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Pandas in Chengdu have many fans. Their cute appearance and naive nature attract people from all over the world. Our private Chengdu tours include the top highlights of this city, which allow you to have close contact with pandas, admire the historical heritage, experience the scenic Jiuzhaigou and taste the famous Sichuan food. Travelers may want to linger here once they have experienced this wonderful place.

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Chengdu Tour Planning

When is the best time to visit Chengdu?

Whatever the season, Chengdu is good for a vacation. However, the periods March to June and September to November are especially favorable for visiting the area. During these periods, the temperature is usually pleasant with less rainfall. We recommend you avoid traveling during the Chinese National holiday in the first week of October as almost all sightseeing spots are always filled with domestic tourists and the traffic is heavy.

How many days are recommended for a Chengdu tour package?

Normally it takes two to three days to explore the popular attractions in Chengdu. Top of the list it comes the Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, where you can get really close to the adorable pandas. The city is also endowed with a great many historic and cultural sites. Among these, Jinsha Site Museum, Sanxindui Museum, Dujiangyan Irrigation System, Wide and Narrow Alleys, as well as Jinli Street are the places most tourists choose to visit.

For those who are also interested in Buddhist culture or natural beauty, you can take a Leshan and Mt. Emei tour or a Jiuzhaigou trip. In this case, two or three more days are necessary. Any of the above sites are worth to be included in your Chengdu tour itinerary.

I see you arrange either the Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding or Dujiangyan Panda Base in itineraries. Can you tell me the major difference between the two?

The Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding is of easy access as it is located just 6 miles (10 km) away from downtown. Here visitors can see a relatively large number of pandas of all ages. In addition, there are also lesser pandas, black-necked cranes, white storks as well as over 20 species of rare animals being fed and bred in this base.

Dujiangyan Panda Base is about 34 miles (56 km) northwest of the city, which is about 1.5 hours drive each way. There are fewer giant pandas here, but this is currently the only place for visitors to hold a lovely panda and attend the panda keeper's program as volunteers. We can arrange either of them to cater for your interest and make your Chengdu private tour an unforgettable experience.

I'm a fan of pandas. Can you tell me what exactly will I do if I attend the Panda Keeper's Program? Can I hold a panda and take photos with it?

A volunteer's work starts with cleaning the pandas' enclosure. This entails sorting out their waste leftovers, excrement and taking notes for records at the same time. Afterwards, it's time to prepare the panda's meal by slicing bamboos into smaller pieces for easier ingestion. Since pandas usually eat a lot each day, you need to prepare a quite large amount. Later, you prepare snacks including apples, carrots or steamed buns for them. You will do all these tasks with the help of the keeper.

If you want to hold a panda and take photos with it, you will have to join the base's donation program, and the amount is about CNY 1,800 to 2,000 per person in cash. Besides, an advance reservation is needed for this program since only 20 visitors are allowed do so each day.

What are the best hours to see the lovely giant pandas? Also, am I able to see panda cubs?

The pandas are most active around 09:00 am. At this time, they usually eat bamboos, climb trees or happily play with each other. Therefore, it's better to arrive at the panda base before 09:30 am to enjoy your visit.

If you are visiting the panda base in August, September or October, you'll have the chance to see the panda cubs. It is because that the pandas' natural breeding season is during March to May and their pregnancy is about five months.

Can I visit Jiuzhaigou Valley at any time of the year?

Yes, Chengdu is the major gateway to Jiuzhaigou. However, the severe weather from November to early March usually makes it difficult to visit Jiuzhaigou Valley, especially Huanglong area. During this period, flights to Jiuzhaigou are frequently subject to cancellations, so it is advisable to visit Jiuzhaigou in the April to October period for a smooth and enjoyable trip.

What's the altitude of Jiuzhaigou Valley? Is altitude sickness a problem?

The average altitude of Jiuzhaigou Valley is 2,500 meters (8,202 feet), so most travelers won't get altitude sickness here. Some people may feel a little dizziness when visiting Huanglong Scenic Reserve for it has an average altitude of 3,300 meters (10,826 feet). To ensure a pleasant trip, we suggest you avoid brisk walking and smoking. Also, it is advisable to drink adequate boiled water and eat plenty of fruit and vegetables during your visit.

It is important to note that people with high blood pressure or heart diseases are not advised to visit the area. If you are concerned about altitude sickness, you should have a physical examination and ask your doctor for advice when planning your Jiuzhaigou trip.

Can I visit both Leshan Giant Buddha and Mt. Emei within one day?

Sorry, this is not going to work as a day is required to visit each of them. For your information, it usually takes about 2 hours to drive from Chengdu to Leshan Giant Buddha. The recommended time for a visit there is around 3 hours. Then you will arrive at Mt. Emei in the late afternoon after driving for one hour from Leshan. Thus, the visit to Mt. Emei has to be scheduled for a second day. A regular Mt. Emei trip with lunch will last for about 5.5 hours, and then it will be late afternoon when visitors are transferred back to Chengdu. The drive takes 2.5 hours.

