Biking to Pandas and Buddhas

Biking to Pandas and Buddhas

7 Days



Biking to Pandas and Buddhas

7 Days Starting and ending in Chengdu, Sichuan, China

Visiting: Chengdu, Panda Valley Ev Charging Station, Anrenzhen, Shangli Ancient Town, Yaan, Emei Mountain, Leshan, Meishan, Huanglongxi

Tour operator:

SpiceRoads Cycling

Tour code:


Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

2 - 16

Physical rating:


Age range:

Min age:18

Special diets catered:

Please advise requests

Tour operated in:
Trip Styles:



Cycling, Walking

$2188 (USD) The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $62

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

Home to the iconic Panda, China's Sichuan province is home to revered cuisine and treasured regional culture. But go deeper into this ancient land, and you'll find legends of sacred mountains and rivers, interwoven with the ancient lore of China's cultivation culture. Let these secrets come to light as you cycle through wild countryside and get a feel for the real Sichuan. This action-packed tour of Chengdu starts off with the first highlight - the Dujiangyan Panda Valley. The famous Panda centre offers refuge and doting for these magnificent, rare animals with rearing and breeding programmes. These giant pandas are the symbol of China, and the research centre provides education and raises awareness of the plight of these great creatures and their environment. Our tour then moves on to discover the history of two ancient towns. Then it’s on to Mengding Mountain, famous for its tea culture where we take a walk in the Mengdingshan Royal Tea Gardens: a delight with its atmospheric pavilions and walking paths. China’s tea growing history can be traced back to the Western Han Dynasty over 2,000 years ago. Reputed to be the birthplace of Chinese tea cultivation, tea trees planted at Mengding by a herdsman are believed to be the very beginning of China's tea history. We next visit UNESCO Heritage listed Mount Emei, one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China and traditionally regarded as a place of enlightenment. The unsurpassed views are one of the great spectacles of Mount Emei and is yet another high point of the tour in all senses of the word! The ride then follows the river to the town of many temples, Leshan. Our last day of the tour takes us on a walk through bamboo forests and to Huang Long Xi, a picturesque town where many Chinese movies have been filmed. We start the tour in Chengdu and from here we visit the first tour highlight, the Dujiangyan Panda Valley. Our tour then moves on to discover the two ancient towns. Then it’s on to Mengding Mountain, famous for its tea culture where we take a walk in the Mengdingshan Royal Tea Gardens: a delight with its atmospheric pavilions and walking paths. China’s tea growing history can be traced back to the Western Han Dynasty over 2,000 years ago. Reputed to be the birthplace of Chinese tea cultivation, tea trees planted at Mengding by a herdsman were believed to be the very beginning of China's tea history. We next visit UNESCO Heritage listed Mount Emei, one of China's Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains and traditionally regarded as a place of enlightenment. The unsurpassed views are one of the great spectacles of Mount Emei and is yet another high point of the tour in every sense of the word! The ride then follows the river to the town of many temples, Leshan.


  • Explore legends of sacred mountains and rivers, interwoven with the ancient lore of China's cultivation culture on cycle.

  • Discover the history of two ancient towns.

  • Learn about the famous for its tea culture where we take a walk in the Mengdingshan Royal Tea Gardens.

  • Visit UNESCO Heritage listed Mount Emei, one of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China.


Expand All
Day 1 : Arrive In Chengdu
Location: Chengdu
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: Sichuan Civil Aviation Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

On arrival in Chengdu and after checking into the hotel, we meet our guide and the rest of the group for a briefing and to fit our bikes. Chengdu has the reputation as a very "laid-back" city that emphasizes culture and relaxation and is a great introduction to this fascinating country. In the evening we have dinner together and a chance to try the traditional Sichuan hot pot, a popular spicy dish.

Day 2 : Chengdu - Anren
Location: Chengdu, Panda Valley Ev Charging Station, Anrenzhen
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: De Men Ren Li Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

After breakfast, drive out of the city center to spend the morning with pandas. We transfer to the new Dujiangyan Panda Valley where we spend a few hours meeting the lovable pandas. Our bikes will be waiting for us to ride when we finish our visit. We cycle 20 km from the valley to Jiezi Old Town, along the foot of Mount Qingcheng. Jiezi has a history of over 1,000 years and boasts 32 temples and a number of historical sites, but it is also a bit touristy, so we won't linger too long. After our stop we ride on to Anren Ancient Town, through countryside, and in late February and March, when the canola flowers bloom, the farmland scenery is truly spectacular. The terrain is primarily flat and will be easy riding. In the afternoon we will cycle to the historic town of Anren which is famed for having 27 mansions built during the period of the Republic of China.

