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Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding

There are few images more iconic to southwestern China than that of the giant panda. Unfortunately, despite its status as a Chinese national treasure, the giant panda population has been whittled down to just 1,000 pandas due to mass human development over the last century.

As a response to this ecological crisis the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding was opened in 1987 and began caring for six pandas rescued from the wild. During the 25 years since its founding the Chengdu Panda Base has employed some of the world’s leading giant panda researchers to manage an open air sanctuary where giant pandas can be bred and raised in an effort to eventually be reintroduced into wild populations.

Located only seven miles from downtown Chengdu, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding is inarguably one of the most popular tourist destinations in all of southern China. A 92-acre compound which is covered in bamboo, the facility amazingly provides the 80 pounds of bamboo each panda can consume on a daily basis.

More than simply providing a natural setting for the giant pandas, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding also serves as the world’s largest and most successful giant panda breeding center. Here visitors can learn about the myriad difficulties which go into breeding what is seemingly everyone’s favorite species of bear. As an example, mature female pandas are only fertile for a select number of hours per year and require a specific breeding position which those in captivity have shown difficulty mastering. Nevertheless, through artificial insemination techniques and calculated monitoring of the giant panda’s peculiar reproductive cycle (pandas can, for example, be pregnant anywhere from 11 weeks to 11 months), the team of researchers have managed to grow the center’s population from six bears to just under ninety.

The center is accessible from the city of Chengdu by taxi, and visitors eager to see active giant pandas will have their best opportunity during the morning feeding time from 8-10 AM. It’s also during this time where visitors can pay a fee of approximately $200 to hold a baby panda bear or sit next to a larger grown adult. Though a hefty sum, the revenue garnered goes towards the purchase of land in rural Sichuan province where the pandas will eventually be reintroduced into the wild.

More than a center for just giant pandas, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding also has facilities for red pandas, golden monkeys, South China tigers and other regional endangered species from around the Sichuan province. In a country that is not always known for its sensitive treatment of wildlife and the environment, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding is a facility where the dedication to preserving the delicate biodiversity of Sichuan province is inspiringly alive and well.

Tours & Tickets

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Half-Day Chengdu Panda Breeding Center Tour with Optional Baby Panda Holding

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 40 Reviews

Spend your morning with the cutest, yet impressive, creatures in China! Visit the Chengdu Panda Breeding Center and take a guided tour of the facility. Tour ...  Read more

Location: Chengdu, China
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $51.90

Viator Exclusive: Volunteer at Panda Breeding Center with Optional Panda Holding

4.5 star rating: Recommended 5 Reviews

Volunteer for a day with a private tour at the Chengdu Panda Breeding Center – a Viator Exclusive you won’t find anywhere else! You’ll see giant pandas up ...  Read more

Location: Chengdu, China
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $218.66

Private Tour: Chengdu Sightseeing with Panda Breeding Center Visit

This private city sightseeing tour of Chengdu takes you to all the highlights: Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, Zhaojue Temple, People’s Park ...  Read more

Location: Chengdu, China
Duration: 11 hours (approx.)

From USD $89.90

Chengdu Full-Day Tour: Panda Breeding Center and Sanxingdui Museum

Chengdu isn’t known as the ‘Land of Abundance’ for nothing. On this full-day tour, find out why as you visit the Chengdu Panda Breeding and Research Center and ...  Read more

Location: Chengdu, China
Duration: 9 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $116.99

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