In search of Giant Pandas!
03.08.2015 - 03.08.2015 34 °C
Yesterday we decided to head to Jinan Zoo to see their Giant Pandas. JInan Zoo is located in the north of Jinan, about 15 miles from where we live. The journey was simple enough, we got a bus into the city and changed buses at Daming Lake to get to the zoo. We were lucky enough to manage to get some of the 'K' buses on our journey. These are air conditioned buses which are much newer that the regular buses, though they appear to be quite infrequent. They are more expensive than the regular buses costing 2 yuan rather than 1 (but still only 20p!)
Jinan zoo is one of the largest in China, and is set in the grounds of and old park. We were a bit unsure of what to expect from the zoo before we got there, knowing that a lot of Asian zoos are different to western ones in the types of enclosures they provide for the animals.
Once we had arrived we headed straight for the pandas. We were expecting there to be a bit of a queue as when we had seen them before, at Ueno Zoo in Tokyo, there had been a large crowd both times. We were pleasantly surprised though as there was hardly anyone in the viewing area! We were treated to two young pandas looking quite relaxed, both of which were quite active - and for once not eating bamboo!
After seeing the pandas we looked around at some of the other enclosures and were left feeling rather confused. What we found was a bit of a mix, some of the enclosures were spacious and quite new, while others were small and outdated.
Having seen where they were keeping the lions and tigers we were set to leave, not feeling very happy. Then, as we were walking out, we came across a huge open enclosure to the back of the big cats. It was an impressive space, and from the signs around the edges it was clearly the outdoor area for the animals. What confused us though, was that all of the big cats backed onto the same enclosure and so they would have to have some kind of rotation to allow all of the animals out!
There was quite a range of animals, from pandas, lions, white tigers and gorillas to ... seagulls?
We left the zoo feeling slightly deflated, and probably wouldn't go again, but it was definitely worth it to see the pandas! (Especially seeing as the entrance fee was 25 yuan... about £2.50!)
Tomorrow (weather permitting) we are heading to Thousand Buddha Mountain in southern Jinan, so check back soon for more adventures, or subscribe if you haven't done so yet!
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