Thom's Pai Elephant Camp

Thom's Pai Elephant Camp: Hours, Address, Thom's Pai Elephant Camp Reviews: 3.5/5

Thom's Pai Elephant Camp
3.5
Nature & Wildlife Areas
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Thom's was the first elephant camp in Thailand where visitors could trek, play with them and swim together in the river. Thom grew up with her elephants, played with them as a child, and knows how much fun it is to spend the time with these wonderful animals. Thom's father was also an experienced trainer of young elephants and passed on his knowledge to Thom. Thom's Elephant Camp also offers specialist Mahout Training Courses. It starts with the introduction into elephant care, the verbal and body language to communicate with the elephants, followed by hand on practises. How to ride, play, feed, bath and take care of the elephants. Thom's Elephant Camp also offers beautiful bungalows and accomodation, mineral hot tub and spa retreat, Organic Farming and Mahout Course, sight seeing tours and of course wonderful elephant mountain and river treks.
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3.5
400 reviews
Excellent
170
Very good
91
Average
36
Poor
18
Terrible
85

JENNY
Chiang Mai, Thailand65 contributions
WALK OR RIDE BARE BACK
Sep 2019
Do the trip to the river and have someone video you going into the water as the elephant slides in.
After it’s all over enjoy the hot springs tubs on the premises!
Written April 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Cindy C
44 contributions
Make sure you go to the right Thom's and enjpy the experience!
Jan 2020 • Friends
Nguan, Tutdao and Ot. The 3 fantastic ladies in Thom's. Each with their own characteristics. We totally enjoyed their company, achieving what we were there for. To spend time and feed them.

Elephants in Thom's has their own space and are not chained. When they are led out by the handlers, there are no hooks and no hitting. One would need to go there personally to experience and see for oneself.

There are quite a few different camps along the way so make sure you go to Thom's and experience the way they treat their elephants before making any conclusions.

It is definitely one of the highlights of my trip to Pai!

Written March 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jimmy Meese
Calgary, Canada14 contributions
Great place with well cared for elephants! Don't Believe the Bad Reviews
Feb 2020
Before I give my review please make SPECIAL NOTE. I read trip adviser first to determine if I wanted to come here. There are a hundreds of bad reviews and was worried about the site. I read over 100 bad reviews and all are COMPLETELY INACCURATE and FALSE.
I did my own research by actually visiting this place seeing the surrounding areas and taking a tour with an elephant trainer, I also talked to Thom who owns and operates this camp.

The misconceptions by the majority of false reviews is due to there being another elephant camp by Thom's Elephant Camp, which is across the road. The elephant camp is called TWINS ELEPHANT CAMP. NO WAY RELATED to Thom's Elephant camp and EVERY BAD REVIEW I read took photos and makes comments about Twins Elephant camp HOWEVER they tag it to Thom's Elephant Camp, as she is the only one listed on google maps and in trip adviser.
All the photos of barbwire fencing, elephants chained up and no food or water is of Twins Elephant Camp. Many bad review say they drive by and are heartbroken, however Thom and volunteers are always around outside interacting with people that stop by and answering any questions you have.

EVERYONE who gives her a bad review that I read did NOT stop and talk to Thom they cowardly drove by took a photo and drove away posting bad review, which is NOT what trip adviser is about! Having said here is my review of what you can expect with Thom's Elephant Camp.

We arrived on Thursday Feb 13 to check out the camp, when we arrived we talked to a volunteer who gave us bananas to feed the elephants took some photos and then went and talked to Thom who helped us book a time and date for tour 2 hour walk. Elephants are in Large corrals that are roughly 6 to 8 times larger then them so they have room to move around and have fresh water to drink. The corrals are covered by a roof so that the elephants don't over heat in the sun.

On the day of our tour we arrived 30 minutes early and talked with Thom and the trainer, they unlocked the gate and the elephant lifted it up and walked out. We walked down the road and then into some brush and fields where we got to take photos with elephant and she would stop and keep trying to eat everything she could, after about 1 hour we stopped and the elephant eat for about 10 minutes before she was ready to head back to the camp and head down to the river. On the way back the elephant was getting hot so the trainer grabbed a hose from one of the houses and allowed the elephant to drink its fill and cool off. We continued to the river where we got to swim with her and she sprayed us with water. We then walked back to the camp where we feed the elephants some more. We then sat in a natural hot spring tub which was the perfect ending. AMAZING EXPERIENCE and a place you should support and visit!!!!

Just on a quick note the trainers do carry a bamboo stick to help control the elephants these sticks DO NOT have any knives or hooks on them are small and would never hurt the elephant due to its thick rough hide. It's no different than a leash for a dog, or a whip and bridle for a horse.
Secondly trainers do talk in a loud and harsh voice when giving commands, this is not aggressive, cruel or mean to the elephant but required in giving commands and typical of the Thai Language when spoke.

