How to Plan a Day in Chengdu — Top Stopover Ideas

 Jinli Old Street Jinli Old Street

This article is designed to help you get the most out of your visit, should you find yourself with a day in China's most laid back city — Chengdu.

Transit from the Airport and Visa Requirements

Transport from the Airport to downtown Chengdu is extremely convenient. Line 10 on the Metro opened in September 2017 providing a quick transport link into central Chengdu for 2-5RMB. A taxi should cost between 40-70RMB, taking around half an hour — be advised that the roads can get heavily congested during rush hours.

Chengdu also enjoys visa-free transit travel, please see our 72-Hour Visa-Free Transit Policy page for details.

Top Stopover Ideas

As most places are within easy reach of each other, it is possible to see them all within a day and, if you wish to do this, you should follow the order we set out below.

1. Giant Panda Breeding and Research Base:

Giant pandas

The most accessible Panda Base from central Chengdu with pandas of all ages in nice environments. Best to go early and by taxi. Check out our Giant Panda Breeding and Research Base page for more information. 3 hours to half a day, depending on interest.

Should you wish a more involved and intimate panda experience, we highly recommend visiting the Dujiangyan Panda Base. Please see our Dujiangyan Panda Base – Panda Keeper Program page.

2. Wenshu Monastery:

Arguably the most interesting working Buddhist Monastery to be found in Chengdu. It also holds a picturesque tea house and a vegetarian restaurant. You can find directions on our Chengdu Wenshu Monastery page. 1-2 hours.

3. People's Park:

Tea houses, musicians, dancing aunties and even a marriage market; Chengdu's liveliest park is a melting pot of Chinese culture. Best visited via the close by Tianfu Square. For more information, visit our Chengdu People's Park page. 2-3 hours.

4. Jinli Old Street:

Ancient Chinese streets that have been renovated in the traditional style and now full to the brim with souvenir shops and Chinese delicacies. For more detail and the hows of getting there, go to our Jinli Old Street page. 1 hour.

5. Sichuan Opera:

Sichuan operaSichuan opera

Face changing, acrobatics and slapstick comedy all abound. Do not miss the chance to see one of China's most famous opera's. Please see our Magical Face Changing in Sichuan Opera page. 1.5 hours.

Meals and Shopping

You could easily spend the whole day exploring all the food options the city has to offer. However, without a doubt, spicy hotpot is a must. Just make sure you read our article on How to Survive Hotpot in Chengdu first.

Need to do some shopping? Chunxi Lu is very impressive and provides everything from cheap Chinese brands to top of the range designer labels. Check out the Top 7 Shopping Streets in Chengdu.

Need Help With a Day Tour?

Wenshu MonasteryWenshu Monastery

If you're thinking that taking an independent trip to Chengdu is really complicated and stressful, let us tailor-make a day trip in Chengdu for you according to what you want to do.

See our most popular Chengdu tours for more inspiration:

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