China is a vast country, covering more than 9 million square kilometres. Travelling between cities can take up valuable time and as the cost of flights continues to increase it often makes sense to use China’s excellent rail network. Taking a taxi from the airport to the centre of Shanghai can take up to 45 minutes to cover the 30 kilometres in heavy traffic, however the high speed Maglev train can whisk you into the city centre in just 7 minutes and 20 seconds!
When traveling between major cities in China make the most of the sleeper trains available. Compartments sleep either four or six people and although perhaps you won’t have your most comfortable night’s sleep they do offer a wonderful opportunity to meet and chat with Chinese families travelling. Chinese New Year is the busiest time, with an estimated 3.5 million passengers travelling by train each day.
One of the world’s classic train journeys ends in Beijing, the Trans-Siberian Railway. The route begins at Saint Petersburg and traverses the vast landscapes of Russia before entering Mongolia and continuing to the Chinese capital, Beijing.