I have always wanted to visit Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary but was always lazy. Since it was a Public Holiday in celebration of the Installation of the YDP Agong of Malaysia, I’ve decided to bring the boys here for the first time.
Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary, or National Elephant Conservation Centre (NECC) is located at Lanchang Pahang, a mere 90 minutes drive from Kuala Lumpur City. We left home at around 8.30am, had breakfast, took a slow and steady drive and reached the place at around 10.30am.
The drive was pretty easy with signboards along the way after you have took the exit to Lanchang along Karak Highway.
Visitor Registration Counter
Admission to the Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary is free but visitors have to register with simple information (name, I/C No., D.O.B. and address) at the registration counter at the main entrance. Visitors can also donate (optional) any amount to the sanctuary for the upkeep of the facility.
After completing the simple form, each visitor is given a simple sticker to be put on on your clothing.
Exhibition Hall and Theater
There is an exhibition hall and a theater inside the same building of the registration counter. In the center of the exhibition hall, there is an elephant skeleton being displayed. Around it there are banners displaying information related to elephants.
There is a 30 minute documentary on elephant being shown in the theater. Refer to the schedule below for the showtime.
Elephants in the Sanctuary
There are a total of 7 elephants in the Kuala Kandah Elephant Sanctuary – 2 adults and 5 babies (or rather, relatively younger than the 5 adults). All of them were being rescued in the wild and brought to the sanctuary for protection. According to the commentator during the conservation talk, 6 of them were being rescued in Malaysia and 1 from Myanmar.
Feeding the Elephants
There are 2 spots in the sanctuary were we could feed the elephants:
- Open area where the adult/bigger elephants were
- Enclosed locations where 2 younger/smaller elephants were being kept
Food for the elephant can be purchased at these spots. The price is as follow:
- Sugar cane – RM3
- Peanut – RM3/pack
- Banana – RM5
Depending on how you like to call it, this is the place for visitors to rest and/or fill up their tummy. It’s also a good place to escape the hot sun.
Elephant Bathing Session
At around 2pm, the elephants would be guided by their mahout (the person who is in charge of taking care of the elephant) and walk to the podium and subsequently to the river for their bathing session. During this time, we can have the chance to have the elephants walking right beside us – wonderful time to have selfie with the elephants upclose.
The elephants really did enjoy their bath in the river. The respective mahout would give them the instruction whether to stand or lie down in the river so that it is easier for them to scrub the elephant’s back.
After the bath, the 5 adult elephants are being guided back to the podium whereas the 2 little ones stayed back in the river for the tourist-elephant interaction bathing session.
After the bathing session, the 5 adult elephants returned to the podium. The commentator started introducing the elephants – name, estimated age and how they ended up here in the sanctuary. Then the mahout would give instructions to the elephant to show us how smart elephants are and what they are capable of doing. After this short 10 minutes session, visitors get to feed the elephant again and go unclose to have selfie with the elephants.
Bathing with Young Elephants
For this particular activity, visitors are compulsory to hire Nature Guide Service with fee of RM10.00 / person (adult) and RM5.00 / person (children). One baby elephant will by bathe by 4 person at a time for 2 minutes.
This activity is only opened for the first 100 person who register for it in the morning on a first come first serve basis. We wanted to give it a try but unfortunately the slots were all taken up when we arrived at 10.30am.
End of Trip
After 5 hours here, it’s time to call it a day and head back to Kuala Lumpur. The kids were already exhausted but how would they miss out a little fun at the mini playground with slide, swing and see-saw.
About Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary
- Address: National Elephant Conservation Centre (NECC), Kuala Gandah, 28500 Lanchang, Pahang Darul Makmur, Malaysia
- Telephone: +6013-908 8207
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.wildlife.gov.my
- Monday – Thursday: 8am – 1pm, 2.30pm – 4.30pm
- Friday: 8am – 12.30pm, 2.30pm – 4.30pm
- Saturday – Sunday: 8am – 1pm, 2.30pm – 4.30pm
There is NO admission charge into the Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary. However, during registration you can optionally donate any amount to the sanctuary for its upkeep.