Following the success of the cycling trip to Yunan in 2005, I decided to ask Danny Chen to arrange a sightseeing/walking tour of Sichuan, his home province. They were three of us, Julie, my partner, John, my son, and me.
We journeyed via Beijing and arrived in Chengdu after over 20 hours travelling. Danny was there to welcome us at the airport.
After a shower and a rest, we met Danny’s wife, Xiao Yu, and walked to a ‘herbal’ restaurant for our first taste of genuine Sichuan cuisine. We made our introduction to the Sichuan pepper. Together with red chilies, they dominated most meals we ate.
The next day we were introduced to our driver, Diaoping, and the 8 seater vehicle which transported us around Sichuan for the next two weeks. The first stop was the Panda Breeding Research Centre just outside Chengdu. The pandas bred here are for zoos worldwide. Pandas for release into the wild are bred at Woolong.
The views of the giant pandas were fantastic. The red pandas were a surprise. I had not known that there was a second, far smaller, species.
Giant pandas. Click on the grey bar on the picture to scroll through the photographs. If you are using Internet Explorer, make sure that scripts and Active X controls are allowed.