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Great experience!!

The driver was on time and it's a 2 or so hour trek into the jungle. The views are AMAZING so soak... read more

Reviewed yesterday
Y9753TWlisab
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Greenville, South Carolina
via mobile
Expectations Exceeded

After a long beautiful drive up into the mountains the scenery started to change; There fewer and... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
Amy P
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Eugene, Oregon
via mobile
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Reviewed 25 June 2018

Not sure how much good another excellent review among hundreds of other excellent reviews will do, but my friends and I had such a great time with the Karen Tribe that it is definitely warranted. We opted to do the overnight stay, and while it is pricey relative to other things you can do in Thailand, it was 100% worth it and supports a great cause.

Booking was super easy - two weeks before our trip, I found them on Facebook and sent a message inquiring about availability and got a quick response and an email address to confirm with. No deposit was needed, and we just sent them the name of our hostel in Chiang Mai the day before.

During the day, we (the three of us) were with no more than 8 other people as we met our elephants, learned how to take care of them and check their health, and even how to talk to them. Sun, our enthusiastic leader, explained things with great detail and passion and in excellent English (and occasionally French for the French group with us). He explained how the Karen Tribe has been raising elephants for generations, and how they are nothing like the dozens of other expat European owned elephant "sanctuaries" around Chiang Mai and the rest of Asia that have become trendy recently.

In the evening, only our group stayed overnight and we were welcomed into their home as if we were family. We had our own private cabin that was clean, looked newly built, and offered a good amount of privacy. There were two bedrooms, each with an ensuite bathroom. That evening and the following morning, we learned to weave, cook, hunt for frogs, and look for wild honey. It was exhausting, dirty, and really exciting work.

If you are considering a trip to Thailand, I cannot recommend visiting the Karen Tribe enough, and especially doing an overnight stay.

Date of experience: June 2018
2  Thank Judy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2018

The visit to the Karen Tribe was an experience of a life time. my wife and I love the big elephants, and like people who travel all over to ride roller coasters we in a way have traveled all over to spend time with the elephants. Mind you, we have not been to them all and there is controversies. What I find at the Karen tribe is a group of people who care and love the animals. We had to drive over two hours into the back jungles of Thailand to get there. When we arrived there were eight elephants just roaming around. females and males alike, That was the 2nd thing we were told in the past that they only have females because they are more controllable and less dangerous, We had an introduction about the Karen tribe and their practices and beliefs. They talked about the elephants, how to tell there moods what to watch for (this explanation here is very brief) Then we were introduced to our elephant. We then proceeded to spend the day with our mahout as he feed them cleaned them bathed them made up a vitamin mix to feed them etc. We were able to ride them if we desired as we made our way back to the home grounds from the river where they were bathed. We had a fantastic lunch put on by the people of the Karen tribe. OH, I almost forgot they have only 8 elephants and they only take 8 people at a time to their village so everything is very much one on one. My suggestion if you love elephants, want a fantastic experience GO. Please look them up and read about them on their web site you will get a much better picture then what I can write here.

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank James V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2018 via mobile

My partner and I have been travelling in Bangkok and decided to visit Chiang Mai solely for this experience. The reviews were incredible and I can tell you, every one of them is true. We were picked up early in the morning and our driver kindly made an additional stop for us as we'd left our cash behind. The journey was comfortable, and the views on the way there were amazing. I won't spoil it by going into detail too much - but the buffalo were awesome!
We finally arrived and were welcomed and allowed time to introduce ourselves to the elephants and the tribe. The scenery, the people, the elephants - it was gorgeous and overwhelming.
Again I won't go into too much detail about the day as you can find out more on the website/other reviews- but WOW. We felt welcome, comfortable, and we fell in love with our elephant Maybutong (Not sure how to spell it!) If we're ever back in Thailand I would be back in a flash and I hope to keep in touch and hear about how the elephants are doing.

You will not regret this trip. It was worth coming from Scotland to Thailand for.

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank Clementine41239
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2018

We came for the elephants but we fell in love with the Karen people. My family of five (3 kids ages 10, 12, and 13) did an overnight with Sun and his family. We had an amazing day taking care of the elephants--feeding, bathing, making medicine balls, and riding them as they went for a walk. In the evening, a local villager taught me how to make a scarf using a loom. She was so patient with me and taught me the entire process! That evening my kids LOVED catching frogs under the moonlight. The next day we went to the field to plant rice. To our great amazement and joy, this not only involved plowing the field but catching crabs, fish, and eel in the rice paddies. Seeing my kids knee deep in mud as they searched for crabs and eels in the rice field was a truly special experience. We loved spending time with Sun and his family. It was the highlight of our trip.

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank Emily L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2018

Best of all experience in the deep jungle of Chiang mai with a lovely elephant. Sun is a centre of Karen's tribe family in this village who willing to take care of elephant and forest.
To help them that mean you are also taking care of nature too.

Date of experience: February 2018
Thank Adisak_BaanBooLOo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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