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Visit Elephant Valley Thailand (Chiang Rai)

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Elephant Valley Thailand

Thai name :

GPS : 19.81545358,99.76246639 (See on the map)
Chiang Rai
Chiang Rai
Chiang Rai
Chiang Rai

Presentation

Elephant Valley did not survive the loss of income following the cessation of tourism caused by the COVID-19 crisis and announced its closure on April 30, 2020. There is still Elephant Valley in Cambodia that I recommend you to go visit if you have the opportunity.

In Thailand, the places where you can meet captive elephants whose well-being is a lot more important than tourist considerations are unfortunately not so numerous. I try to modestly participate to the campaign to make tourist more conscious of elephant conditions and choose carefully where they go meet this magestic animals. Things slowly improve with more virtuous sanctuaries and practices such as elephant riding or the use of bullhooks (sticks with a sharp hook) become more and more scarce but there is still a long way to go !

Elephant Valley is one of those respectful parks in Thailand where they ''let elephants be elephants''. Here you will not climb on them, you will not baths with them either, they will not paint or do any tricks to entertain you, you will not touch them at all. You will simply observe them, follow them, look at them from a distance. Minimum 10 meters away, this is the number 1 rule of the 7 rules to follow when visiting the park. Elephant Valley goal is to reduce their contact with humans to a minimum so step by step their 6 elephants (in December 2017, they were 6) often coming from trekking camps, often in bad condition, can resume their wild habits and live their lives without needing humans and especially without permanent submission to humans.
Elephant Valley Thailand is a variation of a similar elephant sanctuary in Cambodia. Opened in 2016 not far from Chiang Rai White Temple, it has not yet reached full scale yet and is trying to expand by acquiring neighboring land. Their purpose, maybe a little optimistic, is to make their elephants able to live again in the nature in 10 years. Because nature is where elephants are the most happy of course but we have to deal with all those who have been raised in captivity and support all initiatives to offer them a better life and try to avoid their extinction. The Elephant Valley project is one of them.

Practical information about Elephant Valley Thailand

Prices (December 2017): half-day visit is at 1400 THB per person and full day visit at 1800 THB (pickup and meals included)
The park accepts a very limited number of visitors per day (group of 8, maximum 10 per half day), so I recommend you to book in advance. You can book your visit on their website HERE or at the Elephant Valley shop in Chiang Rai city near Bus Terminal 1.
Note that you can also spend the night there (all the information on their site).

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