I have traveled in Europe, Brazil, the Caribbean and Asia and have, on occasion, hired tour guides. I can, without hesitation, say that My Panda Tour/Alvin Shun H Liu is by far the best tour company and guide and I highly recommend him for any upcoming travel to China. The trip we booked with Alvin was both very enjoyable and memorable and a definite highlight of the trip.
From the first time we met Alvin in our hotel lobby to the end of our trip two days later, I was both amazed and impressed at how well planned and coordinated each part of our trip was. Always punctual, he was waiting for us in our hotel lobby and, as we had requested, made sure to hire a car that was big enough to accommodate all our luggage. The eight-hour car ride from Chengdu to Foping seemed daunting at first but the hours flew by and, before we knew it, we had arrived. During the eight hours, Alvin had planned periodic rest stops, had water and Chinese snacks in the car as well as having videos and movies about our favorite Giant Pandas on his iPAD that we watched. He is also a wealth of information when it comes to Chinese history, art and culture as well as Giant Pandas. He provided us with so much fascinating information about the areas through which we traveled and entertained us with his great sense of humor.
While en route to our hotel, Alvin called ahead to make sure our reservation was set, and that the hotel knew we would be arriving shortly. Once we arrived, we were delighted to find that we were staying on the Foping Reserve in a Panda Hotel. The restaurant directly across from the hotel was amazing as well. Alvin not only walked through the kitchen to ensure that it met his standards, but he also talked to the chef about preparing our food. Alvin is a “foodie” and is also very keen to ensure any dietary restrictions that his clients have are fully supported. Needless to say, the food was perfect.
During our stay in Foping, Alvin accompanied us and translated for us throughout the day. He helped us navigate the reserve and visit both giant panda Qi Zai as well as 80 free ranging Golden Snub-Nosed Monkeys who live at the top of the base. The time spent at the Foping reserve was enchanting.
From Foping, our travels took us to Dujiangyan. Alvin took us to the Dujiangyan Giant Panda Base where we spent most of the day. We had visited the Base during previous visits to China and knew some of the staff and of course our favorite pandas. However, it was very nice to have Alvin there to translate for us as well as enjoy the Pandas. He is truly a student of Giant Pandas and knows so much about every aspect of their lives.
As we left China, I felt that Alvin was and is so much more than a businessman and tour guide – he is a friend who shares our passion for Giant Panda conservation. He is a consummate professional who makes every effort to ensure that each of his tours is well planned and organized and that his clients are comfortable and happy throughout their travels. He also remains flexible in terms of accommodating changes in plans when possible.
Once again, I highly recommend Alvin and My Panda Tour for your future travel in China. I know that you will be as delighted with your travels as we were with ours. Thanks so much Alvin for making our trip so memorable.
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