ChengDu, the panda Capital

Lieve Wout,
Eerst en vooral een gelukkige verjaardag! Hoe was het feestje?
We hebben ons best gedaan om de foto’s van de panda’s vlug op de blog
te plaatsen omdat we weten dat je supernieuwsgierig bent. Je bent een
echte dierenliefhebber.
Straks valt er terug een verrassing in de brievenbus. Vertel je me dan
hoelang de postbode gewandeld heeft vanuit het verre China?
Dikke kus, ook aan je mama, papa en zus.

In Chengdu we stay two nights in the Mix Hostel, a friendly cosy
backpackers hostel just outside the town centre. We’ll use this
location for our brief exploration of the city…
Our first experience in the hotel : make your own dumplings… and
afterwards the easiest part, eat them!

The most interesting part of the city stays the Panda Breeding
Research Centre. There you can observe these cosy, nearly extinct,
When we arrive in the centre, it is feeding time.
Most of the bears are busy, munching the bamboo sticks and the little
ones start hugging and playing with each other after dinner. Before
they all fall asleep… We were lucky, the cool, rainy weather made
them more vivid than normal, so we observed them quite a while.
After that we briefly visit their little red namesakes, the red panda.
They are eating fruit from their metal bowls when we arrive, before
climbing again in the treetops.

In the afternoon we cross the Wenshu Temple, a marvellous Tibetan
looking temple near the city centre. In the Aidao nunnery we got a
brief introduction in the praying methods and are invited to walk
three times around the main temple, chanting the ‘Ohm mani padme
Ohm’-mantra… Finally we visit the Green Ram Temple, a taoist temple
where we spot the typical Chinese way of dressing. The Tao was the
real religion of the Chinese emperors…
We conclude the city with a stroll through the People’s park and a
visit to the country’s greatest statue of ‘Chairman Mao’.

Interesting detail, the communistically China had a flag with a hammer
and a sickle… But nowadays the People’s Republic of China changed
the flag into one with five yellow stars in the corner. One central
one and four around.