Ride: 69km
Elevation: +282m
Descent: -246m

Day 3 : Anren - Mengding Mountain
Location: Anrenzhen, Shangli Ancient Town, Yaan
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: Howdy Smart Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we leave the flats behind and head for the hills as we begin our climb up into tea country. We stop to visit White Horse Spring which was constructed during the Tang Dynasty and named because clops can be heard when the water ebbs and flow. From there it's a short downhill to Shangli Ancient Town, famous for their noodles which we will have for lunch. From here we transfer up to perhaps the most famous tea garden in China. Via gondola we are taken to the top of the Mengdingshan Royal Tea Gardens, home to the world’s oldest living tea trees and where China's finest green tea was grown to serve royalty. We will spend an hour walking on trails and there are great views if the weather cooperates. We transfer to our hotel in the town of Ya'an.

Ride: 56km
Elevation: +1146m
Descent: -548m

Day 4 : Mengding - Mt Emei
Location: Yaan, Emei Mountain
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: Yangxinzhai Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

A short transfer to our ride start. Today we cycle through rolling hills and farmland to the village of Caoyuthan. Here we cross a river by a small dam and continue along a quiet, little country road following the river. After lunch we ride to the backside of Mt. Emei, the highest of four sacred Buddhist mountains in China. At around 63 km the climbing starts and we will hop into the van to reach our hotel in the village of Linggongli, in the shadow of this majestic mountain.

Ride: 68km
Elevation: +921m
Descent: -1593m

Day 5 : Mt Emei - Leshan
Location: Emei Mountain, Leshan
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: Chopines Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

We have an early start to spend the day exploring Mt. Emei. Cyclists are not allowed on park roads so we take a 40 minute bus ride to where we catch a cable car to the top of the mountain at 3077 m/10,168 ft. We spend an hour at the summit touring the many temples and shrines on this most holy peak. The views are weather dependent, but if it is clear we won’t be disappointed. We take the cable car and bus down again, but this time all the way to the base of the mountain. After lunch our bikes are ready and waiting for us and in the afternoon we continue our ride to Leshan, located at the confluence of the Dadu and Min Rivers. If time allows, we take a short boat ride to see the world's largest seated Buddha, a 71 metres (233 ft) tall stone statue, built during the Tang Dynasty, carved out of a cliff face. We spend the night here in Leshan.

Ride: 37km
Elevation: +182m
Descent: -304m

Day 6 : Leshan - Huanglongxi
Location: Leshan, Meishan, Huanglongxi
Accommodation: Hotel
Accommodation Name: Caston Huanglong Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Today we ride north and upstream roughly following the Min River for the entire day. It is a very pretty road as we pass through orchards and rice fields. The first leg will be 27 km to the temple of Qingshanzongyan where we take a break and go for a walk through a secluded network of paths in a peaceful bamboo mountain forest. Along the way there are some ancient bas-reliefs cut into the shale cliffs, and some small shrines. Our lunch stop is at a local riverside restaurant. When we reach the town of Meishan we'll decide if we want to continue riding along the river or transfer to our final destination of Huanglongxi. This quaint town with classic Chinese architecture has been restored and preserved and more than 180 Chinese movies have been filmed here. The village sees a lot of day visitors, but few people spend the night here and we have the ancient alleys to ourselves to explore. As it’s the last night of the tour we enjoy a farewell dinner together.

Ride: 75km
Elevation: +481m
Descent: -435m

Day 7 : Chengdu Airport
Location: Chengdu
Meals Included: Breakfast

We transfer directly to the airport (which is conveniently part way between Huanglongxi and Chengdu) in time for your onward flight. Or if you are extending your stay in Chengdu we can drop you at a city hotel.

What's Included

  • Accommodation

  • Airport Transfers at Destination

    Airport drop off service is included.

  • Fully Guided

    Experienced local English-speaking guide on this tour.

  • Meals

    As detailed in itinerary.

  • SpiceRoads jersey

  • Support vehicle

  • Water bottle,Snacks and drinks

What's Not Included

  • Additional Services

    Tips service are not included.

  • Airport Transfers at Destination

    Airport pick up services is not included.

  • International Travel

    International flights are not included.

