Winter at Tantora

Elephant Sanctuaries in Chiang Mai

by Nia Scott

Jan 8, 2019

Chiang Mai, Thailand © Narathip Ruksa | Dreamstime

Tips / Destination

Elephants are magnificent animals. For centuries, they captured the attention of humans in both good and bad ways. Unfortunately, the elephant population is dwindling due to poaching, habitat loss and abuse. These gentle giants are taken advantage of all the time by people who wish to exploit them for monetary purposes. Thailand has some issues with those situations, but the people are working to combat them by creating sanctuaries for elephants. These safe areas are run by people who want to see elephants treated as they should be. Caring for elephants is hard work at times and costly. Using volunteers helps to keep the cost down and the elephants cared for. In addition, people have the opportunity to learn about elephants and their plight.


There are several sanctuaries in the area that welcome volunteers with open arms. One of these is called the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary. Located 60 kilometers from the main city, this sanctuary is an ethical and sustainable eco-tourism project. It’s a joint project with the members of hill-tribes and locals of Chiang Mai. In addition, the company has a sister project in Phuket and Pattaya.


The sanctuary offers half-day, full-day and overnight stay options at the establishment. Volunteers assist with feeding, bathing and playing with elephants. The staff on site educates volunteers during these activities about the lives of elephants. You can bring a camera, but this company has its own photography service, offered free of charge. To book an appointment, fill out the booking information online and then arrive at the sanctuary.



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