If there is one animal that people associate with Thailand, it is elephants. Elephants have been a part of Thai life for hundreds of years, but with them no longer being used for traditional work such as logging, they are now a firm favourite with tourists. However, over the last decade or so, the rise of ethical elephant camps has seen an increase in tourists who want to get up close and personal with the pachyderms, without them suffering. If this is something that interests you, read on below how you can spend the day and night with these majestic animals.
Ethical Elephant Camps In Phuket
Tourists who visit Phuket are no different than the ones visiting any other place in Thailand, and one thing that is high up on their to-do lists is to see the elephants. You used to be able to visit a camp and ride on the elephants, but this is not good for them wearing the bulky seats all day and carrying tourists around. Conservation has seen the rise of ethical elephant sanctuaries all over Thailand, so if you are going to visit the elephants when in Phuket, make sure that you visit an ethical camp.
One of the most popular overnight tours in Phuket is an excursion to one of the elephant sanctuaries and staying overnight at the camp. It will allow you to get up close and personal with the elephants and see everything that goes into taking care of them correctly. You will also get to appreciate the logistics of feeding these animals which have a massive appetite, and how important tourists are to their survival.
What You Can Expect
When you arrange a visit to an elephant park, they will pick you up early in the morning from your hotel and drive you to the facility. You may also stop off on the way at the local market to pick up some fruit and vegetables to feed the elephants. You will get to walk through the jungle and learn about the elephants as well as the measures to rescue and take care of them, and you will also get to enjoy traditional Thai food.
One of the highlights of your trip will most likely be when you get to give them a bath or a mud spa in the afternoon which they love. As the single-day guests leave the camp in the late afternoon, you can wander around and enjoy the surroundings while you watch the elephants. You will be up early in the morning and breakfast is provided, after which you may get to enjoy a class in making paper out of elephant dung. When it is mid-morning, it is time to say goodbye to the elephants and friends you have made as you are taken back to your hotel. Without a doubt, a trip like this will give you fantastic memories that will last for the rest of your life, as well as plenty of excellent photos.