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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
  • Questions & Answers
    4.855 Reviews
    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!
    Francesco Hammond
    Posted on September 28, 2019
    It was a pleasant 5 days Chengdu tour. The guide explained in detail and spoke fluent English. I was so moved that they looked after us all the time. Her hard work won our praise. In the Wide and Narrow Alley, she also recommended delicious foods and distinctive shops to us. In a word, I spent a good time on this trip.
    Sue Hegedus
    New Zealand
    Posted on September 15, 2019
    The driver we had on the 2 days Chengdu tour to Leshan and Mt. Emei was experienced and drove safely. We enjoyed a considerate service and a detail explanation from the guide. We went to Mt. Emei on a sunny day. The sea clouds in the Golden Summit was presented perfectly. It was incredibly splendid and beautiful! Highly recommended!
    Frederick Gury
    Posted on September 08, 2019
    Fortunately, the weather in Chengdu had been very good for five days. The guides offered careful and interesting explanations. The van we rode was very smooth and comfortable. Every meal tasted good. I saw the lovely pandas, magnificent Leshan Giant Buddha, and spectacular Mt. Emei. The time spent together was very short, but it was different every day. I would cherish the unforgettable memories of the 5 days Chengdu tour forever!
    Ken Crook
    United States
    Posted on September 08, 2019
    I had thought that there were fewer people in the off-season. I was wrong. It was busy and bustling in the scenic spots especially in the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda. So many people went there to see the cute pandas. The itinerary was tight but the elderly people and children could keep up with the group. We still have great fun and learned a lot about the culture and history of Sichuan. It was a wonderful Chengdu panda tour. I was willing to book another tour with TravelChinaGuide!
    New Zealand
    Posted on September 05, 2019
    The itinerary and accommodation of the 2 days Chengdu tour to Leshan and Mt. Emei was consistent with the description by the company. The guide was very responsible and paid much attention to safety. She was enthusiastic and professional and was capable to explain every scenic spot in detail. She was busy but always full of energy. I would like to express my special thanks to the driver and guide for the services, dedication and hard work in the past few days. Thank you!
    United Kingdom
    Posted on September 03, 2019
    It was a joyful 5 days Chengdu tour. The guide was responsible and organized the itinerary well. The accommodation and meals were first class. We rode a comfortable van and had plenty of time to visit every scenic spot. Chengdu was a beautiful and carefree city. I wished I could have more time to experience the local life and tasted more Sichuan foods!
    Posted on September 02, 2019
    We had professional and nice guides during the 2 days Chengdu tour. My son liked the guide in Chengdu who told many interesting stories. It was a pity that the schedule is too tight and we could not explore more places.
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