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“stunning” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Elephant Sanctuary

Elephant Sanctuary
Hazyview, South Africa
+27 13 737 6609
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Ranked #6 of 15 things to do in Hazyview
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Attraction details
aylesbury
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“stunning”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

amazing chance to get up close and personal with these gentle giants. excellent value for money and wonderful hosts

Visited March 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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UK
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Up close and personal”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

We visited here in 2009 on our previous visit to SA, not in 2012 as the caption may tell you. At the time it was very well run and there was an opportunity to groom an elephant, lead it on a walk and share treats afterwards. Actually, the sharing is entirely one-way! A beautiful experience that we unfortunately did not get chance to repeat on this visit.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Two elephants performing circus tricks is not a sanctuary, a discusting rip-off.”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

This is not a sanctuary just two perfoming elephants in a very poor commercial venture. Definitely not a sanctuary for the two poor elephants that perform circus tricks all day. R500 person for entry too. Avoid if you have any concerns for animals.

Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GroupM, Owner at Elephant Sanctuary, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Dear Bedfordboy2010
I am sorry that you did not enjoy your visit to Hazyview Elephant Sanctuary and that you found it to be two circus elephants performing tricks. I can understand that a person who would like to see elephants in a wild environment without an interactive basis may find an elephant trumpeting on command or lying down on command to be uncomfortable. What I would like to point out is that these animals are in what is called a "managed environment". This means that the land-size that they are kept on is not 2000 to 4000 hectares large - it is substantially smaller. The food is therefore brought in and the elephants are looked after by handlers who go out walking and swimming and free browsing with the elephants. We would love to have the elephants on a massive piece of land, running around doing their own thing all the time. The problem is to find the land and then to pay for it - we are talking 30-40 million rand. Then how do we sustain this? Also bear in mind that just down the road Kruger Park already has too many elephants for the land they have available. This is the age-old dilemma of wild elephants. The "tricks" you refer to occur through an unusual process. They are not taught to do them. They do certain things like trumpet for example. When the handler sees them doing this, they say "Trumpet Kitso" ie. they teach the elephant the English name for the action they are already performing and then they reward the behaviour. So then if they want Kitso to trumpet, he knows that that noise he makes is called "Trumpet". It is positive reinforcement of natural behaviours. These interactions are a stimulus for the elephants. If we have any elephant that does not want to be walked with or ridden or interacted with, we do not compel them. I do however respect your opinion and views and thank you for both visiting us and for sending us your opinion. Kindly Elephant Sanctuary
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“An amazing experience...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2012

I visited the sanctuary in early December, and since I was alone, I didn't think that the program would go ahead. To my suprise they were not only accommodating, but I also got to meet both elephants and I loved every minute of it! They provide a lot of information, including quite an in depth talk about the anatomy of the elephant, which I found very intriguing. Meeting Casper and Kitso, was a priceless experience. They are very tame and I enjoyed the interaction with them. I was able to walk both elephants with their trunks in hand and rounded it off with feeding them. Having to alternate between them while feeding them was such fun. Highly recommended if you're in the area!

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GroupM, Owner at Elephant Sanctuary, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Dear Thandz
Much appreciate your positive response. Yes, we do look after each guest. Your support is important to us. Kindly Elephant Sanctuary
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Newcastle upon Tyne
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“5 stars!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2012

We visited the Sanctuary in December. Stayed at very convenient Casa do Sol hotel located next door as our brush down and trunk in hand programme was very early in the morning. Very easy to find and easy parking.

The whole experience was excellent. The staff are all very knowledgeable and genuinely love and care for the Kietso and Kasper. Expect a very hands on session where you get up close and personal with the elephants and you will leave with lots of knowledge and understanding of the elephant species and also many photos taken by the handlers for you.

Can highly recommend going to visit and support the fabulous work of the sanctuary.

Visited December 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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