How to Get to & around Datong

Datong is a provincial sub center city in northern Shanxi bordering Inner Mongolia and Hebei Province. It has been an important transportation hub in northern China since ancient times. It is also one of the state-list famous historical and culture cities with precious attractions such as Yungang Grottoes and Hanging Temple.

With flights and high speed trains, Datong is now well connected with surrounding cities. Here we have provided you with more specific information about Datong transportation including how to get to Datong from other cities like Beijing, Xian, Pingyao, etc. and how to get to the main attractions in Datong from downtown.

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Where is Datong

Located in the northernmost Shanxi province in China, Datong City is easy to reach from Beijing in the east, Hohhot in the west, Taiyuan in the south, and Xian in the southwest. It is about 338 km to Beijing, 900 km to Xian, and 280 km to Taiyuan.

Datong Map Datong Location Map

Get to Datong by Flight

Datong Yungang Airport (IATA: DAT)

Location: Yunzhou District, Datong, Shanxi (山西省大同市云州区), about 15.5 km (40 minutes’ drive) to downtown, 46 km (1 hour’s drive) to Yungang Grottoes and 73km (1.5 hours’ drive) to the Hanging Temple.

Datong Yungang Airport (大同云冈机场) was built in 2005. It now has 15 airlines connecting 25 cities in China such as Beijing (1h), Shanghai (2.5h), Chongqing (2.5h), Xian (2h), Chengdu (2.5h) and Wuhan (2h). But please note that the flights may be a little different in winter/spring and summer/autumn. For example, flights to Beijing are not available in winter/spring. Main airline companies include Air China (CA), China Eastern Airlines (MU), Shanghai Airlines (FM), China Southern Airlines (CZ), etc.

Datong Transportation

Datong Yungang Airport

Get to Datong by Train

There are two railway stations in Datong - Datong South Railway Station and Datong Railway Station. The former one is a newly built high speed railway station and the latter one is mainly for normal trains.

Datong South Railway Station (大同南站)

Location: Kaiyuan Street, Pingcheng District, Datong, Shanxi (山西省大同市平城区开源街), about 8 km (25 minutes’ drive) to city center, 25 km (40 minutes’ drive) to Yungang Grottoes and 65km (75 minutes’ drive) to the Hanging Temple.

Datong South Railway Station, or Datongnan Railway Station, is the second biggest high speed railway station in Shanxi Province. It was put into operation on Dec. 30, 2019, is a new departure station on Datong-Xi'an passenger line and Datong-Zhangjiakou passenger line. The construction of Datong South Railway Station has greatly shortened the travel time of northern China, especially between Datong and Beijing, Zhangjiakou, Taiyuan, Pingyao, etc. Read more about Datong Railway Stations>

Datong Transportation

Datong South Railway Station

Datong Railway Station (大同站)

Location: No. 4 Zhanqian Street, Pingcheng District, Datong, Shanxi (山西省大同市平城区站前街4号), about 10 km (30 minutes’ drive) to city center, 18 km (40 minutes’ drive) to Yungang Grottoes and 90 km (1h 40 minutes’ drive) to the Hanging Temple.

Datong Railway Station has a history of more than 100 years and was first put into use in 1914. It is the meeting point of Beijing-Baotou Railway and North Datong-Puzhou Railway, playing a significant role in connecting Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Shanxi and Inner Mongolia. Now it mainly operates Z, K and other normal trains.

Datong Transportation

Datong Railway Station

Datong Train Schedules:

Get from Beijing to Datong

Datong is about 338 km (5 hours’ drive) to the west of Beijing. Direct flight (1 hour) is not always available (usually 3-4 flights a week in winter/spring) or necessary as high speed trains have shortened the transfer time to 2-2.5 hours. There are about 12 trains a day from Beijing to Datong, among which 7 are high speed trains that depart from Beijing Qinghe Railway Station or Beijing North Railway Station to Datong South Railway Station. Tourists can also take one of the about 10 long-distance buses (5-6 hours) at Liuliqiao Passenger Station to Datong.

