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“Save your money for another tour”

Panda Tour & Trekking
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
62 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Save your money for another tour”
Reviewed December 26, 2013

We started off the day in a very bad way because we had earlier booked a tour though our hotel that should comprise a 3hr trek and bamboo rafting. We were told that pick up will be at 10 am. We were met by a furious driver at 10 am and we only found out from a fellow traveller that they have been waited outside our hotel in the songtaew for 1.5 hours. There were 12 of us squashed into the back of the songtaew with barely any space to move. So we proceeded on a tour comprising the orchid garden, elephant trekking, bamboo rafting, tribe visit and waterfall...all that we did not intend to do. The elephant trainer we got was very young and had problems guiding the poor elephant and had to dismount and started hitting the legs and hinds to compel it to move. We just wanted to go back to the starting point and forget about the ride but we couldn't communicate with him as he couldn't understand English. The trek to the waterfall although short was rather difficult and will recommend proper shoes and not sandals. Although the guide spoke good english, he was rather nonchalant. i will not recommend signing up with panda tours.

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank toffeebee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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363 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Blaine, Minnesota
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“We got a terrible rash from the elephants”
Reviewed December 25, 2013

We were given oversized Jean shorts and shirts that wouldn't stay buttoned to wear as our trainer suit. The day after the tour both my friend and I had terrible rashes on the insides of our shins/calves. It is the only bare skin that was in contact with the elephant while riding. It has been 11 days and it is still not gone. We have been to the Thai doctor and we're given cream and antibiotics but it still is not going away. It is the most disgusting rash I've had and some of the bumps swelled to the size of a quarter. We contacted panda and their response was that it is not from their elephants. There nothing else it could be from. They need to provide long pants. The rest of the negative reviews were also accurate, except our elephants were not bleeding.

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank travelbug2649
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A wonderful 2 days”
Reviewed December 15, 2013 via mobile

Me and my boyfriend went on a 2 day one night trek with Panda tours. After booking it and reading negative reviews we were both apprehensive to go but were happily surprised with the tour. We got picked up and brought to the office where we paid our fee and signed insurance forms then visited the long next tribe then had a gorgeous pad Thai lunch. After which we went elephant trekking which was very enjoyable. The elephants are fed well but aren't very pleased with bring brought around the same path again and again which is understandable. Then the trek began which was tough but with beautiful views and our guides "K" and "Y" were very good with great English and fun personalities which made the two days better! The place we stayed over night was fine don't expect anything fancy just mats on the floor with a pillow n a blanket but that adds to the experience! A lovely dinner of green curry was served with beers and minerals available to buy for a small fee. We all had good fun over the fire with a few beers. The second day we had an egg & toast breakfast then finished the trek with a trip to a waterfall with some swimming! Unfortunately we couldn't do white water rafting due to low water levels but we did do bamboo rafting which was much better then expected! Thank you to "K" and "Y" for a brilliant two days! We won't forget it!

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
Thank Queenie89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Amateurs guides that can abandon you in dangerous situations”
Reviewed December 13, 2013

I was in Chiang Mai mid-October 2013 and my hotel suggested a tour with Panda Tour & Trekking. The very good thing was the price: my fiancee and I paid about 800 Baht each. Later in the day we found out other guys on the same tour with us paid almost double price. But the good experience stopped there. The guides were almost never speaking to us and nonetheless having a very poor english. Transportation was on a very bad kept truck, and this is quite impacting if you have to travel for more than 2 hours during that day. Finally, the abandoned us swimming in a pond letting us reaching the truck alone.

We went for the following classic tour which consisted of the followings:
- Orchids and Butterfly Farm: Orchids were there and were indeed very nice, but Butterfly "cage" was empty. We stopped there for about 30 minutes and was definetively too much time for everyone, given that all of the people in my tour were back to the truck after 10 minutes;
- Elephant Farm: This was the best part of the tour. Finally a guy who spoke perfect English. The farm itself was a bit rough, but animals were well kept. The tour on the elephant was nice but nothing very "extreme". What was very disappointing to see was our "Pand Tour" guide having fun by making a caged monkey smoke and drink Sprite. Very unrespectful of the animal.
- White Water Rafting: here the choice was between an inflatable raft or a bamboo raft. The only difference was in the means but, again, also this was not "extreme" at all. We rafted for about 10km of almost flatlands, quite useless and annoying after all. Moreover, the guy who was supposed to give us instructions on how to steer the raft was pretty uncaring and didn't provide guidance at all.
- Hill Tribe Village & Waterfall: well... what to say. Landscape here was wonderful but the visit to the village utterly useless. The only living human in the area wanted to sell few commercial/industrial items (not even a single piece of handycraft). After that, finally our guide brought us to a waterfall were we could bath. The place was missing every minimal security measure, but was worth a swim. Here, "Panda Tour" reached the worst and left 4 of us in the water swimming and went back to the track (5 minutes hike), thus leaving us almost at sunset with no guidance in the Jungle. That's completely nuts!

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Danilo A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saratoga Springs, Utah
2 reviews
“Great staff”
Reviewed December 7, 2013

We had TK as our leader and he spoke great English and was very funny. They really emphasized how they treat the elephants well there and you can tell. The camp is located up in the mountains/jungle and it was beautiful. We learned commands, ate buffet style lunch, and rode the elephants for a couple of hours. Then we bathed with them in the water and mud, followed by a mud fight. Great experience and exceeded our expectations. The whole staff got involved and it helped that they enjoy being there.

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
Thank Kelsey E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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