A Day With the Elephants

Thailand has a true, vivid vibrancy about it. Every step you take becomes more and more beautiful. It’s the adventurer’s dreamland.

However, one of its signature hotbeds is its high count of elephants. It’s the national animal, so of course these beauties will make majestic appearances throughout your itinerary, and when you come across a lookbook into Thailand’s culture, it’s easy to step into the experience of watching and interacting with these stunning animals.

But, before you think about riding them or joining up with a bandwagon of circuses and elephant performers, let me give you a look into their reality:

We visited the Phuket Elephant Sanctuary, a safe house for these beautiful creatures, home to a group of elder elephants who’ve triumphed through years of abuse at the hands of circus moguls and tourist attractions. The PES has 3 strong elephants: one, a 65 year old beauty with a broken leg who’s seen her fair share of abuse, a charming 35-year-old mammoth, and another 35-year-old darling who in blind in both eyes after being rescued from a sickly abusive circus trade. These animals have been stripped from their homelands and were virtually rescued from black markets by the activists at Phuket Elephant Sanctuary. It costs nearly 600,000 BAT (about $300,000 USD) to rescue one elephant, which makes the task a great one. The people at PES are humane and give life and happiness to these giant beauties, and it was beyond a treasure to visit them.

Celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and the band Coldplay have been known frequenters of the sanctuary, and Britney Spears beat us to there by only a week. The facility is aided by strong, wonderful leaders who gave us the chance to explore, feed, and feel in touch with these handsome creatures. There are so many good moments. And it’s true what they say – they really are emotional creatures. They feel every ounce that we carry, as well, and it is powerful to even be in their presence.

Taking care of our planet starts with our daily moments. Whether you’re trailing lions on a safari, or swimming by a coral reef, being observers is the best role we can play to keep our earth clean. Take into account the many details of tourist traps, the harm they can be doing, and be cautious of your own actions!

Aim to make the world better, always.

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