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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Mae Taeng Elephant Park

Sometimes It's Fun to Be a Tourist

We aren't big tour group kinds
of travelers.  We find our way
around on local transit, eat the
local foods, wander through
lonely streets, etc.  But every
once in a while taking a tour
is a fun thing.  We planned to
head up into the mountains
outside Chiang Mai and our
local truck taxi driver suggested
 a visit to the Elephant Park.

We had a great time!
First the elephants took
 a bath in the river.

Okay, this is where it did
get rather touristy with the
feeding of the elephants and
the elephants dancing...

...but then, the elephants
painted.  It was amazing.  If
 I had not seen it with my own
eyes I wouldn't have believed it.
Later that night we were showing
some new friends the photos of
the paintings and 3 of us in the
group had Fine Art degrees and
we couldn't get over how well
that darn elephant could paint.

Next it was the highlight of the
day ~ we got to ride the elephants.
I could go on a long journey by
elephant, it was wonderful to
ride atop this majestic animal.

Next we took an oxcart
ride.  That was not so nice,
it hurt to bump along the dirt paths.

We enjoyed a lovely lunch
beside a beautiful garden.

And then it was time for
the bamboo raft ride down the
river, which should have been
fun.  But in typical Murphy's Law
fashion, the monsoon rain started as
soon as we set off.  It was a long
ride down that river.

Even our sweet, kind taxi
driver had to laugh when he
saw us, we were drenched!
I was very glad he was there
to drive us back to the Villa.

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