Elephant Nature Park is a 800-hectare (2,000-acre) sanctuary and rescue centre for elephants in the Northern Thailand, Chiang Mai Province, approximately 60 kilometres (37 mi) from Chiang Mai City. Founded in the 1990s, the project's aim is to provide sanctuary for distressed elephants from all over Thailand. Set in a natural valley, bordered by a river, and surrounded by forested mountains the sanctuary and surrounding area offers a glimpse of rural life.
Its founder, Sangduen "Lek" Chailert, was born at a remote mountain community in Northern Thailand in the 1960s. Her maternal grandfather was a tribal man of the forest and Lek's jungle forays with him led to an early understanding of the wonders of nature. When Lek was young, her family cared for an elephant which became a close companion to Lek. This affection led to working with elephants in the forests. She obtained a university education.
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