Taking the train to and from Datong
Datong is on the railwaytrack between Beijing and Xian. From Beijing it is a six hours ride for 46 Yuan as a Hard Seat. Dont worry, it is much better than it sounds;-)
Leaving Datong to Xian, you have to take the overnight train. Departure is in the early evening and arrival in Xian in the early morning. Hard Sleeper charge was 130 Kuai.
It was ok, but for my size the beds were a little bit short. Hard Sleeper means three beds on top of each other and six beds alltogether in an open cabin.
Tickets are easy to get in the trainstation.
Extreme bus riding!
Well, Datong public transportation is quite adventurous! The bus on the pic still has some scars from several roadkills and the door opens by pulling the "automatic" line;-)
In other busses you could look through the bottom holes all the way to the streetground - if Datong wouldn´t be so polluted due to the heavy coal industry I would say it is good for fresh air.....
But they offer a good connection to the Yungang Caves. It takes about 20 minutes.
Bus rides normally cost 1 Kuai.
easy to go to Yungang Cave
Yungang cave is west of Datong, pretty close. You can easily get an taxi or join a day tour at local travel agencies
It takes about 40 min from city center to Yungang Cave
Tour buses to Yungan Cave and Hanging Monastery is available at Datong Long Distance Bus Station.
- Historical Travel
- Arts and Culture
Capturados por el CIT / Captured by the CIT
Cundo bajas del tren en Datong te sientes capturado por el CIT pues están esperando a la salida y en cuanto ven a un "guiri" lo atrapan e intentan venderle la excursión . A pesar de ser unos vendedores bastante desagradables , contratamos con ellos el hotel y la excursión que no nos salió mal , comparado con las otras personas que encontramos en el viaje
Visita al templo colgante y a las cuevas , incluida la comida : 100 Yuan traslados + 120 Yuan Entradas + 5 Yuan Comida
Visita de nueve de la mañana a seis de la tarde
When leave the train in Datong you feel yourself captured by the CIT , because they are waiting in the exit and if you look like a tourist they trap you and they try to sell you the trip. Despite being some rather unpleasant sellers , we got from them the hotel and the visit around , and we were not wrong, compared with the other travellers who were on the trip
Visit the hanging temple and caves, including food: 120 Yuan Transport + 100 Yuan Entrance tickets + 5 Yuan Food
Visit : from 9am to 6 pm
Rough ride to the Hanging Monastery
Bustrip from Datong to the Xuankong Si. You have to take a private bus to Hunyuan (10-15 Kuai) and from there it is only 5km rough ride on a mountain path to the Temple.
Private Busses are always crowded. They drive around on the look for more passengers and they won´t leave until they are full. But full has a different meaning for private transportation entrepreneurs....
This one was built for 10 passangers - in the end there were 22 people on board! They know how to squeeze the last Jiaoje out of their vehicles!
PS: some roads are in a very poor condition, they sometimes drive bumpy short cuts across the fields and the last mountain path is not much better - I hit my head on the bus roof twice!
Plus our bad luck was that on the way back it started to snow heavily and most other cars got stuck or were already in the ditches - our good luck was that our bus driver had snow chains, thank God almighty!
Getting to Datong
There is a night train from Beijing West Station.
In 2001, this was K705 leaving at 11:23pm and scheduled to arrive at 6:30am. If you're only doing a daytrip of the Hanging Monastery and the Cloud Ridge Grottoes, you may want to find the CITS agent who meets the train. (Our train was delayed until 1:30am so the CITS tour was delayed to accomodate Beijing customers.)
As explained in the transportation section of my China page, it was difficult obtaining train tickets on your own. We were told that no sleepers were available for the return trip.
However, the CITS magically booked us on #4431 to Beijing Main Station (not the West station) departing 10:40pm and gave us a discount on the booking fee for booking the tour at the same time.
- Historical Travel
Llegamos a Datong en tren de día y nos fuimos hacia Pingyao en el tren nocturno al día siguiente , así que fue nuestro estreno en los asientos y camas duras . ambos como su propio nombre indica son "duros" , pero no por ello dejan de ser prácticos y hasta "divertido"
En el viaje de día lo pasamos muy bien pues sacamos el libro de Chino y era una auténtica sensación para los Chinos que se pasaron todo el viaje , revisándolo , enseñándonos a pronunciar e intentando comunicarse con nosotros además , aunque todavía no sabemos por que nos cambiaron a medio viaje a asientos blandos .
La noche que cogimos el tren nocturno íbamos preocupados pues hacía mucho frío y pensábamos que la noche iba a ser muy mala .El vagón no tiene puertas y tiene separaciones en las que hay 6 literas , las de abajo más caras que las de arriba , pero todas ellas limpias y con una manta que nos quitó el frió a pesar de que la calefacción no era muy fuerte
Nos llamó la atención como se movía , por la mañana , la responsable del vagón por la parte de arriba de las literas recogiéndolas , se movía con la ligereza de un mono
Beijing- Datong . Asiento duro : 31 Yuan 5h 30m
datong- Pingyao . Cama dura : 78 Yuan + 30 Yuan comision CIT 9h
We arrived by train to Datong in a day train and we went to Pingyao in the night train the next day, so it was our debut in the hard seats and sleepers. Both as its name suggests are "tough", but nevertheless they are practical and "fun"
During the day we passed it very well , because we took the Chinese language book and it was really funny for the Chinese , who spent the entire trip, checking it , teaching us and trying to make contact with us . We still do not know why , but they changed us during the trip to soft seats.
The night we went in the night train , we were worried because it was very cold and we thought that the night was going to be very bad. Wagon has no doors and have separations in which there are 6 berths, the lowers more expensive than those above, but all clean and with a blanket that helped us in a very cold night cold because the heating was not very strong
We drew attention the way it was moving , in the morning, the lady responsible for the wagon by the top of berths picking all clothes , as she moved with the lightness of a monkey
Beijing-Datong. Hard Seat: 31 Yuan 5h 30m
Datong-Pingyao. hard Sleeper : 78 Yuan + 30 Yuan CIT commission 9h