Overview

In the foothills of Kulen Mountain, lies the Bos Thom Community Forest, 1100 acres of protected forest inhabited by the 14 elephants of Angkor. For 22 years, these elephants have given rides to visitors in the temples of the world heritage site. Today, they roam free in their natural habitat and are living testimony of a changing world.

With 75 remaining captive elephants in Cambodia, the protection of this amazing animal is more critical than ever. A visit to the Kulen Elephant Forest will not only help the elephants of Angkor but all elephants in Cambodia through the KEF’s longer term objectives, for we believe in the power of education and tourism as drivers for conservation.

Our Mission

The elephants at the Kulen Elephant Forest have spent most of their lives working in the tourism industry and are enjoying a long-awaited and well-deserved retirement. Here in the forest, they can finally roam free and unburdened. They will rediscover relationships, natural foods they haven’t eaten in years, and receive the best of care.

Our mission is to provide our residents with a happy and comfortable retirement but also to offer a fun, educational approach to elephant conservation and contribute as much as possible to preserving the remaining elephants of Cambodia.

Setting an Example

Retiring the elephants of Angkor is a major transition in Cambodia’s perception of elephants’ roles in society and culture. We hope that this transition will help inspire elephant owners across Cambodia to look more towards the conservation model as a real alternative.

Re-Population

We hope to pioneer a successful breeding programme for Cambodia’s elephants. With so few remaining in isolated pockets, we must strive to protect genetic diversity to combat inbreeding

Message

Visitors will get a chance to learn the very real implications of elephant conservation in Cambodia. We offer an ethical, pragmatic and scientific rationale to the conservation debate, a message that we hope our visitors will understand and spread.

Support

We aim to provide support and assistance whenever possible to the captive elephant community of Cambodia. Whether it be through advising, educating, resource exchange or hosting elephants in need of care; we are ready to lend a helping hand.

Meet the elephants

Chi Mean

Chi Tan

Chi Tem

Chi Tone

Gom phoy

I Plock

Savath

Chi Ole

Chi Youl

Chi Chlorb

Itok

Kham Song

Thorng Kham

Meet the team

Olivier Ntepp

Sanctuary Manager

Olivier has worked as a veterinarian in various parts of Africa, which allowed him to nurture his passion for not only animals but biodiversity in general. As an experienced horticulturist, Olivier also works to support the sanctuary’s forestry objectives.

Dr. Ronnachit Rungsri

Head Veterinarian

Dr. Ronnachit Rungsri has decades of experience with over a thousand elephants across Thailand and Laos. He is one of Asia’s finest elephant veterinarians and has dealt with all aspects of elephant care, from routine procedures to artificial insemination. As a university lecturer, Dr. Rungsri is a great educator and a formidable source of information for all things elephant.

Oan Kiry

Director

For over 20 years, Mr. Oan Kiry has worked with elephants in the temples of Angkor. Today, he uses his talents to smoothly run the Kulen Elephant Forest’s operations and maintain its relationship with the local community.

 

 

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