There's An Ecolodge In Chiang Mai Where Elephants Can Come Right Up To Your Bedroom Window

The sanctuary provides a safe haven for elephants rescued from years of abuse in the tourism industry.

Cover image via Chai Lai Orchid & The Chai Lai Orchid (Facebook)

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Ever dreamed of hanging out with gentle giants and chilling in a place so beautiful it looks straight outta a postcard?

Well, pack your bags because Chai Lai Orchid in Chiang Mai, Thailand is about to be your new happy place.

Image via Chai Lai Orchid

Just about an hour's drive from Chiang Mai's airport, this nature retreat offers cosy rooms and private villas surrounded by lush greenery.

Chai Lai Orchid is a unique social enterprise combining eco-conscious hospitality with elephant conservation and the empowerment of marginalised women.

By addressing the complex issues of elephant exploitation and human trafficking in the region, Chai Lai Orchid partners with a nearby elephant sanctuary, allowing guests to interact with elephants in a respectful and ethical way.

Image via Chai Lai Orchid

The sanctuary provides a safe haven for elephants rescued from years of abuse in the tourism industry

Forget elephant rides or degrading shows; the focus here is on observing and understanding the elephants' natural behaviours, and even participating in their daily mud baths.

From your bedroom window to a cute bathtub setup or balcony platform, you can feed the elephants breakfast in the mornings.

Your stay can also include a special photography session in these dreamy settings, where you can meet the friendly giants!

Image via Chai Lai Orchid
Image via Chai Lai Orchid
Image via Chai Lai Orchid

You can book a private jungle trip for a once-in-a-lifetime experience of spending one-on-one time with the elephants, learning to communicate with them, and swimming together in the Mae Wang River

Image via Chai Lai Orchid

At the ecolodge, there's also a pool for you to take a dip in and other on-site activities, such as waterfall treks and visits to hidden jungle temples.

You can even host a small wedding reception or renewal of vows on the premises with the majestic creatures joining in!

The plight of elephants isn't the only concern addressed by Chai Lai Orchid.

The founders also tackle the vulnerability faced by women, particularly from ethnic minorities such as the Karen and Kayan communities.

They provide jobs and training for these women, who work in the hotel, manage the shop selling handmade crafts, and join educational programmes about gender equality.

The lodge uses eco-friendly practices throughout its operations, and 100% of the proceeds from its tourism activities are channelled into their Daughters Rising programme, a local anti-trafficking initiative.

Image via Chai Lai Orchid

Watch this adorable video of a mama elephant and calf bathing in the river together at the ecolodge:

So, if you're looking for your next holiday, consider this bamboo jungle hideaway

By booking your stay, you won't just secure a hotel room — you'll also support elephant conservation, empower women, and promote social responsibility in the tourism industry.

Image via Chai Lai Orchid

Prices per night are between THB2,900 (RM371) and THB3,200 (RM410) for three people.

Find out more about Chai Lai Orchid by visiting the website, Instagram, or Facebook.

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