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Yangtze in February

by superscot Online Now Dec 15, 2005 at 9:17 AM

Hi

I'm hoping to visit Chongquin in mid February but can't find out much information about Yangtze trips then. The only boat that I can find that is running is the Victoria Cruises ship - once a week.

Are there any others running then (don't have to be 5* cruise ships). Details and web links would be great. Should I book before I arrive or can I book at in CQ? Any idea of costs?

Many thanks

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3 Answers
  • Mique's Profile Photo

    RE: Yangtze in February

    by Mique Online Now Dec 21, 2005 at 6:01 AM

    This is what a freind of mine posted on the Thorntree a week or so ago. He did it about 2 weeks ago and i'm heading down that way soon (next week or so). Hope it helps but if it doesn't answer your questions ask me in a week or 2

    Sandra

    hello All
    an update for anyone planning on catching the boat down the Yangzai
    river
    from chongqing to yictang, or wuhan
    it is possible to buy the tickets for the boat at the docks, there is a
    ticket office there, to the left, it wil save you the cost of
    commission
    that all the tour offices charge
    for example, my ticket 578 yuan, CITS charge 750 yuan, the ship office
    would
    charge around 440 yuan
    also, you do not need to buy the tours (temple, ghost city, 3 little
    gorges,
    big dam) if you book through a tour company
    again the charge commission, you will have tour reps on the boat who
    will
    sell you the tickets on the boat a few hours to a few minutes before
    the
    boat stops at these places, again, it will save you
    for example
    pagoda temple, ticket at the front door only 20 yuan, at the tourist
    office,
    its 40 yuan
    3 little gorges tour, tour company 190 yuan, on the boat 150 yuan
    big dam, 160 yuan, on the boat, 125 yuan
    you could also avoid the extra 5 by either buying your ticket on the
    cable
    car for 2 yuan right there at the base of the cable car, or even walk
    up the
    stairs (but for 2 yuan, you would be crazy to walk it, long way)
    by wary of all the tour companies, the boat is a means to rip off all
    foreigners and even the chinese are not spared, food in the restaurant
    is
    not cheap i mean, cheap by western standards, but not chinese
    standards, but
    food was good)
    and the biggest point i guess, is NOT too buy your sun deck pass, it
    costs
    anywhere between 60 to 120 yuan, you are technically allowed up for
    free
    be rude, be adamant, even be angry, be strong and just say no no no,
    walk
    pass the checkers and hang out up there, they will insist you must pay,
    you
    will see the chinese pay, but after 2 or 3 attempts to get money they
    will
    give up
    after that first time, it is easier and by the end, i was never even
    stopped
    anymore, you DO NOT have to pay, even the tour companies in chongqing
    told
    me this......so simply be forceful, and dont pay, ignore them, its a
    scam
    also met travellers who jumped a train direct from yichtang to shanghai
    for
    about 370 hard sleeper
    by the route the tour companies would suggest, its a 5 hour, 120 yuan
    bus
    ride to wuhan then the 1425, K13 train to shanghai.....this ticket also
    cost
    me about 370 yuan, plus that bus fare......i would recommend getting a
    tour
    company to book you those tickets though (especially in summer or over
    holidays) cause that way you are guaranteed to reach shanghai, and not
    be
    stuck in hard seat, or worse still, stuck a few days when you just want
    to
    reach shanghai.....its worth the commission on this one, someone will
    meet
    you at the town with your ticket, or you will be told where to go to
    pick
    them up (in our case, a hotel travel agency)
    the boats are rather tacky, feel cheap, chinese friendly anyhow, had no
    security issues, etc but makesure anytime you exit the boat (you are
    allowed
    off, even if you dont pay for entrance to sights) that your door is
    locked!
    i saw the workers on the baot go around after most had left the boat,
    and
    they were unlocking doors, very strange!!! so lock and try to makesure
    it
    stays that way
    but the scenery is great, the cruise slow and cool
    the dam is half built, and despite the dodgy tour (1 hour at dam for
    photos,
    then they fill the rest of the time taking you to a very crap arquirum,
    another temple (avoid the back room unless you planned on seeing very
    old
    dead bodies floating in a tank of vinegar!!! i wasnt expecting this
    tired as
    hell at 1pm!!!) and some very very sad horse show) all this is
    happening at
    night time, about 8pm till 12:30am while the boat passes thru the
    locks....then the boat arrives in yichtang at 4am, and you are kicked
    off
    the boat, its cold too
    up to you, depends on how much you want to see the big dam i guess, it
    is
    rather impressive, but you wont be able to see it from the locks, there
    is a
    mountain in the way, tour is the only way to see it....
    there it is, enjoy...ps, the water has already risen quiet a lot, the
    river
    is effectively damed already.....so this is your last chance to see it
    before they turn it on for real, but alot is gone already :( its a
    beautiful
    river

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  • RE: RE: Yangtze in February

    by superscot Online Now Dec 31, 2005 at 11:28 AM

    Hi Sandra

    Thanks for the info - really useful insights.

    I hear what your friend says about buying tickets directly at the docks. I got a reply last week from trekyangtze.com who are really helpful and who will arrange flights from Shanghai to Chongquin and from Yichang back to Shanghai for about Y1500 all in. I'll probably book the cruise with them as my time is very limited and I need to make sure of things in advance.

    Hope you have a great trip.

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    RE: RE: Yangtze in February

    by Mique Online Now Dec 31, 2005 at 11:16 PM

    Have fun!

    I'll be doing the trip next week (wuhan to Chongquin). Am now in Wuhan to wait fro the extension of my visa. Still have to go to the docks and see if there is a ferry or anything going though. But that is always the case with me

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