Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Is the road, border or area open and accessible to foreigners? Is there danger?
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kunibald
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by kunibald »

Hi, is the bus and the border working in the winter, meaning in the end of november/beginning of december? I can't find any information if the road might be closed.
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BakuBound
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by BakuBound »

I don't know about the through bus, but this is a year-round crossing: there's no mountain pass involved.
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Alkh
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by Alkh »

According to kazakh border agent this crossing is closed. If u want to cross in khorgos do not tell them you are planning to cross, it wouldnt surprise me if chinese side actually lets you in anyway (wouldnt surprise me if they dont, either, though). You need to go to a new crossing called nur joly which is 4km south (but 30km by car because you need to drive 14km west first).

Nur joly cant be crossed by walking or bicycle only by bus from zherkent (you can hop on the bus at the border too though, cost 3000 tenge for 1km ride. Chinese side didnt open my backpack or ask to see any pictures on my phone. I have a muslim last name but a swedish passport. My passport was of great interest, 5 customs agents looked at it from every single angle possible for. 30 minutes before giving it back.

Theres money exchangers once u get out of the border. There is no atm. I believe train station is a 1km walk straight forward once u get out. I didnt have any money left after taking taxi to the new border + getting scammed out of my last 2000 tenge by the only english speaking kazakh customs agent who was going to help me with getting on the bus (he said something to the drover after taking my money in bathroom of the only duty free store at thr border) though, so i walked to the city to withdraw, 4km north. Fun paranoid walk.

Yes. I know giving 2000 tenge was pretty much going to be a scam, to his credit he did get me on the bus, they asked me for ticket or 3000 tenge before we departed though. Was not kicked out for not having money luckily.

I can provide some more details in a few days if anyone has a question i guess.

Havent seen a single mention of this crossing on the internet so far. The border agent at khorgos was super sure i couldnt pass only shop at khorgos. Agent scammer said cant pass khorgos since 2-3 months ago which i dont think is true.

First and possibly only bus arrived at the border 3pm beijing time if i remember correctly. I waited 3 hours, doubt there was an earlier bus.
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Stefan Wo
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by Stefan Wo »

We crossed the border from Kazakhstan to China at Khorgos on December 18th by bicycle. First thing you have to know is that the old border at Khorgos, as you can find it on Google Maps and Maps.me, is actually closed. As mentioned in the post before, there is a new border crossing a few kilometres south. We were heading to the old one and cars stopped by and told us to turn and go to the new one. Because the map shows it different, we stopped a police car and they also told us the old one is closed. This road only leads to the shopping centre within the Special Economic Zone. You have to follow the southern road (south of Sharkent), even if the maps tell you different. If you come from Almaty, just always follow the new four lane highway, it leads directly to the new boarder.

Once you are there, the procedure at the kazakh side was easy and fast. On the chinese side soldiers seem to be a bit confused of how to deal with us at first. We had to wait in an office for an hour but then a higher ranked soldier came and we were guided to the brand new border crossing building. There, the normal procedure, as mentioned by many others, began. Luggage was x-rayed a couple of times and we had to show our phones and camera. They had a look at the pictures but it all happened while we were around, so no spy app was installed (like some people told it). The people who do this and the ones who scan your luggage are different ones, so you can even decide if you mention your camera or not, they won't check your luggage at this point. At lust there was the customs, where the luggage was scanned again and we had to get rid of some cheese we forgot, that's all. If you carry a petrol stove with you, better get rid of the petrol before. They checked all our bottles and we had to sip at them to proofe it's just water. We were afraid they won't allow us to carry our knife but they didn't mention them (we hided them deep in our panniers).

In Khorgos we deciced to take the bus to Urumqi. We cycled to the bus station, which doesn't look like one from outside (you can find it on maps.me). The bus departured at 7 pm and was around 150 RMB per person. For ours bikes and panniers we had to pay 50 RMB each but we had to bargain kind of hard because they wanted to have 100 RMB per person at first. The bus is a sleeping coach and took 17 hours to Urumqi.
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BakuBound
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by BakuBound »

You're not home clear! Knives are a problem at train stations and airports throughout China, especially Xinjiang but actually everywhere.
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steven
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by steven »

I made a stab at where I think the new border is on the border crossing map, but a precise gps coordinate is welcome.
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Alkh
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by Alkh »

Honestly im not sure if i passed the same border as the other guy, my border seemed very unpassable without a vehicle, in fact the kazakh side was kind of closed for people not in a car until the bus came. My crossing also didnt check any phones. Only xray luggage.

