If you’re planning a trip to somewhere in Southeast Asia, there’s a good chance that you’ll find some sort of place that houses elephants for you to visit. Even though seeing an elephant up close is really a remarkable thing, there are many different types of places where elephants live, and some are more ethical than others. Before you start booking tickets, get familiar with the difference between an elephant sanctuary and a nature park.
Even though it has the world sanctuary in its title, an elephant sanctuary is not as peaceful as it seems. These businesses are known to not treat their elephants very well, at the very least making them perform shows for the people who come to visit. They have also been to known to beat the elephants, chain them up, and keep them in tight quarters at night.
Sometimes also called a rescue center, elephant nature parks are the ethical way to see elephants. These places are there to rehabilitate elephants, not just capture them and put them out for a show. Also, customers are not allowed to ride the elephants at all unlike most sanctuaries, because this can cause harm to the elephants.