Updated: Jul 25, 2018
Last February, my friend Kathryn and I got to explore Thailand. In Chiang Mai, we were able to fulfill our dream of spending a day playing with the elephants. Continue reading to see pics, get details/incite on where we went, and read about our experience!
It was important for me to go somewhere they cared about the animals, rather than a cruel place to make money. I stumbled upon Bobby's Elephant Home from another travel blog and decided it was the best place to go! He rescued these elephants and brought them to his camp for a better quality of life. The camp only allows 20 visitors per day and the elephants are ridden bare-backed without any heavy equipment
A shuttle picks you up from your hotel and brings you to the habitat. Upon arrival, we changed our clothes and were given a sheet with words/commands to use with the elephants to communicate.
Time to meet the elephants! We got to hand-feed them using the learned language with phrases in Thai such as "lift your trunk higher" or "good job". It was so much fun, even if we had to yell "stop" when they tried to steal food out of the basket without our permission!
Everyone working was so awesome, they even took our cameras to capture the memories for us so we could enjoy the experience to the fullest!
After feeding one of the older elephants, Bobby brought out a baby elephant to play with us! We even got several hugs and wet kisses from the cutie :)
I think he likes me :)
We signed up to share an elephant, but they let us ride individually since there wasn't anybody else there! Getting onto the backs was scary at first being as they're so large, but once you're up there it's totally awesome! We had guides with us to direct the elephants so they didn't go running off in the forest. We went trough the river, and into the forrest, communicating to them along the way with phrases like "right", "left", "stop", and "go".
We then went right into the river to bathe these beauties! We were given buckets to splash water onto them and give them a nice little cleaning. So much fun!
Once they were squeaky clean, we took them back to camp to say goodbye and eat lunch (included in the cost). One of the workers, Chalie, drove us back to town (and even stopped at Tiger Kingdom on the way home). It was a day filled with amazing animals, awesome staff, and a beautiful setting. It even allowed me to forget about my food poisoning for a day :P
It was an experience to remember forever!