Useful Links: Travel from Beijing to Datong | Travel from Datong to Beijing

Recommended Tours: 2 Days Beijing Side Trip to Datong | 6 Days Beijing Datong Essence Tour | All Beijing Datong Tours

Datong Transportation

Beijing Datong Transfer Map (click to enlarge)

Get from Xian to Datong

Xian is located about 900 km south of Datong. The most recommended transfer way is by flight (1 h 40 min) or high speed train (6 h). There is usually 1 direct flight a day from Xian Xianyang International Airport to Datong Yungang Airport and 2 high speed trains from Xi’an North Railway Station to Datong South Railway Station. Normal train (16.5 h) is also available but you will need to spend a night on the train. Long-distance bus is not recommended because it will take at least 12 hours.

Useful Links: Travel from Xian to Datong | Travel from Datong to Xian

Recommended Tour: 9 Days Ancient Treasures of China Tour (Beijing / Datong / Pingyao / Xian)

Datong Transportation

Xian Datong Transfer Map (click to enlarge)

Get from Taiyuan to Datong

Taiyuan, the capital city of Shanxi Province, is about 280 km away from Datong. You can transfer between these two cities simply by car (3.5-4h) or by high speed trains (2-2.5h). There are over 10 high speed trains a day from 8:30 am to 8:30 pm. Direct flight (1 h) is also available but not recommended because you may need more time in checking in and transferring between the airports and downtown.

Useful Links: Travel from Taiyuan to Datong | Travel from Datong to Taiyuan

Recommended Tours: 6 Days Essence Tour to Datong Wutaishan Taiyuan & Pingyao

Datong Transportation

Taiyuan Datong Transfer Map (click to enlarge)

Get from Pingyao to Datong

Pingyao is about 385 km to the south of Datong. There is no airport in Pingyao so flights are not available. The most chosen way is by train. There are 3 high speed trains (3-3.5h) a day from Pingyaogucheng Railway Station to Datong South Railway Station. Normal trains will need about 8 hours thus are not recommended. Actually Taiyuan mentioned above is on the way from Pingyao to Datong. If you are interested, you can stop by in Taiyuan and then continue to Datong.

Useful Links: Travel from Pingyao to Datong | Travel from Datong to Pingyao

Recommended Tours: 4 Days Essence of Datong & Pingyao Tour

Datong Transportation

Pingyao Datong Transfer Map (click to enlarge)

Get Around Datong

For independent travellers, the most common way to get around Datong is by taxi or bus. Subway is not available in Datong at present.

By taxi: Taking a taxi to tour around Datong city can save you much time. Generally speaking, the fare is CNY7 for the first 3 kilometers, then charging CNY1.6 for each additional kilometer. The taxi fare will be a little higher at night.

By bus: There are over 30 bus routes in Datong. They connect most parts of the city including the relatively far Yungang Grottoes. The air-conditioned ones usually charge CNY 2 and those without air-conditioner charge CNY 1.

How to Get to Yungang Grottoes

Yungang Grottoes locate in No. 1, Yungang Town, Yungang District, Datong (大同市云冈区云冈镇1号). There are buses from Datong downtown to the scenic area and it will need about 1 hour. To save time and transfer trouble, taxi is more chosen by tourists. Yungang Grottoes are about 23.5 km (45 min by car) from city center, 46 km (1 hour by car) from Datong Yungang Airport, and 25 km (45 min by car) from Datong South Railway Station.

How to Get to Hanging Temple

Hanging Temple is in Hunyuan County, Datong, Shanxi (山西省大同市浑源县). It is a little far from downtown, about 80 km, nearly 1.5h by car. The most convenient way to get there for independent travelers is to charter a car. Bus is also available, but it can only take you to the bus station in Hunyun County and you still need to take a taxi to the temple. Read more about How to Get to Hanging Temple>

Datong Transportation

Environment Friendly Bus in Datong

Datong Transportation

Main Attractions in Datong (click to enlarge)

