What a mission. Two days on a train, one night on a bus. I guess it could have been worse, but I have finally made it to the China/Kazakhstan border at Khorgos, Xinjiang Province, the northwest corner of China.
I left Shanghai at 8:40pm April the 24th on the Shanghai-Urumqi express train. I bought the ticket for a hard-sleeper berth four days in advance from the English-speaking counter at the Shanghai Central Station. It was about 650RMB for the ticket.
I arrived in Urumqi at 3:30pm on the 26th of April. Much sooner than I had expected.
In Urumqi I asked at the information counter at the Urumqi train station about trains or buses to Khorgos (the information people speak English). They directed me to a bus station further in town. Asking locals along the way, I managed to get to the bus station in one piece, and booked a seat on the overnight sleeper bus leaving Urumqi at 9pm that night.
I boarded the bus at 9pm, and 12 hours later, at 9am on the 27th of April, I arrived in Khorgos. Tired from traveling, but stoked to be outside and on my way…