Any direct trains between Hong Kong and Guilin?
There are no direct trains between Hong Kong and the Guilin area. However there are some very good high-speed trains just over the border in Shenzhen. Bullet trains depart / arrive at the Shenzhen north station. The Shenzhen north station is easy to reach from Hong Kong by taking the bus or the subway. Watch these two videos that explain how easy it is to commute between Hong Kong and the Shenzhen north railway station.
Trains between Shenzhen and Guilin
There are four pairs of high-speed trains between Shenzhen and Guilin with a very quick travel time of about 3 hours. Departures are at various convenient times during the day. Coming from Hong Kong, it is difficult to make the first train departing from Shenzhen at 7h21. However, since hotels are cheaper in Shenzhen than Hong Kong, it makes sense to spend the previous night in Shenzhen if you wish to catch the first train to Guilin.
Shenzhen – Guilin train timetable
|G2902||7:21||10:33||3 h 12 min|
|G2904||11:47||14:45||2 h 58 min|
|G2908||13:05||16:02||2 h 57 min|
|G2906||14:26||17:26||3 h 00 min|
|G2907||9:30||12:30||3 h 00 min|
|G2901||10:58||14:03||3 h 05 min|
|G2903||15:22||18:30||3 h 08 min|
|G2905||17:55||21:00||3 h 05 min|
Note that there is also a popular overnight train that allows you to save on the cost of a hotel room for one night.
How to go from Hong Kong to Yangshuo?
The trains departing from Shenzhen do not stop in Yangshuo. However there are 10 pairs of trains each day between Guangzhou and Yangshuo. These bullet trains cover the distance in 2h10 to 2h30 only. If you do not plan to visit Guilin and prefer Yangshuo, this is an excellent alternative.
Commuting between Guangzhou and Hong Kong
There are several train stations in Guangzhou. High-speed trains to or from Guilin and Yangshuo are at the Guangzhou south station. There are trains between Hong Kong and Guangzhou but these trains are at the Guangzhou east station. These two stations in Guangzhou are over 25km away from each other and, considering the terrible traffic in Guangzhou, a taxi may take 1.5 hours between stations. So, we believe that it is simpler to take the bus or train from Hong Kong to the Shenzhen north station and then take a train from Shenzhen to Guangzhou south station. This train takes about 30 minutes only and cost ¥99.5 for 1st class seats and ¥74.5 for 2nd class seats. There are over 100 trains daily in each direction.
The Guangzhou south railway station is very large. So we recommend picking up all your tickets at your point of origin so that you can do a transit in the station without exiting th train station and passing security again.
See how it is done in this video that was filmed at Guangzhou south:
Note that very few tickets are allocated for the Yangshuo station. If you wish to book tickets to or from Yangshuo and tickets appear as sold out, please contact us and we may find a way to secure some tickets.
How does the train compare to flying?
Direct flights between Hong Kong and Guilin take 1.5 hours (not including immigration procedures). However such flights are pretty rare. Direct flights are only available in peak travel season. Otherwise, flying from HK to Guilin requires a transit, usually in Shanghai or Xiamen which means 7 to 12 hours of travel time.
A direct flight in economy is over ¥2000. A flight with a stopover will run between ¥1400 and ¥1800, in economy. One can take the train even in business class for a fraction of this. Even when flights are discounted, trains are much cheaper. A second class seat on the Shenzhen-Guilin train is just ¥212. Guangzhou to Yangshuo is 2nd class is just ¥117 while the train from Shenzhen to Guangzhou is ¥74.5. With such a price differential, it pays even to ride the train in 1st class.