|Day 1||Day 1: Meeting at the hotel, welcome dinner.|
|Day 2||Day 02: Visit of Panda Research Base, Kunzhai Xiang, Chinese tea houses and Sichuan Opera|
|Day 3||Day 03: Visit of Leshan Giant Buddha & Sichuan hotpot dinner|
Royal Mountain Travel is a Nepal-based sustainable tourism operator. We specialize in curating once-in-a-lifetime experiences to showcase indigenous and community based tourism projects. We work with travel agents and tourism companies to help plan travel experiences that highlight authentic, local lifestyles throughout some of the most unique landscapes on earth.
Day 1: Meeting at the hotel, welcome dinner.
Day 02: Visit of Panda Research Base, Kunzhai Xiang, Chinese tea houses and Sichuan Opera
Panda Research Base: It takes about half an hour from the center of Chengdu to reach the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding depending on the traffic. It is a huge park with rivers, lakes, ornamental green lawns, wild bamboo forests and man-made rocks and caves created to provide a healthy environment for the pandas living there. The base is the habitat of other endangered species as well, like red pandas, swans, peacocks, rare birds and butterflies. The giant pandas live in enclosures, and visitors can observe them resting, eating, playing with each other. You may take pictures of the pandas, but using flash is not allowed. After the main entrance inside there is a museum on the left promoting the protection of the environment and sharing results of scientific research related to panda breeding, and further inside the park there is a panda cinema, where they show a very informative film on the life of giant pandas.
Wide and narrow alleys / Kunzhai Xiang: These three parallel ancient city alleys have 45 ancient courtyards houses going back to the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Kuanzhai Xiang was restored in 2008 and became a popular area with many bars, restaurants, teahouses and shops selling interesting Chinese souvenirs. It provides a good opportunity to learn about local life during the Qing Dynasty, and appreciate Sichuan embroidery, shadow play, puppet show and Sichuan opera.
Chinese tea houses: Tea houses in Chengdu are both indoor and outdoor with a tranquil ambience, for leisure, meeting friends, and relaxing. The teas mostly served include Jasmin, Dragon Well and Bi Luo Chun. The most popular ones are Heming Tea House in People’s Park, Zhiji Tea House in Culture Park, Laozhaiyuan in Kuanzhai Xiang, and Wenshu Monastery Tea House on Renmin Road.
Sichuan Opera: Originates in the 17th century, when immigrants flooding into Sichuan brought different dramas and blend it with the local dialect, customs, folk music and dances. The main highlight of Sichuan Opera is the „face changing” act, when actors change their masks, often 10 masks in less than 20 seconds! In Sichuan Opera qigong movements are also integrated, it is is an acrobatic and humorous show, very entertaining.
Day 03: Visit of Leshan Giant Buddha & Sichuan hotpot dinner
Leshan Giant Buddha: This 71 m tall stone statue was built in the 8th century, during the Tang Dynasty, depicting a seated Maitreya, the Future Buddha. It is the largest stone Buddha in the world. Carved out of a cliff face it lies at the confluence of three rivers in the southern part of Sichuan Province about 165 km from Chengdu (two hours by car). You can walk up and down on both sides of the statue to have a closer look, or go on a river cruise to take photos. Best is to arrive early to avoid the crowd. There is a monastery, the Wuyou Si, south of the Buddha founded in 742 AD with impressive decorations and statues, and painted scenes from the Journey to the West (one of the four classical Chinese novels written in the 16th century) in the second hall. The Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area was included by the UNESCO on the list of World Heritage sites in 1996.
Sichuan hotpot dinner: Sichuan cuisine has bold flavours, it is pungent and spicy. A lot of chilli and garlic is used, and its most famous spice is Sichuan pepper (peppercorn), which creates a tingly-numbing sensation in the mouth. Sichuan hotpot is a must-try. It is a metal pot of spicy stock at the center of the dining table, where different ingredients, like thinly sliced meat, leaf vegetables, dumplings, tofu and seafood can be cooked. The cooked food is shared by the people sitting around the table, and it is usually eaten with a dipping sauce.