Chaotianmen Dock, also known as Chaotianmen Wharf, Chaotianmen Terminal and Chaotianmen Port, sits in Chongqing center area, where Yangtze River and Jialing River meet together. More than 85% of Chongqing’s visitors include Chaotianmen Wharf on their itinerary, which mainly because the dock is usually the first or final stop of Yangtze River cruise journeys. However, besides its important role for Yangtze River cruisers, Chaotianmen Dock itself is also a popular tourist site to enjoy the stunning night view of Chongqing City.
Want more info of Chaotianmen Dock? This guide is trying to show you all the important information of the dock, including its location, facts, things to do & see, map and how to get there.
Chaotianmen Dock does not refer to one wharf, but a group of altogether 17 wharfs. The wharfs from number 1 to 11 share the same entrance, and Chaotianmen Wharf 13, 15 and 17 are out of the entrance. Usually, the wharf number starts at the central area of the dock, to the left are the even-numbered wharfs (2, 4, 6, 8, 10) and to the right are the odd-numbered wharfs (1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17).
Chaotianmen Square is built next to the wharfs. In the late 2019, a newly-built Raffles City on the square opened to public, allowing tourist to do shopping, dining and have fun there.
Important: During the flood season (July, August) and dry season (March, April), the Yangtze River cruise ships may cannot dock at Chaotianmen Dock. Chongqing Grand Theater (重庆大剧院) or Huguang Guild (湖广会馆) will then be the vital assembling points, rather than Chaotianmen Dock. For downstream cruises guests, you will catch a bus arranged by the cruise companies at Chongqing Grand Theater (重庆大剧院) or Huguang Guild (湖广会馆) to Fengdu to board your ship. Upstream cruise guests will end up your trip at Chongqing Grand Theater (重庆大剧院) or Huguang Guild (湖广会馆) too.
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Usually, the exact wharf number for each ship is only published ONE or TWO days before sailing. Therefore, you can know your exact boarding wharf only ONE or TWO days in advance instead of when you booking the cruises. Usually, Victoria Cruises use Chaotianmen 5 Wharf and Century Cruises use Chaotianmen 11 Wharf.
For Yangtze River cruise tourists booking with China Discovery, our professional one-to-one travel consultant will tell you the exact wharf as soon as they get the latest information.
Important: The arranged boarding and disembarking wharfs of Yangtze River cruises may be changed sometimes. You are suggested to ask your travel consultant for the exact wharf that your cruise will dock.
The exact boarding time and disembarking time of ships vary according to different cruise companies. Usually, you can board your downstream Yangtze River cruise ships at Chaotianmen Dock during 18:00pm~21:00pm. And upstream Yangtze River cruises arrive at Chaotianmen Dock at about 8:00am. You can check your confirmation letter or contact your travel consultant to know the exact time of your ship.
Important: Remember to leave yourself enough time to catch your Yangtze River cruise ships, trains and flights. We suggest downstream Chongqing to Yichang Yangtze River cruises travelers book your flight arriving at Chongqing Jiangbei Airport before 16:30pm or train arriving at Chongqing before 18:00pm. For Yichang to Chongqing upstream cruise travelers, you are advised to book your flight from Chongqing Jiangbei Airport after 12:30 or train after 11:00 on your disembarkation day or later.
Chaotianmen Port is located at the confluence of the Yangtze River and Jialing River in the Peninsula of Yuzhong District in Chongqing. It is about 28km away from Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport. At present, you are mostly suggested to get to Chaotianmen Dock by taxi or licensed private cars. You cannot reach to the dock by metro directly. The closest metro station (Xiaoshizi 小什字) is about 1.5km away from the entrance of Chaotianmen Dock.
Warm tip: Traffic jams appear a lot in Chongqing city, especially during the rush hours (8-9am and 5-6pm). Try to hop on a taxi as early as possible.
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All the taxis, buses and cars are not allowed to get inside Chaotianmen Dock. You should get off the taxi at the entrance, and then walk to the pointed wharf with your luggage. Walking from the entrance to your wharf needs about 3-13 minutes. The walking time is determined by the distance from entrance to your wharf. There are altogether 17 wharfs there (Chaotianmen 1-17 Wharfs). The even-numbered wharfs are the farthest from the entrance, so it takes more time to get to these wharfs. Chaotianmen 13 wharf, 15 wharf and 17 wharf are located outside the entrance. There is no need to go inside if you are going to board your ship at one of these wharfs.
Important: Many tourists still feel trouble about boarding their ship at Chaotianmen Dock even with the help of an in-hand map. If you also feel nerves about that or you are going to visit Chaotianmen for the first time, you can ask our local guide and driver for help. After booking such a service, your English-speaking tour guide will be waiting for you at your arrival airport or train station and escort you directly to your wharf. Tell us your group size, arriving time and place, and let us take care of the rest.
Boarding Yangtze River Cruises Ships at Chaotianmen Dock:
Disembarking from Yangtze River Cruises Ships at Chaotianmen Dock:
Important: There are many stone steps when boarding or disembarking at Chaotianmen Dock. If you feel tough to walk on those steps with your luggage, you can ask for a porter service. The service is offered by the cruise company and needs extra charge of about 15~25RMB for each piece of luggage. Tell your travel consultant in advance if you need such a service.
