How to Get to & around Shanxi

As a landlocked tourist region in Northwest China, Shanxi is normally the second stop for a China tour. Travelers often get to an international hub in China first, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Xian, and then transfer to Shanxi by domestic flight or train. Getting to Shanxi by road from nearby cities is not as popular as the air and train travel. The capital city Taiyuan is usually chosen as the arrival city as well as transfer city to other destinations in Shanxi, such as Pingyao, Datong, Wutaishan (Mount Wutai), etc. Located between Beijing and Xian and well connected by high-speed railway, Shanxi is also popularly visited with Beijing and Xian by tourists. When talking about the transportation in Shanxi, it mainly refers to how to get to and around the top sites like Taiyuan, Datong (Yungang Grottoes), Pingyao (Pingyao Ancient City), Wutaishan (Famous Buddhist Mountain), etc.

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Get to Shanxi by Air

Taking a flight is the fastest and most comfortable way to get to Shanxi. So far (Aug 2020), there are 7 airports serving different cities in Shanxi. Among them, Taiyuan Wuxu Airport, Datong Yungang Airport, Xinzhou Wutaishan Airport, are the 3 most popular airports among tourists, and only Taiyuan Wuxu Airport is the international airport in Shanxi. Besides, there are also many other smaller airports in Shanxi serving cities in Yuncheng, Linfen, Changzhi, and Lvliang.

Take Flight to Taiyuan

Taiyuan Wusu International Airport (IATA: TYN)

Location: Taiyu Road, Xiaodian District, Taiyuan, Shanxi (山西省太原市小店区太榆路), about 16 km, 30 minutes’ drive to Taiyuan downtown (Yingze Park), 24 km, 30 minutes’ drive to Jinci Temple, and only 7 km, 15 minutes’ drive to Taiyuan South Railway Station.

Taiyuan Wusu International Airport is also most frequently used airport to Shanxi, operating over 130 airlines connecting with over 70 domestic and foreign cities such as Beijing (1.5h), Shanghai (2.5h), Chengdu (2h10min), Chongqing (2h), Wuhan (2h), Kunming (3h), Hangzhou (2.5h), Xiamen (3h), in China, and international cities like Bangkok (5.5h) in Thailand, etc.

Take Flight to Datong

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.

Take Flight to Wutaishan (Mount Wutai)

Xinzhou Wutaishan Airport (IATA: WUT)

Location: Wuweizhuang Village, Hongdao Town, Dingxiang County, Xinzhou City, Shanxi Province 山西省忻州市定襄县宏道镇无畏庄村, about 110 km (2 hours’ driving) from Taihuai Town, Mount Wutai; about 40 km (1 hour’s driving) from Xinzhou City

It serves tourists to Mount Wutai and Xinzhou City. At present, tourists can take non-stop flights to Wutaishan from Shanghai, Chengdu, Nanjing, and Hangzhou and over 10 Chinese cities. Air travel is normally within 3 hours. Flights departing from Shanghai, Nanjing are scheduled daily while others are weekly. If you want to fly from Beijing to Wutaishan, there are frequent connecting flights available daily, which takes at least 7 hours. Please note that once arrived, air travelers still need to spend 2 hours driving to Wutaishan from the airport.

Useful Links: Wutaishan Airport and Flights | Shanghai Wutaishan Flights

Take Flight to Changzhi & Yuncheng

As for sightseeing in Changzhi and Yuncheng, flights are available in these two cities. Changzhi Wangcun Airport has direct flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Xi’an, and Datong. While, Yuncheng Guangong Airport has flights to Guangzhou, Taiyuan, Shenzhen, and Tianjin and has become the aviation center of the southwest region of Jin.

Taiyuan Wusu International Airport

Taiyuan Wusu International Airport

Datong Transportation

Datong Yungang Airport

Get to Wutaishan by Flight

Xinzhou Wutaishan Airport

Get to Shanxi by Train

Thanks to the well-connected high-speed railway network, Shanxi can be reached from most cities in China by train, which makes it a very important connection between northern and southwestern China, and between eastern and northwestern China. If you are making a long-distance journey or want to try a bullet train experience in China, train travel can be a unique experience.

Only about 350km away from Beijing, Datong can be reached by high-speed bullet train within about 3 hours, and the Datong Xian High-Speed Railway was fully opened in 2019 and it takes only 6-6.5 hours traveling from Datong to ancient capital Xian. Meanwhile, you can take a 2.5 hours bullet train from Datong to visit Taiyuan, and 3-3.5 hours to visit Pingyao in Shanxi. Besides getting to Beijing, Xian and the cities of Shanxi, from the capital of Shanxi, Taiyuan, you can also take the high-speed train to Hohhot and Beijing in the north, to Shijiazhuang and Qingdao in the east, to Lanzhou, Xining in the northwest, and to Chengdu and Chongqing in the southeast, etc.

