Saturday, September 13, 2008

Train from Shanghai to Guangzhou

Short Note: It's so hot in Malaysia OMG OMG. *hide in air-conditioned room*

Oh Yea. I'm back from 5 weeks in Australia!!! Ugh, I hate the sun.
Manado Manado~

Anyway, now that I am back and have access to all my photos. I am going to continue blogging about where I left off before my laptop crashed (a month ago).



It was time to leave Shanghai.

me at train station in the afternoon
didn't sleep the night before


On my last day, I packed my bags, said bye to Sean (my host in Shanghai) and took a taxi around 3pm to Shanghai Train Station, where I bought my overnight train ticket to Guangzhou the day before.

Shanghai Train Station was by far the most impressive train station, in terms of vastness and quantity of passengers each day, I have never seen.

people at train station 2
Look to the right.


people at train station
Look to the left.


China is so big (land and population wise), they even have to partition separate ticket buildings (not booths, buildings!) for short and long distance train tickets, which were then categorized into Northern, Western and Southern routes (there’s no East after Shanghai, unless you consider the ferry to Japan from here a route, which then tickets would have to be purchased elsewhere).

In fact, it was so big, I got lost when I first arrived here. I grabbed the first policeman I saw and interrogated him for the route ticketing area for long distance routes; to which he, rudely and ignorantly, raised his nose (or head, I couldn’t really make out) and made a gesture that directed my sight to a huge building located on the other side of the road. It was like “wtf? How many buildings do they need for a train station, geez!”

My ticket to Guangzhou consist of two journeys because there was no vacancy for the hard sleeper on the first leg of my journey.

shanghai to guangzhou tickets


First three hours to Jin Hua Xi on hard seater,

economy hard seater cabin
Hard seater carriage


sleeping on hard seater
Me trying to sleep on the hard seater by leaning against the wobbling wall of the train


water bottle in train
My water bottle


then switch carriage to hard sleeper to proceed the following 15 hours of train ride (which means I will be reaching in Guang Zhou at 11:18am the next day). My ticket cost me 363 yuan (around RM 180).

Settling myself on a second class hard sleeper (which wasn’t that hard really) after much climbing and descending of staircase, lulling my oversized diva-like luggage (according to Sean) over platforms and check in counters (if that was even considered a counter) and squirming through the narrow passage through 13 carriages!!!!! Because my journey was divided into two parts, first 4 hours in carriage no.16 in hard seater and the following 8 hours in carriage no.4 for a sleeper (damn I tell you these were LONG carriages!), I was more than ready to enter dream mode.

lying on hard sleeper


mirror image of me on hard sleeper
This is the window reflection of me in my hard sleeper cabin


Carts selling supper would come by selling congee and snacks or instant noodles, but it was too tired to eat. Besides, supper’s not good for you.

Morning came pretty fast. Female conductors will be making a havoc wakeup call which included making a lot of noise and much banging on the walls (there were no doors to each of these sleeper cabins). I leaped down from my sleeper and join the rest of the early birds on the corridor to view the morning beauty of Guang Zhou from the train.

people waking up in the morning on train


view from train
Oh… river! I wonder if I’m in Guangzhou yet.


crumpled bedsheet
Crumpled bed sheets in the morning.


Soon the breakfast would come along, selling what I thought could be leftover congee from last night, which of course could not be true, could it?

breakfast cart on train


Despite not being a heavy beakfast person, I didn’t want to take the risk and moved to the cafeteria carriage where they would serve proper breakfast.

Though in my opinion, nothing served on Chinese transport can ever be considered proper or decent to be eaten. My breakfast was egg on toast, and mind you, they were some pretty stale bread.

breakfast on train
Bloody thing cost me RM6!


Served with diluted milk too. -.-

gazing out of window on train
Breakfast on the train is always the best!


morning look
Morning look


But yes, overall, it was fun taking train, all the hassle really put me to thinking twice if I would ever take another train in China again. But then again I have always fancied taking land transportation,

gazing window 2


just the fact of waking up in another destination beguiles me a lot.




Next up,

yum cha in guang zhou


Yum Cha in Guang Zhou.

14 comments:

  1. sucks totally!

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  2. Nicole, when do u want to bring me along to travel? is ur job is to introduce about places?

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  3. Were you at the Shanghai South station? It's nice, compared to some of the other train stations out there. I took the High Speed Rail to Hangzhou from there.

    The waiting rooms looked like the LCCT at KLIA. Dunno if that's a compliment or not though.

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  4. Hi Nicole,
    Totally agreed foods served on chinese transport can never be decent, it even amaze you.
    I was on a flight to Fujian, they serve wine with ice and bread with salted vegetable.

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  5. Wow that train station is crowded. It looks like an airport. I took night trains in Europe and they were not too bad. It is definetly better to have a sleeper cabin than a regular chair (if you can afford it). I found a new travel site, baraaza.com. You can review destinations, upload pics and get info for your next trip. I think you might like it.

    Nicole

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  6. Wondering whether when you sleep in the upper bunk of the train, are you dizzy?

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  7. huhu~

    I want to travel around the world..
    but i can't.. my job afford me not to go..

    So I just travel with u through this site..

    keep it up nicole.. ;-)

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  8. is so nice to travel around orh.. i wish i can do it as well.. i still stuck on my studies....

    btw.. drink more when u in msia... the weather here is way too hot tho.. it will makes u sick

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  9. hey babe, u got doubLe eye-bags in the pics!
    pity u..make sure next time have enough rest+sleep-clicks while u'r onboard ok?
    keep up the beautiful stories telling!
    tee hee~

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  10. hi Nicole,
    good experience i been travel from guongzhou to shanghai on normal train i think cost me around RMB 400 but 3 days 3 nights on the train.i finished reading 2 books.
    very happy to find your blog which can share all your beutifull pictures and experience.

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  11. Please bring me along when you next travel to anywhere, any place and any time lor. I'll be your guardian angel and sleeping pillow, ok?

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  12. ed from toronto canada28/10/08 10:04 PM

    hi nicky sorry you had rough time, you should have paid the extra 250rmb(45 canadian)for a soft sleeper which is a room with four beds and a DOOR. i am from toronto ca if you haven't noticed candian dollar and all. i took the the train from hong kong to shanghai and than shanghai back to hong kong in the hard sleeper section which is six beds(three on each side)no DOOR it was fun and all got see how the regular folk travelled,i vowed never again if had the chance and money. well i am in shanghai china again. i plan to take a train to guangzhuo from shanghai in soft sleeper cost is get this 670 rmb. live and learn. oh yeah by the way you are veryyyyyyyyy hottttttt!!!!!! edo842@hotmail.com

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  13. really nice and informative blog. Thanks for share.
    Flights to Guangzhou

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