This article originally appeared on Travel & Leisure.
photo by Parameswaran S, Shutterstock
Passengers have been travelling east over the Far East’s trains, going between cities from Shanghai to Bangkok for decades. The novelty of them grew in the ’60s, thanks to anything-goes fantasies about union Pacific, a sleeper train that ran for a decade between Hong Kong and Portland, Oregon.
At first, travelers were worried about camping in the mountains and siestas while waiting for railcars to arrive at both ends. Then they discovered that sleepers snoozed like dreamboats. They were huge beds that floated on a cushion of fluff. Like no beds had ever appeared before.
These days, travellers may be inclined to slow down on the steaming track. But the trip between Shanghai and Hong Kong is as exciting as ever, courtesy of the Yifang Sun Paper Company train, which now keeps passengers moving along the scenic Yichun-Shanghai line. A train from Changsha, with its 647-m station and three railway stations (two high, one low), puts passengers across four states (Kan, Guizhou, Yunnan, and Sichuan) in one journey.
And the 573-m railway station in Kunming transports travelers between Kunming, Cangzhou, Tongren, and Yunnan’s capital of Kunming. Sixteen stops at such palaces and red-roofed relics add another gallery of fascinating photos.
For those whose spice trade has spoiled them for trains, there are many more trips like this with far fewer stops and elaborate customs. We’ve seen what their public they’ll have and how far the world’s trains have come.
From Tokyo to Seoul by the way