  • Visa fees

  • Alcohol

Bike Hire

Mountain Bike: US$ 105

Single Supplement

US$ 215

Mode of Transport

Because some people can't imagine going on a trip without their own beloved bicycle, we do not provide them as part of this tour. However, you are able to hire bikes locally for the price listed in the tour pricing section. The bikes are mountain bikes (Giant ATX 650/770, 24/27- speed Alivio, front shocks, vee and disc brakes). If you bring your own bike, please make sure it is a mountain bike, preferably with front suspension, and that it is in good mechanical order.

Bike Repairs
Basic spares and tools are carried by the guide and on the support vehicle, though we cannot guarantee having spares for every conceivable problem. Carrying a basic tool kit, a spare tube and a pump while riding is recommended.

Check out our Q&As

  • Is there any free time to explore places during the tour?

    As detailed in itinerary.

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    Yes, Local English speaking guide on this tour.

  • What is the fitness level required to do this tour?

    This tour is classed as ACTIVE. Cyclists looking for more of a physical experience will find it on our Active trips. Longer distances of over 75 kilometers on undulating terrain, or up to 1,000 meters climbing over shorter distances provide more of a challenge for fit cyclists. Active trips require cycling experience, but not technical expertise, as most road conditions are tarmac. Riders should be comfortable making sustained climbs, being in the saddle for longer, consecutive cycling days and for tackling one or two especially difficult riding days. Get out and ride three times a week, with a longer ride, up to 70km, on the weekends. Aim to feel comfortable spending several hours at a time in the saddle, and with cycling on back-to-back days. Try to ride in hillier areas to get used to climbing.

  • Are vaccinations required for this tour?

    Recommended vaccinations include: Adult diphtheria and tetanus, Hepatitis A and B, Measles, mumps and rubella, Typhoid, Varicella, Influenza, Japanese B encephalitis, Pneumonia, Rabies, and Tuberculosis. If you are arriving from a country infected with Yellow Fever, a certificate is required within six days. Please speak to your doctor for the most up to date information.

  • Is there a supplement for solo travellers?

    SpiceRoads does not require you to pay a surcharge for travelling alone. We will arrange for you to share accommodation with another traveller of the same gender and if we can not match you up we will provide a single room at no extra charge. If you prefer not to share a single supplement is payable to guarantee your own room. The cost of the single supplement is US$ 215.

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    Airport return transfer is included.

  • Do you require a visa for this holiday?

    All nationalities are required to possess a valid passport. An entry visa is required to enter the PRC. Most travelers will seek a type L visa, stemming from the Chinese word: luxing (travel). This letter is stamped directly onto the visa. Visas are easily obtainable from most Chinese embassies or consulates abroad and issued within 3 to 5 days from application. Express visas are available for an additional fee. If you are applying for a visa by mail, it can take 3 to 4 weeks for approval. Most nationalities qualify for a 30 day visa which is activated on your first day in China, and must be used within 3 months of its issuance. There are also 60 and 90 day visas available. The 90 day visas where once difficult to get but are now more easily obtainable. A Chinese visa covers virtually the entire country with the exception of some restricted areas and Tibet.

  • Are flights included in this tour?

    Domestic and International flights are not included.

  • What is the maximum group size?

    The max group size is 16 peoples.

  • Do I need to have travel insurance?

    Yes! SpiceRoads insists that all clients must take out good travel insurance before joining one of our tours. There are inherent risks involved in cycling and mountain biking and we will not be liable for your medical expenses or evacuation in case of an accident. This insurance must include adequate coverage for any personal accident, medical expenses, injury, death and repatriation. Insurance should also provide coverage for cancellations or curtailment of the holiday. Clients should also ensure that there are no exclusion clauses limiting protection for any dangerous or unusual activities that might be included in their tour. If you join the tour without adequate insurance you may be disallowed from continuing on the tour without the right of refund. Clients are solely responsible for arranging their insurance and they should ensure that they are covered for the full duration of their tour. Your tour leader will ask for copies of your insurance before allowing you to join the tour. This protects both you and us.

  • Is the trip guaranteed to depart and does it require a minimum number of people?

    There is a minimum number of participants (usually 2) required to enable the trip to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to Depart'. Once a trip is guaranteed to depart you are free to book your flights and make other travel arrangements. If the trip status is ‘Limited’ will mean we have only a small number of spaces available for booking. If you are unsure about the trip status, please contact us.

  • Why hire a bike from SpiceRoads?

