Visited & filmed: 18 April 2017 (with some earlier footage)
China has a number of ancient capitals, and amongst them include Nanjing. Last officially the capital of the Republic of China in 1927, it is now the number one city, and provincial capital, of Jiangsu. With a city of this importance, you know they had to make the HSR station, Nanjing South (Nanjingnan) look good.
The arrival hall felt rather chilly and cool, but the immediacy of onward connections — no less than three Metro lines — made getting through this hub (especially those who need to make city-bound connections) very pleasant. There was also, of course, the Starbucks by the exit, in case you had a fair bit of time to kill.
Nanjing South does look like quite a palace, especially if seen from the station square. It had to be pretty grandiose, and you get to see that as you went up the escalators at the Departures Hall. There’s even an adornment of sorts of what David thinks is a mythological creature by the main entrance on the upper level. And in case you needed tickets, you’d be pleased to know that there are quite a number of backup ticket counters at the ticket hall (especially on Level 1), so if they all leapt into action, the queues would die in a moment (let’s hope!).
Service is key here, with both a Special Care centre, a general Info Desk, and even a medical centre for passengers who need this whilst they’re on the go. Passengers travelling on Business Class get their very own lounge on the upper level of the Departures Hall.
The Departures Hall has been fully used, so that the departure gates are right at the edge of the hall, thus yielding much more space for passengers in this very busy HSR hub. High speed trains on the Beijing-Shanghai and Shanghai-Wuhan-Chengdu routes serve the station, as well as some intercity HSR trains via Wuxi and Suzhou main stations to Shanghai, and trains to Anqing.
Next it was onto a very special line that celebrated on the day itself its tenth birthday — the express line between Nanjing and Hefei. Onwards, then, to Hefei South…