The elephants is the symbol of Thailand and the top thing to do on most tourist’s itinerary is to ride one. Unfortunately, the backs of elephants are not designed to carry that much weight (only 220 pounds, and the chair weights 110 alone!) and years of working in trekking camps often permanently injures and even deforms an elephant’s spine. They are also often forced to work in the cities begging for food and taking photos with tourists. This is unhealthy because of the long hot days (Asian elephants get sunburned!), blistering sidewalks (the soles of their feet are very sensitive) and not enough water (they need a day!).
Logging was banned in Thailand in 1989 but many of Elephant’s World’s elephants are 50+ years old so they’ve spent their early years hauling logs.
Elephant’s World will be my home for the next month and for 8 hours each day I am lucky enough to be able to serve the elephants who have spent their lives serving us.