Wolong Natural Reserve is located in the southwestern part of Wenchuan County, Aba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture of Sichuan Province. It is on the southeastern slope of Qionglai Mountain, 130 kilometers from the city of Chengdu, which is the provincial capital, and the transportation here is very convenient. As one of the earliest comprehensive state-level natural reserves in China, Wolong Natural Reserve was set up in 1963, covering an area of 200,000 hectares. It is now also an important base not only provincially but also nationally for science popularization and patriotism education. There are now 5,343 people living inside the reserve, of which the agricultural population accounts for 4,550.
In this area there are several scenic spots that belong to the list of World Natural Heritage, such as the Wolong Panda Reserve, Siguniang Mountain, and Jiajin Mountain, which in total cover an area of 9,245 square kilometers. Twelve counties from four cities including Chengdu, Aba, Ya’an, and Ganzi are covered by the three natural heritages. More than thirty percent of the wild pandas in the whole world inhabit in this area, and it is also the biggest panda habitat as well as one of the areas on earth with the most abundant species of plants next to the tropical rain forest.
Known as the hometown of pandas, a precious biological gene bank, and a natural zoo as well as arboretum, Wolong Natural Reserve enjoys high popularity and fame all over China as well as the rest of the world. Besides the abundant species of animals and plants, mineral resources are also widely distributed here. More than one hundred pandas now inhabit in the reserve, accounting for about ten percent of the total number in China.
Wolong Natural Reserve has very unique geographical conditions and complicated topographies. The scenery here is very beautiful and various, and the climate is quite agreeable. High mountains, clean rivers, big forest, deep caves and steep cliffs are all existed here. Moreover, the unique cultures of the Tibetan and Qiang nationalities here are both charming and fascinating. On this land, the panda garden and the breeding base for lesser pandas which are smaller than pandas and have different colors of furs, have been built. The Panda Museum, which is up to now the only museum in China that contains only one single specie of animals. An observing station for doing research on wild pandas has also been constructed inside the reserve.
The Breeding Base of Lesser Pandas
This is a special breeding base for half-wild and half-raising lesser pandas. Visitors have the opportunity to personally feel the environment where lesser pandas live. The lovely lesser pandas here sometimes walk to the tourists, behave in a spoiled manner and ask for food. And sometimes they just play with each other on the trees, in the woods or on the grassland. People always begin to love them at first sight.
The Panda Garden
This is the largest panda-raising stable in the world. There are 66 pandas ranging from different ages now living inside. Visitors could learn about the life of pandas as well as the research work done by experts. In spring when flowers bloom, tourists have the chance to enjoy the courtship songs of pandas as well as watch the interesting scenes when pandas mate with each other. In golden autumn, you may be able to watch the whole birthing process of baby pandas. The greatest gift for visitors will be taking photos with pandas here. They could be permitted to stand close to the pandas and then take pictures together, personally appreciating the harmony between nature, animals and human beings. That must be a wonderful experience for visitors.
China Wolong Panda Museum
As the only one panda museum in China, the name of this place on the gate was written by former Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji. There are mainly six parts of exhibitions inside, showing visitors the living environment, historical evolution, characters, concomitant animals, and artificial feeding, breeding, research and protection of pandas, and the last part is about the history and development of this natural reserve. Visitors are also able to learn about the love and care to pandas from international organizations and friends, the achievements accomplished after the launching of international cooperation on research of pandas, and more detailed information and mysteries of this cute animal.
Wuyipeng Ecological Observing Station of Wild Pandas(the number of people admitted to visit here is strictly limited)
With an altitude of 2,589 meters, this is the earliest-built observing station for wild pandas. It is also the most densely inhabited area of wild pandas and the best-preserved original ecological environment in which pandas live. In the past it was opened only to Chinese and foreign experts who came to make on-the-spot investigations and researches. Nowadays in order to let more and more people care and learn more about pandas, besides animal experts, a small number of visitors could be admitted to come into this area, and that number could be no more than ten tourists per month. This small number of visitors must be of excellent physical, mental and moral qualities. They should apply earlier and the permission will be given according to the time order of the applications.