Since 1993, the government-owned Thai Elephant Conservation Center (or Lampang Elephant Conservation Center) has been bringing travelers up close to one of the jungle’s largest mammals, 50 of which call the protected stables home. Visitors can spend time enjoying the grounds while following expert guides who know just about everything there is to know about these massive animals. The camp employees work diligently to educate travelers about animal conservation and environmental protection.
Visitors can tour the private stables where the elephants sleep and live, watch them bathe and even take a ride high atop one of these gentle giants. The dung paper factory provides an interesting look at one of the conservation center’s truly unique crafts, but perhaps the most unique experience of all is watching the animals paint and play instruments—a truly impressive feat that’s worth the cost of admission. Travelers will love the non-touristy feel of Lampang Elephant Conservation Center, where passionate conservationists share their love and knowledge of these friendly beasts with those who visit this one-of-a-kind destination.
The Thai Elephant Conservation Center is located at 28-29 Lampang-Chiang Mai Highway, about 70 kilometers from Chiang Mai. Admission is 200 baht for adults and 100 baht for children, while one-day mahout training courses are available for about 3,500 Baht, while longer stays are also possible for additional fees. Most events take place before 3:30 p.m., when elephants are led into the forest for the night.