Chaotianmen Dock is vital starting and ending stop of almost all Yangtze River cruise ships. Here, you can catch downstream cruises to explore the longest and most picturesque river in China - Yangtze River. Upstream Yangtze River cruise ships also ends their trip at Chaotianmen Dock. There are many ship companies for you to choose, such as the most popular Victoria Cruises and Century Cruises.
Chongqing enjoys the reputation of “Little Hong Kong”, because the city has splendid nigh views like Hong Kong does. Standing at Chaotianmen Dock, you can take all the outstanding items of Chongqing Night View into your eyes, including the glittering rivers, moving cruises, soaring skyscrapers, spectacular bridges, surrounding mountains, odd-shaped Grand Theater…
If you do not have that many days to cruise Yangtze River, then how about have a short cruising trip in Chongqing? Such a short cruise trip needs less than 1 hour and can take you have a short explore of both Jialing River and Yangtze River in Chongqing downtown area. Night cruises are more recommended, as you can enjoy the standout night view while cruising.
Have a short shopping and dining time at Raffles City in steps away from Chaotianmen Dock is the best choice for tourists who have only several hours left before boarding the cruises in the dock. It is also recommended for tourists coming to Chaotianmen Dock to appreciate the stunning night view. This newly-created Shopping mall offers much to buy, eat and have fun!
If you are curious of how Chongqing was built on mountains and cliffs by river, you can have a leisure time in Chongqing City Planning Exhibition Center in the dock. Everyone can have a free visit the Exhibition Center except Monday. It will be closed every Monday.
Best Chongqing City Tours:
Since Chaotianmen Dock is settled at the city enter area, you can travel from the dock to many other attractive spots in Chongqing, such as the notable Hongya Cave, Chongqing Grand Theater, Liziba Metro Station, Jiefangbei, Three Gorges Museum, Ciqikou Ancient Town, etc. Check the Chaotianmen Dock Location Map below to know its surrounding Chongqing attractions.
If there is only one picture can be used to show the amazing Chongqing City. Hongya Cave must be the most competitive option. The large-scale of stilt houses there are all incedingly carved to the cliffs at the riverside. When the night falls, magnificent warm-toned lamps and lanterns brightly light up the stilt houses. making it a fairy-tale world.
Liziba Metro Station (李子坝轻轨站) has become one of the most famous photography sites in Chongqing because of the amazing house-crossing metro trains. It is now always on the top of visitors’ Chongqing-must-visit list. There are plenty of reviews, hashtags and social media posts to prove that.
Chongqing Grand Theater and Chaotianmen Dock face each other across the Jialing River. It is mainly famed for its unique “glass spaceship” appearance in the daytime and colorful and changeful appearance at night. If you are interested, you can also enjoy international operas, ballets, symphonies, ballets, musicals, and other performances there.
When it comes to where to do shopping in Chongqing, Jiefangbei is usually on the top of the answer list. Tourists usually come to Jiefangbei to seek for local snacks and souvenirs. If you have time, you can also join their team.
For history and culture lovers, you may want a visit to Three Gorges Museum. It is not only a typical museum of the Yangtze Three Gorges but also a comprehensive museum of history and arts. There is no admission fee charges of the museum.
If you are looking for a place with fewer tourists and can have a panorama view of Chaotianmen Dock and Chaotianmen Square, Landmark Riverside Park opposite to the dock is a good choice. And some tourists believe the view from the park is as fantastic as they can see by cruising.
Ciqikou Ancient Town is such a tourist site that can give you a glimpse of Chongqing in old days. The history of Ciqikou can be traced back for more than 1,700 years. Leaving yourself for about 1-2 hours to stroll around the ancient streets there can be a unique experience of stepping into past.
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Most highlights in Chongqing are located relatively close, and for most visitors to Chongqing, they spend 1-2 days in the downtown to experience the top attractions including Hongya Cave, Three Gorges Museum, Ciqikou Old Town, city’s full view, and more with the fresh taste of the famous hot pot and more local special things to see and do. And also, you can extend like many other people to travel further to see the UNESCO World heritage sites - Dazu Rock Carving and Wulong Karst Geopark at Chongqing suburb area for another 1-2 days.
Chengdu and Chongqing are very close with only 1.5 hour’s high speed train riding, so you are also recommended to add a 2-3 days’ Chengdu trip into your itinerary to full feel the culture, history and food in Sichuan Ba and Shu areas. And since Chongqing is the start and end of the world famous classic Yangtze River Cruise, you are highly recommended to do as other over 50% of Chongqing visitors to travel Chongqing together with the great mother river! Chongqing to Yichang Yangtze River Cruise takes 4 days and 3 nights, and Yichang to Chongqing cruise takes 5 days and 4 nights, you can select according to your length of vacation! Furthermore, you are also very welcomed to tell us if you have any other ideas about your Chongqing trip 2022/20231!
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