Welcome to the Thai Riviera on the Gulf of Siam
Elephant Riding along the Gulf of Siam
Elephants have always been an important part of Thai culture and the Thai way of life. They are a typical symbol of Royal power, an essential feature of Buddhist art and architecture and a spiritual mentor for people from all walks of life.
In the early part of this century, elephants roamed Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Burma in large numbers. Before the 18th century, they were the main vehicle of war in Southeast Asia. One King of Thailand in the late 17th century had 20 000 war elephants trained for battle.
Today, more and more logging elephants are becoming redundant in the northern logging camps and Elephant trekking became a growing industry. For the past years mahouts and their elephants have been drifting to the tourist centres of the South to start a new life by providing trekking tours through the jungle foliage.
There are several Elephant Camps along the Thai Riviera. Most offer a one hour tour and the opportunity to see elephant bathing and feeding. These camps provide a natural environment for elephants and their mahouts. Therefore, the elephant's living conditions today, are far better than they have ever been in the logging camps up in the north of Thailand. If you want to help Thai elephants to survive, take a ride on one of the majestic beasts.