While children always love to attend the circus or go to a zoo with mom and dad, there are a growing number of people who recognize that animals kept in captivity aren’t always ethically treated. Any animal, no matter how large or small, is never going to be comfortable outside its natural habitat. That goes for humans as well! Can you imagine being kept in a land so foreign that you couldn’t avail yourself of all the things that give you a sense of security and even identity? With that in mind, let’s look for a moment at elephants. If you want to see elephants in the most ethical place, that would be in their natural habitat without a doubt. Here are three of those ethical destinations to consider.
Asia has long been known to be home to some of earth’s most amazing creatures, including elephants. If you are looking to see elephants in their natural habitat while ensuring that they are not being interfered with by humans, Thailand provides an amazing opportunity. While some Asian countries aren’t as open to Western visitors, Thailand is big on the tourist industry. In the northern part of the country there is the Elephant Jungle Sanctuary which is monitored to ensure that all animals are not being intruded upon by men. Tours are provided and visitors to the elephant nature park Chiang Mai can hand feed the elephants, but great care is taken to ensure that their natural habitat is preserved.
2. Elephantastic in Jaipur, India
Second only to Southeast Asia, Chiang Mai Thailand to be precise, is India when it comes to viewing elephants in their natural habitat. If you are going to tour countries to view elephants in the most humane way, Elephantastic is said to be one of the most humane sanctuaries there are. The people of the region are hospitable and the good news is that most people in the district speak a good bit of English, so any questions you have to ask can be answered well. That is a definite plus.
3. Elephant Valley Project in Mondulkiri, Cambodia
Although the Elephant Valley Project in Mondulkiri, Cambodia is said to be one of the better ones alongside those in Thailand and India, the one thing that many visitors remark on is the extent of damage still to be seen in areas of this war-torn country. Even so, it does give you a better understanding of what we do to these endangered animals with all the man-made destruction created through wars and expansion. So, there you have three of the best ethical places to see elephants in an ethical setting that tries to keep them alive and well away from the dangers of civilization. The bottom line is that the most ethical places to see elephants would be in those areas where they live and breed naturally without interference (as much as possible, that is!) from humans. If you want to see only ethical treatment of these amazingly majestic creatures, steer clear of the circus. That’s the best advice of all