Lampang Elephant Hospital

A world leader in caring for elephants

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What we say: 4.5 stars

Established in 1994 by the NGO Friends of the Asian Elephant, this elephant health centre was the first of its kind in the world.

It has treated thousands of sick and injured elephants with afflictions ranging from poor diet and general mistreatment to shotgun or barbed wire injuries to more serious land-mine injuries. One of the hospital's most famous guests is 50 year-old female, Motala, who attracted global media attention after losing a foot from a land-mine in Burma. There are no rides or shows here (although they are available at the neighbouring Thai Elephant Conservation Centre), but visitors are free to visit the elephants in the rest and recuperation centre and even to watch them being treated through a mix of Western veterinary care and medicinal herb treatments.

An information centre offers some excellent info in English.

Admission is free, but you can contribute to the centre by purchasing souvenirs and/or giving donations.

More details
How to get there: The hospital is located some 28 kilometres north of Lampang city, adjacent to the main highway to Chiang Mai. Unlike the Elephant Conservation Centre the hospital doesn’t run shuttle buses, though that’s an easy option if you’re planning on visiting both sites. Otherwise, unless you have your own transport, you can catch a Lampang-Chiang Mai bus. These run hourly; just ask to be dropped off on the main highway, from where you’ll have a five- or 10-minute walk, and then return to the highway after your visit to flag down the next passing bus.
Last updated: 6th June, 2013

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