As mentioned in the first part of this blog entry, I would not have made it here if not for my mother. I am not a zoo person. I would rather see animals in their natural habitat. But having said that, I can’t really say that I have a moralistic attitude when it comes to animals in captivity. The elephants I have seen here at Samphran Elephant Ground & Zoo were well-fed and looked quite happy.
I predict however that the zoo institution will become a less attractive piece of entertainment in the coming years and generation. What with the increase of noise around animal rights in the west – we even have a political ‘Animal Party (Partij voor de Dieren) in the parliament in the Netherlands! People as well are becoming more conscious about their footprints affecting the world’s ecosystem and are slowly adapting a responsible and sustainable lifestyle. I guess it is just a matter of time.
Anyway, here at Samphran, the Elephant Show is divided into several parts and acts. We started off with some magic, similar to having an aperitif at first. The hors d’oeuvres were the introduction of the elephants. The teaser so to speak. Then the first course came when the gentle animals played the Elephant World Cup, hehe.
Now we are on the main course of this show – the Yutha Hathi which is a re-enactment of the historical Thai Royal Battle scene.
Here is a short video of the Royal Battle, the Yutha Hathi.
The elephants were dressed extravagantly in colourful silken and embroidered garb and their fighters as well in very elegant ancient robes and headwear, accentuated with highly dramatic accessories such as umbrellas. I am not sure if the purpose of the umbrella is to protect the fighter from the stark rays of the sun or the sword and spear of the enemy? I am confused. Maybe these are just props for the show.
The dessert finale came after the battle when the elephants lined up for the audience for the most awaited picture taking and feeding. You can buy bananas for a few baht to feed the lovely animals. I even managed to make a quick selfie! Yipee =)
Such a beautiful and gentle animal.
In full royal battle gear.
Oi, the trunk must tickle!
Feeding the elephants - just look at the little girl's expression, amazed and slightly intimidated at the huge gentle animals cowering above her.
My selfie. An achievement, haha.
These little children were so brave! Kudos.
Travel Period: November 2015
Destination: Sam Phran (Nakhon-Pathom), Thailand
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Happy Travels! Enjoy Life =)
All pictures were taken by a point and shoot pocket camera or iPhone.