For Spring Break we traveled from Beijing to Chengdu in the Sichuan Province of China. It was a quick three hour plane ride. Along with spicy Sichuan food, the main draw to Chengdu is the Giant Pandas. It is true you can see Pandas at the Beijing Zoo, however The Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding is the best place to view these amazing creatures.
Getting to the Base is easy, the taxi from our hotel knew exactly where to go and it cost us between 70-80 RMB each way (approximately $10-12 USD). Admission to the base is 58 RMB for adults and less for student-age children. Once you enter the base you can pay an extra 10 RMB for a shuttle ticket. The grounds are very large and provide an amazing park-like setting. By far, this is the most professional and immaculate place we've been to in China!
We had no idea how many pandas we would see or what condition they would be in. We were pleasantly surprised that we saw almost one hundred hundred pandas. Going in the morning provided us with entertaining views of them eating and playing.
Here are two videos to actually see how they move and interact.
Wasn't that funny?
|Mother and Baby|
|Mother itching and cleaning herself.|
We never tired of watching these serene animals. There are many different areas where we observed them. There are also places to learn about how they are bred, what they eat, how to digest and about their personalities.
|More funny Chinglish|
There are a few different places to eat. We chose the cafe that had both Chinese and Western options.
|The menu at the Cafe|
|An example of the beautiful gardens|
|Feeding the Koi Fish at Swan Lake is a big hit with the kids. |
Fish food is sold for 2 RMB.
Did you know Pandas feel safer sleeping in trees rather than on the ground?
|Baby Panda reminded me of a kid in a halloween costume.|
We had heard that you can pay to take a picture with a panda. Start saving now. For the outrageous price of 2,000 RMB ($300 USD) PER PERSON you can spend a few minutes holding a panda and take a picture. They take professional pictures and allow you to take pictures with your own camera as well. They also frame your picture, give you a hoodie sweatshirt and a DVD. It was tough to pay that much, but it is a "donation" to the base for more research and breeding.
This was definitely one of the highlights of my time here in China. If you find yourself visiting China, you MUST be sure to visit the Giant Pandas in Chengdu!