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Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

portlandman
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Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

Hi. Posted this in the Shanghai forum and didn't get any responses, so I'm asking the question here in hopes of a response.

We'll be wrapping up our trip to China in Shanghai. My question: if we are coming from Xian and have four nights/three and a half days and want to spend one day and night in Tongli, does it make sense to go directly from Xian to Tongli? Or should we go in the middle of our stay in Shanghai? We'll be arriving in Shanghai mid-day or early afternoon on a Wednesday, departing on Sunday morning. Thanks in advance for the help.

Vancouver, Canada
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1. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

The cheapest and the fastest way from Xian to Tongli is by air to Shanghai then;

1) Hire a private cab to Tongli (if you don't mind),

2) By Shanghai Airport shuttle bus to Suzhou. At the Railway Station, there are freq. buses to Tongli. or,

3) Stay 1-night in Shanghai. Next day by tourist bus to Tongli.

As you mentioned that 'We'll be arriving in Shanghai mid-day or early afternoon on a Wednesday'. I'll suggest you opt#2.

Sherbrooke, Canada
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2. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

There are also many trains leaving the Shanghai Hongqiao train station which is adjacent to the Hongqiao airport.

portlandman
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3. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

Thanks to both of you. So, I take it that it's not that difficult to go directly from the Shanghai airport to Suzhou and then Tongli. About how long do you think the entire trip will take? And what's the best way to get back to Shanghai the following day? Finally, any suggestions on the ideal location for the stay in Shanghai. We were looking at the Astor House near the Bund, but weren't sure if that was a convenient location.

Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

First of all, I assumed you opt Xian- Shanghai Pudong Airport by air.

There is no direct flight will arrives Shanghai Hongqiao from Xian at the 'mid-day or early afternoon on a Wednesday'. Selection by train at Shanghai Hongqiao train station is ...........(ops, sorry, no comment). As we knew, connected flight is more expensive and more time consuming.

At Shanghai Pudong Airport , the long haul bus (it will have a stop at Hongqiao Airport) schedule to Suzhou are;

10:00, 10:40, 11:10, 11:40, 12:10, 12:40, 13:10, 13:50, 14:20, 14:50, 15:20, 16:10, 16:50, 17:20, 18:10, 18:50, 19:20, 20:00.

The bus fare is RMB84pp and the travel time is 3H.

When arriving Suzhou bus terminal, by taxi to the Main railway station (approx. 5KM) then by bus to Tongli.

In 2011.12, the bus fare is RMB8pp and the travel time is 45min. The Suzhou- Tongli bus terminated near the lakeside. At the lakeside, by battery shuttle (RMB2pp) or on foot (1KM) to Tongli's Main Entrance.

Tongli adm. fee is RMB100pp, if you come late, you can make 1-day extension.

There are 2 options to get back to Shanghai.

1) Tongli- Suzhou- Shanghai (if you prefer have a excursion)- Shanghai.

a) Tongli- Suzhou same as above.

b) Suzhou- Shanghai have a lot of choices. By train or by buses. Bear in mind that, in 2011.12, buses will arrive at Shanghai South (RMB33pp, time= 90min) only.

2) Tongli- Shanghai (not recommended)

a) By tourist bus, may be paid of double trip fee and unsure any vacancy.

FYI.

BTW, you can opt Xian- Suzhou by train.

Edited: 07 September 2012, 20:27
portlandman
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5. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

So, if I understand this my only option from Xian to Shanghai is to fly into Pudong (most distant airport) and take a full day bus and train trip to Tongli, or take the train directly from Xian to Suzhou, a very long trip. If that's the case, it may not be worth the time involved to make the Tongli trip.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

For me (I'm a budget traveler), I'll by night train from Xian- Suzhou on Tue. and will arr. on Wed. Hard sleeper is RMB308pp. The trains#, dep. time and arr. time (next day) are;

1) Z94/Z91, 17:12, 06:44,

2) K559/K558, 17:20, 12:14,

3) T140/T137, 19:43, 10:50,

4) T118/T115, 21:04, 12:06,

5) T54/T51, 22:17/ 13:14 and

6) T1114/T1111, 22:40/13:32.

For example, when choosing #T1114/T1111 that dep. at 22:40 and will arr. at 13:32 on Wed.

Most likely you'll catch up the Suzhou- Tongli bus not later than 14:30 and will arrive the entrance at 15:30.

Once you get your lodging before 16:30, you still have 1~2 hours day time.

If you choose Z#94/Z91, that dep. at 17:12 and will arr. at 06:44, it is great!!!!.

You'll settle down before 10:00 and have 1-1/2 full day in Tongli.

portlandman
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7. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

Thanks the good information. We're budget travelers, too, but I think I'd have a tough time convincing my wife to share an overnight cabin with four other people. And I don't think there is a two-person option on this train. So, I think I may be stuck with plane-train if we make this trip.

8. Re: Advice on Shanghai and water town itinerary

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