Thailand has continued to be one of the most tempting destinations for those who are seeking a combination of enchanting natural surroundings, alluring culture, and incredible biodiversity. Breathtaking silvery beaches lapped by warm, crystal clear waters are complemented by friendly locals, mouth-watering local delicacies, and an ancient and fascinating historical heritage rooted in Buddhist origins.
In its waters live a fantastic array of marine creatures and snorkelling or scuba diving in Thailand is a truly unforgettable experience. However, some of the countries most charming wildlife, elephants, is under threat. Join our elephant project to help contribute towards the care of retired working elephants and help make their remaining days as enjoyable as possible, whilst enjoying all the fun of a gap year or year out abroad!
Immerse yourself in true Thai culture
Help care for the magnificant elephant
Make lifelong friends
Exercising the elephants
Washing & feeding the elephants
Working directly with the people of the centre
Eco-sytle thatched huts
Before you go
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
Ground transfers & in-transit accommodation
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up
What Next? Apply Now!
WHAT WILL I BE DOING?
According to estimates by the World Wildlife Fund, there are only between 2,000 and 3,000 wild elephants remaining in Thailand, and this number continues to decline. Much of this trend can be attributed to the competition for land between local communities and the elephants, while domesticated elephants continue to roam throughout Thailand with their mahouts and are seen begging for food by performing tricks for tourists.
This placement will give you the opportunity to immerse yourself in Thai culture, learning about the role of elephants as you help the mahouts in the elephant camp that provides a sanctuary for retired working elephants. Your work may include a combination of exercising, washing and feeding the elephants, garden maintenance and working directly with the people of the centre. You will soon learn that the elephants have their own individual personalities and your experience and knowledge will go some way towards resolving the problem of human-elephant conflict. At the weekends you will have free time to explore the surrounding area and enjoy activities such as white water rafting.
Volunteers participating for longer than one week will also take part in an orientation and cultural immersion week. Your introductory week will be the first step towards a successful stay in Thailand and is designed specifically to ensure that you get the most possible out of the trip as a whole. Your culture, language and cooking lessons will help you to settle and feel more at home, and the temple and museum visits will give you a taste of the history of Thailand and the influences on the development of its national identity.
What Next? Apply Now!
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?
You will be met at Bangkok airport by a friendly representative from Frontier-Thailand before being transferred to your accommodation in Singburi, where you will be based for your orientation week. You will then travel to your project site, 380km north of Bangkok, in Phitsanulok province in northern Thailand, famous for being the birthplace of King Naresuan the Great. Please aim to fly into Bangkok on the Saturday before your project begins.
WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?
Throughout your orientation week you will be staying in a shared volunteer house before being transferred to the sanctuary in the north of the country where you will be based for the remainder of your stay. During your time at the santuary you will be staying in the jungle hut centre and will have access to all basic amenities, including cold water showers nice and refreshing in the heat of Thailand!
Facilities available in the nearby town include the internet, shops, a hospital, pharmacy, banks and restaurants, and it is possible to hire an affordable local taxi should you need to visit the town while on your placement.
WHAT WILL I BE EATING?
All food is included during your placement, and you will find it to be typically Thai fare. Thai is one of the world's most exciting cuisines, and if you're willing to experiment, you'll be richly rewarded. Contrary to popular belief, not all Thai food is fiery hot and there are plenty of tasty dishes suited to the Western palate. This hybrid cuisine has been influenced by soups and noodle dishes from China, curries from India and satays from Indonesia. Most dishes incorporate four elements, sweet, sour, salty and hot flavours, and many of the dishes are rice or noodle based.
What Next? Apply Now!
Immerse yourself into the experience!
6 Aug 2012
Excellent help and advice from Frontier.
We were able to change our schedule easil...
Getting to hang out with the elephant’s everyday was great!
26 Sep 2010
This was such a fun project! Getting to hang out with the elephant’s everyday was great! Th...
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In your spare time you can explore the local area and absorb Thailand's captivating culture. Explore golden temples, with their ancient Buddhist carvings and magical atmosphere. Try some more adventurous activities, such as mountain biking through the stunning landscape, white water rafting, diving, sailing or sea canoeing. Enjoy a Thai massage, which really will give you a new sense of serenity! As you can see, there will be no shortage of ways to occupy your time off.