Photographer's Note

The giant pandas are not only a Chinese national treasure but are also beloved by people the world over. They are found only in Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu provinces. In total there are fewer than 1000, of which 80% are distributed within the territory of Sichuan province.

The Chengdu Panda Breeding Research Center is located 10km outside of downtown Chengdu and is easily worth the trip.

The Research Center covers an area of 92 acres and is home to Giant pandas, lesser pandas, black-necked cranes, white storks among others.

I enjoyed my visit so much that I canceled all of my activities for the next day so I could visit again. I particularly enjoyed watching the baby pandas (6 months old) play. The one in this photo spent a few minutes making his way up to the top of their play area before realizing that perhaps this is not where he wished to be afterall.

If you do visit make sure to go in the morning (preferably right when it opens). The pandas are quite active early but by 10 or 11 they mostly just sleep for the rest of the day and there is very little point in remaining.

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