Wolong Panda Base
Just about 3 hours' drive from the downtown Chengdu, there lies a real homeland of giant pandas named Wolong National Nature Reserve with untouched beauties of lush woodlands and pristine forests that make up the ideal wild habitat for animals. Covering an area of about 200,000 hectares, it is abundant in natural landscapes, from alpine meadows to broad-leaved forest, and rare animals, from giant pandas to snub-nosed monkey, making it appealing for the flow of worldwide tourists and scientists to explore. Founded in 1963, Wolong National Nature Reserve housing more than 100 captive pandas thanks to its unique geographic advantages has become the biggest panda reserve in China.
Those chubby pandas had enjoyed their leisure life until the catastrophic Wenchuan Earthquake deadly destroyed their home and even deprived the life of a nine-year-old panda named Mao Mao in May 12, 2008. Then many of the pandas were relocated to Bifengxia Base of China Panda Protection and Research Center and this Panda Base was closed for the successive renovations. But in 2016, Wolong Panda Research Center started to be revitalized again for a total number of 74 pandas were transferred back to the new reserve gradually.
What distinguishes Wolong Panda Research Center from others is its main focus on how to successfully introduce those pandas back to the wild. The fact that six pandas have already returned to the wild and five of them have been accustomed to living in the wild has greatly encouraged the scientist's confidence and pushed forward the process of the wildness training program.
Never miss the chance to spend a whole day with those adorable giant pandas as a panda keeper if you enjoy your days in Wolong National Nature Reserve. Follow your professional panda keeper to clean the pandas' enclosures, take delights in hand-feeding the giant pandas, tour around the Base to capture their interesting moments with your cameras, make your own panda cakes and watch a panda-themed documentary movie, there are a series of volunteer activities to amaze and delight you. At last, you will be awarded with the Honorable Certificate and an exquisite souvenir to memorize your wonderful panda keeper experience.
While exploring Wolong National Nature Reserve, be sure to hike through Dengsheng Gorge with an altitude of 2,800 meters, an unspoiled fairyland packed with dense pristine forests where rare wild animals like wild pandas, black bear, white-eared pheasant, etc. inhabit. Stop along the way to soak up the natural scenes of winding streams, verdant mountains and luxuriant grasslands as you trek deeper into the Gorge. Besides the original beauties, it is a good chance for you to explore the traces and wastes of giant pandas amid the picturesque natures because a few pandas have already successfully introduced back to the wild.
- Hiking length and time will be up to your preferences.
- Outdoor footware are suggested due to the craggy trails.
- Long-sleeved shirts, pants and coats are recommended due to the lower temperature of the Gorge.
- You are also suggested to bring some water and snacks for the hike.
- Please travel green and leave nothing but footprints in the beautiful gorge.
In 2008, the former Wolong Panda Research Center was tragically destroyed by the massive Wenchuan earthquake and the pandas once inhabited there were forced to leave for other Bases. But after the eight-year recovery, there sits a newly built home named Shenshuping Panda Center with an area of about 150 hectares (371 acres), where more than 70 captive giant pandas comfortably settle down. With verdant bamboo groves, vast area and fresh air, it provides the best wild habitat for those endangered giant pandas who are taken care of in different zones such as Grown-up Panda Zone, Sub-adult Panda Zone, Baby Panda Zone and Wildness Training Zone. You may enjoy your time seeing giant pandas who nibble bamboos, climb the trees, run around or quietly snooze in the garden as you tour around the less-crowded Shenshuping Panda Center. Additionally, it never fails to exceed visitor's expectations for its untouched natural scenes of bluish hills, lush forests, murmuring streams will await you.
Besides seeing the cuddly giant pandas in person, it is a good chance for you to get deep insight of this endangered species in all regards from living environments, historical evolutions, and their natures to achievements of panda protections by visiting Wolong Museum exclusive for giant pandas where more than 200 panda-related exhibits are on display.
About 130km (80 miles) northwest of Chengdu (about 3 hours' drive)Best Time to Visit
The best season to see pandas falls in Spring, Autumn and Winter as giant pandas prefer to enjoy the cool temperature outside. But whenever you visit, bear in mind that giant pandas tend to be more active and playful in the morning. Please set off early so as to enjoy more time with those adorable pandas.Time needed:2 days Admission Fee:
CNY 15 Entrance fee
CNY 20 Giant Panda Museum
CNY 60 Shenshuping Panda CenterOpening hours:9:30am-4:00pm
- Take Metro Line 2 to Chadianzi Coach Station and head to Wolong by the coach to Xiaojin County or Wolong Town.
- Take the bullet train to Dujiangyan and then transfer to the bus up to Wolong.