D I Y Hangzhou, China from Shanghai

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#1
894 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
We will be in Shanghai, China for three days in March.
We are considering taking the high speed train to Hangzhou on our own.
Has anyone succeeded in this adventure?

Barbara
#2
New York NY
1,152 Posts
Joined Nov 2003
Easy to do. However I would get the tickets in advance. Get the app Ctrip. Has a new name but itís the same. You can buy rail tickets very easy. They will send you a receipt. You go to the station and pick up the tickets.
China rail tickets sell out very very fast. And all the info on the app is in English. You must have your passport to pick up the tickets. And you must have a real visa. The 72 hour visa is no good. Only good for where you arrive and transit to point of dep.


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JIG
#3
894 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Thank you, JIG. That takes care of one piece of the puzzle as long as the ship docks as scheduled.
We were thinking it would be easier to take a taxi from the ship to the train station. Would that be outrageously expensive?

Barbara
#4
New York NY
1,152 Posts
Joined Nov 2003
Originally posted by bcummin
Thank you, JIG. That takes care of one piece of the puzzle as long as the ship docks as scheduled.

We were thinking it would be easier to take a taxi from the ship to the train station. Would that be outrageously expensive?



Barbara


Not really. However you have to deal with many factors. I guess I misread. Didnít realize your going from the ship. You must have Chinese money. No $. Then you need to make sure which station you leaving from. You must have it written in Chinese. Once in the station there is an info desk in the middle. Show them the app ticket and they will give you the window number to get the ticket. If itís a rt you will pay a fee if $1 for the return ticket. You go through an airport like security and then itís easy. Get a fc ticket.


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#5
894 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
JIG, you had no way of knowing what I had not shared.
We do not like the price of the ship's shore excursion to Hangzhou, so DH announced, "We could do it ourselves!"
My research has uncovered many, many matters to consider. Yes, we will have Chinese money and Chinese Visas. We know which train station for Shanghai and for Hangzhou, and there is even a tourist bus system that I would not dare step off of in Hangzhou. We do not speak or read Chinese. We know a few words, and I do carry a little translator.
On the other hand, DH flies by the seat of his pants and usually lands on both feet. It could turn out well. Very well.
We watched a couple on U Tube exploring Hangzhou, but they had a car and he knew what he was doing.
I keep hoping to find someone who has actually done this and dealt with all of the many matters that are involved.
Thank you for helping.

Barbara
#6
New York NY
1,152 Posts
Joined Nov 2003
The main thing in hangzhou is the lake. When you get off the train there is a metro. All metros in china are in English. Take it to the stop closet to the lake. I think itís one or two stops and walk around as much if the lake as you want. There are two causeways that cut some of it. As you leave the train station take a picture of it. When you done with whatever your doing get a taxi and show the picture of the station. Very easy. Beautiful place. If itís too much may I recommend Suzhou. The city of gardens. Many more tourists but still nice.


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#7
New York NY
1,152 Posts
Joined Nov 2003
The 1st class ticket is $18 and the business class is $34. Much much more comfy but on a train less then an hour not needed.


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#9
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
I have done the same from Shanghai to hangzhou on a day trip. Start from Hongqiao railway station. The first high speed train starts at 6:05 and the last return train ends at 10:22. You may not want the risk of missing the last train. The train stops at Hangzhou east, exit D to find the subway #1. Take subway #1 for five stops to Feng Qi Lu stop, exit B and walk south for one kilometer to the west lake. The whole journey from hotel door near nanjing lu to the lake took me three and a half hours.


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#10
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
If you want to take a taxi from Hangzhou east to the west lake the distance is 9 kilometer and the fare is about 30 rmb, 5 USD only. Taxi is a good option but finding a taxi has become a challenge if you do not have a Di Di smart phone app so always prepare to take public transportation. Taxi from Shanghai Hongqiao to the west lake costs about 700rmb for an hour 45 minutes over 180 kilometers.


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#11
894 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Thank you, Peelboy, for so many encouraging details.
We are fine tuning a way from the cruise ship to Shanghai's Hongiaio station. Possibly the metro?
You mention your hotel near nanjing lu. Was that in Shanghai?
Why go to Hangzhou EAST railway station? Hangzhou Railway Station is closer to West Lake, and there is a tourist bus stop nearby.

Barbara
#12
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Shanghai Wusongkou cruise terminal for smaller ships is closer to the city. You take bus 51 and then subway 3 and subway 2 ( a total of 32 stops) to Hongqiao station. It takes close to two hours. Taxi fare according to Di Di app is 120 rmb.


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#13
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Waigaiqiao cargo terminal for bigger ships is further away. You take bus 1027 and then subway 6 and subway 2 for 31 stops. The journey will take two hours fifteen minutes. Di Di taxi fare is 179 rmb. Taxi fare is dirt cheap compared to USA and for cruise day trip every minute is important so I donít recommend public transportation. Also when you return to the ship at night taxi may be your only option. I am kidding though Shanghai is a modern city the subway stops running to suburbs at 10:30 and possibly there will be no bus. Taxi could be your only option at night.


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#14
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Nanjing Lu is near the bund. Every tourist for their first visit will go there. It is Peopleís Square neighborhood. Nanjing lu subway stop or Nanjing lu east stop will take you there.


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#15
Toronto, Canada
132 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
Hangzhou station is closer but older. There are only a handful of high speed trains go there. If you miss a train you will have to wait for an hour or two for the next train or there is no more train. High speed train goes to Hangzhou east every fifteen minutes so you miss a train but you will have so many chances for the next one in fifteen minutes. You also donít have to worry about buying tickets in advance. You can buy tickets for both ways once you arrive at Hongqiao station.


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#17
Sherbrooke
263 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
Originally posted by jig
Easy to do. However I would get the tickets in advance. Get the app Ctrip. Has a new name but itís the same. You can buy rail tickets very easy. They will send you a receipt. You go to the station and pick up the tickets.
China rail tickets sell out very very fast. And all the info on the app is in English. You must have your passport to pick up the tickets. And you must have a real visa. The 72 hour visa is no good. Only good for where you arrive and transit to point of dep.


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Incorrect. You do not need a visa. If you enter Shanghai under the visa exemption, you can travel to the Zhejiang province where Hangzhou is located.
#18
Sherbrooke
263 Posts
Joined Oct 2013
When you arrive in Hangzhou, there is a subway station next to the train station. Take the subway, it is simple and cheap.
Watch this video of Hangzhou east: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lP-OKA5VrNo If you arrive at the other station then check the video of the other station.

regarding the advice above about going to the information counter to ask where to pick up the tickets, this is irrelevant. You just go to any ticket counter. It is well signed in English.
This ticket agent that made the video above also has one about the Shanghai Hongqiao station. You may want to search for it on their Youtube channel.
#20
New York NY
1,152 Posts
Joined Nov 2003
Originally posted by TravelMore&More
Incorrect. You do not need a visa. If you enter Shanghai under the visa exemption, you can travel to the Zhejiang province where Hangzhou is located.


You sure? In canton you can NOT get a train ticket to Guilin with the 72 hour non visa. You must have a full visa to pick up the ticket. Maybe Shanghai is different. They do enforce things differently here and there. But unless your entering one city and leaving another you are to gave a full visa. Itís good now for 10 years and as many times. If your an American.
The 72 hour non visa is issued city by city to encourage people transiting to stay. Chinese airlines allow stopovers for free or $100. I use china southern to fly from USA to Australia all the time.


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JIG