Fast trains launched in Yunnan, Shandong

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Photo taken on Nov 8, 2018 shows the scenery of Erhai Lake in Dali, Southwest China’s Yunnan Province.
Photo: Xinhua

A new high-speed rail route linking several famous tourist attractions in Yunnan Province is set to open soon, according to the China Railway Corp.

The new line will link sites such as Lijiang and Dali, and the Three Parallel Rivers area, all UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The new line, which has 10 stations, will cut travel time from Lijiang to Kunming, the provincial capital of Yunnan, from more than eight hours to just three hours. It will be the first time Lijiang has high-speed rail accessibility.

“The route will offer new choices for tourists, and travel agencies will be able to provide more customized services,” said Liu Qingyuan, deputy general manager of Lijiang Association Holiday Travel Agency.

Zhang Yu, a local tour guide, said the new line will boost the region’s tourism sector by bringing more visitors to Lijiang.

“At the same time, local residents will be more connected with major neighbouring cities,” said Zhang.

The new line will also link Lijiang to Dali, another tourist destination in the province, cutting travel time to under an hour.

The new line in Yunnan is just one of 10 routes recently opened or soon to be-by CRC. The company also plans to adjust train operating times nationwide beginning Jan 5 in preparation for the Spring Festival travel rush.

Two new high-speed rail routes began operating in Shandong province on Wednesday.

One route links the provincial capital of Jinan with the port city of Qingdao, “which reduces travel time to around 90 minutes from well over two hours before”, said Liu Qing, deputy director of Qingdao Railway Station, adding that passengers from Qingdao and Beijing need to travel only 3.5 hours to Jinan if they choose the fastest line, saving 52 minutes.

The 307-kilometre high-speed rail route features 11 stations.

The other new route links major cities in Shandong and Jiangsu provinces.

“The line will run to Shanghai in the future after construction between Shanghai and Lianyungang (Jiangsu) is complete,” said the deputy director.

It is estimated that within two years, travel time between Shanghai and Qingdao will be cut to four hours from over seven hours currently.

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