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Inside Elephant Hills: Thailand's First Luxury Tented Camp

| Words by Ellena Johnstone |

Introducing Elephant Hills...

Want to wake up to the sounds of the rainforest? And interact with Asian elephants in a responsible way? Elephant Hills might just be for you.

Why should I go?

The Rainforest at sunsetWatch the sunset over the rainforest at Elephant Hills floating Rainforest Camp.

Elephant Hills is Thailand’s first luxury tented camp, offering visitors the chance to get up close to Asian elephants in a responsible way. Their Elephant Experience is ranked by the Tourism Authority of Thailand as the best elephant camp in Thailand for animal welfare.

If you can imagine waking to the sounds of the rainforest and the call of gibbons in the trees, then Elephant Hills is an absolute must on your next visit to Thailand….

Where is the camp?

Elephant Hills is located within Khao Sok National Park in Southern Thailand, not far from Phuket. The camp is easily reachable from all over Southern Thailand, with transfers included from Phuket, Khao Lak, Krabi and even Koh Samui! Our Asia experts can advise the best way to reach Elephant Hills.

Where will I stay?

Elephant Hills embodies ‘glamping’ at its finest – the best of camping, without skimping on any of the luxuries! Guests will first stay at the Elephant Camp, before moving to the floating Rainforest Camp on their second night. All tents are spacious and well-appointed, with comfortable beds, electricity and an en-suite bathroom with hot running water. At the floating Rainforest Camp, each tent is provided with its own canoe, so guests can set off and explore the lake independently between activities.

What activities can I enjoy?

The Rainforest CampOne thing is for sure - you'll never get bored at Elephant Hills! With canoe safaris, jungle treks and their famous elephant experience, there's so much to see and do.

The chance to get up close and personal with Asian Elephants is naturally a major highlight for visitors to Elephant Hills. During their unique Elephant Experience, guests will learn about these gentle giants, bathe them, scrub them with coconut husks and prepare and feed them one of their daily meals. With the camp’s 11 elephants joining in, there’s plenty of opportunity for guests to engage with them and learn about how Elephant Hills is ensuring their welfare.

Yet elephants are only a small part of the magic of Elephant Hills; at the Rainforest Camp there is a whole range of activities to take part in, from guided canoe safaris through the rainforest, to jungle-trekking and exploring caves. There’s also plenty of free time to take canoes out and explore the peaceful channels of Cheow Larn Lake independently, or swim in its emerald green waters. Pure relaxation!

What about meals?

All stays at Elephant Hills are full-board, so expect delicious, freshly-cooked meals three times a day. There is also a fully-stocked bar for you to indulge in a beer after a day of wildlife-spotting!

Is the camp’s elephant experience ethical?

Asian ElephantsElephant Hills is ranked among the best elephant camps in Thailand for animal welfare.

Elephant Hills was awarded the Thailand Green Excellence Award for animal welfare in 2014 and 2015, and is ranked as the best elephant camp in Thailand for animal welfare. The welfare of their elephants is at the heart of Elephant Hills, and as such the camp does not offer elephant riding as this is not a natural activity for the elephants. Instead, their elephant experience involves feeding and bathing the elephants. The camp meets Insider Journeys strict Elephant Tourism Policy, which is endorsed by independent body Tourism Concern.

When is the best time to go?

Elephant Hills can be visited all year round. Given its location within one of Thailand’s largest rainforests, rain is to be expected but this only adds to the authenticity of the experience.

I want to go! Can you help me arrange this?

Talk to our Asia experts today, who can tailor-make your ideal Thailand private itinerary with a stay at Elephant Hills. Alternatively, our Southern Thailand Revealed small group journey includes a stay at Elephant Hills so you can experience the jungle with your group.