After spending the morning with the pandas of the Chengdu Panda Base, we returned to the city centre to visit some more sights of the capital of Sichuan. First we walked along the Fu River to the Wuhou Shrine within the Nanjiao Park. This complex commemorates some of the heroes of the Chinese classic “Romance of the Three Kingdoms“, i.e. Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei. The tomb of the Emperor Liu Bei is situated here, but comparatively unspectacular. Close-by lies Jinli Gujie, an array of restored alleyways full of people, restaurants, and souvenir stalls. After a late lunch of typical Sichuan Hot Pot, we walked further to the Qingyang Temple. This is Chengdu’s oldest and most important Taoist temple with a number of quirky statues as well as some beautiful buildings, such as the famous eight-sided pagoda.
After dinner, we went to the Shufeng Yayun Teahouse which offers fantastic shows of the Sichuanese Opera, including music, puppetry, comedy, fire-breathing, and the famous “face changing”. The latter includes performers who wear colourful masks which can be changed almost instantaneously with the swipe of a fan, a movement of the head, etc. This show with its intricate costumes was definitely the highlight of our stay in Chengdu!
On the following day, we took the bus to Leshan approximately 130 km south of Chengdu and famous for the ancient, 72-m-high Giant Buddha. You may read about this trip in the following post!