Introduction & Highlights:
Traveling by train in China might seem a bit daunting at busy times, such as during the Chinese New Year, the Summer Holidays and other festivals.
But, it can also be an enjoyable experience, especially if you think about exotic Hainan, boasting a high-speed railway around the entire island, that connects all the major cities.
Stretching more than 650 kilometres, the train line links Haikou capital city, in the North, to Sanya, in the South, in the blink of an eye. At the same time, it provides a glimpse of Hainan’s most scenic spots.
In less than five hours and for 34 dollars approximately, you’re able to complete the whole loop. During the trip, you will stop, for example, in Wenchang, Qionghai, Bo’ao and Ledong.
You can always stop off at these places to explore them. All the way through, you’ll find a mix of urban and wild areas, surrounded by plenty of palm trees, embraced by the ocean’s horizon and populated with ethnic groups embracing generations-old traditions.
Locals are used to tourists, so even though you might struggle with the language barrier you can always expect a warm welcome upon your arrival at different spots. Make sure you’re ready to try some of the different delicacies you’ll find along the way.
Trains between Haikou and Sanya normally run all day long, from 06:50 until 22:10. If you only have a day to travel between the two busiest cities on Hainan island, consider taking one of the early high-speed trains to make the most of your day.
Before starting your train adventure, you can buy tickets in advance at railway stations or via the 12306 App, which you’ll need to download in advance. Bear in mind that to be able to book a train ticket in China, you need to provide a valid ID card and if you’re a foreigner you’ll always need to present your passport. You can choose between business, first and second-class seats.