How is the food in Chengdu?

Chengdu is the birthplace of Sichuan cuisine, which is famous for its richness, variety and spicy flavor. Typical dishes include Ma Po Tofu, Kung Pao Chicken, Fish Flavored Shredded Pork, Twice Cooked Spicy Pork Slices, etc. There are also many snack bars selling traditional local delicacies such as Long Wontons, Lai Tang Yuan, and Braised Beef and so on. Besides, hotpot is also a must try dish. Tasting the authentic Sichuan food is a big part of Chengdu travel experience to most visitors.

For those who are not used to Chinese food, you can also find a good number of Western restaurants in the city.
  • Customer Reviews
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    4.862 Reviews
    United States
    Posted on January 19, 2020
    I was pleased with the Chengdu tour. The guide and driver picked me up at the airport in time. I had a good rest in a luxurious hotel. The guide made good use of the time and arranged reasonable schedules. The members of our group were friendly and from different countries. We got along well and shared the experiences and stories with each other. The greatest treasure I earned on this trip was that I met so many lovely people. I had made an appointment with one of my new friends to travel to other places in China. ... More
    Allison Debruce
    Posted on January 06, 2020
    It was a worthwhile Chengdu tour. First of all, getting picked-up or dropped-off service at the airports was very convenient and thoughtful for me since I went to Chengdu for the first time. I stayed in a clean hotel with a good environment. The quality of the meals was high. The enthusiastic guide provided a professional explanation and service. We also sang and had a happy time in the car. This wonderful tour was worthy to recommend to everyone!
    Posted on December 23, 2019
    I brought my family and children together to experience the slow life in 2 days Chengdu for the first time. From the beginning to the end, the guide made meticulous arrangements in all aspects, which touched us all. We were deeply impressed by her dedication. I would use TravelChinaGuide and experience such a good tour again!
    Ky Howell
    Posted on December 17, 2019
    Seeing the pandas had been on the top of my list since I moved to China. Despite my last-minute call (I desperately needed to get away for a weekend), both my travel agent and tour guide, Ashley Tang and Jack respectively, helped me plan a trip to Chengdu without a problem. They worked with my wants and needs and provided an excellent adventure that had let me see everything I wanted without feeling burned out. The hotel they provided was in an exquisite resort, and Jack was very informative with every place we visited. If you want to plan a trip to Chengdu or volunteer st a panda reserve, I highly recommend this agency to help you. ... More
    Alvin White
    Posted on December 09, 2019
    It was a great Chengdu tour to Leshan and Mt.Emei. I couldn’t be satisfied with the high-quality meals and hotels more. We appreciated the Leshan Giant Buddha by taking a boat. The Buddha was so huge and splendid. It was incredible that it could be preserved so well after a thousand years. I was lucky to have a glimpse of the Golden Summit on the Mt. Emei. But it was a pity that I didn’t come across any monkey. Maybe it was because of the cold weather…
    Steven Le Gassick
    Posted on November 25, 2019
    Really enjoyed the tour . Lisa was delightful and we learned about everyday life in Chengdu. The driver was excellent and a safe driver. We highly recommend this tour. We were also dropped off at our next destination for an extra charge which was very helpful.

    Heddah Viteri
    United Kingdom
    Posted on November 25, 2019
    The guide was knowledgeable and outgoing. She offered a very considerate service and arranged everything well. There was a clean and comfortable hotel. The driver drove steadily and picked us up on time. The guide was warm and thoughtful, caring about each tourist and explaining the scenic spots comprehensively. She reminded us of matters needing attention in particular. The scenic spots we visited were beautiful and memorable. It was a worthwhile Chengdu tour. I’d like to explore other places in Sichuan with my family! ... More
    Mary Hinspeter
    Posted on November 11, 2019
    When I booked the tour, Echo, the consultant, answered my questions patiently and offered many useful suggestions. Each part of the Chengdu tour was accompanied by the guide with meticulous arrangements! From the airport picking-up to the accommodation, the scenic spots explanations and meals in the itinerary were all considered from the perspective of the tourists! Thank very much for the guide and driver's hard work!
    Janet Monroe
    Posted on October 28, 2019
    The guide was knowledgeable and familiar with Chengdu. We were not bored when we transferred to different places because she introduced the customs and culture of Chengdu from the introduction Jinsha Site Museum to the leisure life in People’ Park. She was sincere and took care of every visitor at all times. I enjoyed the 3 days Chengdu tour very much. I wished I could have her accompany me when I travel to Chengdu next time!
    Posted on October 14, 2019
    We did the one-day Dujiangyan and Mount Qingcheng tour in the Chinese New Year holiday, so there were many tourists. But under the enthusiastic service of the tour guide, the trip could be almost perfect! I was satisfied with the guide most: her professional quality and ability and service attitude were first-class!
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