Elephant Ride at Amber Fort
A good place to take an elephant ride is the Amber Fort in Jaipur. The Amber Fort is a palatial complex and is located in the outskirts of Jaipur (11 km away from it) and is one of those monuments that every tourist who goes to India cannot fail to see. We talked about it in our previous post, as well as on our Jaipur Property page, where we spoke for the first time about the elephant rides and wonderful things that can be done in Jaipur.
Decorated with traditional paintings, these elephants are a magnificent means of transport to ascend the slopes that climb the hillside on which the Amber Fort stands. The elephant rides to Amber Fort lasts between 20 minutes to half an hour (Elephant ride at Amber Fort costs Rs 1.000 for two people). The one that takes more or less time to climb up to the fort depends on the rush that can be found. The rates that are used for elephant rides are set by the government.
To ascend the hills that lead to the Amber Fort, around 80 elephants are used to transport about 900 visitors a day. Law and custom determine that the same elephant cannot make more than a certain number of trips per day so that the animal does not get exhausted with a harmful excess of work and to avoid the animal abuse.
Although the activity of elephant walking is widespread in India, the fact is that more and more voices are rising against it. One of those associations is “Save the Elephants”. This association proclaims on its website that its mission is “to ensure a future for elephants and maintain the beauty and ecological integrity of the places where they live” to, finally, “develop a tolerant relationship” between the human being and the elephant. Save the Elephants warns that the elephant could become extinct in a single generation. Although Save the Elephants, founded by Iain Douglas-Hamilton in 1993, is based in Kenya and focuses mainly on the rescue and salvation of the African elephant and on stopping the illegal trade in ivory, Indian elephants are also a source of concern for this organization of environmental character.
The elephant defense organizations argue in their argument that they are torn from their family at an early age, they suffer from violent domestication, many elephants cannot resist the violence of such domestication and they die because of it; young animals with a body that is not yet developed are used in rides, they have little access to water while carrying out trips in which they carry people, they spend too many hours chained, they suffer stress, they receive blows in sensitive places likes ears and eyes, which are not designed to support large weights on their shoulders, which suffer malformations, their feet are not designed to walk on hard surfaces, which have a very sensitive skin…
Lovers of elephants who wish to enjoy their sight but refuse to use them for a tourist activity such as taking an elephant ride can choose to see elephants in freedom in both the natural park of Corbett as in the reserve of Periyar National Park.