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Pictures/Info on Kids at Thai Elephant Conservatory Mahout Training

Pictures/Info on Kids at Thai Elephant Conservatory Mahout Training

Feb 24th, 2007, 10:47 PM
  #1  
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Pictures/Info on Kids at Thai Elephant Conservatory Mahout Training

Hi. I was wondering if I could get more information about people that have done the mahout training course with kids. I am in the middle of securing our reservation for 2 day course in September, and we will be traveling with out 6 year old son and daughter.

I have read KimJapan's posts on doing this with her daughter and was wondering if you or anyone else have any pictures they would care to share about the experience.

I am a little conserned about the water making KimJapan's daughter sick. This is kind of disappointing as playing in the water seems to be one of the highlights. Do they take you to shallow water if you are with children? I have seen YouTube video of people getting completely submerged when their elephant goes under.

Also, do they try to get a smaller elephant for the kids?

Any additional information would be appreciated.

Thanks, Heather
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Feb 26th, 2007, 02:29 PM
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Just bumping, hoping for some pictures
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Feb 26th, 2007, 03:16 PM
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I did not visit the elephant camp in Chiang Mai, but I did visit a small camp near Kanchanaburi. The elephants were being bathed in the river, and as they bathed, they "pooped". I would definitely stay out of that water!
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Mar 9th, 2007, 09:34 PM
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Just bumping this up. Another question I was wondering is if they use smaller elephants with the kids.
Thanks, Heather
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Mar 10th, 2007, 12:39 AM
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Teaghan had a small elephant. Here are some photos.

http://homepage.mac.com/teaghanmacke...toAlbum18.html

While we are not 100% sure that she got sick from the water, we strongly suspect it. Even so, Teaghan says she would gladly go through it again to have the experience. I, on the other hand, would prefer not to see her so sick again.

The water is pretty shallow, but gets deep quickly. The mahout stays on the elephant with the kids in the water (and adults too). If your kids can swim I wouldn't worry too much about the depth of the water...I'd worry more about the water getting in their mouths.

In August we are going to the Anantara to do elephants there...not because we didn't like the TECC, but because the Anantara comes out to be about the same price per night with the Mahout Discovery Package there, with the bonuses of real beds, pool, spa, and choice of food.
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Mar 10th, 2007, 08:28 AM
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Thank you KimJapan. I am glad you finally got back, because I had originally posted this with you in mind. I had done a search and read your trip report.

I was showing my daughter your wonderful pictures, exactly what I was wanting, and she wanted to know about the cooking school and where she could paint an umbrella.

I think you mentioned then name of the cooking school, but is there any contact information about the umbrellas?

P.S. Do you remeber the name of the antibiotic they gave your daughter? I was thinking I could talk to the travel doctor about taking some of it with us.

Does the water itself really look dirty?

Thanks, Heather
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Mar 10th, 2007, 11:51 AM
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The cooking school was www.alotofthai.com. We did a custom course of complicated dishes for my husband and I (he was a chef when we lived in the states) and vegetarian pad thai for my daughter. It was just the 3 of us, for the whole day, with a trip to the market first thing to buy what we needed. Yui and her husband Kwan were wonderful. Their son was at school most of the day, but joined us in the afternoon, and now they have an infant daughter as well. Can't recommend them enough though. They were the only place willing to customize for us, and were reasonably priced, too.

The umbrella painting was at a factory place along the road where all the same type places are. The first one we stopped at wouldn't let her paint, but the next one did. It is certainly NOT the norm for tourists to actually do the painting, so you may have to try a few places, and even a few artists within the same place.

I don't recall the antibiotic Teaghan was given....but it worked. We had carried Cipro with us, but the doctor there told us what he was giving her was better suited to her condition.

Next trip, August, we won't bother carrying any antibiotics. Our experience using the Thai hospital was good, and would use them again if needed rather than self treating.

The water at the TECC looks dirty, smells dirty, and is dirty. It's brown and murky, with elephant poop floating around in it, and sometimes sometimes I saw frothy suds at the edge of the pool. It wasn't until they were actually in the water and soaked that I even realized that she was submerged in it...I had assumed they would stay pretty dry on top of the eles as the mahouts did...but reality is you get drenched, really drenched. Teaghan enjoyed it so much that I figured we'd deal with side effects later...which I'm pretty sure we did.
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Mar 10th, 2007, 08:35 PM
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HI. I will definitly contact Alotofthai for the cooking school. That looks like a very fun family activity, since my daughter expecially loves to cook.

Did you daughter get a little smaller elephant than you and your husband? I am a little worried that it may be overwhelming for them to get up on the elephant. We have ridden on an elephant before with a kind of saddle to hold on to. They keep assuring me that they really want to do this and that they will ride the elephants. But the thought crosses my mind of being there and them not getting on the elephant. But maybe they could just walk with it.

Thank you for all of your information!

Heather
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Mar 10th, 2007, 09:14 PM
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You should be able to see in the pictures that her ele was lots smaller than mine. She could get on an off by herself. She was 8 at the time.

Even if in the end they don't ride the elephants, the whole experience there is really fun and is much more than elephant riding. It would be worthwhile anyway I think.
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Mar 10th, 2007, 10:12 PM
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KimJapan - Thank you again for all of your answers.
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