If we haven’t already made it clear: getting ripped off in … [Read More...] about Getting ripped off in Yangshuo: eating local delicacy of beer fish
Yangshuo does not have its very own airport, but is served and easily accessible from Guilin Liangjiang International Airport (桂林两江国际机场 Guìlín liǎngjiāng guójì jīchǎng) (airport code KWL).
The airport is excellently served from many major Chinese cities, such as Beijing, Shanghai, and Xi’an. Due to its tourist draw, flights are more often than not even cheaper than taking the train (particularly to Xi’an).
It is about 2 hours from Guilin airport to Yangshuo. There are 3 buses per day between Yangshuo and Guilin airport that cost RMB 60. Alternatively take the bus into town (RMB 20), get off at the train station and take the regular bus to Yangshuo. This bus technically costs 25 RMB, but make sure you have the right change or you will be overcharged. DO NOT FOLLOW A TOUT! Yangshuo bus touts are legendary, and will often pocket your money without even giving you a bus ticket.
Avoid taking a taxi from the airport. The people of Guilin and Yangshuo are famous for, well, being bastards! Taxis will pull prices out of the air, and they are so used to ripping people off they would rather sit and do nothing than offer a fair price. Expect to pay 4-500 RMB if you do get a cab, or better still use “DiDi” (the Chinese Uber), which will be less than half that price.
There are now essentially 3 methods to get to Yangshuo by train, with Yangshuo station (actually located in Xingping), Guilin Railway Station, and Gongcheng.
Yangshuo Railway Station
Yangshuo now has a brand-spanking-new high-speed railway station located in Xingping and a 40-50-minute bus ride (RMB 20), or RMB 200 taxi ride to Yangshuo town.
With this being Yangshuo, expect lots of spiv taxi drivers outside trying to steal your money. Avoid them: the bus is regular, fast and RMB 20.
Yangshuo Railway Station is connected to Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and many other local destinations.
Guilin Railway Station
Guilin has three railway stations: Guilin, Guilin North, and Guilin West, the first two of which offer connections to Yangshuo, with Guilin West being seldom served. From Gulin you can reach most major destinations in China either by fast or slow train.
Gongcheng Railway Station
A lot nearer than Guilin, at under 90 minutes, although being a small town there’s not much in the way of connections to Yangshuo. If you’re lucky you can score a cab from the station to Yangshuo for under RMB 200, depending on your skills at negotiating in Mandarin.
Bus to Yangshuo
Guilin Railway Station
Currently the bus from Gulin Station to Yangshuo officially costs RMB 25, but be prepared for classic Yangshuo hospitality, as in they will try to rip you off.
There’s a bus three times a day that costs RMB 60, with tickets being purchased in the airport, if you can dodge the rip-off taxis (did I mention what bastards the taxi drivers are?).
Long Distance Buses
There are long distance buses to Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Nanning, but these should be avoided like the plague unless you like shitting your pants (there is no toilet), or need to pay under 5 dollars. That being said: on Chinese holidays they can be your only option. Prices are anything from RMB 150 to whatever they fancy charging. This is Yangshuo; people will try to rip you off.
There’s a tourist boat from Guilin to Yangshuo which costs RMB 380 and is great if you like to share a boat with hordes of very loud tourists.