Monday, March 30, 2015

Travel :: Elephant's World

After Erawan Falls we headed south to Elephant's World. As soon as we booked our trip to Thailand it became apparent that riding an elephant was a very unusual and popular experience that many people partake in while visiting Thailand. I was thrilled at the thought and started even looking into staying at an elephant camp. However, a small part of me started to wonder how ethical the elephant trekking camps that I had seen so many of my Facebook friends visit over the years actually were. After doing a significant amount of research I decided against riding an elephant. We were going to opt out of the experience all-together, but while booking our trip to Erawan Falls with BKK Tours they mentioned that we might also be interested in adding on a stop at Elephant's World.

The name Elephant's World immediately brought to mind some kind of theme park, so my first response was that I wasn't interested due to ethical reasons, but after talking with the tour planner I realized that Elephant's World was actually an amazing non-profit whose only goal is to better the lives of Elephant's. I did my homework and was thrilled to have found such a charitable organization whose motto is "At Elephant's World we work for the elephants, instead of them for us!"

We arrived to Elephant's World around 1PM and were immediately in awe of it's gorgeous location. Set in the rolling countryside and surrounded by mountains, it is a place where elephants and other rescued animals roam safely and freely. Stray dogs somehow magically show up at the property and are given food and shelter - it's like somehow they sense that it is a safe haven for all living creatures. It is run by volunteers, many of whom explained they had visited and fell so in love with it that they never left. We first spent time feeding the elephants and learning more about them. Most lived in elephant trekking camps and had become old or sick and were getting ready to be "disposed of." Elephant's World rescues them, allowing them to live out their retirement in peace and harmony. 

After spending time with Bo, an ancient, blind elephant with wrinkly skin and a love for rice balls we walked to the River Kwai to bath the elephants and swim with them! They even allowed us to climb on top of the elephant's necks for a few minutes which was absolutely amazing. Being able to pet, touch and hug these majestic creatures was truly an experience I will cherish for the rest of my life. Ryan and I played with "our elephant" Rom Sai, a retired logging elephant, then went on to feed him a bushel of fruit {watermelon being his favorite}. It's hard for me to put into words how wonderful and meaningful the afternoon was, but if you're ever in the Bangkok area I couldn't recommend a trip to Elephant's World enough!


  1. this makes me teary just knowing that they are well taken care.
    i love places like this and good people who take care of God's creatures :)

    sounds magical.

  2. What absolutely beautiful creatures. If only all travellers were so concerned with the welfare of the animals they journey across continents to visit! xxx
    Lucy @

  3. Amazing! That pic of the old elephant is so sweet. Would love to meet him