Has anyone here done the train trip from Hong Kong to Hanoi (HK to Guangzhou, Guangshou to Nanning, Nanning to Hanoi)? If you could share your exeperiences with me that would be wonderful!
If this portion of my trip occurs, I'll be getting my Chinese visa in Toronto and my Vietnamese visa in Hong Kong (since I won't be flying in an evisa won't be possible).
Everything you need to know is on the website I posted below.
#2 NYTim has been a member since 11/9/2009. Posts: 106
I have yet to do this (maybe next year?) but I understand that Nanning to Hanoi could be a problem - not a daily run and 2 separate trains involved (Chinese & Viet) due to different gauge track. There is a daily Nanning to Hanoi bus that goes straight through except for border formalities. Train passengers have to walk/taxi across that border, but 1 ticket is good for the whole trip.
We travelled from HK to Hanoi overland but indirectly and using both bus and train so I can't offer exact experiences. However, as Daawgon says, it's easier to get a bus from Nanning to Hanoi - it was a really straightforward and relatively comfortable journey. I can dig out some details if you need them.
We also got the bus for the HK to Guangzhou leg of the journey as it doesn't take long and we were staying nearer to the bus stop than the train station. But I understand the train's fine - it's only a few hours either way.
As I say, we didn't get a train direct from Guangzhou to Nanning but we did get a few trains on other routes and they were absolutely fine. When you go to the train station be prepared that the person you speak to won't speak a lot of English. Get train times from seat61.com, write down your desination and learn the words for upper, middle and lower bunk!
The easiest way to travel HK to Hanoi is to catch a sleeper bus in HK operated by CTS Travel, departs from Wanchai I remember around 7 pm. This takes you all the way overnight to Nanning bus station where you catch another bus there to Hanoi (departs 8 am I recall). I think cost total around US$100.
Train schedules are a problem as they do not match and you have to hang around in Nanning to make connections. There are trains from Guangzhou to Nanning and a direct Nanning to Hanoi train from China side - same train all the way which departs in the late afternoon arrives early in the morning in Hanoi.
Really the bus is the easiest way.
#5 Pablot has been a member since 4/5/2009. Posts: 102
Never done it that way to get to hong kong. but as I read the post from Pablot above and saying that it's about $100. You can fly for half that price from HK to Bangkok and Bangkok to Hanoi (I know it's way of the track, but still quicker and cheaper)(maybe even HK-HCM and HCM-Hanoi),
I know they normally don't fly into Hanoi, Why? I have NO idea!