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Adventure Blog

Adventure Center Trips No Longer Feature Elephant Rides

adcadmin
06/16/2014 - 13:31

Adventure Center and The Intrepid Group have publicly announced that we no longer offer elephant rides to our travellers.

The decision to end elephant rides is one that we are incredibly proud of, and we have taken our time to do our research and implement the change before moving forward. This move is driven by our Values, particularly “Integrity + Responsible Travel”; it also links strongly to our promise of the “Best Travel Experience Ever”.

Intrepid Travel and The Intrepid Foundation supported an extensive research project by experts from the animal charity WSPA to assess the welfare of captive elephants (and other wildlife) at entertainment venues in Asia. We know that Asian elephants are highly endangered and tourism demand has led to venues where elephants are forced to do unnatural performances. These tourism activities not only cause pain and suffering to the elephant, but the demand from travellers is adding to the number of endangered elephants being poached from the wild.

As a result of the report and through our own observations, we started phasing out elephant rides from Intrepid trips two years ago. This decision was also implemented with our Peregrine and Geckos brands last year. We can now say confidently that Intrepid, Peregrine and Geckos no longer offer elephant rides on any of our trips in any destination. Intrepid, Peregrine and Geckos are the first companies who have made this decision and implemented it.

Although animal protection is a hot topic in the tourism industry right now, it is something that we have always been concerned about.

Our partners, specifically Intrepid Travel, has supported WSPA through the Intrepid Foundation since 2000, and regularly seek their expertise to enable them to make informed decisions – and also to educate our travellers and the communities that we visit about animal welfare and environmental conservation. While we once included elephant rides or entertainment venue visits, we’re now working with rehabilitation and sanctuary facilities. We hope that the increased patronage to commendable venues like this will help encourage others to lift their standards.

The change has been popular with our travellers, who want to know that their travel choices are not causing harm. The announcement has already had a very positive response in international media, and on our social media platforms. A blog post on the decision has been our most popular ever.

To read more about the decision on the blog visit: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/why-not-ride-elephants

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