    SpiceRoads bikes are never just "fit for duty" but a key component of our riders’ tour experience and satisfaction. For tours with bike hire option, renting one of our bikes saves hassle, not to mention precious luggage allowance. All SpiceRoads tours use well-known makes of mountain, hybrid or road bikes (depending on the tour) with lightweight alloy frames, 24- to 27-speed gearing, v-brakes or disc brakes and Shimano components. Mountain bikes all have front suspension. We renew bikes in our fleet every two seasons. When in use, our bikes are well-cared for, including full service before each trip and daily cleaning while on tour. SpiceRoads tour support vehicles carry plenty of spares and extra tubes for every emergency.

  • Do you have E-Bikes?

    Electric "pedal assist" e-bikes are available on select tours. E-bikes can help manage long distances and climbing terrain through the use of a pedal-activated electric motor. Unlike other e-bikes, "pedal assistedr" e-bikes feel more natural to the rider. We recommend e-bikes for riders interested in tours that might normally be too challenging for them, or for groups of riders with mixed ability. E-bikes provide assistance for long distance or more challenging terrain, but they can’t do all the work for you! Always chose a tour within the range of your own abilities to ensure your own enjoyment when exploring a new destination. Contact us for a complete list of e-bike available tours.

  • What do I need to bring if I rent a SpiceRoads bike?

    Bikes rented for tours always come with a helmet, a single water bottle cage, and a standard saddle. If you prefer to bring your own saddle (just the saddle, not the seat post), additional water bottle cage, or SPD pedals, we will fit them to your bike for the tour. Don’t forgot to bring your shoes and cleats if you bring SPD pedals! Women specific seats are recommended for longer tours. We have a limited supply of gel seat covers to soften the ride, and of strap-on toe cages. Please enquire about adding these during your booking.

  • Do you have details of the SpiceRoads fleet?

    In Thailand we have a fleet of Verve city bikes, TREK 4300 and X-Caliber 7 mountain bikes, TREK 7.2 X, FX 3 and 7200 hybrid bikes and Trek 2.1 C, Domane 2.0, Lexa SL and carbon Émonda S5 road bikes. We also carry Giant 2019 Explore E+ 3 e-bikes. Our bicycles are available in sizes ranging from 13 inches to 22 1/2 inches or 47 cm to 62 cm. Please note that a certain frame model is not guaranteed. In Bangkok and Chiang Mai, baby seats, tag-alongs, and child bikes for children are available. In Bangkok the single-wheeled tag-along bike attach to the seat-post of an adult bike, allowing a child to pedal along behind the adult. There's no age limit to the tag-along bike, but there is a 36 kg weight limit. Bike hire is include in the tour price for short tours, while longer tours offer bike hire as a supplement, as many riders opt to bring their own bike for our cycling tours. Depending on the destination, length of tour, and type of bike, hire costs vary.

Reviews from Travellers on this Tour


Great Trip


Another superb guide with excellent support all around, great mix of riding and sight seeing. Having Mr. Bo along was perfect–he is quite the foodie and helped with menu selections. Great mix of cycling on quieter roads, short hikes to temples and pandas and food at its best—can't say enough good things about Spice Roads ability to put a great trip together!


Good Trip


China was so much better than I expected. Clean with good roads and friendly people. The food was excellent. We had great support from SpiceRoads.


China Bicycle Trip Was Wonderful


Our China bicycle trip was wonderful. From the panda sanctuary the first day, to food and lodging, the trip was enlightening. Our guide, Ying-Ying, was so knowledgeable and so welcoming to our questions.


Wonderful Experience


Wonderful experience in cycling, hiking and tasting everything the Sichuan area of China has to offer. Ride support is top notch.

Dates & Availability

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Sunday - Saturday

May 12, 2024 - May 18, 2024
$2250 $2188 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $62 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Sunday - Saturday

Sep 08, 2024 - Sep 14, 2024
$2250 $2188 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $62 (USD)

Instant Booking Available

Sunday - Saturday

Oct 20, 2024 - Oct 26, 2024
$2250 $2188 (USD)

The Big ADVENTURE Sale: $62 (USD)

Book with Confidence

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    SpiceRoads Cycling allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform spiceroads cycling, 40 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    SpiceRoads Cycling requires a minimum deposit of 10% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 60 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of spiceroads cycling charges.

    At 61 days before tour starts: Forfeit 0% of booking price.

    At 60 days before tour starts: Forfeit 70% of booking price.

    At 14 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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