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“Great Experience, Slightly Pricey”

Baanchang Elephant Park - Private Day Tours
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Elephant's Heaven: Half-Day Elephant Experience at Baanchang Elephant Park in...
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Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Baanchang Elephant Park: Is dedicated to providing elephants with the highest quality-of-life possible.Our elephant park run by 100 % Thai Owner. Our Park completely owned and rescued 39 Elephants. The program will provide you the wonderful introductions to the lifestyle of Thai elephants including all details involved about them, also you can learn how to control and bath the elephants as if you are a Mahout. By the way, you will be able to ride elephants bareback through the hills around in our park area.
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Activities for young children, Activities for older children, Lockers / storage
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
25 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Great Experience, Slightly Pricey”
Reviewed 7 July 2014

The great thing about Baan Chang is that they are completely open and honest about how they run the place and why they do certain things. Our guide, Nai, was very friendly and easy going and answered all our questions.

He took great pains to educate us about the realities of rescuing elephants. The great costs involved, the potential danger of being around an elephant that has known nothing but abuse its whole life, the misunderstandings from tourists who impose their own set of unrealistic utopian ideals on this place, etc.

You get to feed the elephants. Not just the incidental stalk of sugar cane, but for a good half an hour to 45 minutes. Then you are taught some basic commands to control the elephant (the mahout is there all the time so don't worry). Eventually you get to ride the elephants, bareback, through the jungle. This was great. It was humane, definitely more natural, for both rider and ridee, and the elephants get to have a jaunt too. Then it ends with you getting a chance to wash the elephants in their watering hole.

It was great to be so close to the elephants, which are really beautiful, sentient creatures who are capable of so much strength, but really are gentle giants. The elephants are rescued from a lifetime of servitude and horrid treatment. Many of them still bear the scars of unthinkable abuse. Some of them are so emotionally scarred that they can only be approached if a mahout is around to supervise.

It was a truly wonderful experience and if you talk to your guide, just talk, not as a customer but as a person, they can really give you some insight into their lives, the nature of elephant exploitation around north thailand and burma, and the facade of a "tour" quickly evaporates. Instead, you get something of a "real" experience - which is the best part of any travel.

I did say it was slightly pricey but then again, as long as the money goes to running the place, paying everyone and so on, it's fine by me. (Besides, all the other elephant camps cost around the same).

Visited June 2014
Thank GarryJohal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Taguig City, Philippines
Level Contributor
32 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Best day of my life”
Reviewed 4 July 2014 via mobile

I am strongly against animal cruelty, which is why I chose to visit Baan Chang after reading all the positive reviews. All the elephants at this camp were rescued from places where they had to perform tricks and shows. You'll find happy elephants here that eat a ton of bananas and sugar cane, have enough exercise, and bathe several times a day. It was such an incredible experience to be a mahout for a day. If I had enough time, I would've availed the 3-day package! But a day is good enough for anyone.

If one of your travel goals is to ride or see elephants in Thailand, please do not support places that abuse elephants and force them to play soccer or do ridiculous tricks. Do your research and find elephant parks like Baan Chang.

1 Thank Dennise Lorrain... G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“One day course Elephant trainer was great! ”
Reviewed 3 July 2014 via mobile

We did a one day course at BaanChang Elephant Park in Chiang Mai and it was great. After pick up from the hotel it is a 45 min drive to the Elephant Park.
The dat starts with a brief introduction about the park and the elephants, after that you have the possibility to feed the animals.
Every elephant has its own Mahout, so you don't have to be afraid when you come close to the elephants. Then you'll learn how to get on the Elephant and make a short walk on them. Everything is done in a friendly and relaxed way. After the lunch you can sit on the back of the elephants and make a trip around the elephant park for about an hour. After the trip it is time to wash the elephants in the water.

We found it a great experience in a relaxing environment. The guide and the Mahouts were very friendly and we were able to ask them anything.
We surely recommend this Elephant Park!

1 Thank Jop M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Warrington, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Amazing Day!!”
Reviewed 2 July 2014

Me and my girlfiend went to Baan chang elephant park during April 2014. We had an amazing day. Started off with a pick up from out hotel which was on time. On arrival we got changed into the blue outfits (so the elephants recognise the difference between mahoot and tourist aparently!) We fed the elephants in the morning then learnt basic elephant riding control and commands. Then we where off out into the jungle for a few laps of the site. We rode the elephants down to the river where we washed them, before returning back to the centre for dinner and drinks.

Visited April 2014
Thank madmike46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience with my kids at Baan Chang”
Reviewed 2 July 2014

A wonderful experience to remember, our tour guide was Woody. My 3 year old daughter, and even my 6 month old son, seemed to enjoy themselves.

We rode the elephants, fed the elephants, and my 3 year old loved to bathe the elephants! The food was very accomodating for vegetarians, and even my 6 month old had an outfit to wear :)

A shame that we missed Pierce Brosnan the day before!

We are still talking about Thailand now in June 2014 and hope to be talking about it for years to come.

Visited December 2013
Thank adiltariqamin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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