Mar 9 2012 by Lizzie Smith, Kilmarnock Standard
GALSTON Primary pupils were the first passengers to travel aboard the Panda Express.
Some 26 pupils helped launch the special bus service from Ayr to Edinburgh Zoo to see the famous Chinese panda bears Tian Tian and Yang Guang.
The Galston Primary pupils enjoyed the trip for free, courtesy of Stagecoach which runs the service.
Most of the pupils were members of the school’s eco-committee and won the trip because of the primary’s close links with Stagecoach’s Bio Bus.
Teacher Jennifer Allan said: “The children had a wonderful time.
“It was a really special day for them as they were the first to travel on the Panda Express.
“The highlight was seeing the female panda Tian Tian being fed bamboo and then watching her climb up in to her treehouse.”
The Panda Express makes a pick up at Kilmarnock bus station every day at 9.10am returning at 5.33pm.
It costs £14.40 for a return fare to Edinburgh Zoo, with one child going free with each adult.
Panda Express passengers during the week have the added bonus of a pre-arranged panda slot and discounted zoo entry included with their bus ticket.
Those travelling at weekends or on holidays must pre-book their viewing slot and are charged standard zoo entry.
l To book tickets for the Panda Express or panda viewing slots, call 0871 266 3333.