Saturday, December 16, 2017

Genting Dream - Elephant trekking in Phuket (Day 3)

After the drivers magnet talked to the last private driver who approached him... Opps~ I mean my husband....

Hubby told me he manage to negotiate to a reasonable price (we didn't bring much Thai Baht with us as I didn't really expect to shop in Phuket. But just in case, I brought some leftover Thai Baht from previous trip along). I agreed to the ride but I told my hubby in Mandarin that we will only pay after he bring us back to the port as I'm worried if we were to pay him first, he might left us at the sightseeing area after he drop-off us. As we didn't book the driver using Uber or Grab app hence I'm worry if anything happened we might not have the data/details of the driver if anything goes wrong (for Uber/Grab, the drivers at least need to register with Uber/Grab so it's easy to track or lodge complain if any mishap happened).

Luckily everything goes smoothly!

As we do not have much Thai Baht with us, daddy told the driver we would like to go for the jungle Jeep ride and the driver drove us up the hills. However, he passed by the Jeep attraction and went slightly upper to elephant trekking attraction (I think it's the driver SOP cause all the attractions were indicated on the attractions list he showed us earlier on. He did bring us to the Jeep attraction after the elephant trekking but we ran out money by then hence we didn't went down :p).

The elephant rides were not cheap to be frank... It costs 900 Thai Baht per pax (approximately SGD40) for 30 minutes ride (it will cost SGD120 for 3 pax to ride on it). Child or adult cost the same. I had heard news of elephant abuse before hence I'm reluctant to ride on the elephant... But hubby said it's a great experience for C&C (actually I rode on elephant in Singapore zoo before when I was young). So we decided to proceed to allow C&C and daddy to ride the elephant.

Contrary to the news and reviews I read, though the guides each held a tool with those sharp edge (not sure what it called but when I saw it I was afraid that they will use it to prick the elephant), I didn't see any of the guides prick the elephant and I asked Cherie when she was back, she told me the guide did not ever try to prick or did any physical abuse to the elephant but he did keep yelling as the elephant keep stopping to have snacks as it trek and she thinks it is very funny. I think the sharp tool is only used when the elephant endangers someone? I even saw a crew who looks like he is only about 9 years old rode on the elephant with tourists and slide down the elephant via it's trunk to help the tourists take photos.

I did saw one of the crew caned an elephant using a cane (which Asian family will be familiar... Cause I have 1 at home too). He caned the elephant in front of me when the elephant tried to take my fan (I was standing behind the metal bar for my own safety and the elephant stretched it's trunk towards me and I just move backwards so that he can't take my fan away). I'm not really pleased when the crew did that as I didn't think the elephant was bothering me. After that I told my husband about the caning incident he told me most probably they need to tame the elephants.

Overall, I do understand some people will comment that elephant trekking is a form of animal abusing. From what I observed there, the elephants has sheltered area to rest and have plenty of food prepared by the attraction staffs... I don't really see any form of abuse happened (well~ of course the caning of the elephant does look like abuse.. but elephant skin is much thicker and I used similar cane to discipline my kids too). Like what daddy said, it's all about survivor. If they don't work like this, they won't be able to survive.

C&C told me its fun

Photo taken before C&C went on their ride

Ask daddy to go for elephant trekking, he went to interview the guide...

I was standing behind the metal bar waiting for daddy and C&C when one of the elephant stretched its trunk to me. I was impressed by a local young boy who slides down from the elephant trunk to help a tourist takes picture as he only looks around 9 years old to me (missed out to take picture of him).

At the waiting area, there was a glass accessories maker. The accessories were so beautiful! I was very tempted to buy as gifts but we used all our thai baht on the private car ride and elephant trekking... Daddy said lucky I didn't have cash with me or I would have made impulsive purchases. :p

The elephants taking a break at their designated shelter and the guide brought them lots of food. When I was there they were eating non stop! Just like my C&C~ :p

Video compile of their departure and back. I waited 30 minutes for them. But most important thing is I think C&C had a wonderful experience.

Missed out to take photo of Cherie as she already alighted

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