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“Absurdly amazing”

Millennium Elephant Foundation
Ranked #2 of 5 things to do in Kegalle
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: A family Run NGO working to improve the lives of domesticated elephants throughout Sri Lanka. Charity number 457. Home of the exclusive Elephant Walk Experience, A personal safari that allows you to follow the elephant around the 15 acre coconut estate as they foragae and wander and graze as they would in the wild. The alternative to elephant riding option and the most ethical, u close and personal experience you can have with captive elephants in Sri Lanka Offering a volunteer program where guests can have the hands on experience of caring for these gentle giants, and the opportunity to learn all about the situation for elephants in Sri Lanka and the hard work of Millennium Elephant Foundation Located half way between Colombo to Kandy this is the ideal stop for a unique elephant experience. We also offer accommodation, refreshments and meals for our visitors to enjoy in our traditional colonial house, surrounded by luscious grounds and greenery for you to enjoy
Newquay, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Absurdly amazing”
Reviewed February 16, 2013 via mobile

My girlfriend and I really wanted to see some elephants whilst out here in Sri Lanka but didn't fancy lining the governments pockets so opted for the Millenium Elephant Foundation and it has been the highlight of our trip. The place has a nice, small and friendly feel to it. The elephants appear to be very happy and looked after well and our guide (older, more stern guy) was great - he took photos of us on the elephants with my camera and actually refused a tip!!! (Which I made him take)

Hopefully more people will visit this great charity and help the team their carry on with the great work that they are doing.

To get to ride and wash an elephant for 2000 rupees (a tenner!!) you can not go wrong. A must if you're in Sri Lanka

2 Thank Max_Hepworth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Dartford, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
19 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Brilliant, thanks Pooja!”
Reviewed February 8, 2013

We visited the Orphanage which was nice, but didn't seem personal, we fed an elephant a bowl of fruit in a matter of seconds, held a bottle of milk for even less time while baby drank it and sat at a hotel table watching them swim in the river. The Millennium Foundation was entirely different, there was a brief talk about the history of the place and a promise that we wouldn't get too wet - they lied! We stood in the water and Pooja joined us she seemed to enjoy my feeble scrubbing of her back with a coconut husk but I think she was being kind! We then climbed onto the wet back of an elephant that had just been lying in a river - how did I think I'd stay dry? We only had a brief ride on her but my partner said in my ear - we're riding an elephant! Thank you Pooja - we'll never forget you.

Visited December 2012
2 Thank Ralph P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“This place is fantastic. Definitely worth a visit.”
Reviewed January 28, 2013 via mobile

My girlfriend and I were actually intending to head to the other elephant orphanage near by but our tuk tuk driver misunderstood and took us here. We liked the look of the grounds and wondered in.
The happiest mistake of my life.
Is such an amazing experience riding an elephant, getting sprayed by her trunk, watching how the mahaot interacts with his friend and learning from the very knowledgable guide, who also took photos for us the whole day.
If you are even slightly contemplating coming, do it. You will not regret.

1 Thank TimqthB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level 6 Contributor
111 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Only reason I didn't give a Terrible mark is because I love elephants so much!”
Reviewed January 21, 2013

The people there are not helpful at all- Basic package is horrendously expensive for 15 minutes!!!- really hope that the money goes to help these beautiful creatures and the people working there (not the volunteers but the guides, mahout,etc) . Problem is you are harrassed inside the park to give tip to everyone- in my experience you give tip because you appreciate a service, it destroys your experience to be coerced in doing so-and being told what a reasonable minimum tip is in Sri Lanka, extremely rude...Stick to watching the elephants bathing in the river-that will be an unforgettable experience.

Visited December 2012
1 Thank Sag79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Well worth the money and an unforgettable experience”
Reviewed January 17, 2013

After seeing some of the negative and ill informed reviews about this place I felt the need to share my experience as i took the time to ask volunteers at the foundation some vital questions. Firstly i asked about the chains. I was told that although they look cruel, these chains are necessary in order to protect tourists like ourselves from harm as they are NOT tame animals. Most have come from the wild and can behave very unpredictably. Volunteers told me that the chains are not something that will be continued for long as they are currently raising money for a huge enclosure which will allow them to roam the site freely and safely.

Secondly I asked about where our money was going. As it is a non profit organisation all the funds raised go toward the upkeep of the elephants (which are extremely expensive to house and feed). Some tourists have complained that the museum looks 'shabby' however I would rather my money go toward feeding the elephants than creating a fancy area for tourist entertainment.

The experience of getting close to these animals was something I will never forget and I am extremely glad I took the time to ask questions to remove my initial misgivings.

7 Thank Lhow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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