If you are looking for an ethical elephant adventure look no further! The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary in Chiang Mai takes good care of the elephants and does not allow them to be ridden or chained up. They have large jungle property, which gives the elephants plenty of space to roam. They are well fed and cared for by the men who stay at the camp. The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary has four locations throughout Thailand: Chiang Mai, Phuket, Ko Samui, and Pattaya. The Chiang Mai branch is the largest of this organization, with 5 different camps where tourists are taken to see the elephants.
If you are looking for more information about the Pattaya location, we also have a review of that location.
How to get to the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Chiang Mai
The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary has its main office inside the city in the Old City shown on the map below. They either pick you up from your lodging, or you have to meet them at the office if you’re staying outside of a few miles. The office is not too far from the bus station, and you can also get picked up from the station if you ask in advance!
The Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Price
The price depends on what experience you choose. The cost includes transportation roundtrip and a meal. Half day visits are 1700 baht for adults, 1300 baht for children 4-10 years old and free for infants and kids 0-3. Full day visits are 2400 baht for adults, 1800 baht for children 4-10 years old, and free for infants 0-3.
We had some confusion regarding the shirts. We saw online that we got to keep the shirts they give you to wear, but on our tour, we didn’t get to keep them. When we tried to look up the information again, we couldn’t find it. So I think we were mistaken. Sidenote: a perk of the Pattaya location is they let you keep the shirt.
The morning visit starts at 6:30-
- 6:30-7 pick up from accomodation
- 7:00 Drive approximately 1.5 hours South of Chiang Mai through rolling hills, forest, and local farming areas.
- 8:30 Arrive at the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary. Learn about the elephants and change into traditional Karen clothing.
- 9: 00 Meet the elephants. Feed, interact, and play with the elephants in a natural environment as you learn about their behavior and history. Take photos with the elephants.
- 9:45 Mud Spa with the elephants
- 10:30 Walk with the elephants to a river and bathe them.
- 11:30 Eat a traditional meal and then say goodbye to the elephants.
- 12:00 Leave the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary and drive approximately 1.5 hours to Chiang Mai.
- 1:30 Drop off at your hotel or accommodation.
The afternoon pick up time is 11:30-12 pm at your hotel or meet them at their office. The price is also 1700 baht per adult for the half-day visit (1300 baht for kids).
- 11:30-12 pm Pick up from residence
- 12:00 pm Drive approximately 1.5 hours South of Chiang Mai through rolling hills, forest, and local farming areas.
- 1:30 Arrive at the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary. Learn about the elephants and change into traditional Karen clothing.
- 2:00pm Meet the elephants. Feed, interact, and play with the elephants in a natural environment as you learn about their behavior and history. Take photos with the elephants.
- 2:45 pm Mud Spa with the elephants
- 3:30 pm Walk with the elephants to a river and bathe them.
- 4:30 pm Eat a traditional meal and then say goodbye to the elephants.
- 5:00 pm Leave the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary and drive approximately 1.5 hours to Chiang Mai.
- 6:30 pm Drop off at your hotel or accommodation.
The full day visit pick up time is 8 am and ends at 5:30 pm drop off. This option gives you a longer period of time to be with the elephants. You also get to learn how to make herbal medicine balls. The cost of full day visit is 2400 baht for adults (1800 for kids). ,
what to bring
- water ( there is water provided there as well)
- change of clothes
- insect repellent
- walking shoes
- camera (if you want). There is a photographer they have as well take photos and post them for free that you can have on their facebook page!
Feed the Elephants
You will arrive and hear about the sanctuary and some general rules. You will be given a karen shirt to protect your clothes and then go to meet and feed the elephants while feeding them bananas and sometimes watermelon.
You join the Elephants in their spa day, rubbing mud on them and bathing them in a giant pool of mud. You play with the elephants in the water, mud, and splash water with the other visitors.
River wash off
The elephants wash off in the river and you help clean them off, as well as yourself, while
Eat an authentic Thai meal
The food was delicious and there was a huge potluck of rice, vegetable stir fry dishes, pad thai noodles, fruit platters, coffee, and water.