Visitor Safety and Regulations

Khao Yai National Park is in a very perfect state of nature. To conserve the forest ecosystems and the wildlife as much as possible for future generations, and for the safety of visitors to the National Park,
you are recommended to strictly comply with the National Park’s advice. 
 

Inside the National Park await a range of activities and tourist attractions for which the rules of conduct are different. You are recommended to study the relevant information carefully for the greatest enjoyment of your visit and to protect nature in its pristine and beautiful state.

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Please bring your litter home
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Not the bonfire in the area
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No polystyrene or toxic waste allowed
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Keep noise to a minimum
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Do not feed or touch wild animal
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Do not take out plants, animals and other forest product
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Do not write on any surfaces
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No pets allowed, they disturb wildlife
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No smoking. Except in designated area
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Do not collect wood or twigs
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Do not use drones without permission
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No alcohol allowed in the National Park

If you meet elephants

Khao Yai National Park is a place where you can see wild elephants close-up, especially by the side of the road, or even in the road.

As construction of the road has severed the elephants’ foraging trails which were taught to them by their ancestors, some parts of the road have to be shared between elephants and vehicles.

For the safety of both elephants and visitors, Khao Yai requests visitors to strictly cooperate with the following advice:

 

 

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Good mood

Ears flap


Gad mood

Ears will stick out

Good mood

Tail is swaying


Bad mood

Tail not swaying

Good mood

Trunk swinging


Bad mood

Trunk stock still and staring at you

 

Try and detect the elephant’s mood

Elephant in a good mood

Ears flap and tail is swaying, trunk swinging from side to side, or is grabbing branches to eat, without paying people much attention. Elephants will charge someone that is annoying them in close range about 2 or 3 times. If they cannot catch up, they will give up and stop running. A good-tempered elephant will not attack, even if a car drives close to them.

 

Elephant in a bad mood

Ears will stick out, tail not swaying, trunk stock still and staring at you as if to charge. If the elephant is angry or suspicious, such as a cow with a calf, they may attack something bothering them, even if it is far away.

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What to do if you see an elephant on the road?

  1. Stop the car at least 30m from the elephant. If the elephant approaches, escape by reversing, taking due care. Wait until the elephant has left the road before proceeding past it.
  2. Don’t use the horn, make any noise to annoy the elephant or try driving the elephant away, as you may anger the elephant and cause it to approach you. Wild elephants have exceptionally sensitive hearing and the sharp sound of a horn may startle or anger them.
  3. Don’t use flash photography as this may startle the elephant when close and make the elephant interested in you and approach you. Once an elephant has become startled, it wears off slowly.
  4. Always keep your engine running to escape if necessary. The low rumble of the engine will not startle or stress the elephant, as it is the familiar sound of a car.
  5. If you encounter an elephant at night, keep your headlights on to conveniently see the elephant’s mood and the distance between you and the elephant. Don’t use your indicators as this light will be seen by the elephant and may attract their interest, causing them to approach you.
  6. If you are surrounded by elephants, stay calm and collected. If it is night-time, dip your headlights, do not use indicators and move the vehicle in the direction that there are less elephants. Even if you have to get close to or push past a herd of elephants, don’t switch off your engine or your headlights under any circumstances, and drive very slowly, trying to keep your engine as quiet as possible.
  7. Don’t stop your car to look at elephants, as there may be another vehicle following you and you will block the road, which might be the cause of an attack on you rather than the car.
  8. Don’t park your car to get close up shots of elephants, as you might not be able to run back to your car in time. Always remember that elephants move together in family groups or herds.
  9. When a cars are in a line, drivers must act in solidarity. Whether a car is close to or far away from elephants, anyone may be in an incident. If a car ahead shows reversing lights, the car behind should reverse carefully.

If you see a solitary elephant, that doesn’t mean that there are no others in the area. A herd of elephants may be scattered and foraging in the forest on either side, and they can get together very fast.

An elephant’s most sensitive senses are its ears, nose and eyes. If the engine is turned off, they will come close to get a better look, smell and touch. When elephants approach, it may be just a little tap to them, but because of their great strength, your vehicle may sustain significant damage.

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