Useful Links: Pingyao High Speed Trains | Datong Xian High Speed Train

Get to Taiyuan by Train

There are 5 train stations in Taiyuan, namely Taiyuan South Railway Station, Taiyuan Railway Station, Taiyuan North Railway Station, Taiyuan East Railway Station, and Taiyuan West Railway Station, among which the former two are the main passenger railway stations.

Taiyuan South Railway Station (太原南站)
Location: Taiyu Road, Xiaodian District, Taiyuan, Shanxi (山西省太原市小店区太榆路), about 12 km, 25 minutes’ drive to the southeast of downtown area, 24 km, 35 minutes’ drive to Jinci Temple and 7 km, 15 minutes’ drive to Taiyuan Wusu International Airport.

Taiyuan Railway Station (太原站)
Location: No.2 Jianshe South Road, Yingze District, Taiyuan, Shanxi (山西省太原市迎泽区建设南路2号). It’s in downtown area, about 30 km, 45 minutes’ drive to Jinci Temple and 15 km, 30 minutes’ drive to Taiyuan Wusu International Airport.

Useful Links: How to Get to Taiyuan | Taiyuan Railway Stations

Taiyuan Transportation

Taiyuan South Railway Station

Taiyuan Train Schedules:

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 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.

Useful Links: How to Get to Datong | Datong Railway Stations

Datong Transportation

Datong South Railway Station

Datong Train Schedules:

Get to Pingyao by Train

At present, there are two railway stations in Pingyao, namely, Pingyao Railway Station and Pingyao Gucheng Station. Pingyao Railway Station is a small train station serving mainly stop-over K trains and other normal trains, while Pingyao Gucheng Station (aka Pingyao Ancient City Railway Station) is the high-speed railway station. Ther are many trains departing from Taiyuan to Pingyao. Traveling by train from Beijing, Xian, Datong, Taiyuan, Luoyang to Pingyao is also very popular.

Pingyao Railway Station - Normal Train Station
Location: 14 Zhongdu Road, Pingyao County, Jinzhong City, Shanxi Province 晋中市平遥县中都路14号, (Distance to Pingyao Ancient City Scenic Site: 1km)

Pingyao Ancient City Railway Station - High-Speed Train Station
Location: Wenjing Avenue, Pingyao County, Jinzhong City, Shanxi Province 晋中市平遥县文景大道 (Distance to Pingyao Ancient City Scenic Site: 10km)

Useful Links: How to Get to Pingyao | Pingyao Railway Stations

How to Get to Pingyao

Pingyao Ancient City Railway Station

Pingyao Train Schedules:

Get to Wutaishan by Train

Now, Xinzhou West Railway Station is the nearest high speed train station to Mount Wutai. The train station is located in Xinzhou City, about 150 km southwest of Mount Wutai. After arrival at Xinzhou West Railway Station, tourists can take a private car or a local taxi to get to Mount Wutai directly.

Xinzhou West Railway Station 忻州西站
Location: Zhanqian Street, Jieyuan Village, Xinfu District, Xinzhou City, Shanxi Province 山西省忻州市忻府区谢原村站前街, about 150 km (2.5 hours to 3 hours’ driving) to Taihuai Town, Mount Wutai

Useful Links: How to Get to Wutaishan | Get to Wutaishan from Beijing | Wutaishan Railway Station

Get to Wutaishan by Train

Wutaishan Railway Station - The Nearest Train Station to Mount Wutai

Wutaishan Train Schedules:

Get Around Taiyuan

For independent travelers, the most common way to get around Taiyuan is by Taxi or bus. Subway in Taiyuan is under construction now. Metro Line 2 that runs north-south through the central axis of Taiyuan is expected to be put into operation at the end of 2020. >>how to get around Taiyuan

Get to Jinci Temple: Jinci Temple is located in Jingci Town, Jinyuan District, Taiyuan, Shanxi (山西省太原市晋源区晋祠镇), about 26 km (40 minutes’ drive) southwest of Taiyuan downtown (Yingze Park), 24 km (30 minutes’ drive) from Taiyuan Wusu International Airport.

Taiyuan Transportation

Jinci Temple Transportation Map (click to enlarge)

Get Around Datong

The most common way to get around Datong is by taxi or bus. Subway is not available in Datong at present. It is convenient to the scenic site in Datong. >>how to get around Datong

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.>>More about how to get to Yungang Grottoes

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. The 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. >>More about how to get to Hanging Temple

Datong Transportation

Main Attractions in Datong (click to enlarge)

Get Around Pingyao

With two train stations, Pingyao is easily accessible by train. Pingyao Railway Station and Pingyao Bus Station are right next to the ancient city wall, while Pingyao Gucheng Railway Station (Pingyao Ancient City Railway Station) is a high-speed train station (about 10km to the ancient city), serving trains from Beijing, Xian, Taiyuan, etc. The nearest airport is about 100km away from Pingyao, namely Taiyuan Airport. On your way to Pingyao from Taiyuan, you can also visit the famous Qiao's family compound or head to Wang's family compound after your Pingyao trip. Besides traveling Pingyao alone, you are recommended to visit other places in Shanxi, such as Datong, Mt Wutai, Hukou Waterfall, etc. >>More about how to get around Pingyao

