Karen Tribe Native Elephants

Karen Tribe Native Elephants is owned by the Karen hill tribe people in Chiang Mai. The Karen people have been known to be the main caregivers to the elephants for many decades.

Sadly, over the years the elephants have been taken out of their natural habitat and put into camps.

The Karen Elephant is now becoming endangered. Where there was once a lot of an elephants, the populations have become shockingly low.

Returning the elephants of Chiang Mai back to the rainforest

Karen Tribe Native Elephants is striving to bring the elephants out of endangerment. We aim to bring the Karen Elephants back to the rainforest where they naturally roamed. We believe that in order for the health, needs and happiness of the elephants to be met, a proper environment is the most important factor.

While you are with us, we will train you to be an elephant caregiver and show you how to interact with the elephants as the Karen Tribe does. This will give you an intimate and up close experience of how the elephants are loved and cared for by the Karen people since long ago.


Not only are you getting personal time with the elephants while you are with us, you are also caring for them and helping us restore the population as well.

Another important aspect is that Karen Tribe Native Elephants is owned and run by the Karen people.

We are not a “for profit” organization. As you will see when you visit us, the process in caring for these gentle giants is not cheap. All of the proceeds from the trips are used to feed and care for the elephants and to give a fair but modest pay to our elephant handlers.

Some organizations have been known to take advantage of their employees by only giving them a small portion of what they need to earn each day.

This unfortunately starts a chain effect.

Unable to care for their elephants due to unfair pay, the caretakers have no choice but to sell them to survive.  As you have no doubt heard or seen in the press, this has resulted in many of the elephants ending up mistreated and in poor conditions. Practices such as being chained up in camps or cruel training regimes to make elephants perform to an audience have to stop!

We are dedicated to bringing the elephants back to their natural habitat, bringing income to the Karen villagers, and the elephant caretakers to stop this chain effect before it starts.