Elephant dream valley is situated 60 km south west of Chiang Mai. You will find here a beautiful scenery, consisting of hills and valley, crossed by a little river. On top, you can observe rice fields and karen villagers working in them. Here, we care about elephants. We aim providing tourists an unforgetable experience without harming elephants. Our everyday life is about caring for elephants, you just share with you this experience in an ethical context.
Karen tribes have been living with elephants for centuries. We know how to take care of them without any harm. In Elephant Dream Valley, we aim an ethical and sustainable tourism. We believe that this is the best option for visitors and elephants. Visitors can get to know elephants from close by, while elephants can still enjoy a safe life, with much less harm than in agriculture or riding transportation. Tourists come and go, but karen people and elephants stay. Our everyday life is very stringly connected. We spend most of our day taking care of the elephants. They are very important to us.
Since ancient times, elephants in Asia have been used for different purposes including: transportation, agriculture and logging. In times of war, the kings would also use elephants as their mean of transportation in battle. The importance of elephants on Asian history can be observed in the many paintings that have been found in old temples. Elephant exploitation for hard work is still an issue. For example, in northern Thailand, 30 years ago, elephants were mainly used for carrying logs. Luckily, the government put an end to this abuse by making it illegal. Since 1980, Thailand has become a popular touristic destination. Elephants started being used as touristic attraction. This did not save elephants from abuse. Some attractions involve elephants carrying heavy weights. Only in recent years, people have started caring more about elephants, provide them better conditions and quality of life. In Elephant Dream Valley, we know elephants more than anybody else. For generations karen people and elephants have co-existed. This is why we know what elephants like and what they hate. From experience, we know that it is possible to have an ethical tourism where the elephants are not harmed and the visitor can be satisfied by simple interactions with elephants such as feeding them, washing them, walking with them.
Karen people and elephants have long co-existed. Karen people know how to take care of elephants. In the old days, karen highlanders took the role of elephant keeper/mahout. They used to seek for the best elephants and train them for the king. Their knowledge passed from generation to generation till current times. Karen tribes remain one of the only group of people who spend their daily life with elephants.