Animals & Attractions

There are two giant pandas here at Edinburgh Zoo - Yang Guang and Tian Tian. Yang Guang is our male panda whose name means Sunshine in Mandarin and Tian Tian is our female panda whose name means Sweetie. Both pandas were born in August 2003.

They are the only giant pandas in the UK and have lived here since 2011 as part of a 10 year agreement between our charity, the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS), and the China Wildlife Conservation Association. We were thrilled to be able to extend Yang Guang and Tian Tian’s stay here at Edinburgh Zoo until 2023.

From Thursday 30 November we will be restricting access to Yang Guang and Tian Tian’s enclosure as the panda pair prepare to return to China. After that date, they will likely out of sight as our keepers ready the bears for the journey home in early December. For security and safety reasons, we will not be announcing the exact date and time they are leaving but it will be in the first week of December. 

We will be providing as many opportunities as possible for people to say goodbye and celebrate the tremendous impact these two charismatic bears have had on our communities, helping to create a world where nature is protected, valued and loved. Find out more about our giant panda farewell.


  • 99% of a giant panda's diet consists of different types of bamboo - Yang Guang can eat up to 100kg of bamboo every day!
  • They are largely solitary but they do communicate through calls and scent marking and occasionally meet outside of the mating season
  • Female pandas are only able to conceive for two to three days a year. This short mating season makes successful breeding very difficult
  • An adult panda is roughly 900 times bigger than a new-born cub

Did you know that £55 would buy lunch for one of the pandas? You can help care for Yang Guang and Tian Tian, and protect threatened animals around the world, by donating today - if you can, please support our Survival Fund.


  • You do not need to book a separate panda viewing time slot in addition to your zoo admission tickets - though you may have to queue as this pair are very popular!
  • Animal exhibits may be closed to visitors without notice and at anytime for animal welfare reasons. We cannot guarantee you will see all of the animals, or a specific animal, on your visit

  • No flash photography is allowed. Please make sure you know how to turn your flash off

  • The pandas are active both day and night but as their activity patterns can vary each day, and with the changing seasons, there is no guarantee that they will be active at a particular time

  • We will be providing as many opportunities as possible for people to say goodbye in 2023. Find out more about our giant panda farewell.
  • For further information about visiting Edinburgh Zoo, please visit our Visitor Information page


While positive developments for giant pandas in recent years include their IUCN status changing from endangered to vulnerable, there are fewer than 2,000 giant pandas left in the wild and their habitat is in decline. 

Yang Guan and Tian Tian are part of a vital international breeding programme and we have been playing an important role in giant panda conservation, education and research - providing expertise in areas including nutrition, genetics and veterinary medicine, as well as financial support to protect their native environment.

Like all the animals in our care, our pandas play a critically important role in attracting and engaging hundreds of thousands of visitors each year so they can learn about the threats animals face in the wild and the action they can take to help. Their power to connect with people with nature and encourage behaviour change is invaluable. 

Each visit to Edinburgh Zoo also supports conservation, research and education here in Scotland and around the world. You can help care for our animals and protect wildlife around the world by visiting our parks, joining RZSS as a member, adopting your favourite species and much more.

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Become an RZSS member and receive a whole host of benefits while helping to care for animals around the world.

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Every month, we need thousands of pounds just to feed and care for the animals you love. If you can, please help your zoo survive long into the future by giving a donation today.

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