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Last month I have an unforgettable experience with the bus from Lijiang to Panzhihua. Our bus started at 7.30 a.m., all of the passengers are chinese except i and my sister. We quite enjoyed with its beautyful scenery but it became terrible when people started to throw out his phlegm and vomit out on the bus floor even the dustbin and the plastic bag are beside them!!!
Written May 2, 2008
There is a long-distance bus from Panzhihua to Lijiang and viceversa.
The price is 62 RMB an the journey is quite fun! It's usually a mid-size bus for about 25 pax.
And I can understand why it's a mid-size one... :) it's because this is the type which will suite the road which is mostly narrow (enough to fit just 2 vehicles) and with a lot of mountain virages. The landsacape is very impressive and it probably worth a ride just for that. Also you will get to see how the locals drive... they drive like crazy! when the bus driver was about to turn on a virgae he would not lower the speed, but he would just signal that I'm coming round the corner... :) and he drived really fast for this kind of road. Apparently all the other drivers do just the same. Also, the only time he would have to stop is just because we were driving throgh some small village where the locals have a street market, of course on the road and there could pass only one vehicle, so from time to time you would have to let vehicles from opposite direction to pass. But it was also interesting, cause you get to see the locals and the street market. If you're realy into adventure the 7-8 hours trip with this bus can be fun. You'll have one stop on the way to eat and maybe 2 more for the toilet..
There are several buses leaving from Panzhihua to Lijiang, the one I took was at 8:30, and it is suitable when you came with the K117 train at 7:30.
The clercks at the bus station will speak English fairly well for you in order to get your ticket. And that is realy surprising, as in other big cities it sometimes can be more of the trouble. But on the other hand it's understandable as each day same route is followed by tens of foreigners. Out of 24 passengers on this bus, there where 4 foreigners including me.
Written Nov 11, 2005
You can get to Panzhihua by train. There is a no: K117 train from Beijing to Panzhihua. The train leaves from Beijing at 11:29 and you'll get to Panzhihua after 2 nights spent in train at around 7:30. Also you can take the same train from Chengdu, it leaves at 18:20, you'll be at Panzhihua next morning (same around 7:30 :)
Also you may catch this train from Xi'an or EmeiShan - other travel destinations people usually come from.
Oh.. and about the price:
Soft-sleeper from Beijing will cost about 900 RMB, hard-sleeper will be around 500 RMB.
Soft-sleeper from Chengdu will be 300 RMB, hard-sleeper is 179 RMB.
Keep in mind that the prices may changes and also depends on the lower or upper bed you are taking, but the difference is minor.
Updated Nov 11, 2005
There is a bus from train station to long distance bus station and viceversa. The trip will take about 40 minutes, as the train station is out of town. It used to take more time, but know they rebuilded the road (in nov.2005 there was just a small portion to be complited) so the trip will be really smooth. The price is 4 RMB. The bus is an old-type 40-people standart one filled with locals carrying their luggage inside the bus. Some of them who will not get the seat will still travel by standing. So if you are not planing on standing as well make sure you have a sit. As soon as you'll get out of the bus or train station you'll notice people calling you to the bus, so it is realy hard to miss it. Enjoy your ride!
Written Nov 11, 2005
The trip from Lijiang to Chengdu was definitely one of the worst trips I've ever encountered. The trip started great because the road winds through some of the gorges in the area that lead to the Tiger Leaping Gorge. Then, the gentleman sitting across from us who was only coughing and groaning before begins to vomit and dry heave out of the bus window. This is the loudest I've ever heard someone do this, it was the most dramatic and theatrical bit of suffering I ever saw (about 5 hrs of). The lady next to him lets her baby urinate in the aisle even though everyones bags are on the floor including her own. We got stuck behind roadwork, we got stuck in mud. The city is not a place you want to stay because the nuclear reactors? around the city cover everything with a dull grey soot. Everything seems smothered. Missed our train but were lucky enough to catch another for that night. Lijiang and Chengdu are wonderful, just be careful in transit.---BC
Written Nov 17, 2004