The description on how to get there very much sound as if its the same so its possible they just changed procedures since it was so new. Or maybe they were allowed to go in the "car lane" which seemed to have different procedures than the bus lane as the buildings i was in only processed people coming by bus.

The kazakh side of the border crossing was at 44.172747, 80.326722. Chinese side approximately 44.160855, 80.403152. Attachment is screenshot from somewhere inbetween the borders, forgot exactly where. The chinese side for cars is somewhere else though, but should be quite near.
Attachments
Screenshot_20181211-123631.jpg
Screenshot_20181211-123631.jpg (188.58 KiB) Viewed 1289 times
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elgarteo95
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by elgarteo95 »

I just crossed the Khorgos border from Kazakhstan to China by bus last week on 12/1.

My girlfriend and I first took a bus from Saryan bus station to Zharkent. The ticket costs 2000 tenge with 250 baggage fee (charged if your bag is deemed too big to carry on board at the ticket office). The timetable in the station turned out to be inaccurate as our bus departed at 9am instead f 9.20am stated on the timetable. The ride took around 4–5 hours and would take you to the Zharkent bus station which is also the place where the bus to China leaves. Note that the location of the bus station on maps.me is wrong. The bus station should be three blocks to the east at the junction of ulitsa Zhansugurova and the main road. We stayed at hotel Satti, 8000 tenge for a room with breakfast included (the hotel is marked as unavailable on online booking sites, but it is operating). There is a bazaar and a Chinese-style mosque in the town. We didn't spot any exchange office though, and one of the two banks on the main road said they don't offer exchange service, while another was closed.

There is a timetable of the bus to China hanged in the station, stating that there're 12 buses daily departing at 1-hour interval. But in reality, the bus leaves only when it's full, or when the driver thinks he has waited long enough. We arrived at 11am, bought the ticket (3000 tenge) and waited in the station until 1.30pm before the driver decided to move off. The immigration at the Kazakh side was smooth and quick. On the Chinese side, the police checked everyone's smartphone and tablet by manually looking through the photo album. The officer who checked mine was quite chill. He just quickly scrolled through my album and even chitchatted with me, but the one who was checking my girlfriend was very persistent on checking every photo she had taken, and started asking questions about her previous trips to other places. They then did a bag search on her as well. It did not happen to other passengers, which is quite strange since she is a Han Chinese national.

After getting through immigration, a Kazakh passenger who also spoke Chinese told us that it would take another 30 min for the bus that we originally took to clear immigration, so we followed everyone out of the hall. Non-Chinese nationals have to register with the police guard post next to the gate. There were several people outside the gate who offered to change money and lifts. Since it was winter and there seemed to have no alternative, we paid 40 yen for a ride to the train station (which I suppose would be cheaper during summer and bargain-able). After knowing that we were heading to Yining, he offered to take us there for 200 yen but we refused (train costs only 12.5 yen), and he didn't insist to afterwards.
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steven
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Re: Khorgos border crossing Q&A (Almaty - Urumqi)

Post by steven »

I changed the location of the Zharkent bus station on maps.me and OSM to the correct location for your convenience.
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elliecopter
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Kazakhstan-China Khorgas-Horgos border report update

Post by elliecopter »

Good news cyclists! You can now cross this border on your bicycles, there is no need to take a bus. The border has changed location I think, so this is the approximate location of the South gate

44°09′20.67″N 80°24′29.42″E

Everything is new and shiny and Google maps does not know that the road or border exists, but I can assure you it does. Give yourselves plenty of time for this border it took us a few hours to leave China with all the security checks. We crossed from Huorguosi, China to Kazakhstan. When you arrive to Kazakhstan there is no town for about 40km. The first town we came to was Zharkent (if you want to visit this town, take a right turn at the first and only junction). In Zharkent there is everything you need, there are banks that will change money for you and ATMs. There are shops and a market and a phone shop to buy a sim card if you're looking. Look for an activ shop for this. So make sure you're prepared for the first 40km before the town including with water as we didn't see anywhere to fill up with a filter or anywhere to buy. There is a restaurant on the Kazakh side though we didn't visit. Hope this is useful.
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