Chiang Dao Elephant Training Center
Jan 13, 2013
Feb 05, 2013
We have afternoon free and plan one last dinner of this wonderful Thai food this evening (after it gets cool enough so that Jim will leave the hotel room).
Tomorrow - a lesson in Thai cooking and a shopping trip to the market to buy the ingredients for the lunch we will make for ourselves.
Arose at 5:30 to drive 1 1/2 hours north of Chiang Mai to an elephant camp. Elephants were used in the past for teak logging, but that has been banned now and so the owners of elephants cannot afford to feed them. I had mixed feelings about the experience. I can appreciate the value of tourism in providing income and in caring for the elephants, And they seem to be well cared for. The center serves the purpose of rescuing elephants when families can no longer afford to care for them. On the other hand, they are breeding the elephants and that seems cruel. There are about 2700 domesticated elephants in Thailand and an estimated 2-3000 in the wild. They are magnificent animals and feeding them bananas was quite fun.