Monday, August 24, 2009

Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary


My brother-in-law (husband's brother), his wife and 3 kids are back from USA for a 6-week holiday so we took them to visit the Elephant Sanctuary in Kuala Gandah, a 2-hour drive from KL. We went in 2 cars as there were 13 of us - 8 adults, 1 teenager, 3 kids and 1 baby.


The Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary is a temporary shelter for wild elephants that have been made homeless due to clearing of the jungle for plantations. These elephants are later relocated to Taman Negara and other suitable habitats throughout Peninsula Malaysia.


We left at around 10 am and packed KFC for lunch as we were worried that since it is the puasa month, all the Malay eateries there would be closed. We had all the kids in our car so we had to make more frequent toilet stops, and reached there around 12.30 pm. Had a picnic lunch and then proceeded to watch the elephants have their bath. First they were hosed down by the keepers, then taken to a nearby river for a thorough cleaning.


My 2 little nephews aged 3 and 5 were thrilled to be able to touch the elephants, feed them and ride on them. We asked the 5-year-old to rate the experience from 1 to 5 and he said, "100!" However, their little baby brother was fussing quite a lot because the weather was really hot today.

Each visitor is given a sticker and only those with the yellow sticker are allowed to ride on the elephants. For each group or family, only half the number of people will have the yellow sticker. I had the red one.

Orang asli children from a nearby settlement

The place closes at 4.30 pm everyday, but we just couldn't take the heat and left around 3.45 pm after watching a few foreign tourists enjoy a wet experience as they rode the elephants into the river. Despite the 'No Bikini' sign, a foreigner still took off her wet T-shirt to reveal her bikini top in the presence of everyone there.


We were quite pleased when we reached the Gombak toll at 5 pm, thinking we would get home early, only to be stuck in the rush hour crawl...


YuinTing Chin said...

Have to bring my kids there one of these days :-)

Sunny-Cookie said...

Remember to apply sunblock!