Updated on January 12, 2018
Chimelong Safari Park, Guangzhou China
We got out of town! Many of the foreign teachers have told us about visiting Guangzhou, the city next to Shenzhen. Bean and I decided we would try it out. We hopped on a bus very similar to Megabus and two hours later, we were in the middle of Guangzhou.
There were many challenges that came with our exploration of this new city. We found it to be more crowded and dingier than where we live. The subway was a nightmare of pushing and shoving. I did not navigate throughout the city as well as I had expected I would. I almost made up my mind to dislike the place.
Chimelong Safari Park saved our opinion of Guangzhou! A reader was kind enough to put me in contact with her sister who has lived in China for five years. What a great help she was. She recommended that Bean and I visit the park and see the pandas. Thank you Nicolle and Michele!
We decided to linger at our hotel in the morning time. We didn’t want to fight the people on the subway. There was a pretty good free breakfast and Bean enjoys laying in bed and watching movies and Chinese cartoons. When we finally left the comfort of the hotel, the train ride didn’t take very long. We reached the Safari Park within 30 minutes.
The distance from the entrance gate to the Safari Park was a nice walk. I decided not to take the bus and see what else the Chimelong Resort had to offer. Yes, the Zoo/Safari Park is a part of a HUGE resort. There was a water park, an amusement park with many rollercoasters, a hotel and the Safari Park. Since we happened to be at the Chimelong Resort during a weekday, we were able to enjoy ourselves without crowds. I have mentioned crowds and masses of people many times. If you have not experienced hundreds of thousands of people trying to do the same activity as you, you just won’t understand. Walking through the zoo and seeing the animals is much more enjoyable than seeing people act like they are in the wild.
The first animal on our list were the pandas. We didn’t realize that the map we were given was a map of both the drive through safari and the walk through safari. We were not driving, so try as we might to get to the other side of the map, it wasn’t happening. When I understood the map, we stopped going around in circles and enjoyed ourselves!
I really liked Chimelong Safari Park because if animals must be in captivity, I want them to have large spaces to roam around. The park was quite large and the animals at the Park had adequate room with attractive habitats. The animals even seemed to be friendly and welcoming to visitors.
Maybe it was just lunch time! At the park, visitors can feed many of the animals simple things they enjoy eating like bamboo, fruit and meat for the big cats. Bean loved it! The elephants were especially sociable. I fell in love with elephants years ago. I was so happy to reach out and pat their trunks. Watching the mamas and babies together was touching.
Unfortunately, the pandas were taking a nap by the time we finally reach them. For a minute, we thought we were going to see something interesting. But no, this panda just wanted to find a better spot to lay down and sleep. The koalas were also sleeping. I didn’t know they slept as much as they do; 18 hours a day.
In almost every enclosure, there was an educational area where children (and adults) could learn more about the animals. The park also offered a few large productions about the different animals and their environments. Of course there were a million gift shops and restaurants.
While Chimelong Safari Park is not much different than many zoos we have visited around the world, I found it a pleasant way to spend our day. No Chinese is needed when looking at animals! Because of our time spent there, we will keep Guangzhou, China on our list of places to re-visit.