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China Panda Breeding Centre

  • In Brief
  • The Project
  • What to Expect
  • Reviews
  • Gallery
  • Extras
  • Dates & Costs
  • Apply
China Panda Breeding Centre China Panda Breeding Centre China Panda Breeding Centre China Panda Breeding Centre
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How To Apply

Simply fill in our no-obligation application form and we will get back to you with full project details

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Find out more about China

Start your adventure now by reading our country guide for China!

Frontier Partner Projects

We work closely with local partners across the world, building awareness of their projects and working alongside them to help achieve their goals.

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China is a land of mesmerising and awe-inspiring contradictions. As the world’s oldest continuous civilisation, travel around China can lead you down a path of rich antiquity. Tempt yourself with out of this world flavours from tender Peking duck, sizzling meats in night markets and slurp down everlasting bowls of Lanzhou noodles. Enliven your senses by experiencing the sights, smells and tastes of this Asian treasure. 

Join this programme to be a part of the extraordinary work to help save China’s iconic panda species. Pandas find their home in the geographic and economic heart of China which is also home to millions of people. Habitat destruction, poaching and forest fragmentation have contributed to dramatically isolating panda populations. With less than 1600 pandas left in the wild this project is vital to ensure the species survival for future generations to enjoy. With your contribution to this project, you will be helping to preserve this national treasure of China.

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  • Make lifelong friendships
  • Gain a better understanding of Chinese culture
  • Contribute to the conservation of pandas


  • Minimum age 18 years
  • A signed waiver confirming your health and ability to work with pandas
Airport Pickup Emergency Ground Transport Hotel Meals Mountainous Terrestrial Wildlife CV
Location Bifengxia, China
Activities Feeding the pandas
Shelter maintenance
Assist with the running of the park
Possible data collection
Medical examinations (depending on quals/experience)
Transport Pick-up from the airport
Transport to & from the project site
Accommodation Hostel

Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel advice & documentation
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier T-shirt (UK only)
In-country Food
Local orientation and training
Ground transfers & in-transit accommodation
Airport pick-up (between 8am & 12pm on Sunday)
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ backup



Today, the Giant Panda's future remains uncertain. This peaceful, bamboo-eating member of the bear family faces a number of threats. Its forest habitat, in the mountainous areas of southwest China, is fragmented and Giant Panda populations are small and isolated from each other. Meanwhile, poaching remains an ever-present threat.

Conservation efforts are being made both in the field, in creating national parks and trying to prevent further deforestation, and also by captive breeding programmes which aim to release pandas into the wild to help restore and maintain a healthy population. There are currently over 50 national parks in China that are home to wild pandas, but there are still pandas living outside these areas that are unprotected and vulnerable to further deforestation and the spread of humanity.

The Frontier-China Panda Conservation Project carries out research into all aspects of panda behaviour and aims to breed pandas and successfully release them into the wild when possible.



After a day's introduction in Chengdu, where you will be provided with introductory talks by the sanctuary staff to familiarise yourself with your surroundings and brief you on the work you will be doing, you will make your way to the panda base in the mountains. Work will include assisting in feeding the pandas and helping with general day-to-day maintenance work - cleaning the pandas' enclosures. Giant Pandas are very strong and can be fierce, so you will not be able to handle them. You will learn about all aspects of panda life and assist the centre staff with the feeding and everyday running of the park. As well as helping prepare the pandas' food you may also have the opportunity to help the sanctuary scientists to collect valuable data about the behaviour of the pandas, which could ultimately benefit the wild populations in China. In addition to this you may be able to assist with medical examinations and breeding efforts. Tasks like these are dependent on time constraints, your own experience and qualifications and the current priorities of the panda base. Entrance fees to the park are included in your contribution.

The success of the breeding programme is crucial to the conservation of pandas in China. Founded in 1980, the staff are experienced and professional and will ensure that your experience is rewarding and unforgettable.


The project is based in Bifengxia, 16 kilometres from Ya'an and 150 kilometres from Chengdu, in Sichuan province. On arrival in China you will be met at Chengdu airport by our partners and transferred to your accommodation for the two-day orientation period. For airport pickup, you will need to between 8am and midnight (12am) on Sunday. Following this orientation you will be transferred to the panda base for the remainder of your placement. At the end of your project you will be returned to Chengdu prior to your flight home. Please aim to depart after 2pm on the Saturday after your project concludes. If you depart earlier than this then you may need to cover the cost of earlier transport to Chengdu.


You will be staying in a simple local hostel set amidst forests and mountains, close to the sanctuary. You may be sharing a room depending on availability and will have a bathroom with hot water and with a Chinese-style toilet. This is the only accommodation in the area and the staff are extremely friendly and helpful. There is a telephone and internet communication available at times at the panda base.


During your stay you will be provided with three meals a day, which will be mainly authentic, local Chinese cuisine. This will be served at the accommodation where you are able to choose from a set menu. Other dishes may be available at extra cost.

Panda immigration and all in one overalls!  | 13 Aug 2018
I arrived in Chengdu and a lovely Chinese lady (Sophia) collected me and we went in a taxi to the...

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Travelling with Frontier China – from a mother’s point of view …  | 25 Jul 2018
When asked by Neil to write this report, I wasn’t sure where to start – what appears ...

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China Panda Real Travel Article  | 11 Jul 2018
One of our China Panda volunteers was recently featured in an article in Real Travel Magazine'...

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If you have the opportunity to step outside your comfort zone and do something as incredible as t...

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Dina's Pavlovian Conditioning  | 17 Jun 2018
The experience was pretty much everything that was stated in the project brief. Our mornings cons...

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Panda personalities, chopstick expertise and impassable mountain roads!  | 3 Jun 2018
My boyfriend Andy and I went to the panda breeding centre in August 2010 and it was an absolutely...

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Panda Magic  | 15 May 2018
What is a Panda Base? Well, let me explain it to you! It is a place where you can encounter p...

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The best decision I have ever made!  | 1 Apr 2018
The BEST decision I have made! From start to finish! Wow…where to start?! Well I g...

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During your free time you can either relax in the tranquil countryside or, if you feel restless, explore the region and its many treasures, such as the city of Chengdu, with its exotic teahouses, or the rock carvings of Dazu, dating back nearly 1500 years.


1 week US$ 1,445



Weekly.  Please arrive on the Sunday between 8am and midnight.


1 week

This project is available throughout the Christmas period


Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt (UK only)


  • Food
  • Accommodation
  • Local orientation
  • Project training
  • Ground transfers & in-transit accommodation
  • Airport pick-up (between 8am & 12pm on Sunday)
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ backup


Nearest airport(s): Chengdu (CTU)



Flights are not included in our project costs. However, Frontier have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with Frontier. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact Frontier’s dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .


For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.


You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.

Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

To apply for this project, or to register your interest, just click on the orange "Apply Now!" button at the top of the menu. Fill out and submit a short application form and then one of our advisers will give you a call back to answer any questions and to progress your application if you wish to continue.

There is no obligation when making an application, and you do not need to pay anything at this point.