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Elephant Nature Park

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Adelaide, Australia
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Elephant Nature Park

Have been researching into Elephant camps/parks in Thailand. Have come across the Elephant Nature Park north of Chiang Mai and was wondering if anyone did the 2 days/ 1 night stay at this particular camp. We would like to visit the Elephants and go for a ride on one but some people i have spoken to have warned me off these due to the quality of care these animals recieve in Thailand. would like to visit a place where the kids can learn about Elephants and am not interested in seeing them performing tricks. Can anyone reccommend a good place.

Also what do people think of the Tiger Temple?

Prague, Czech...
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1. Re: Elephant Nature Park

I plan a visit to Elephant nature park as well this year. It seems to be very good place to learn more about elephants. I red about it in National geographic magazine and it was described like place where elephants are very well treated. Many of them have been saved from suffering and now live freely in this place. They are not forced to do any work or tricks for turist, many of them are old and ill and just have their rest here

Last year we visited TECC(Elephant Conservation center - one hour ride from Lampang, 2 hours from Chiang Mai) and I can recommend this to you. You can experience a mahout training program (they teach you how to ride elephant like a mahout, you can bath elephants and have fun with them) or just go there, have a short ride or just watch the elephants or elephants show. You can find the first elephant hospital there.Animals are treated very nice, people who work there really love them, this place was also mentioned in National Geographic magazine

If you go to these places and pay for it, you give your money to help the elephants.

Adelaide, Australia
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2. Re: Elephant Nature Park

There are two near Chiang Mai and they are easily confused. The Elephant Nature Park and The Elephant Conservation Center at Lampang... I have just posted a huge thing with reviews on the Nature park to another query here in the Chiang Mai forum if you are interested.... I would say ENP sounds much better in terms of education etc... you cant ride the elephants and they dont perform tricks but you do get to bathe/feed them ... it would be the one you saw on National Geo. The lady that runs it has been named in the top 5 women of the year for her conservation work

Adelaide, Australia
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3. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Hi Kata1 and EmjayReet,

Thanks for the great feedback on the ENP. We will definetly put it into our itinery. Sounds like a fantastic place. Seems to be quite a few Elephant places in Thailand, but don't want the cheap tacky parks. Much rather the children learn and come away with a positive experience and i am sure they will from the ENP. Especially if its been in Nat Geo. May try the Conservation Park near Lampang for an Elephant ride. Once again thank you for your feedback.

Cheers Michelle

Adelaide, Australia
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4. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Hi emjay,

Ops, i have just read another one of your reviews, maybe we won't go for E ride at the Conservation place after all. Michelle

Adelaide, Australia
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76 posts
12 reviews
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5. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Hello EmjayReet..again

We are planning a trip to Thailand in May 07 with 2 children-11 and 12. Have found your forums to be so valuable. Thank you so much for the new web address for the ENP. I am so excited about it now. I logged onto NAT GEO and watched the video's with "Luk". My husband and i watched them all...now to educate the kids as to why we will not go for an Elephant ride. We would loved to go to the Haven but not sure how the kids would cope. Maybe can return once the kids have left home? We spent 2 nights with uncle Tan's wildlife in Sabah last yr. That was awesome. (My son found life without PS2, air conditioning hard.) I agree spread the word as to how these animals are treated-stop the cruelty to these awesome animals. Hope you enjoy your trip. michelle

Adelaide, Australia
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6. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Hi Michelle,

Our son is 13 and soooo looking forward to going to Thailand. I have to admit there is a part of me that REALLY wants to ride an elephant but knowing what they are put through I just cant do it. ENP is expensive in terms of 'Thailand' but so much more worth it I think... educating your children on something like this is so valuable!

Another thing you should look into if I havent mentioned it is if you are in Bangkok there is ABC Amazing Bangkok Cycle Tours www.realasia.net - I have spoken with the guy and he said all ages (even people in their 70's) have done the tour... the walkways you cycle on look a little narrow and I do know one girl that fell in the canals (unharmed!!!) but it looks like so much fun... it is something my son is really excited about too!

We will be keeping a travel blog while away (as well as posting a massive report when we get back) but if you would like to give me your email address I can put you on our email list... which will send you links to our blog as we update on the road...

Good luck planning and if you need anymore help just let me know... I have done HOURS of research HOURS!!!!!

emjay xx

Prague, Czech...
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7. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Hi Michellekiwi,

regarding Elephant conservation centre - I red some opinions that this is not nice place because elephants perform the show and turists ride them there. Last year I spent there one wonderful day and honestly I can say that this place seemed to me really nice and I had the feeling that these people really love elephants and treat them very well. They have first elephant hospital there, we visited it. They take care of ill elephants and this must be for sure very expensive. They earn the money to run this centre from turist activity. I asked about this and was told that elephant shows and rides are not the problem as far as the elephants are treated well by their owners, have enough rest and are not forced to do this when they are ill, pregnant or too old. These owners need money to take care of their elephants and turist activity is the way how to get them.The problem is that in many elephant camps elephants are forced to do this nonstop, are overwork and not treated nice at all. I think and hope that this is not the case of TECC ( Elephant conservation centre ), if it be to the contrary I think this place wouldn't have been metioned in National Geographic Magazine. Of course Elephant Nature park is something absolutely special, I wish there were more places like this in Thailand. This year we are planning to visit both, spend two days in ENP and three-day mahout program in TECC.

I think that all this is about people - whether they love elephants and take care of them or just use them to earn money.I saw 2 or 3 places offering elephants treks, one near Damnoen Saduak and I think this one was bad for elephants. I can't say why, I just had the feeling and after reading more about these things, I'm almost sure. The other one on Krabi seemed to be OK, people there seemed they really like elephants very much. Of course, you never know... :o/ if you are planning to visit just one place, ENP or TECC seems to be the best choice - or visit both :O)).

I was told that very bad thing is when the owners take their elephants to towns. You can meet them on the streets, they sell some bananas to you and you can feed the elephant. This is very bad because cities are not healthy for elephants, they can be hurt in traffic and die sooner because of pollution. Sometimes these elephants ore owned by people who lend them to others just for these walks, these people get the money but their elephants live in poor conditions.

London, United...
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8. Re: Elephant Nature Park

We went to the ENP last August (2005) with our (then) 6 and 10 year olds.

This is the place that rescues elephants from the other places and is 100% kosher regarding treatment of the elephants. A family friend visited and spent weeks there working with the animals. We just did a day and whilst there was some waiting around (indicative, I guess, of the fact that they work to the elephants' needs and not ours) it was worthwhile and you just have to treat the expense as a contribution to the upkeep of the place.

Funnily enough, they did offer rides. They said that people wanted to do them and so they were prepared to offer them. Remember, these elephants have been 'broken in' elsewhere - that's the cruel bit - and so once they are trained its less of an issue. Importantly though, you ride on their necks, which is not harmful. That differs from the rides in a seat that is slung accross the animal's back that you see elsewhere. All that having been said, my kids did the ride but I declined.

Adelaide, Australia
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9. Re: Elephant Nature Park

Thank s to all who have given great feed back to the ENP.

Planning on doing the 2 day 1 night trip. Think i would love to wake up with the sound of an Elephant in the backyard..Seems costly ($A700) but think the experience will be invaluable. It is for a good cause so why not!

michelle

10. Re: Elephant Nature Park

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