Please stop, talk to Thom and take a tour then post your experience.
As a traveler, we rely on accurate information and need more honest reviews and not inaccurate speculation.
Written March 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Leslie Dawson
2 contributions
Great experience at Thom’s Elephant Camp
Feb 2020
We visited Thoms elephant camp in February 2020 and paid to spend three hours with two of her three elephants. We walked with them into an open field up behind her house, where we watched them feed in a cut cornfield. Later we walked them down to the river and went into the river with them while they bathed. Thom inherited two of the elephants from her grandfather. The third is a 50 year old rescue who is blind in her right eve and couldn’t work on a rubber plantation any more and was going to be put down. All three elephants were born in captivity. Thoms house is on the side of the road on the way to Pai and during the day when they are working they are in pens there. They are not chained. We never saw the mahouts use a hook, all of their commands were verbal. Working keeps these intelligent animals active and engaged. For those visitors who are concerned with the elephants being penned, consider other domesticated animals many cats are never let outside. We don’t let horses or dogs roam free, and we certainly couldn’t let elephants go free. Not all elephants get along, they prefer living only with family groups, so elephant sanctuaries don’t really work for this species. Paying to walk with the elephants helps Thom to pay for their food and veterinary care, and for the care of their mahout. In my opinion the elephants were well fed and cared for. We had a great time with Thoms elephants and enjoyed a soak in her hot tubs at the end of our swim.
Written February 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Grace C
7 contributions
Awful, do not go here
Feb 2020 • Solo
We saw these elephants whilst passing in Pai, a man with a sharp hook and stick was guiding them and shouting at them. I dread to think what they have done to them to break them in. The elephants looked incredibly sad. Tourists walking beside the elephants, this is not natural for elephants. So incredibly sad to see this is still happening to the poor elephants. Please do not support this place. God help these elephants.
Written February 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Thomas H
1 contribution
Heartbreaking
Nov 2019 • Couples
We stumbled across this place while exploring pai on scooter. The elephants are all tied up and kept in small wooden shacks on the side of the road to lure tourists in. You can see in their eyes the sadness and one was bobbing their head up an down. So sad to see. DONT SUPPORT THIS TERRIBLE PLACE.
Written November 15, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

AliceJoy
2 contributions
Disgusting
Nov 2019 • Couples
This is the saddest sight I’ve seen in Thailand. I cried after I left. The elephants are cooped up on the side of the road, offering rides. The elephants have hooks to keep them in line and it’s just terrible. Do not support this. There should be a campaign to move these elephants to a caring a free environment where they can actually Move around!!!!!
Written November 15, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Beth J
Bournemouth12 contributions
A wonderful experience
Oct 2019 • Solo
My experience of Thoms elephants was one of the best, I spent the morning with a wonderful elephant, her name is Ot.
We walked together with her mantout (trainer) through the jungle where she sleeps, then down to the river. She happily walked and stopped frequently to eat! We played together in the river and and I happily skipped along side her when we walked. I feel so grateful to have spent quality time with such an amazing divine being.

Ot and her elephant friends, spend the day in the cool, being fed. In the afternoon they all head off into the jungle where they sleep. The staff seem to really care for the elephants and they appear to be cared for well and look happy.

After my walk and time the the river I showered and relaxed in the hot spring hot tub, it was great!

I’ll be back during my next trip to Pai to visit!

If you go, say hi to the girls for me ;)
Written October 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Meardis W
Denver, CO10 contributions
Fun in the Sun with these lovely animals
Mar 2019
This was the highlight of my trip. Playing with these lovely gentle giants opened my heart in ways that I can't describe. We fed and played with them until it was time to walk them to the river. Each elephant has a distinct personality that you will never forget. You can actually see and feel how happy they are to play with you in the water. They smile you smile - its a win win for everyone involved. Priceless experience. The camp does not use saddles. You can walk beside them or ride bareback.
Written September 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ellen - Earth Vagabonds
22 contributions
Beautiful visit — ethical and enjoyable
Jul 2019 • Couples
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
❤️🐘❤️🐘❤️

We lived at Thom’s for eight days and eight nights. I saw firsthand how well the elephants are treated.

NO RIDES and they are NOT CHAINED BY THE ROAD. People are confusing Thom’s with other places. It is that simple.

I never saw any animal abuse. Anyone who claims otherwise is either exaggerating or thinking another place is Thom’s.

Tutdao and Ot are treated like family. They have a great life, considering they are fourth generation elephants born in captivity.

Ae is a wonderful manager and a great cook, and a fabulous woman. Thom is nice. The mahouts (trainers) are patient and friendly.

The property is gorgeous. The elephants have a vast space at night up further back on the property— a space most drive-by tourists do not see. And the elephants get exercise every single day.

An amazing, unforgettable, unique stay. We loved it and we will be back. Thank you!!

❤️🐘❤️🐘❤️
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Written July 30, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dear my customer It was very nice to hear from you.Thank you very much to talk true thing from here. Have a good travel. I hope to see you again. Thom
Written August 1, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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