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Elephant Kraal Pavilion

Elephant Kraal Pavilion

A unique elephant experience

Ayutthaya Elephant Kraal Pavilion can be found in the Ayutthaya historical park. In the past wild elephants would be trained here to become war or transport animals. Today it is an elephant camp where mahouts bring elephants to rest after demonstrations at Wat Mongkolbopit, Ayutthaya's city island. These elephants come from many provinces such as Surin and Chaiyapum.

Location

The Elephant Kraal Pavilion is in Suan-Prik sub district, Ayutthaya, about five kilometres from the town

History

The Elephant Kraal Pavilion was at Wat Song or currently Krung Kao District Administration Office from the days of the Ayutthaya kingdom until King Maha Chakrapat's reign. In 1580, King Maha Thammaracha expanded the city wall to Wat Song so the Kraal was relocated outside. It declined during the fall of Ayutthaya before restoration in the reigns of King Rama I, King Rama III, and again King Rama V. Westerners were very interested in the capture of elephants. Memoirs of Chavalier de Chaumont, the French ambassador to Thailand in the reign of King Narai the Great, state that he once attended this trapping ceremony. The last traditional elephant round-up was held during King Rama Vs reign as a ceremony for royal guests, Tsar Nicholas II and Grand Duke Boris Vladimirovich – the two kings of Russia

Attractions

The Kraal is made of brick walls to form a square. There is an inner stockade made of hundreds of large timbers. In the center of the kraal is a Hindu temple. Tourists can take elephant rides or just watch the 90 plus animals of all ages that currently live there. It is possible to stay for a few days to learn about how the elephants are trained and cared for.