Pandas. All about those pandas. We had three goals for our 10 days in mainland China and the first was to see the panda sanctuary in Chengdu. I mean come on, how can you not want to see those awesome cuddly things rolling around and scarfing down bamboo?
While we heard it would be chaos at the panda park, we decided to brave it anyways and were pleasantly surprised it wasn’t that crazy. We showed up just after it opened which helped beat the crowds and tours and got us a chance to check out the pandas while they were awake and eating breakfast. This park is amazing as it literally only has pandas and has TONS of them. We learned China basically leases pandas out to other zoos around the world at around a million dollars per year. Crazy huh?
We saw dozens and dozens of them and the best part is they were all just as awesome. You see them on tv or in movies and think they will be a certain way and the best part is when you see them, they’re exactly what you imagined (unless you imagined kung fu panda, then you might be SOL as I didn’t find a ninja one anywhere). They just seemed happy, chill and fun. The babies spend most of their time rolling around and wrestling with each other. The big ones just want to eat and could care less if you are watching them. Some were pretty funny too. For example, a big one saw us watching him eat, so he took the bamboo pile he was eating and built a teepee out of it then sat behind it so we couldn’t watch him eat anymore. It was hilarious.
Other than the pandas in Chengdu, we spent time walking around and taking in the culture. One of our favorite spots was the People’s Park which was full of locals and had a great energy. There was a lot going on. Ladies are constantly performing synchronized dances, old men are practicing their ancient writing techniques on the sidewalks with huge brushes, people are playing games and there are little food vendors and tea houses everywhere.
Now check out these panda pics!