Maesa Elephant Camp

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The Mae Sa region has a famous elephant camp. Our Tuk-tuk driver decided it would be a good idea to take us there, and since we had no other plans, that was our destination.

In Thai, this is called a Ban Kwan Chang, or the village of trainers of elephants. This is a compound where trainers and elephants live together. There are even elephant shower stalls.

The camp has a website at

We arrived shortly after the show began, so we missed the first 10 minutes of it. The show consisted of elephants and their trainers (called kwans) in blue robes and yellow hats.

After each performance, the performers (elephants and kwans) would bow to the audience in the traditional Thai way. This is called a wai.

After the show ended, we got to get up close with the creatures. Here's an elephant doing a hat trick with my head.

This was concluded with a 30-minute elephant ride. Walking over the muddy and steep terrain so high up on a seat was quite an experience.

All in all, it's an experience worth trying at least once.

This is, updated 2006-04-05 00:55 EDT

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