CHENGDU, China, May 26, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- The 31st Summer World University Games is to kick off in Chengdu of Sichuan province from July 28 to Aug 8, showcasing the unique charm of the "Panda City" and presenting a sporting feast for athletes and guests.
Southwest China's Sichuan is the hometown of giant pandas. The capital city of Chengdu is the only large metropolis in the world where both captive and wild pandas can be found.
Established in 1987, the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding has the largest captive panda population in the world. The base, home to more than 230 giant pandas, simulates their natural habitat, with lakes, streams, bamboo forests and grasslands where visitors can see pandas of different ages from infancy to adulthood.
At the base, there is a giant panda named Zhima that has attracted more and more attention from people around the world because of his special identity - the real image of the Chengdu Universiade mascot Rongbao.
A male giant panda who loves to climb trees, Zhima was selected as the real image of Rongbao in August 2020 after a global vote.
As the habitat of giant pandas in the wild, the Chengdu section of the Giant Panda National Park is home to 73 wild giant pandas, according to the fourth national giant panda survey.
Pandas have deeply integrated into the cultural bloodstream of Chengdu, becoming one of its most famous calling cards. During the Chengdu Universiade, the city will use pandas as a medium to fully demonstrate its unique cultural charms to the world.
Chengdu is home to world heritage sites including Qingcheng Mountain, Dujiangyan and giant panda habitats, humanistic attractions such as Jinsha Site Museum and Wuhou Temple, and intangible cultural heritages such as Sichuan Opera and Shu embroidery.
As the "city of gastronomy" awarded by UNESCO, Chengdu is the birthplace of classic Sichuan dishes such as Kung Pao chicken and Mapo tofu, and is famous for its spicy hot pot and exquisite and diverse snacks.
Activities featuring China's intangible cultural heritage and traditional Chinese cultures will be held during the Universiade, said officials at the Executive Committee of the Chengdu 2021 FISU World University Games.
15 cultural exchange stations will be set up and 10 boutique experience routes will be launched, to help global guests appreciate the unique charm of Sichuan and Chengdu.