Transport and Lodging of Yunnan

Yunnan had been long closed to the outside world, because of its poor transport system and lodging conditions. Yet thanks to the reforming and opening up policy carried out by the Chinese central government decades of years ago, Yunnan has witnessed a fast development in transport and lodging sector. Now a good transportation network composed of road, railway, civil aviation and water transport has been formed in Yunnan, which links up all parts of the province and blends Yunnan with the rest of the country. The status quo of the transport and lodging of Yunnan is as follows:


Yunnan has formed a good road network with Kunming as its center. As the trunk lines, the national and provincial highways link major cities in the province and connect to adjoining provinces of Sichuan, Guizhou, Guangxi and Tibet, as well as the neighboring countries of Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar etc, meanwhile, fairly good roads lead to every town in Yunnan.


Yunnan is the only province in China where the standard gauge railway (gauge: 1.435 meters), meter gauge railway (gauge: 1meter) and inch gauge railway (gauge: 0.6 meter) coexist; thus, Yunnan enjoys the reputation of the “Railway Museum”. Yunnan is connected with other parts of China on the rail; however, there are only a few railroads inside the province.

Civil Aviation

There are now 10 airports in Yunnan linking major tourist destinations in the province. Kunming airport is one of the 5 largest airports in China, and a first-class international airport at which Boeing 747 and A310 airplanes can land and take off. There are more than 50 domestic air routes covering almost every part of China. Kunming airport now can receive nearly 4.5 million passengers a year.

Water Transport

There are 6 river systems in Yunnan, which ranks first in terms of water systems in China. Exploitable waterways are over 8000 kilometers; the navigable mileage is only 1324 kilometers. The main ports in Yunnan are Shuifu, Simao, and Jinghong. The waterway from Shuifu to Shanghai is the longest inland waterway in China (2884 kilometers).The Lancang River with its lower reaches called Mekong is the only international river linking 6 countries in Asia. Its total water course is 4880 kilometers long with 2130 kilometers in China and 1200 kilometers in Yunnan.


The lodging facilities in Yunnan have been improved greatly since the holding of the World Horticultural Exposition in1999. A large number of hotels sprung up. In major tourist destinations, deluxe hotels are not uncommon, while, in the less popular travel destinations, less luxurious hotels, or at least guesthouses, are always available.