When we came to Chiang Mai, all I wanted to do was see an elephant, but it can be pricey and our budget isn’t what you would call lenient. However, when my parents offered to pay for us to go on the elephant mahout day trip, we jumped at the opportunity. Little did we know that we would not only see the elephants but feed them, learn to ride them, and bath with them in the river. The experience was nothing less than incredible and the money WELL worth it, (even though we didn’t have to pay for it ourselves). The camp that we went to was called the Baan Chang Elephant Camp and is really well-run by Woody, a guy who has grown up with the elephants and trained them from a young age. The fees (upwards of 2400 Baht per person) are used exclusively to buy food (and elephants eat a lot!!) for the 8 or so elephants who live on the camp, and to pay their handlers who care for them day and night (interestingly, elephants only sleep for approximately 3 hours each night).
Below are some photos of our day at the camp!
If you would like to know more about the camp or book it for yourself (they also do 2 or more day camps) visit Woody’s blog on www.woodyelephanttraining.com and check out the photo gallery page in the next few days to see more photos of us in action!
D, T and M x