Water with Elephants

Trip Start Jan 21, 2013
Trip End Mar 16, 2013

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Flag of Thailand  , Kanchanaburi,
Saturday, January 26, 2013

For any of you who have a bucket list, you must add to it , Riding Elephants in a river in Thailand. I have rode many an elephant. For anyone traveling with me for the first time, I always take them on a elephant ride during our time in Thailand. Its really such an amazing experience to be up close to these amazing creatures. Especially here, there are very little rules, and no waivers to sigh stating that you wont hold it against them or sue if one of their elephants steps on your foot, or if you fall off while riding on them and break your arm, you just show up, pay a small fee, and they take you out for a ride in the jungle on the back of a elephant. They even let you ride on its neck bareback! and its a long way up!which means its also a long way down... and nothing to hold on to, so if you're feeling like really experiencing a elephant ride, you can get off the little riding bench on top of the elephant, and ride right on its neck, tucking your legs behind its large ears, and feeling the tough skin with your touch, and how amazingly sweet these gentle giants truly are. Since our elephant camp we were visiting that day was by a river, they offered taking the elephants bathing and swimming in the river after our jungle ride. We are so in, that's sounds like so much fun! we came prepared, knowing we wanted to do this, wearing clothes that we didn't mind getting soaking wet.
So after our jungle ride, they took off the saddles on the elephants and we jumped on bareback, along with my little ten year old guide, an adorable girl who was the daughter of one of the elephant trainers, and headed down to the river. Remember how i said that Christine had a bit of a fear of river snakes? well, she seemed to have put those thoughts aside with hopes that a big elephant would scare any would be river snakes from approaching us at this time.
Ive seen the pictures of people on the back of the elephants  while they went into the water, and you got a little spray from their trunks as they filled their trunks and sprayed off their backs to the delight of  the guest riding on their back.
To our surprise these elephants went into the water, and dove all the way underneath, completely immersing themselves underwater! with us riding on top bareback with nothing to hold us on, except our legs clutching around their large bellies. we laughed hysterically as they swam and dove underneath the water again and again, my little guide encouraging mine to stand up and try to buck me off which he accomplished several times. Christine's elephant loved to fill up its truck and completely drench her, which didn't matter since by this time we were completely wet anyways. It was seriously one of the funnest things i have ever done.
To top the day off, we went on a floating river raft cruise down the river kwai. sitting on a small platform, sharing a Chang beer and watching the local life as we cruised by.
What an amazing day, and I'm happy to report not one river snake to be seen.
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nancy kiesling on


Maureen mason on

what a blast!!!! Just loved the baby elephant and the little girl. What was her name? The "freckles" on the trunk were interesting. Well, I can proudly say I have been on an elephant tour with Elizabeth in Koh Chang in 2007. Did not have the river "slam dunk" tour but will next time!

Sarah on

I agree with Mo...I loved my elephant ride but playing in the water would of been so cool! I am glad you are having so much fun. Those elephants are sooo pretty. And then a ride down the river with a drink? Wow. What a great day. I can't wait to read what's next!

Sarah on

P.S. I love the title...water with elephants...like water for elephants. :) Clever Mom!

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