if this is not the case, please advise if you need suggestions for additional places to work into this itinerary.

Edited: 1:09 pm, February 15, 2013
Cebu City...
posts: 49
reviews: 4
8. Re: Xian to Datong by train

I enjoy spending enough time in a place so that I'm not rushed. I like to see the typical things in a new place but also like to simply walk around for a day or 2 in big cities. I also plan to take more trips to China in the near future. But, after saying that, what suggestions do you have within the area I'll be in?

Xi'an,Shannxi...
posts: 22
9. Re: Xian to Datong by train

Dear Scott,

Speaking of the arrangement of your tour,you may adjust your duration in different places,for example,you can spend 3 or 4 days in Beijing,it's good good enough for exploring in that city,you may spend 2 full days in Xi'an,to be frank,i am a local guide in Xi'an,and i know there are so much to see in this city speaking of the cultural sites,then you can take the train to go to Datong,and there is only one train(Train number is 2762,leaving Xi'an at 22:54pm and arrives in Datong around 15:30 pm next day),after the visit in Datong,you may go to Beijing,which will be much easier,only a couple of hours by bus,then you will get to Beijing.

Hopefully the explanation will help.

Allen

Xianprivatetours

beijing
posts: 3,292
reviews: 5
10. Re: Xian to Datong by train

#8--Do a little research on the following:

--Wutaishan area. This is between Datong and Pingyao but off to the east. Might be worth a couple of nights. A little bit harder to get around though.

--Luoyang. East of Xi'an and Huashan, but very close by bullet train. A day and a night would cover it.

--Tianshui. West of Xi'an. This has the Maijishan Grottoes. It's doable as a daytrip from Xi'an by standard train, if you're willing to get up early and return at night. Tianshui city is rather dumpy but the grottoes are out of the city (public bus runs out there cheap from train station).

--Chengde northeast of Beijing, usually done by bus (3 hrs) with parts of Day 1, overnight, morning of Day 2 then return to BJ.

On time in Beijing, I hear that you're not wanting to be rushed, but I'd start out with 4 days and plan on backloading another 3-4 more at the end.