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“So much fun”
Review of Thai Elephant Home

Thai Elephant Home
Richmond, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
82 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“So much fun”
Reviewed 17 July 2014

We did the 2 hour tour (which isn't available at most other elephant farms). You get to ride the elephants bare back. There is a Mahout for each elephant in case so you're well taken care of. There's also someone per 3-4 people that will take your camera and help you take loads of pictures during your 2 hours. You start off going through the trek (make sure to put on bug repellent) then to the river where you'll bathe your elephant. Our elephants bathed us... and lift us up with his trunk - loads of fun and laughters. The river is quite rocky, so its best to where some sort of water shoes. We took our flip flops off because we didn't want it to float away and there were a few times I thought I might bleed as I stepped on something sharp. On our way back, we got to meet a baby elephant.

Overall, a great experience. We were kind of worried prior as we saw many reviews on other farms using sharp hooks to control the elephants. Our mahouts did have them but out of the 2 hours, not once did I see them use it.

Visited November 2013
1 Thank Oli0612
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Dublin, Ireland
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Worth a visit!”
Reviewed 17 July 2014 via mobile

We did a two hour tour for 2,225 each. This included travelling there and back. We left at 7am and were back in our hotel for 11:20. Our hotel gave us sandwiches to eat as we had no breakfast. The elephant trek was amazing, the elephants are so gentle and friendly. The staff seemed to treat the elephants well and explained to us the commands to use. The staff are very nice and took many photos and videos from our phone. Which i think we should have given him something for doing so.
The only negative thing I would say is that the elephants are chained to a pole so that they don't ramble off on the road. It would be good if they could build something like the zoos have to keep them in safe instead. It was a great thing to do and I recommend it.

1 Thank sinedublin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“So fun!”
Reviewed 15 July 2014 via mobile

We had an amazing day at the Thai Elephant Home riding the elephants bare back. We spent a long time trekking in relatively steep up and downhill areas and eventually you start to feel pretty stable on the elephant. Many of the elephants in our group enjoyed stopping every few feet for a grassy snack which was pretty funny. Swimming with them was the highlight for me! The river was high from the rains and upon crossing it, I kind of took a tumble into the water and my mahout told me to turn my back and asked my elephant to lift me on it's trunk. It was really fun and hilarious. The elephant kisses were fun too! The elephants have so much personality, I only wish we could spend even more time with them. If you're not short on time, a 2day visit would probably be amazing!

1 Thank Sasha924
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hobart, Australia
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great family fun”
Reviewed 11 July 2014 via mobile

We took our 14, 11 and 7 year olds on a full day at the Thai Elephant home. We were collected from our hotel, thank goodness because it was a fair distance from our city hotel. We were given a run down on information we needed for the day, then given clothes to change into. After reading previous reviews, we were prepared wearing our bathers underneath, and covering ourselves with bug spray. We were introduced to the elephants, then matched to them. Our 7 and 11 year olds shared an elephant. The one in the front held onto the head, and the one at the back held onto the Belly rope. It takes a while to feel comfortable and balanced, but it does get easier. We walked on some very steep paths, but the Elephants are very sure footed, and you will adjust yourself to sit comfortably. Lunch was pad Thai in banana leaves which we later fed to the elephants. Our kids struggled with chop sticks, but one of the guides found them spoons. At lunch you can buy soft drink or beer, but you are provided with two bottles of water to carry with you before you start. We then played in the mud bath with an elephant, whilst covering ourselves in the 'mineral mud'. Then we were off to the river for a wash which was the highlight of the day. A warning for the unfit, some Elephants can't squat down, so you have to climb on from its blended knee. A bit of upper body strength is required to do this elegantly (I have none!). My Elephant is pregnant due Around Nov. It was so nice to see my guide stopping often along the way cutting her sugar cane and grass to snack on. He did not once use his hook (nor did any other guides), just gave her verbal commands. At the river everyone got wet and had fun with the Elephants. The kids all had a go at being lifted up by an Elephant trunk, then sprayed. The Elephants looked like they we're having an amazing time, cooling off in the water. All in all it was an amazing experience for our family. To the people who gave bad reviews saying this was cruel, they forget that these Elephants are breed from generations of domestic Elephants who are well feed and cared for by generations of the same family. Unfortunately letting such a huge beast roam free in its off time isn't an option, just as we wouldn't let a huge bull wonder around our back yard. Our Zoos keep Elephants behind 2 inch bars, which would be too expensive an option for rural Thailand. These elephants are exercised, fed, allowed to free bath in the river daily. It was 'awesome fun' ( as said by our kids). P.S. Expect a sore backside for a few days afterwards, but so worth it!

1 Thank Regan246
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 6 Contributor
124 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 July 2014 via mobile

For $138 USD we were picked up at our Chiangmai hotel, given outfits and coffee and water on arrival, as well as introductory information. After feeding the elephants bananas, you put the commands you just learned to use and learn how to mount and dismount your elephant for the day. A long ride into the jungle is paused for lunch. Price included lunch (delicious pad thai) where leftovers were given to an elephant. We even got elephant kisses before giving one a mud bath. Back on the elephant, you ride to the river and play in the water with the animals. Then it's a short ride back to camp, where fruit and coffee are provided while you watch your DVD of images the photographer took of you that day. The disk is given to you, along with a tshirt, before you go. Showers are available with soap and shampoo provided. (A hook in the stall would really help prevent clothes from getting wet).

If the experience wasn't already amazing, the guides really add an element of charm. Even when language is a barrier, they are still fabulous. One caught on that I did not like the giant bugs in the jungle and really loved scaring me with them (good fun). This is worth every penny. I know one of the girls on the tour bargained the price, but when you consider all the amazing work this company does, I think the price is worth it. Our 90baht picture frame was made by kids at a local school. I can't recommend this tour highly enough!

2 Thank Brianne P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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