It's the town on the Mongolian side of the sole border crossing into China open to foreigners. You will pass through it if you're travelling between Beijing and Ulaanbaatar as described in Mongolia#From_China. The town on the Chinese side of the border is Erlian
A paved road was finished from Sainshand to Zamiin-Uud in 2013, completing a paved road from the Chinese border to the Russian border at Suhbaatar through Ulaanbaatar. From China, you can cross the border from Erlian as described in Erlian#To_and_from_Mongolia.
To China, instructions are pretty much identical to the above, with the following amendments:
- By bus - the bus leaves from in front of the train station
- By jeep - the jeep trip from Zamiin-Uud to Erlian costs ¥50-80 (Chinese yuan)
To Ulaanbaatar your best option is by train. Trains leave Zamiin-Uud for Ulaanbaatar on at least a daily basis, as of May 2018 at 18:05 and arrive at 08:30. You can buy tickets for the train from the top floor black glass building to the left of the main train station building as you face it. Left luggage is in the basement of this building.
Getting tickets on the same day can be an issue - later on in the day often only soft sleeper and hard seat are available. At busy times (for instance around the Nadaam) and on days when only one train to Ulaanbaatar runs sometimes soft sleeper sells out as well. It's best to cross the border as early as possible to ensure a bed. If you speak Mongolian, you could also try contacting Anda Tour below who can reserve tickets for you. If you're travelling from Beijing to Ulaanbaatar (UB), you could buy a package from one of the guesthouses in Beijing, but this is probably only worth it around the Naadam.
It costs 25,600 ₮ (May 2018) for hard sleeper and 40,000 ₮ (April 2011) for soft sleeper to UB and takes 14.5 hours for the slow train at 18:05.
Below is the timetable for trains leaving Zamiin-Uud as of May, 2018):
|3||Beijing - Ulaanbaatar - Moscow (Trans Mongolian)||01:25||02:40||Wednesday|
|4||Moscow - Ulaanbaatar - Beijing (Trans Mongolian)||18:50||20:35||Sunday|
|23||Beijing - Ulaanbaatar (Trans Mongolian)||01:25||02:40||Saturday|
|24||Ulaanbaatar - Beijing (Trans Mongolian)||18:50||20:35||Thursday|
|22||Ulaanbaatar - Zamiin-Uud||08:30||N/A||Monday, Friday|
|21||Zamiin-Uud - Ulaanbaatar||N/A||21:35||Monday, Friday|
|34||Ulaanbaatar - Zamiin-Uud - Hohhot||08:30||N/A||Tuesday, Saturday|
|33||Hohhot - Zamiin-Uud - Ulaanbaatar||N/A||21:35||Tuesday, Saturday|
|685/686||Zamiin-Uud - Erlian||17:35||10:00||Monday, Friday|
|681/682||Zamiin-Uud - Erlian - Hohhot||17:35||10:00||Tuesday, Saturday|
|275, 276||Zamiin-Uud - Ulaanbaatar||7:20||18:05||Every day|
With your back to the station in the rear left of the square there's a building which contains a bank, hotel & restaurant which serves decent food, and a load of other ones around the square.
The beautiful "yellow shop" to the left of the station sells ice cold beer.
- Jinchiin Hotel (Near the train station), ☏ . Small hotel with about 20 rooms and a simple cafe. 10,000-30,000 ₮.
Zamiin-Uud is a dusty border town that consists mostly of gers and small wooden houses. Probably best to take the train or shared taxi to Sainshand, the provincial capital. From there, it is easier to explore the Gobi Desert.
- Erlian, China: there are buses and jeeps to Erlian. There are local trains leaving in the evening most days and arriving in the morning. The border opens around 08:30. From Erlian there are buses and trains to other locations in China.
|Routes through Zamyn-Üüd|
|Irkutsk ← Ulaanbaatar ← Sainshand ←||N S||→ Erlian → Beijing|