So what if it is like a pet elephant facility? A visit to the Dubare Elephant Camp in Coorg is a must visit.
You can go there as a day visitor or as a guest at the accommodation run by Jungle Lodges and Resorts.
An alert first: to have real fun, be at the camp by 9:00 a.m. – else don’t bother going. The best part is watching and giving elephants a bath.
The camp is home to elephants of all ages, from babies to grand-daddies. At around 9, they come out of their quarters and head for the water pool for their daily bath. Be careful when they come down: some amble, but some run. You don’t want to be in the way.
And they keep coming into the water, while those who are finished leave. You can watch them from the sides, and step into the water and give them a scrub yourself.
A good idea to be wearing shorts; take off the shoes too when in the water. Mind the stones below – and tread carefully lest you slip. Once in, you will feel you are in a bathroom for elephants.
Of course, elephants don’t know the difference between a bathtub and a toilet seat – they allow their poop to drop where they are. You can be sure you are stepping on some. Hehe! Wash your feet with soap later.
Some elephants take a leisurely bath, some play pranks. A big one decided to spray water on all onlookers – mind your cameras. And a little one gave a chase to some kids but ran back to momma when the shrieking of the children startled him (or her). Wonder if the animals are trained to perform antics?
What is disappointing are the chains on the elephants – guess these are important for safety reasons.
After the bath, you can go feed the elephants or take a short ride on one. But these are not as much fun as the bath.
The camp is a short river crossing away – you take a motorboat or a row boat or a raft. Keep your ticket intact for the return ride. Or you can always balance over a bridge of rocks to get to the other side.
The raft takes you upstream for a ride too – and there are water pools you can swim in if you like.
Boats have to move very carefully as the water is shallow and one is close to sharp rocks both from the bottom and the sides. A navigator guides the boatman but you never know when they will make a mistake.
Restaurants on the parking side serve a decent fare if you want breakfast or lunch. I had two dosas since I was early and hungry.
Dubare is a nice place to hang around all day long – lounge in the shade when done with elephants, take a boat ride, go bird spotting, read a book or just picnic with some music from your iPod. Life will look wonderful.
Let the images do the rest of the talking.
This video is available on Youtube as well.
Signs for visitors at the camp:
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