Pingyao Ancient City Location Map

Pingyao Ancient City Location Map

Get Around Wutaishan (Mount Wutai)

Mount Wutai is a huge scenic area consisting of five terraces and 47 Buddhist temples. Travelers often get to the core site - Taihuai Town first and then begin the Wutaishan tour from the temples around the town. Hikers can trek among all temples and spots, while regular tourists are recommended to take a tourist bus to save time and energy for sightseeing more. You can easily walk to visit some famous and top temples around, such as Wuye Temple, Tayuan Temple, Xiantong Temple, Dailupding Temple, Pusading Temple, etc. There are also several local buses and tourist buses running among the tourist center, the terraces, landmark hotels, and main temples. To reach the peak - Dailuoding temple, you choose to hike all the way up, take a cable car, or ride a horse.>>how to get around Wutaishan

Taihuai Town to Five Terraces on Mount Wutai

Five Terraces Location Map
(click to enlarge)

How to Plan a Shanxi Tour

Top Places to Visit in Shanxi: Datong Yungang Grottoes, Pingyao Ancient City, Mount Wutai, Wang’s Family Compound, Hukou Waterfall, etc.

Best Time to Visit Shanxi: April ~ May & September ~November for most places; June ~ August for Mount Wutai.

How to Get to Shanxi: Take flight to Taiyuan Airport, Wutaishan Airport, or take high speed trains to Datong, Pingyao, Taiyuan, Linfen…

Shanxi is an excellent region to explore different treasures of ancient China. Depending on your itinerary, you can either spend 2 days visiting one destination only or take more time, maybe 1 week to cover major highlights in Shanxi, touring Datong, Pingyao, Mount Wutai and Hukou Waterfall in one single trip.

Most tourists tend to spend 4 days touring two top destinations of Shanxi, such as Datong and Pingyao, Datong and Mount Wutai. If you want to take an in-depth Shanxi tour with more attractions and experience some interesting local activities, 6 days is enough for a combined trip to Datong, Mount Wutai, Pingyao and Taiyuan while 7 days is suitable with extra trip to Hukou Waterfall.

☛ 4 Days Essence of Datong & Pingyao Tour
☛ 4 Days Datong Wutaishan Discovery Tour
☛ 6 Days Datong Pingyao Tour plus Wutaishan Visit
☛ 7 Days Shanxi Diversity Tour including Hukou Waterfall

Want to extend trip longer with other parts of China? Then, Beijing and Xian are the two most recommended places to travel with Shanxi. Also, you can explore famous destinations in neighboring provinces, like Luoyang, Zhengzhou, or get to Shanghai and other Chinese cities. If you plan to have a short side trip to Shanxi from Beijing, or Xian, you can spare 2 days to visit one destination as well. China Discovery is always prepared to offer you the best Shanxi tours and customized service for a satisfied itinerary based on your requirement.

☛ 9 Days Ancient Treasure of China Tour
☛ 8 Days Ancient Beijing and Shanxi Culture Tour
☛ 6 Days Beijing Pingyao Highlights Tour
☛ 6 Days Beijing Datong Essence Tour

China Shanxi Tour

Yungang Grottoes, Hanging Temple, Pingyao and Mount Wutai in Shanxi

Travel with China Discovery

China Discovery is an experienced, professional and a reliable travel companion devoted to offering high-quality and the best tour services for all travelers to China. In order to have a hassle-free travel and focus on the trip itself, it’s highly recommended travelling with China Discovery. So, you can enjoy convenient airport pick-up and drop-off service and transportation to all scenic spots in a safe, clean, comfortable, air-conditioned and non-smoking vehicle. Also, we will arrange knowledgeable local tour guide, excellent accommodation and dining arrangements to ensure you rest well and get better understanding of local culture. You may select a favorite from our most popular Shanxi Tours or contact us to design a unique itinerary according to your personal time and preference.

We have helped many global travelers enjoy their memorable wonderful trips to Shanxi for the past few years. Among them, a sweet couple from the UK traveled with us and spent 21 Happy Days in Datong, Pingyao, Mount Wutai, Xi'an and 5 Other Cities in Northern China, and shared us their special travel story!

Moreover, we got more than 1,620+ good reviews on, and over 3,310+ China travel reviews from our customers. Travel with China Discovery to create your great China trip memories!

Recommended Shanxi Tours

Top 3 Shanxi tours chosen by most customers to explore Shanxi 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 (Cave No. 20)
4 Days Essence of Datong & Pingyao Tour

Datong / Pingyao

Hukou Waterfall (Shanxi Side)
7 Days Shanxi Diversity Tour including Hukou Waterfall

Datong / Wutaishan / Pingyiao / Hukou Waterfall

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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