How to Plan a Datong Tour

It usually needs 2 days to cover the highlights in Datong. Without any doubt, Yungang Grottoes are a must. It consists of 53 grottoes with 51,000 statues and is a real treasure of traditional Chinese art. After that, you can go to Shanhua Monastery to appreciate a set of well-preserved buildings of Liao Dynasty (905-1125). Then, continue to have a look at Nine Dragon Screen, the oldest and largest glazed screen in China and later head to Huayan Temple, which keeps the largest wooden structure of Buddhist temple hall with elegant mural and scriptures. The next day is for the attractions a little far from downtown such as Hanging Temple, an unusual temple standing on the precarious cliff built over 1500 years ago, and Yingxian Wooden Pagoda, the highest wooden pagoda in the world.

☛ 2 Days Datong Yungang Grottoes Tour
☛ 3 Days Datong Culture Tour with Hanging Temple

In addition, the convenient transportation of Datong provides opportunities to discover more of Shanxi to Taiyuan, sacred Buddhist mountain Mount Wutai, world heritage site Pingyao Ancient City, magnificent Hukou Waterfall, etc.

☛ 5 Days Datong & Wutaishan Discovery Tour
☛ 6 Day Datong Pingyao Tour Plus Wutaishan Visit

If you have more days and want to travel outside Shanxi, it is highly recommended to extend your tour to capital Beijing (Great Wall, Forbidden City), time-honored Xi’an (Terracotta Warriors), and modern metropolis Shanghai (the Bund).

☛ 9 Days Ancient Treasures of China Tour
☛ 11 Days Golden Triangle Tour with Shanxi Highlights

Datong Transportation

Yungang Grottoes

Datong Transportation

Hanging Temple

Travel Datong with China Discovery

Want to travel in and around Datong but don't know how to arrange your day by day itinerary? Travel Datong with us, and all of your problems will be solved. In every city, our professional local guide and driver will escort you from your hotel, train station, airport to all attractions with comfortable private licensed car and let you catch the highlights of every site and city, so you can get really relaxed on the way and focus on what you are interested in. The tour can be tailor made according to your plan, time and interests and demands. If you are interested, please feel free to contact us and tell us your needs, and we will customize a memorable tour for you!

Datong Transportation

Private Transfer with China Discovery

Recommended Datong Tours

Top 3 Datong tours chosen by most customers to explore Datong in the best way. Check the detailed itinerary, or tailor your own trip now with us.

Peaceful Scenery of Mount Wutai

6 Day Datong Pingyao Tour Plus Wutaishan Visit

Datong / Wutaishan / Taiyuan / Pingyao

Datong Yungang Grottoes - World Heritage Site

4 Days Essence of Datong & Pingyao Tour

Datong / Pingyao

Ancient Man-Made Yungang Grottoes

2 Days Datong Yungang Grottoes Tour


Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once inquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5~23.5 hours.

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Questions & Discussions

Following are latest questions and answers from our webusers and customers. You can learn many useful information from the discussion and cases. You can also join in the discussions or ask your own question. Our experts will help you ASAP.

Datong to Wutaishan bus
Hi there, I read on your website that there are buses from Datong to Wutaishan. Where exactly do they set off from and arrive? I will travel from Datong to Wutaishan on July 27. On July 30 I need to return to Beijing. Can I return from Wutaishan on that day? Is the bus service to and from Datong reliable? And also can I buy tickets in advance online?

Thank you,

2018-07-05 01:24
Dear Daniel,

Thanks for your question. On July 27, there will be one distance bus departing from Datong Bus Station (大同汽车站) at 07:30 and arriving at Wutaishan Bus Station (五台山汽车站). Wutaishan Bus Station is quite close to the scenic area and the whole journey takes 4~5 hours usually. Without Chinese ID Card Number, you are unable to book the tickets on line. You have to go to the station or ticket agency to book one. 2 full days is enough for a classic Wutaishan tour, so you can return to Beijing on July 30. There are 3 trains from Wutaishan to Beijing (departing at 01:49, 17:19 and 22:54) and the train trip takes about 6.5 ~ 7 hours.

Wish you a nice trip.

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