The favorite foreign tourist spot in the Guilin area is the small town of Yangshuo. To get to Yangshuo, you can use the Guilin airport, bullet trains, regular trains (+ local buses, private transport, etc.), or direct long-distance buses.
Once in Yangshuo, there are taxis, golf carts, and pedicabs, and you can easily rent bikes. Walking around is quite easy since the town is small.
Chinese name: 阳朔 Yángshuò, pronounced yang-shwor.
Getting to Yangshuo/Guilin from Far Away
Yangshuo is 70 km (44 miles) from Guilin, or 80 minutes by car. Most people first go to Guilin by air, train, or bus, and then go on to Yangshuo.
Guilin Liangjiang International Airport has flights from the big cities in China, and also from Hong Kong, Bangkok, Seoul, and Japan. It's about 85 kilometers (1½ hours) by road from Yangshuo.
Guilin and (Yangshuo) is 3-or-6-day visa free for international transit! Read more about Guilin visa-free travel>>
By High-Speed Rail Direct to Yangshuo Station
Yangshuo Station might be the best long-distance option, especially if you want to go to Xingping first. The station is among the hills 6 km (4 miles) east of Xingping Town, renowned for the cream of Li River scenery.
Yangshuo town is about an hour from Yangshuo Station by bus (20 yuan), and there is a further 10 minutes in a golf cart, etc. to get to West Street from the "Yangshuo-to-Xingping Bus Station."
Yangshuo Station is a good option especially for those coming/going from Guangzhou, Guiyang, and Guizhou's minority areas. See more on the Guiyang–Guangzhou High-Speed Railway.
Once the trip from the Hong Kong border to Yangshuo took from 10 to 16 hours on a bus or slow train (+bus), but now the trip to Yangshuo can be done in less than 7 hours with some planning.
- From Guangzhou South Station: 9 trains daily to Yangshuo (2 hours and 20 minutes, 18 USD second class)
- From Guiyang North Station: 4 trains daily taking about 3 hours (08:59, 09:15, 15:42, 17:35, 23 USD second class)
- See more on Yangshuo Station.
By Rail to Guilin
There are also three train stations in Guilin city you can choose from, before getting onward transport to Yangshuo Station. Please read the respective links about the best stations to use for your travels.
- Guilin Station is the area's most used station since it is conveniently in the center of Guilin and near to the main bus stations. It is the main regular train station too. It is best for bullet and regular trains going north towards Beijing etc.
- Guilin North Station is a less well situated option for bullet/normal trains, 6 km north of the city center.
- Guilin West is generally best for Guiyang-Guangzhou HSR trains, but least conveniently situated, 10 km northwest of the city center.
Booking Train Tickets
You can book train online. See How to Buy Tickets in China.
We can assist you with booking tickets — just 3 easy steps (search trains, book tickets, and quick pay), 10,000+ customers/year, 24/7 service, and express delivery.
Long distance buses don't all stop at the old bus station near West Street. Every day from 6:30 am to 6:00 pm dozens of buses head east to Shenzhen and Guangzhou and go to other cities too. Long distance overnight buses from Guangzhou and Shenzhen are regular, and often the only option during the Chinese New Year Rush.
From Shenzhen: In general, overnight bed buses are the cheapest way to get from Shenzhen and Hong Kong to Yangshuo, but be prepared for a possibly unpleasant journey in a cramped bus. See Shenzhen Train Station information about where to catch the bed buses outside the station at the Luohu border crossing.
See more on Guilin Transportation>>
Transportation to Yangshuo from Guilin
Bullet Trains from Guilin to Yangshuo Station
As explained above, Yangshuo Station is a station in the mountains, 6 km east of Xingping. If you want to go direct from Guilin to the West Street (西街 Xijie /sshee-jyeah/) town center of Yangshuo where the hotels and shops are, then taking the 1½-hour bus is still the best option from the small bus station in front of Guilin Station.
The best trains for Yangshuo Station from Guilin leave from the conveniently located Guilin Station at the central city. Others leave from inconveniently located Guilin North and Guilin West stations that are about 40 or 50 minutes respectively from the city center.
- From Guilin West Station: 5 trains daily taking 31 minutes (11:39, 11:49, 18:10, 18:22, 20:15, 4 USD second class).
- From Guilin North Station: 2 trains daily taking 32 minutes (08:17 and 15:33).
- From Guilin Station: 2 trains daily taking 51 minutes (15:46 and 20:51).
Guilin to Yangshuo Buses
Getting to Yangshuo from downtown Guilin is easy by getting a cheap minibus from the main Guilin Train Station. They leave every ten minutes or so for about 16 to 24 RMB (about 3.50 USD) and get there in 80 or 90 minutes.
Guilin Train Station is about a ten minute walk from the main long-distance bus station. The Yangshuo local bus station is about 15 minutes from West Street by golf cart.
Guilin to Yangshuo Taxis
Taking a taxi is problematical because they are noted for scamming or overcharging tourists. If you take one, the usual price is 250 or 300 RMB (per taxi not per person) for the 70-kilometer drive, and the travel time is an hour and a half. They may not be willing to take you to your desired location, but they might simply drop you off at the Yangshuo Bus Station which means you need to walk or find other transportation. See more on Guilin Taxis.
Li River Cruises
You have a fourth scenic option. You can take a river boat cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo. There cruises generally start running around 9 am in the morning and take about 4 hours. Lunch is included and you have the option for snacks and beverages.
Transportation Within Yangshuo
Bikes are naturally a popular vehicle for tourists in Yangshuo. Guesthouses and hotels around West Street rent bicycles from about 15 yuan to 70 yuan per day, and the deposit is 200 to 500 yuan (30-75 USD). See Yangshuo Biking>>
Electric bikes rent for about 60 yuan per day.
Other vehicles are public buses (electricity-powered carts due to environmental protection concerns), pedicabs, motorbikes, minibuses, and taxi. Beware of being overcharged by the pedicabs or taxi drivers. Yangshuo is notorious for the expensive taxi rides.
Touring Yangshuo with Private Transport
If the Guilin/Yangshuo public transport doesn't sound like the way you would like to go around, China Highlights is based in Guilin and can help.
You can expect the best personalized private tours with us. We can arrange everything from area transportation to your flight tickets and visa to China.
A Better Local Transport Option: Private Car — free of hassles, more flexibility
Private drivers: Hiring a private driver might be the best option, saving time and even money. It is the most comfortable and pleasant way to travel.
But pick a reputable company like China Highlights. You can arrange for our driver and guide to wait for you. We are known for providing individualized services for our customers.