London to Beijing by high-speed train

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Okay, okay, maybe not just yet. But according to a report in the Telegraph, China is in negotiations to build a continent-spanning high-speed rail network within the next ten years.

These trains would be able to travel at over 200mph, meaning travellers could jump aboard in London and alight 5,070 miles and two days later in Beijing. It would also run to India and Pakistan, with follow-on projects creating routes through Russia to Germany, segueing into Europe's rail system. Even further down the track (ahem) will be routes into Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar/Burma and Malaysia.

Pretty amazing concept, huh? Instead of interminable bone-rattlers, you can get on this rocket-like train and feasibly travel thousands of miles in relative speed and comfort. This also has implications for the environment,  making the idea of green long-haul travel a distinct possibility. It may not have the romance of old-school rail travel but it may redefine the experience to be exciting in a different way.

Would you choose rail over air if this high-speed option was available to you? Would cost be a factor? What do you think could be the knock-on effects of such a service on the travel industry? We'd love to hear what you think. Post your comments below.