I went down to the river today – Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage Kandy,Sri Lanka

Bathroom with a view!

So Cute !!!!

Pinnawala, about 90Km from Colombo towards Kandy is the home to some 60 or more elephant orphans. Started in 1972 the Elephant Orphanage was relocated to at the present site in 1975 Bathing time at Ma Oya just in front of the orphanage is sharp at 10.00am and 2.00pm. Feeding time is about and hour earlier.

It seemed like a long journey, getting up at a ridiculous time, negotiating a price for a cyclobike, driving along dusty roads from Kandy to Pinnawala in the cold.  But we organised it, headed off, arrived, paid our money and went in.   The compound was dusty red and the elephants were hanging around in apathetic groups.   The handlers were trying to rip the tourists off for pictures with the elephants (ignore them) and it looked like we had travelled a long way for very little.    But then it was bath time.   The elephants shuffled around in anticipation and eyes started to sparkle.  They formed a queue (very British), the little ones curling  their trunks around the tails of their brothers and sister,  then crocodialled down to the river.

As you can see the babies had a ball – as did the adults!

Bathing took a couple of hours and there was plenty of time to take photos, have a drink and eat something but it was had to tear myself away from the cavorting animals.  Was it worth it?  Of course – the photos say it all.

6 thoughts on “I went down to the river today – Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage Kandy,Sri Lanka

  1. gorgeous photos…I just got back from Kenya and the Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, which I suppose is twinned with Pinnawala. No bathing, but the orphans were being bottle fed a special elephant formula. The orphanage nurtures them for 2 years and then reintroduces them to the wild.
    Brake for elephants!

  2. The absolutely, most brilliant thing in the world is watching ellies swimming and bathing! They love being in the water, especially the babies! Such utter abandonement to pleasure and trunk curling joy ;D

  3. I’m so glad you posted your Pinnawella visit – I just can’t get enough of those orphans! And your photos are wonderful – full of the zest and playfulness of the babies and adolescents playing in the water with such abandon. Ah, must get myself back soon, it’s been too long. Last time I was there I took Ma. She was 97, and the mahouts made such a fuss of her I’d forgotten how craven they can be with ‘foreigners’. I’m so glad the elies made you forget the less than promising start:)

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