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The Elephant Sanctuary Volunteer Project Thailand

Love elephants? Volunteer with these beautiful gentle giants!

This wonderful elephant project is a sanctuary where old, sick, disabled, previously abused or illegally-owned elephants now call home. Here, volunteers work for the elephants, not the other way around. This means there will be no elephant riding in the program. 

At a glance:

Volunteering: Caring for Elephants in Thailand

Accommodation: Shared rooms

Meals: x3 meals a day included

Dates: Every week

Minimum stay: 1 week


What animals will I look after? 

You will get the chance to experience and bond with the elephants gentle giants by swimming with them, bathing them and preparing their food, which typically comes in the form of Bana grass, sugarcane and banana plants.

The elephants freely roam around the sanctuary by day, and then are taken to the forest in the early evening.

You will be spending time alongside experienced mahouts, who invest their entire lives gaining an understanding of the elephants and how best to care for them.

About the Elephant Sanctuary:

The project is based in the Thai town of Kanchanaburi, which manages to have a delicate balance between tradition and tourism. It's surrounding limestone hills create and an unimaginably beautiful landscape enhanced by its numerous bamboo-style buildings, stunning meandering rivers and unique temple caves!. 

Kanchanaburi is truly one of Thailand’s natural gems and the perfect place to indulge in nature and spend time with elephants in our project.

Aims of the Sanctuary:
The aim of your volunteer project is to relocate elephants that have been injured, that are ill, that were previously abused or illegally owned into a sanctuary, where they are well looked after and taken care for, and replicating their natural environment so they feel safe and relaxed.

What will I be doing at The Elephant Sanctuary?


Here's an example schedule of your activities:


  • Breakfast
  • Grass preparation
  • Walk with the elephants
  • Elephant feeding
  • Elephant bathing
  • Observation of elephants (grass eating)
  • Lunch
  • Observation of elephants (mud bathing)
  • Elephant feeding
  • Walk with the elephants
  • Dinner
  • Visit local market



  • Breakfast
  • Depart from the elephant sanctuary, taken to Kanchanaburi bus station if it’s the end of your program or back to Singburi for further programs out with the sanctuary

    ***This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.

    You will need:
  • A caring and compassionate attitude towards animals!
  • To be a responsible traveller - you will not get to ride elephants - this is not that type of project
  • Additional equipment
  • Sturdy shoes
  • Clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty


  • Accommodation is provided in a spacious, wooden house within the sanctuary grounds. The rooms are simple, yet comfortable and appropriate for this setting. Private room upgrades for 1-2 people are available. 
  • Hot showers, a western toilet, mosquito nets, fans, bed linen and towels are all provided.
  • A safety box is available for your valuables. 


  • You will be provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner on weekdays. 
  • Meals are typically Thai and vegetarian-friendly.
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I feel like I will return to my home away from home at least one more time. and who knows again… and maybe again… because I fell in love with this place, it’s people and the life it offers. If you consider volunteering for a month, I can assure you, you won’t regret it. Big hug to all of you and especially to my fellow elephant lovers can relate to (some) of this…Rosalinde Spitters


This place lives each breath with the intent to help out another species that should never have been subjugated in the first place. When you get to know Elephants personally as a volunteer, you’ll know what I mean. The Elephant Sanctuary is like a huge billboard to nature saying “I’m sorry, we’re sorry, and we’re trying to make it better.” It is going out of its way to correct the mistakes that history has made before its existence. Chris Hetke

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